In recent years, Bali has become the place to be. Whether you’re on your personal Eat, Pray, Love journey, or you simply want a breathtakingly beautiful holiday, the Island of Gods is sure to conquer your heart. But, at what cost?
As millions of travellers roam around the island that is home to a delicate ecosystem, and take advantage of how affordable life in Bali is, the government is keen to ‘protect the environment and culture’ of the island, according to the Independent.
The country’s tourism and creative economy minister Sandiago Uno revealed that they were considering introducing a tourist tax in April, saying they wanted to shift Bali away from being a low-end holiday destination to a quality tourism hub.
It has since been announced that as of February 14 2024, every person entering the island will have to pay a $10 (£7.70, €8.90, IDR 150,000) fee. It applies to adults and children but not Indonesian tourists, and is a one-time transaction which can be paid electronically upon arrival.
The fee’s launch date is earlier than expected, and the plan for how the funds will be spent in the long term will be released after the 2024 election, according to 7News. The island’s governor, I Wayan Koster, says ‘We will use it for the environment [and] culture, and we will build better quality infrastructure so travelling to Bali will be more comfortable and safe.’
The news follows a slew of recent restrictions on tourism in Bali, including a ban on tourists renting motorbikes and climbing Bali’s mountains. It was also announced that a taskforce to control unruly tourist behaviour would be introduced.
The Indonesian government also said in April that it wants to crack down on illegal workers, which could potentially impact digital nomads. The planned rules will target those who use fake Indonesian IDs or abuse their residence and work visas.
The rise of the tourist tax
Bali isn’t the only destination to have introduced a tourist tax – Venice, Iceland, Amsterdam and Paris have all recently announced they’re upping the fees for visitors. Tourist taxes are one way popular travel destinations can combat problems with overtourism. From capping numbers at popular tourist sites to asking visitors to stay away altogether, read up on all the ways tourist hotspots are keeping overtourism at bay.
Did you see that this is officially the cheapest European capital for digital nomads?
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