Australians heading to Bali will now have to pay a new ‘tourist tax’ to enter the holiday spot, introduced in a bid to curb unruly tourists.
Starting Wednesday this week, all international tourists will pay 150,000 Indonesian Rupiah (about $15 Australian dollars) to pass through Bali’s Ngurah Rai Airport in Denpasar or any of the island’s seaports.
Tourists will have to pay the tax each time they enter the island, in addition to an existing $50 e-visa that is valid from May 2022.
Bali Governor Wayan Koster urged tourists to pay the fee online before leaving for the island to avoid long queues, although you can also pay in cash at the airport.
Koster said the tax will help fund efforts to preserve Bali’s rich “culture and environment” and make the destination less attractive to “cheap” tourists.
International tourists will have to pay an additional A$15 tourist tax to enter Bali (pictured) from February 14 in a bid to preserve the island’s rich “culture and environment”.
The governor had previously said of the introduction of the tax that he hoped it would drive away “cheap tourists who tend to cause a lot of problems”.
Bali officials have been fighting to prevent unruly visitors from behaving disrespectfully towards locals and the environment after Covid-era lockdowns were lifted.
In the year and a half since then, some tourists have been seen circumventing the island’s laws and traditions, including incidents of people appearing naked in front of sacred monuments and urinating in public places.
Officials also claim that the influx of tourists has also left the picturesque island and its environment damaged and in need of government intervention to preserve them.
“Bali’s nature has become a major national and global tourism destination and has indeed made a positive contribution to Bali and nationally, but on the other hand, it has also had a serious negative impact,” said Mr. Koster last year.
“To protect the glory of Balinese culture and the quality of the natural environment, it is very necessary to make concrete efforts in mutual cooperation with all parties related to Bali tourism.”
Bali Governor Wayan Koster urged tourists to pay the tax online before arriving on the island, however it can be purchased in cash upon arrival at Ngurah Rai Airport in Denpasar (pictured)
There are several exemptions to paying the tourist tax, including those for those entering for diplomatic or official purposes, meeting family members, and transport crew members working on ships.
Those who enter the country with temporary or permanent stay cards, or with a golden and student visa, will also be exempt.
Koster previously posted a list of “do’s and don’ts” that will be given to tourists upon entry to remind them of what is acceptable during their stay.
Among the “don’t list,” tourists will be asked not to desecrate sacred sites or pollute the island, such as littering its waterways.
According to the ‘bucket list’, tourists are asked to respect the island’s customs, dress modestly and behave courteously at sacred sites.