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Things To Know Before You Go
Airlines Access
Bali’s sole airport is served by 15 international air carriers with Singapore Airlines and Garuda Indonesia providing the highest frequency of service. In addition, there are a large number of Indonesian domestic carriers offering connections to the rest of the Indonesian republic. Most major air carriers are only a short connecting flight away from Bali via major air hubs in Singapore, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Taipei and major airports in Australia and Japan. Virtually every major international air carrier either flies to Bali directly or via one of these nearby air hubs.

Airport
Ngurah Rai International Airport, referred to as “Denpasar” or DPS on air tickets, serves all international and domestic flights. The airport is centrally located in relation to the main tourist areas of the island: 30 minutes to Sanur; 15 minutes to Nusa Dua; an hour to Ubud; 40-50 minutes to Tabanan/Tanah Lot; 20-30 minutes to Kuta. A licensed taxi co-operative operates from the airport with a fixed published tariff (US$2.50-$45.00) to all parts of the island. Those arriving on inclusive tours and group programs are typically met by DMC (Destination Management Company) tour representatives who coordinate transfers.

Airport Service Charge
Rp. 100,000 (the rupiah is the Indonesian currency) per passenger departing on inter-national flights, Rp. 40,000 per passenger on domestic flights.

ATM Machines
Automated Teller Machines (ATM) abound in Bali with many offering international withdrawals on major credit cards.

Baby-sitting
With advance notice, most hotels can arrange baby-sitting services.

Best Buys
Woodcarvings, batik cloth, handmade jewelry, handicrafts, garments, innovative fashions, leather clothing, spices, coffee and tea.

Business Hours
Offices generally follow the 9-to-5 format of the western world. Most government offices, however, are open from 7 a.m. until 3 p.m. and visitors should target 8 a.m. to 12 noon for their visits. Government offices are open Monday to Saturday, closing earlier on Friday and Saturday.

Communications
Email & Internet
Internet connections are readily available with many service providers having local dial-up numbers. Internet cafes, charging reasonable rates, are available in all tourist areas of the island. WiFi services are becoming increasingly common in major tourist areas of the Island.

Telephone and Facsimile
The international dialing code for Indonesia is 62. International roaming facilities can connect cell phone users, except in some of the more remote corners of Bali. Phone cards are available everywhere.
Bali’s directory assistance is 108, or call your hotel operator. Hotels and resorts offer international direct dialing (IDD) services.

Credit Cards
Major credit cards are accepted at most hotels and many businesses. Note that while prices are often advertised in U.S. dollars or Indonesian Rupiah, all credit card sales are transacted in Rupiah. As a result, all final charges shown on your monthly statement will reflect inter-bank exchange rates and possibly even a 1-3% surcharge.

Customs
Weapons, pornography and narcotics are illegal imports. Rupiah currency in excess of Rp5 million cannot be imported or exported without written permission from Bank Indonesia. Visitors may bring in 100 grams of tobacco, 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars, and 1 liter of liquor or wine duty free.

Clothing
Unless your event includes a formal business session or black tie evening, there’s little reason to pack a jacket and tie or formal evening wear. Smart casual attire is suitable for even the island’s most fashionable restaurants and top hotels. Please note that the Balinese typically show regard for each other by dressing neatly. Sarongs and sashes are mandatory when visiting local temples. Your local guide can best advise you in these matters.

Consulates
The following countries offer consular services in Bali: Australia, Austria, Canada, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom and the United States.

Dietary Matters
Most special dietary requirements can be catered to by giving advance notice to your hotel.

Driving
Self-drive car and motorcycle rentals are available for those holding an international driving permit, but Bali’s congested and unpredictable roads are not the place to learn how to ride a motorcycle. Also, Bali’s rules of the road can prove frustrating for the uninitiated. Consider hiring vehicles with drivers at very reasonable rates. All major points of interest are within only a few hours drive.

Electricity
220 volts at 50 cycles alternating current. Most local electrical outlets utilize a two-pin plug.

Pre and Post Programs
LOMBOK - The island of Lombok is a 15 minute flight or a two hour ferry ride from Bali.

JOGJAKARTA - A 45 minute flight from Bali, the cultural hub of Java’s royal court society with easy access to the fabled Borobudur Buddhist temple.

MT. BROMO - The haunting volcanic moonscapes of eastern Java are accessible via Surabaya, a 30 minute flight from Bali.

KOMODO NATIONAL PARK - A world heritage site and home to the world’s largest lizard is accessible by charter flight or several days voyage via a number of affordable small passenger yachts based in Bali or in or around the Komodo-Rinca National Park.

Foreign Exchange
The Indonesian currency is the Rupiah. For best rates and service, exchange foreign currency only at licensed moneychangers or banks. New, uncreased, unstained, un-stapled US$100 bills get the highest rate of exchange. Always insist on a receipt and personally count your money before leaving the counter.

Handicapped Facilities
Facilities for handicapped travelers, although limited, are available. Check with your DMC or hotel for the availability of transport and rooms configured for handicapped travelers.

Meeting & Conference Permits
Hotels and Destination Management Companies can readily arrange the required permits.

 

Insurance
Insurance coverage against illness and accident is highly recommended. Such reputable providers as AIG offer medical evacuation and repatriation, travel accident and outpatient expenses insurance.

Language
Indonesian is the common language of Bali together with Balinese, both spoken by the indigenous population. English is widely used in tourist areas. Qualified foreign language speaking guides and simultaneous interpreters are available.

Medical Facilities
Many hotels maintain clinics and offer the services of house doctors. Several well-equipped and professionally staffed international medical and emergency. assistance outpatient facilities, such as BIMC, operate on a 24-hour 7-days-a-week basis. Bali also has a number of privately run hospitals in addition to Denpasar's main general public hospital (RSUP) at Sanglah with its modern trauma and blood donor facilities.

Population
Bali's population is approximately 3 million, spread across eight regencies. The most populous are the island's southern districts.

Postal Services
The Indonesian postal service has a complete range of mail and parcel services, including Express Mail Service (EMS). Major international courier services such as by DHL operate in Bali.

Religion
Hinduism is the predominant religion of Bali with minorities of Moslems, Christians and Buddhists.

Sea Access
Regular car and passenger ferry service operates between Ketapang (East Java) and Gilimanuk (West Bali). Travel from Bali to adjacent Lombok Island is available on car and passenger ships from the ports of Padangbai and Benoa on Bali's east coast. Lombok is also serviced by fast passenger ships and catamarans. Cruise ships also call at Padangbai or Benoa, depending on their size.

Size and Topography
The Island of Bali covers an area of 5,623 square kilometers. At its widest points the island measures 90 kilometers by 150 kilometers. The highest point on the island is Mount Agung at 3,142 meters.

Time Zone
Bali time is +8 hours from Greenwich Mean time/UTC.

Tipping
Most hotel and restaurant bills include a 10% service charge. An additional gratuity for excellent service and a 10-15% tip to drivers and guides is always appreciated. Airport porters are entitled to Rp 2,500 for each bag carried.

Telephone and Facsimile
The international dialing code for Indonesia is 62. International roaming facilities can connect cell phone users, except in some of the more remote corners of Bali. Phone cards are available everywhere. Bali's directory assistance is 108, or call your hotel operator. Hotels and resorts offer international direct dialing (IDD) services.

Visas
NATIONALS OF MOST COUNTRIES MUST OBTAIN A VISA PRIOR TO ARRIVAL.

For the latest visa information click here
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Tax and Service Charges
An 11% development tax (plus a 10% service charge) is added to most hotel and restaurant bills.

Taxi & Transportation
There are several reputable metered taxi companies operating in Bali. Insist that taxis use their meters or be sure to agree on the fare before you get in. Initial flag fall is Rp 4,000,- while the per kilometer charge is Rp 2,000,- Waiting or standing time is Rp 20,000,- per-hour. Public transport, in the form of small local vans and intercity buses, operate at very reasonable rates.

Television
Indonesia has numerous national television networks, many broadcasting some entertainment and news programs in English. Most hotels offer cable or satellite delivered international TV broadcasts in a number of languages. Consult your hotel for service details.

Water
Water is generally not potable in Bali. Most hotels provide bottled water in each room, often at no additional charge. Bottled water is available everywhere in Bali.

Weather
Bali enjoys a warm tropical climate averaging 25-34 degrees Celsius (77-91 degrees Fahrenheit), depending on the season and altitude. Due to its proximity to the equator, Bali escapes the monsoons and typhoons found either 15 degrees north or south of the equator. A rainy season from approximately November to April often brings late afternoon showers of brief duration, not likely to disrupt scheduled tour programs.

Weights and Measures
Bali operates on the metric system.

Newspapers
The English language Jakarta Post and International Herald Tribune are both printed in Jakarta daily and delivered by air to Bali. International magazines are available at many hotels, bookstores and newsstands. Real time downloads of major newspapers from around the world are now available in Bali.

Pharmacy
Most pharmaceuticals are stocked at Bali's many drug stores. It is recommended that you bring with you copies of eyeglass and medical prescriptions. Also consider bringing details of any significant medical history should a sudden need for local medical treatment arise.

Places of Worship
Many religious denominations are represented in Bali. Schedules of services and locations are maintained at your hotel reception. The Puja Mandala complex near Nusa Dua houses Islamic, Hindu, Buddhist, Roman Catholic and Protestant places of worship in a single shared locale.

Smoking
Public smoking is widely accepted and many Indonesians enjoy smoking. Major brands of imported tobacco products are available. There is a growing sensitivity to the dangers of passive smoke and it's polite to always check before you light up in public settings. Many hotels also offer non-smoking rooms. Those who enjoy smoking should not leave Bali without sampling the aromatic clove cigarettes or kretek loved by Indonesian smokers or the fine cigars produced in Lombok or Central Java.

Health Notice
No vaccinations are currently required for visitors to Bali but cholera, typhoid and tetanus shots are recommended. Note that malarial and dengue fever infections can occur in urban areas. However, cases reported among tourists staying at hotels and resorts where pest control measures are in place are very rare.