Australians traveling to Bali are being warned of an alleged scam in which tourists are being charged to use the airport’s expedited service, which is supposed to be free.
Indonesian authorities arrested five immigration officers at Ngurah Rai International Airport on Tuesday following complaints that they were abusing the priority arrivals lane.
Immigration officials are accused of allowing tourists to use the priority arrival lane in exchange for cash.
Tourists had to pay between 100,000 and 250,000 rupees – between 10 and 25 AUD – per person to get through the airport quickly.
The service, free of charge, is designed to help those who need additional assistance while traveling, including the elderly and pregnant women.
Australians traveling to Bali (pictured) are being warned about an alleged scam in which tourists are being charged to use the airport’s expedited service.
Assistant Special Crimes Officer at the Bali Prosecutor General’s Office, Deddy Koerniawan, said authorities were informed of the alleged scam following complaints from the public.
“It started with public complaints about the misuse of fast-track facilities. That’s why we went to check the ground,” Koerniawan said, according to The sun of Bali.
“Expedited services are free for priority people such as the elderly and pregnant women. However, foreigners who use the accelerated procedure are (being) charged.
Mr Koerniawan explained that there had been an incident of accelerated withdrawals worth 100 to 200 million rupees per month.
“Thanks to this guarantee, the prosecutor’s office managed to obtain a sum of money worth IDR 100 million ($10,000),” Koerniawan said.
“Of course, these profits are illegal and could harm the image of Bandra International Ngurah Rai.”
Authorities have advised tourists arriving in Bali not to pay for a priority service and urged them to report it to the police if airport staff offer to take them quickly for money.
In 2019, Bali airport officials signed an agreement declaring Gusti Ngurah Rai International Airport a “corruption-free zone.”
A statement on the Bali Airport website regarding claims that the government agency is committed to creating a corruption-free zone by improving the quality of public services through governance structuring, systems structuring human resources management, strengthening supervision and strengthening accountability for performance.
Indonesian authorities have arrested five immigration officers at Ngurah Rai International Airport (pictured) for allegedly asking arriving tourists to use the priority lane to speed them through the airport.
It comes after an Australian tourist in Bali warned fellow travelers about a scam at ATMs used on the island.
The traveler shared a photo exposing the scam to a Facebook group popular with Australians traveling to the holiday hotspot.
The photo showed a Commonwealth Bank ATM located in a supermarket in Seminyak – a resort town on the southern tip of Bali, with a hand-written “broken” sign on the machine’s card slot.
The sign is intended to prevent tourists from using the ATM and using another one nearby that is equipped with a suspected card skimming device.
“Just a heads up, a guy wearing a purple shirt keeps putting a ‘broken’ sign on the Commonwealth Bank ATM at Bintang Supermarket,” the man wrote.
“Three or four people came by and went to use the next ATM, but I told them the ATM was fine, so they could use the Commbank one.”
“This guy kept looking at me like he was angry, and as soon as I walked away I saw him put another sign up,” the concerned traveler wrote.