Travelling to Bali – island of the Gods
Bali’s airport is called Ngurah Rai and is located south of Kuta. On most airline websites the destination will be listed as Denpasar (the capital of Bali) with the code DPS. Many of the major airlines fly to Bali, most of them indirectly. Some of the most popular airlines are Singapore Airlines, Garuda Indonesia and Malaysia Airlines, as they often have good deals from Europe. From Australia, Jetstar and AirAsia can be good options. There are of course many more airlines and it’s worthwhile to shop around.
Some airlines allow a maximum of 20kg checked-in luggage, others 30kg. You might find that some airlines allow additional weight if you are a diver, it is worthwhile to check with the airline beforehand. Low-cost airlines like AirAsia and Jetstar charge extra for checked-in luggage.
A visa is needed for Bali. Over 60 nationalities are able to get a ‘visa on arrival’. Check your local Indonesian embassy to see if this applies to your country. At the airport you will have to pay US$25 for your 30-day visa. You can also pay this in different common currencies like the Euro. If you are planning to stay longer, you can apply for a visa at the Indonesian Embassy in your country beforehand. Since the beginning of 2010 it is also possible to extend your visa on arrival in Bali for another 30 days; however it is probably easier to already apply for a longer visa in advance.
You can find ATMs practically everywhere on Bali, except for the more remote areas. There are also several ATMs at the airport, amongst others at the luggage belts. The amount you can take is usually limited, however you are able to take out money a couple of times in a row if needed. It is also possible to exchange your money at one of the many money exchangers at the airport. Rates however, don’t tend to be that good here.
You will often find porters at the luggage belts to assist you with your luggage for a fee. You are not obliged to use them. If you would like to, make sure you agree a fee beforehand. Luggage trolleys are available for free and can be found near the luggage belts.
You can take a taxi from the airport to your hotel. When exiting the airport, you will see many taxi drivers keen to sell you their services. Your cheapest option is to ignore them and to go to the taxi desk on your right just outside the exit. They have fixed fees for the different towns on Bali. You will receive a ticket which you can hand to the taxi driver. Usually a taxi driver will already be at the taxi desk to take you. We can also arrange to pick you up from the airport of course, just let us know
Traveling around Bali
There are several ways to travel around Bali. Taxis are very convenient and not very expensive. In the south of Bali, taxis always have a taximeter. In places like Sanur, you also have the option to take a bemo (a small local bus) to travel around in Sanur. A ride will cost you about 5000 rupiah. If you would like to do daytrips to popular places like Ubud, you can also opt for the Perama bus. Tickets for these buses tend to be sold on every street corner and are not expensive.
It is also possible to rent a motor bike, car or bicycle. Please note: you need an international driver’s license if you would like to drive a car or a motor bike on Bali. The costs for a motor bike vary, but you should not pay more than 50,000 rupiah per day. If you are looking to rent for longer, do negotiate on the price. It is very normal to negotiate here in Bali, it is more or less expected. Driving in Bali does require some courage by the way, as the traffic can be manic.
Tips and taxes
It didn’t used to be common to tip on Bali. However, this is increasingly changing. You will often see a service charge included on the restaurant bill these days, sometimes combined with a government tax. Officially all restaurants need to charge government tax. Menus normally indicate whether there are additional charges on top of the published rates. Smaller warungs (Indonesian small restaurants) often don’t charge any government tax.
Being close to the equator, the temperature on Bali tends to be relatively similar throughout the year and hovers around 30oC (86oF). Bali only knows two seasons, the dry season and the wet season. The wet season runs from October to March. Usually this means 1 or two showers a day, often at night or late in the afternoon. You can dive on Bali the entire year. Visibility tends to be better during the dry season.
Contact us now to discuss your dive holiday in Bali!