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Bali Set To Focus On Attracting A More ‘Classy’ Kind Of Tourism

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More local leaders in Bali have come out to share their support for a shift towards more high-quality tourism on the island.

The new statements, issued by the Mayor of Denpasar, come just days after Bali Governor Wayan Koster proposed that quotas be created to limit the number of international arrivals to the island.

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Speaking to the press, the Mayor of Denpasar, I Gusti Ngurah Jaya Negara, said that he hopes new policies will be put in place to tighten the number of foreigners allowed to enter Bali as tourists. He noted specifically that restrictions should ensure that only ‘classy’ tourists would be allowed in.

Mayor Negara said, “We have had time to communicate with the Deputy Governor of Bali, who is also the Chairman of PHRI Bali (Restaurant and Hotel Association), that what were are currently pursuing is quality tourists.”

The Mayor suggested that Bali’s mass, cheap tourism model must be ‘changed immediately’ so that tourism can provide economic benefit across Bali, which would benefit all communities.

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Speaking from the People’s Market in Denpasar, alongside the Mayor, the Denpasar City Regional Secretary, Ida Magus Alit Wiradana, explained that the race to the bottom line is having a negative impact on tourism businesses and likely tourist experience too.

He shared, “I saw several hotels that used to cost a minimum of IDR 800,000 per night but are not selling for IDR 400,000.”

He continued to share that with hotel occupancy in some parts of the island still falling below 60% consistently; low room rates make it difficult for hotel entrepreneurs. This, in turn, can also have a negative impact on the tourist experience, and hospitality standards could begin to drop.

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@mariepayraud There are more but these are my personal favorites ☀️ #bali ♬ Runaway – AURORA

Wiradana made a noteworthy proposal; he suggested that the Bali Hotel and Restaurant Association set the prices for hotel room rates.

He explained, “We propose that the PHRI really determines the price of hotel rooms. For example, a three-star hotel should be determined this way…and there should not be the impression [by hotel owners] that they are competing to lower prices in order to gain a market share”.

If this idea takes off, then it would have huge ramifications for tourists, essentially having a series of set rates for hotel rooms.

Hotels and other accommodation options would have to become evermore innovative in order to attract tourists to make bookings, as a set room rate would essentially neutralize potential competition for budget-concious travelers.

@mariepayraud There are more but these are my personal favorites ☀️ #bali ♬ Runaway – AURORA

Wiradana concluded, “The point now is that it is more important that the quality of foreign tourists must be pursued.”

The comments from Mayor Negara and Pak Wiradana come in the days since Governor Koster announced his proposed tourism quotas and garnered support from the 5th President of Indonesia, Megawati Soekarnoputri.

During the Next 100 Years Of Bali conference held last week, President Soekarnoputri explained her observations of misbehaving tourists in Bali.


She said, “How can these foreigners act so arrogantly? This does not mean I am anti-foreigners. I don’t accept such behavior. Why do the Balinese allow such uncouth behavior?”

There is much discussion about the need to attract more ‘quality’ or ‘classy’ tourists to Bali. Yet, there has not been a clear definition shared of what this ideal class tourist would look like, what activities they would do, how much they would spend, and where they would stay.


With the province still keen to hit tourism targets of welcoming 4.5 million tourists this year, its evident that despite conversions suggesting a complete and immediate overhaul in tourist demographic, in actual fact, Bali’s mainstay demographic of well-behaved couples, families, and group travel holidaymakers will still be very much welcome on the island.

While the definition of a classy demographic is still emerging, it is clear how leaders want to see such ‘classy’ tourists behave.


The Bali Provincial government is currently working on creating a series of informational resources dubbed ‘the good tourists guide’ to help visitors to the Island of the Gods understand the do’s and don’ts during their visit.

Similar information has recently been shared by the Indonesian tourism board, Wonderful Indonesia. The information guided visitors on how to dress at temples and reminded tourists to ensure they have the correct licenses before hiring a moped to explore the island.

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Frustrated too

Friday 12th of May 2023

Phuket is trying to deal with this problem with a yellow card system where a second yellows means red and deportation. Problem is they haven't defined what infractions get a yellow and it could be something minor like not wearing a helmet while riding. Tough luck if you have a long term visa


Friday 12th of May 2023

Define "CLASSY" I'm sure they mean Rich. Leaves most Indonesians, Chinese, Aussies, etc at home. Hellooooo Americans, Canadians and Europeans.


Thursday 11th of May 2023

Yeah, Classy! You need to come with a 3-piece suits, a cigar in your hand and a walking stick to avoid pot holes everywhere. Let's do it, sir!😆


Thursday 11th of May 2023

Class and 'classy' are funny concepts... especially in Indonesia...

What the Bali 'elite' don't seem to realise, is that it is mainly the new rich, high end, 'classy' tourists from certain regions that are doing all the behaving badly

"“How can these foreigners act so arrogantly?"

Comes with the territory unfortunately

Another wayward brain fart from local leaders, where the exclusive focus on $$$ clouds all judgement and determines alll outcomes.

It's the obsession on $$$ that has allowed this problem to fester.


Friday 12th of May 2023

@Rika, Accurate reporting.

Colin Jordan

Wednesday 10th of May 2023

You must be kidding..what are you going to only have tourists with a big bank account and live in "upper-class" suburbs?


Thursday 11th of May 2023

@Colin Jordan, What "upper class" suburbs. On my way down to (socalled "upper calss") Sanur Mertasari area on my bike -- the roadside is overflowing with garbage left for weeks without collection. The smell is unbearable.

People need to realize the garbage collection system is getting worse by day and is about to collapse.

Basic infrastructure and services are not working and then tens of "disrespecting" tourists is the big problem? Talk about projection.