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Travel Formalities

 
 

IMMIGRATION
To enter Bali, or Indonesia for that matter you need a passport that has a validity period of at least six more months, and some cases a visa as well. Citizens from Asean (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) do not require a visa, only a valid travel document. Travellers from some thirty countries are also provided with a 60-day tourist visa issued directly upon arrival.

CURRENCY
The local currency is the Rupiah (Rp) which can be found in the following denominations: the notes come in 100, 500, 1.000, 5.000, 10.000, 20.000, 50.000, 100.000; while the coin are in 25, 50, 100, 500, 1.000 rupiah denominations. We recommended to carry US$ cash or travellers cheques.
Credit card and change cards are also accepted in most retail establishments, at hotels and on airlines. In some cases, a service fee is included when charging a purchase to your card. However, when travelling to the village, take Rupiah with you. Keep small change handy when riding in bemo (public minibus) or buying a drink at warung.

LANGUAGE
The Balinese have their own language, but almost all Balinese speak Bahasa Indonesia. English is also widely used throughout the island, but it certainly helps to know a few words or phrases in Indonesian.

CLOTHING
Going to Bali, dress casually. Take light clothes, as the weather is warm-to-hot throughout the year. There are really only two seasons in Bali - the wet or rainy season the rest of the year. But the rains usually fall in short spells.

CUSTOMS & TRADITIONS
Shorts and mini-skirts are not allowed in and around temples. It is a custom to take off the shoes in temples, on festivals grounds and in private houses. We strongly recommended these customs to show your respect for the religious traditions.
Embracings and intimate touchings are not well seen in public. Nude or topless bathing is forbidden.

ETIQUETTE
The Balinese take great pride in their heritage and are happy to have visitors observe ceremonies and traditional dance, providing a few basic rules of etiquette are adhered to. Be discreet, you may use a camera, handy camcorder or tape recorder, but keep your voice down and don't stand in anyone's way. Leave your beach clothes at the beach, temple ceremonies and dances are sacred event for which Balinese done their best attire. Tourists are given a certain latitude in this regard, but women should wear a long skirt and men apair of slacks-sarong will do in either case. Tops should be modest and you need to wear a sash around the waist (larger temple usually keep a stock of sarong and sahes that you may hire). Women who in menstruation period are not allowed to enter the temple.

BARGAINING
Bargaining is a common practice in Indonesia. Done with good humor, you can bring prices down considerably in local markets.

HEALTH
Bali has come a long way in recent years in term of hygiene, but a few points are worth nothing. Stick to bottled water, don't drink from a tap even in the most luxurious resort. Use mosquito repellent and cover up at night. While malaria is not considered a problem in Bali. Eat at established hotels and restaurants. Be sure to guard against sunburn, dehydration, and heat exhaustion.

ELECTRICITY - 220 V AC.