Bali is served by an ever-increasing number of scheduled international air carriers, with Singapore Airlines and Garuda Indonesia providing the highest frequency of service. In addition, there are several Indonesian carriers which offer international connections via domestic hubs, and domestic carriers providing connections to the rest of Indonesia. Most major air carriers are only a short connecting flight away from Bali via major air hubs in Singapore, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Seoul, Tokyo and Taipei. Virtually every major international air carrier either flies to Bali direct or via one of these air hubs. Refer to the preceding Air Links pages for more information.
Airport-International & Domestic
Ngurah Rai International Airport referred to as Denpasar or DPS on air tickets, serves all international and domestic flights. It is centrally located in relation to the islands main tourist areas: 30 minutes to Sanur; 15 minutes to Nusa Dua; 60 minutes to Ubud; 40-50 minutes to Tabanan/Tanah Lot; and 15-30 minutes to Kuta. A licensed taxi co-operative offers service to all island destinations at fixed published tariffs. MICE program passengers are typically met by DMC (Destination Management Company) representatives who coordinate transfers. Airport Service Charge: The charge per passenger departing on international flight is Rp.150.000,- and Rp. 40.000,- per passenger on domestic flight.
Automated Teller Machines (ATM) abound in South Bali, with many offering international withdrawals on major credit cards and bank cards linked to major banking networks.
With advanced notice, most hotels can arrange babysitting services.
Most offices are open 9am - 5pm. Most government offices, however, are open 7 am - 3 pm Monday-Friday, closing earlier on Friday. The period of 8 am - 12 noon is the best time to go to a government office.
Smart, casual attire is suitable for even the islands most fashionable restaurants and top hotels and unless a MICE event includes a formal business session or black-tie evening, theres little reason to pack a jacket and tie or formal evening wear. The Balinese typically show respect for each other by dressing neatly. When visiting local temples sarongs, long pants or long skirts with a sash around the waist are mandatory.
Email and Internet - Connecting and transmitting speeds have improved but can be slower than experienced in other countries. Reliable internet access is available in hotels many of which also offer wireless connections. Internet cafes and kiosks, charging reasonable rates, are available in all areas of the island. Telephone and Facsimile - the international dialing code for Indonesia is 62 and the area code for most of southern Bali is 361, with 362, 363, 365 and 366 used in other parts of the island. Except in some of the more remote parts of the island, international roaming facilities can connect cell phone users. Phone cards are widely available at wartel (public telephone kiosks) where one can also make local, long distance and international calls as well as send and receive faxes.
The following countries offer consular services in Bali: Australia (also serving Canada and New Zealand), Brazil, Britain, Chile, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Slovak Republic, Spain, Sweden& Finland, Switzerland& Austria, Thailand, Timor Leste, and USA.
Major credit cards are accepted at most hotels and many businesses. Note that while prices are often advertised in U.S. dollars or Indonesian rupiah, all credit card sales are transacted in rupiah. As a result, all final charges will reflect inter-bank exchange rates and,in some cases, a 1-4% surcharge.
The Indonesian currency is the Rupiah. Notes range from Rp.1,000 to Rp.100,000 and coins from Rp.50 to Rp.1,000.
Weapons, pornography and narcotics are illegal imports. Rupiah currency in excess of ten million cannot be imported or exported without written permission from Bank Indonesia. Visitors may bring in duty free 100 grams of tobacco, 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars, and one litre of alcohol. Your DMC can facilitate the temporary importation of exhibition materials.
Most special requirements can be catered for by giving advance notice to your hotel or DMC.
Self-drive car and motorcycle rentals are available for those holding an international driving permit, but Balis sometimes congested and unpredictable roads and unfamiliar road rules can prove frustrating for the uninitiated. Consider hiring vehicles with driver, as the rates are very reasonable. All major points of interest are within only a few hours drive.
220 volts at a 50-cycle alternating current. Most electrical outlets utilise a two-pin plug.
For best rates and service, only exchange foreign currency at licensed moneychangers or banks. New, un-creased, unstained, un-stapled US$100 bills fetch the highest rate of exchange.
Bali is part of the Republic of Indonesia, the worlds largest archipelago encompassing over 17,500 islands. Bali is one of Indonesia 33 semi-autonomous provinces with its own provincial government and legislature. The province is further divided into nine regencies.
Facilities for handicapped travellers, although limited, are becoming more readily available. Check with the DMC or hotel for the availability of appropriate transport and rooms.
Indonesia is a developing and as such does not have the same level of sanitation and health-care standards as develop nations. Many travel-related disease are prevalent in Indonesia, including Bali, and it is therefore recommend that travellers to Indonesia consult their doctor regarding travel vaccinations well before they travel. Recommended vaccines for travellers to Indonesia (including Bali): Hepatitis A, Typhoid fever, Flu vaccination (for people over 50 or people with a compromised immune system). See also Medical Facilities.
Free for the taking at the airport, hotels, restaurants and entertainment venues are a number of excellent publications such as Bali & Beyond, Bali Plus, Hello Bali, and the beat. Balis leading DMCs maintain lists of hotels, tours and attractions together with regular updates on island news on their websites: www.destination-asia.com, www.kelanadmc.com, www.balidiscovery.com.
Insurance coverage against illness and accident is highly recommended while in Indonesia. Several reputable providers offer medical evacuation and repatriation, travel accident and outpatient expenses insurance.
Indonesian and Balinese are the common languages of Bali. English is widely used in tourist areas. Qualified foreign-language-speaking personnel including guides and simultaneous interpreters are available.
Many hotels maintain clinics and offer the services of in-house doctors. Several well-equipped and professionally staffed international medical and emergency assistance outpatient facilities, such as BIMC, operate on a 24-hour, 7-day-a-week basis. Bali also has a number of privately run hospitals in addition to Denpasar main general public hospital (RSUP) at Sanglah in Denpasar with its modern trauma and blood donor facilities.
Meeting and Conference Permits
Hotels and DMCs can readily arrange any required permits.
The English-language dailies, Jakarta Post and International Herald Tribune, are both printed in Bali. International magazines and newspapers are also available at many hotels, bookstores and newsstands. Hotel and villa guests now have the option of real-time satellite printing of more than 200 newspapers from around the world.
Most pharmaceuticals are stocked in Bali many pharmacies. It is recommended that guests bring with you copies of optical and medical prescriptions and details of any significant medical history should a sudden need for local medical treatment arise.
Places of Worship
Many religious denominations are represented in Bali. Schedules of services and locations are maintained at your hotel reception. The Puja Mandala complex near Nusa Dua houses Islamic, Hindu, Buddhist, Roman Catholic, and Protestant places of worship in a single shared locale.
Bali population of over nearly four million is concentrated in the islands southern regencies.
The Indonesian postal service offers a range of mail and parcel services, including Express Mail Service (EMS). Major national and international courier services, operate in Bali.
Hinduism is the predominant religion of Bali with minorities of Moslems, Christians and Buddhists. In Bali, as in all of Indonesia, the practice of religion is free and open.
Regular car and passenger ferry services operate between Ketapang (East Java) and Gilimanuk (West Bali), as well as to adjacent Lombok Island from Padangbai on Bali east coast. Cruise ships call at Padangbai or Benoa, depending on their size.
Size and Topography
The Island of Bali covers an area of 5,623 square kilometres. At its widest point, the island measures 90 by 150 kilometres. The highest point on the island is Mount Agung at 3,142 metres.
Bali is in the process of implementation new island-wide regulations prohibiting smoking in public area, and places of business. While these rules are not yet uniformly enforced, it is wise to refrain from smoking in public areas such as airports, restaurants, hotel lobbies and shopping centres.
Tax and Service Charges
An 11% development tax plus a 10% service charge is added to most hotel and restaurant bills.
Taxis and Transportation
Taxis, including several reputable metered taxi companies, are widely available. Public transportation, in the form of small local vans (bemo) and intercity buses, operates at very reasonable rates. There is also a new public bus system, Sarbagita, operating between BatuBulan and Nusa Dua which is comfortable, reliable and inexpensive.
Indonesia has numerous national television networks, many broadcasting some entertainment and news programs in English. Most hotels offer satellite-delivered, international TV broadcasts in a number of languages.
Bali time is +8 hours from Greenwich Mean Time / UTC.
Most hotel and restaurant bills include a 10% service charge. An additional gratuity for excellent service and a 10-15% tip to drivers and guides is always appreciated. Airport porters are entitled to Rp3,000 for each bag carried.
See separate information on Visas to Indonesia on the following page.
Water is generally not potable. Most hotels provide bottled water in each room, often at no additional charge. Bottled water is available cheaply everywhere in Bali.
Bali enjoys a warm tropical climate averaging 25-34 degrees Celsius (77-91 degrees Fahrenheit), depending on the season and altitude. Due to its proximity to the equator, Bali escapes the typhoons found 15 degrees north or south of the equator. The rainy season from approximately November-April, which often brings brief late afternoon showers, is not likely to disrupt scheduled events.
Weights and Measures
Indonesia and Bali operate on the metric system.
Public Holidays 2013
Public Holidays are subject to change. At the time of publication, the following information was available.
January 1 : New Years Day
January 24 : Birthday of Prophet Muhammad SAW
February 10 : Chinese New Year (Imlek)
March 12 : HariNyepiCakra (Day of Silence-Bali only)
March 27 : Galungan (Bali only)
March 29 : Good Friday (Easter)
April 6 : Kuningan (Bali only)
May 9 : Ascension of Jesus Christ
May 25 : Hari Raya Waisak
June 6 : Ascension of Prophet Muhammad SAW
August 5-7 : Holiday prior to Idul Fitri
August 8-9 : Idul Fitri
August 17 : Indonesian Independence Day
October 14 : Holiday prior to Idul Adha
October 15 : Idul Adha
October 23 : Galungan (Bali only)
November 2 : Kuningan (Bali only)
November 5 : Islamic New Year
December 25-26 : Christmas & holiday following Christmas
Entry to Indonesia
Every visitor to Indonesia needs a visa or free-stay permit and must have a passport valid for at least 6 months at the time of arrival, be able to demonstrate sufficient means to live while in Indonesia and have return or onward tickets. A VISA ON ARRIVAL (VOA)can be obtained by passport holders of:
A 30-day VOA is US$25 payable in cash or by Visa or Mastercard. VOA can be extended for 30 days but are not convertible to another class of visa. Arrival is day one and departure must be on or before day 30 or 60. Overstays cost US$20 per day up to sixty days. Persons overstaying more than 60 days are liable to 5 years imprisonment or a fine of 25 million rupiah (US$ 2778).
Free 30-Day Stay Permits
Visitors holding valid passports of the following 11 countries and territories are eligible for a free 30-day non-extendable visa-free short visit permit upon arrival.
Persons not eligible for a free stay permit or a VOA can apply for a tourist visa at the closest Indonesian embassy abroad. Tourist visas are normally valid for a 60-day visit.
A sponsoring party in Indonesia must make an application to the Indonesian department of immigration for the issuance of this visa by an Indonesian embassy abroad to applicants visiting Indonesia for normal business activities (including attending a conference/seminar) which do not involve taking up employment or receiving any form of payment whilst in Indonesia. This visa, valid for a stay of 60 days, can be for a single or for multiple visits.
DMCs can arrange group desks and express immigration handling for meetings and conferences.
Changes In Policy And Regulations
These can occur at any time with little notice. Consult a DMC or an Indonesian embassy or consulate prior to departure.
Information valid as of October 2012