Kuta Traditional Village has been vocal about its intention to implement an entry fee for visitors to the world-famous Kuta Beach. Despite plans being full speed ahead, Indonesian Tourism Minister Sandiaga Uno has urged the committee to rethink their approach.
Speaking at the Bali Export Shop MSME Campus earlier in the week, Minister Uno said, ‘Maybe what we can consider again in the next 2-3 years is how tourism in Bali becomes quality and sustainable with better approaches, sustainable tourism products’.
He said he wants Kuta Traditional Village first to collect the taxes, tariffs, and levies implemented this year. He is concerned that implementing an entry fee for Kuta Beach may be offputting for travelers.
@sholee68 The last time I’ve been here there wasn’t many peddler’s. Now it looks commercialised that it so reminded me of Phuket. #baliindonesia #sholeeschillpill #kutabeach #vitaminsea ♬ Vacation – Dirty Heads
He continued to explain that he wants to see data for the end of 2022 before any such tariff is implemented. He said, ‘Tourism has just risen, but don’t make too many decisions that might burden domestic tourists’. He explained that Kuta Beach is one of the most popular destinations in Bali and much loved by both domestic and international visitors.
He suggested that Kuta Traditional Village and other tourism agents in the area should focus on improving the quality of the tourism offering to improve public image and generate more income that way.
@yin.zen My recent trip to Bali with my love was something I will never forget! 🗺️ We spent our first two nights in Kuta and these are some of the amazing moments we shared 💚 Although we may be home now, we will always have these memories 🍃 . . . . . . . . , . #bali #kutabeach #kuta #kutabeachbali #holiday #vacation #vacation #flight #thesememories #memories ♬ These Memories – Hollow Coves
Minister Uno used Bhutan as an example of sustainable and high-quality tourism. The tourism model in Bhutan and Bali could not be further apart, but Minister Uno’s sentiment is clear. He drew parallels between Bhutan and Bali using the example that the Himalayan Kingdom is aggressively focusing on increasing the number and length of stay of foreign tourists. Bhutan has recently changed its tourism fees, increasing the daily set fee.
@fizzyforreal #bali #sunset #kuta #seminyak #canggu #beach #beachsunset #waves #surfing ♬ until i found you – favmusicvibes
Depending on the group size, tourists to Bhutan must pay between $200-250 (depending on the season) a day for the sustainable tourism fee and must travel as a part of an officially recognized tour. This takes the daily minimum spend up to USD 450 for a solo traveler, including tours and hotel costs. Something that Bali would have to undergo a kind of revolution to implement. That said, some small tourism levies are already in place, like the daily tourism fee for visitors to the Nusa Islands.
Minister Uno didn’t rule out the implementation of sustainable tourism fees but was clear that any decision moving forward needs to be informed by data. He ended his comments on the matter by saying, ‘In my view, we from the Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy, we want to see the data until the end of the year before implementing policies that burden tourists’.
Minster Uno’s comments may be a saving grace for Kuta. Local tourism workers have spoken to reporters this week about their experience of the resort village in a post-pandemic world. Local guides have shared their observations that many holidaymakers are abandoning old favorite Kuta in favor of trendy Canggu.
Although Kuta was busy during the peak season in July and August, the natural lull in arrivals has felt a little too quiet this week. Local guides noted that not only has Canggu become more fashionable but that Kuta has developed a reputation for being unsafe after a series of mobile phone thefts in the area.
Kuta Traditional Village has not commented after Minister Uno’s insights about the plans to put an entry fee at the beach. The response online to having an entry fee at Kuta Beach was mixed. Some welcomed the idea if it meant that the area was better maintained, while others were concerned that the fees would add up and be yet another cost to factor into a holiday budget. It is speculated that entry fees will range between IDR 5,000 (USD 0.33) and IDR 15,000 (USD 0.99) per person per visit.
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