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Bali’s New Tourism Tax Could Be Spent On Resolving Traffic Issues

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In 2024 Bali will be introducing a mandatory tourism tax for all international visitors to the island. The controversial new policy has been the focal point of significant public discussion.

Local leaders, business owners, and tourists who regularly visit Bali have a vast array of opinions on the upcoming tax levy. 

In mid-July, Bali’s Governor Wayan Koster announced that the long-speculated tourism tax would come into effect in 2024.

Traffic in Bali Moped Grab GoJek.jpg

He announced that he and his provincial government had submitted the necessary legislative documents in order to bring the localized tourism tax into effect by the middle of next year. 

Speaking at the time of the announcement Governor Koster said that the new tourism tax is vital if the island wants to promote and protect its cultural and natural heritage, as well as develop a new era of high-quality and sustainable tourism.

@wanderwithivana I’ve never seen anything like this in my life 😂😱 #bali #canggu #balitraffic #balitravel #travel #traveltok #fyp #pov ♬ pass the dutchie sped up – vevonix

Governor Koster explained, “Bali’s nature has become a major national and world tourism destination.” 

He added that tourism “has indeed made a positive contribution to Bali itself and [Indonesia] nationally, but on the other hand, it has also had a serious negative impact.”

The mandatory tourism tax is necessary, in Governor Koster’s view, “in order to protect the glory of Balinese culture and the quality of the natural environment.”

He also shared that the tax “is very necessary to make concrete efforts in mutual cooperation with all parties related to Bali Tourism.”

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@toniaguiar__ In #seminyak we walk 🏝️ #bali #indonesia #traffic ♬ original sound – Badr

During the initial announcement, he did not outline a proposed budget for how and where funds generated by the tourism tax will be spent. The tax is set to be introduced at IDR 150,000 per person, including children.

The fee will only be payable in Indonesian Rupiah in order to combat any fluctuations in the international currency exchange. 

Since Governor Koster has yet to outline how the tourism tax will be spent, other local leaders, business owners, residents, and tourists are speculating about how best the funds can be used.

It is a well-acknowledged fact that Bali is struggling to get a grip on its mounting waste management issues and growing traffic congestion.

These are both problems that many local stakeholders feel could and should be fixed through the tourism tax.

@carlaoliveirra Canggu shortcut saves lives, but it has a lot of stress too 😂 #bali #fybali #fyindonesia #balitravel #fy #Balitips #canggu #canggubali #canggushortcut #balitiktok #traffic #balitraffic #canggutraffic ♬ Ooh Ahh (My Life Be Like) [feat. Tobymac] – Grits

Local tourism leader Wisnu Arimbawa has spoken to reporters about how he and his teams hope to see the tourism tax spent.

Bali is set to welcome over 4.5 million international tourists this year, and targets will likely be even higher in 2024.

With this in mind, leaders in Bali can expect to have access to billions of rupiah worth of tax revenue to utilize in a way that benefits local communities and helps improve tourism experiences on the island. 


Arimbawa told reporters, “I think the levy can later be used to deal with both problems of congestion and garbage.” He shared that traffic issues in Bali are contributing negatively to the overall tourism experience on the island.

He feels that new infrastructure should be put in place to help improve the quality and sustainability of transportation on the island. 

Arimbawa noted how the most congested points on the island are only getting worse. And that these traffic congestion hotspots impact the vast majority of tourists at some point during their stay.

He used the examples of the Ngurah Rai Bypass Road area around the road to Sunrise Beach.

Of course, no mention of traffic congestion in Bali would be complete without acknowledgment of the issues in Ubud, Canggu, the Uluwatu area, and its surroundings.

Traffic Congestion in Canggu

He also called on leaders to assign a decent portion of the tax revenue to tackle the mounting waste management issues on the island. This is a sentiment shared by many leaders and tourism stakeholders in Bali. 

Shortly after the announcement of the new tourism tax, the Indonesian Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment, Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, issued a press statement to say that he hoped Bali’s tourism tax would be used to help resolve the island’s “uncontrollable” plastic waste problem

Many local communities are also keen to see traffic and waste management resolved through the revenue generated by the tourism tax.

Many tourists and Bali lovers are concerned that the tourism tax must be collated and spent in a transparent way.


Governor Koster has assured the public that the tourism tax will be spent in a transparent way.

He told the media, “The collection will be carried out via electronic payment and must be done before or when entering the arrival gate in Bali. 

He added, “Results from levies will be managed in a transparent manner in accordance with statutory provisions with the principle of openness, which allows foreign tourists and the public to know and gain access to the widest possible information about the management and utilization of levies for foreign tourists.” 

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Sunday 3rd of September 2023

Just come back from Bali total cost of holiday was $ 6100 if have to pay $400 tax for 3 people 1 been a child won't pay friends just come back from Vietnam had great holiday 5 star accommodation drinks cheaper every thing cheaper $2100 cheaper than I spent so sorry Bali Vietnam thialand next holiday for use feel sorry for nice Balinese people they will suffer government will prosper

Peering in

Friday 18th of August 2023

Bali has had decades to have infrastructure in place and to gradually improve as and when required. Putting money in the present corrupt paws isn’t going to solve anything but at least we can all gloat and point fingers at Co-star when he’s finally rumbled.


Sunday 20th of August 2023

@Peering in, Would around 350 years be enough? 75 down, 250+ to get it better 'O Say can you see........' RI is even now way in front.

Live Life

Friday 18th of August 2023



Sunday 20th of August 2023

@Live Life, Thx.


Friday 18th of August 2023

'...He (Koster) announced that he and his provincial government had submitted the necessary legislative documents in order to bring the localized tourism tax into effect by the middle of next year....'

Calm down. This tax and all of the other proposed measures are dependent on some important relevant factors.

1. My understanding is all Indonesian parliaments and assemblies are now in recess leading up to the February elections. 2. For this matter (and others) Koster would need to be reelected, and a majority of new members vote to approve. 3. That's not a given. RI is no longer collegiate voting. It's one man, one vote. 4. There's electorates where some of the measures would have direct negative impact. Smart local candidates will focus on that. 5. Pork Barreling. Drive around and look at the huge amount of road, canal, being suddenly done. most Funny, seems to be in PDIP controlled areas. That leaves a lot of other pissed off people. 6. On the things that matter to the locals, bugger all has been done. The rubbish collection and disposal problem has been put in the too hard basket. Major traffic problems are being ignored (unless you're an egotistical nobody then then you get a siren blaring escort). Schools are short staffed so they charge fees to pay for extra staff. 8.Unlicensed buildings, be it houses, villas, restaurants, hotels, pondoks, night clubs.....It's not the flavour of the month Russians fault.(check out the numbers, most are other RI's. Even the USA Orange Idiot tried) It's the failure of to enforce or block restrictions.

So, after all this analysis what does it mean?

Yes, it's a dog's breakfast.

But name me another country ruling itself for 70+ years after 300+ years of colonisation, with the huge diversity of land mass, language, culture, religion, social structure....that has achieved what RI has?

Don't even bring up European places, you'll lose.

Besides, why would they want to be them? Let them make their own mistakes then find their own appropropriate cultural solutions.


Tuesday 29th of August 2023

@Ned, I get paid by the extreme pleasure of coming here for over 30 years and living here for over 10. That's in Bali mind you. Not amongst tourists or whingeing expats. I'm fully aware of the problems we have, and yes sometimes they give me the shits. But they're more than off balanced by the joy of being here. I want to see Bali grow as a Balinese place maintaining it's traditions, values and social structure. Not what expats and tourists think it should be. Bali has the right to find it's own solutions and how to carry them out. Besides. Read your post and most of the many whinges from many regulars. Overwhelmingly they've achieved nothing.


Tuesday 22nd of August 2023

@Shorty, How much do you get paid to feed rubbish back to these comments which are all very true and from people who actually care about Bali?


Thursday 17th of August 2023

How about enforce the already existing rules? It's all there, god forbid if Dishub, polisi lalu Lintas and Satpol PP would actually do what they're paid to do. No more dickhead parking or kaki lima on roadside and Lawan arus would make a huge difference. Wtf. Some many Dinas otak kosong. Keep dealer better stock up on Rubicons in anticipation.


Friday 18th of August 2023

@Neol, Yepp. Even worse on "local main roads" like Jl Tukad Balian; 1. Business do not have enough parking space inside workshop so use roadside as "business" parking 2. Businesses ignore setback, so they run their business halfway onto the road 3. All "sidewalks" occupied by parked vehicles and businesses.

I try to bike around sometimes but it is really dangerous as sidewalks and cars/motors are parked halfway onto the road everywhere.