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Governor Of Bali Formally Bans Tourists Hiring Mopeds Directly From Locals

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The Governor of Bali has made a series of announcements that will heavily impact travelers planning their trip to the island.

In the last few weeks, the provincial government has proposed a ban on all tourists driving on the island; following a press conference on Sunday evening, Governor Wayan Koster has taken the first steps in formalizing the ban. 

Rent Moped Bali.jpg

Back in mid-March, Governor Koster made a series of monumental announcements that proposed changes to the way in which tourists could experience the island.

The first was a proposed revocation of the visa on arrival for Russian and Ukrainian citizens, which has not been implemented.

The second was the deployment of a task force whose mission is to crack down on foreigners breaking the conditions of their visas by working illegally and operating businesses without a license. 

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The third proposal was, perhaps, the most impactful of all for tourists. Governor Koster announced in March that he wanted to ban all foreigners from driving in Bali.

This proposed policy would include foreign tourists and ex-pats and would ban any non-Indonesians from driving motorcycles or cars on the island. 

Late on Sunday, 28th May, Governor Koster made a further set of announcements, including the first steps in bringing this ban on tourists driving in Bali into law. 

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The initial legislative change, as laid out by Governor Koster in March, would require all foreigners to hire a private driver for all their transportation needs. This ban would mean that tourists in Bali could not hire a moped to explore the island, irrespective of whether they had an international or even local driving license.

Governor Koster said, “Those tourists have to travel, walk, and use cars to travel. It is no longer allowed to use a motorcycle or anything that is not from a travel agent.”

This announcement was received with a mix of responses from both locals and frequent visitors to Bali. Some local motorcycle rental owners urged the provincial government to rethink the ban.

Other regular tourists, digital nomads, and ex-pats in Bali began asking how the process would work, noting that in many popular areas of the island, this would trigger extreme traffic congestion.

The ban, in its initial proposed form, would also then make it even harder for tourists to use GoJek and Grab services since these online taxi services are not recognized as formal travel agents. 


On Sunday, Governor Koster called local residents in Bali to play their part in ensuring that tourists obey the rules and regulations of the island.

He said he urged local residents not to facilitate foreigners in committing acts that violate both Indonesian law and local Balinese customs. 

Governor Koster told reporters, “Bali residents are prohibited from facilitating foreign tourists who wish to commit activities that are inconsistent with their visa permits or the provisions of law.”


In specific reference to the hiring of motorcycles, Governor Koster said that local residents who are not formally registered as members of trade agencies or the transportation renting association are not permitted to rent two-wheeling vehicles to foreign tourists. 

This is huge news, both for local people and for tourists. While there are hundreds of companies that are part of the transportation renting association in Bali, there are just as many informal operations renting motorcycles to tourists, digital nomads, and ex-pats in Bali.

These more informal motorcycle rental enterprises provide many families with their basic income and come as a result of huge investments and loans. 


Moving forward, until any further ban on tourist driving is written into legislation, tourists can only hire a motorcycle from a business that is registered with the relevant trade agencies or the transportation renting association in Bali.

Tourists cannot simply rent a motorcycle from a guesthouse owner, local friend, or rental owner who is not a formally registered motorcycle rental company. 

Tourists must also have an international driving license that covers them for driving motorcycles and relevant insurance documents.

Traffic police across Bali are working in conjunction with the tourism task forces to crack down on tourists violating the rules of the road. This comes as part of a bigger, island-wide commitment to establish higher-quality tourism in Bali.

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Saturday 8th of July 2023


Get rid of this corrupt governor.


Saturday 24th of June 2023

So I can still borrow my friends scooter though? As long as I don't "rent" it from him?

I can see many loop holes in this low IQ rule from a low IQ leader.

David Hooper

Saturday 24th of June 2023

This is bull$hit, I have ridden bikes in Bali for 10 years and always obeyed the laws, I always wear a helmet, mainly for my own safety, I am always cautious of other road users and in some cases pedestrians. I own my own bike there Vario 150. This is crap that I cannot ride my own bike. You are penalizing all non indonesians, because of the idiots that drive crazy, drive whilst intoxicated and drive without helmets. To be honest why don't you clean up your own backyard as well, the corrupt Polisi that use the tourists to fill their pockets with cash only fines with no receipts. Indonesians that do not wear helmets and or don't have licences, of which the Polisi ignore mainly because they make no money out of stopping them. This is extremely sad that everyone has to be penalized for a minority of idiots not complying. How about 4 or 5 people on one bike, something you see regularly, or the adult wearing a helmet and the child on the bike not wearing anything, I have seen numerous times the Polisi totally ignore them as they ride past. You have extremely short memories, you have just come out of Covid restrictions, where a lot of New Zealanders and Australians helped support Balinese families through this period. It will be easier just to start visiting and supporting Thailand, Philippines, Vietnam and Cambodia from now on. Your loss Indonesia, I have been talking with a lot of New Zealanders and Australians who feel the same way I do. In the last 10 years I have spent in and supported Bali with well over $10,000 Aus per year (100 million rupiah). NO MORE!!! Until the stupid restrictions are lifted!!!

J schneider

Thursday 22nd of June 2023

Theres some very beautiful places in lombok.. love bali but when tourism takes over and $ is # 1.everything changes.. please dont jeapordize your island and its culture for $ . You have the most beautiful people in the world. Be careful what you wish for. Before you know it , it will be to late.

J schneider

Thursday 22nd of June 2023

Lombok still rent motorbikes.. i think i will make it my #1 go to destination. Just vist bali for a