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Tourists Urged To Think Twice About Driving In Bali As Collisions Double In A Year 

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Bali is a province with so much to explore. With limited public transport options, many tourists choose to drive themselves around the island.

Tragically, over the last 12 months, conditions on the island’s roads have taken a dramatic turn for the worse. 

Balinese Couple Ride on moped on Bali road in daytime.jpg

The number of recorded collisions on Bali’s road has doubled in the last year. This 100% increase is a huge cause for concern for local communities and for tourists.

The Indonesian Transportation Agency has issued a response to the staggering statistics and has warnings for road users for the year ahead. 

Data show that Bali, followed by East Kalimantan, has the most dangerous roads in Indonesia.

The Deputy General Chairperson for Transportation Safety, Indonesian Transportation Society (MTI), Rivan A. Purwantoro, told reporters, “If you look, what has increased is actually a drastic increase. This time there are two provinces that really stand out, namely Bali and East Kalimantan.”

@journeyonpoints Survival mode in Bali 😅 #bali #indonesia #traffic #travel ♬ What is Dis Huni – Brian Morr

He explained that there has been an increase in the number of collisions involving drivers who do not have driving licenses and that exceedingly reckless driving has been a leading cause of collisions on Bali’s roads.

Purwantoro added, “What’s interesting is that Bali experienced an increase. Almost double the number of accidents last year. While East Kalimantan increased by 24%, this is what is important for us [to resolve.]”

Leaders will be looking to the approaches taken on the roads in Yogyakarta, which has seen a decrease in the number of collisions this year.

Purwantoro explained, “One example that is densely populated and has succeeded in reducing the number of accidents is Yogyakarta.”

“In Yogyakarta, the number of accidents has dropped by almost 17 percent. This means that Yogyakarta has good handling, especially in track areas such as provincial crossings, Yogyakarta to Bantul, Yogyakarta to Sleman, and so on.”

@goodtimestravel2022 LONGEST Traffic Jam Ever in BALI!! #bali #balitraffic #trafficjam #balitrafficjam #fyp #viral #carcrash #caraccident #carwreck ♬ Beep Beep – Nicki Minaj

Speaking separately the Bali Police Chief Inspector General Ida Bagus Kade Putra Narendra, gave more details on the specifics of the data on road collisions for Bali.

He revealed, “Throughout 2023, there have been 7,224 traffic accidents. This number has increased by 100 percent compared to 3,602 incidents in 2022.”

He continued to share the tragic details that “the number of victims who died due to traffic accidents in 2023 was 632 people, an increase of 25.89 percent from the number of victims who died in 2022, which was 502 people.”

The vast majority of these collisions involved motorcycles, 86% in fact, with just 7% of collisions involving cars.

@lifewiththebergs Traffic in Bali is next level 😂 #lifewiththebergs #travecouple #Bali #traffic #scooters #mopeds #holiday ♬ Happy , Sunshine & Ukulele – Balang_3go

Collisions have been caused by everything from animals on the road to careless driving, drivers not looking in both directions before crossing junctions, speeding, drunk driving, driving with too many passengers on a bike, losing control of vehicles, and more.

Speeding has been a leading cause of collisions in Bali, with a dangerous rise in the number of speed racing gangs of local youth on the roads.

Motorcycle moped lies on the ground after crash at nighttime

Police, traffic officers, and local security are all working together to crack down on the speed racers who have been organizing illegal races across all regencies late at night.

Drivers are also taking an increasing amount of risks as traffic congestion builds up on the island. With more vehicles on the roads, drivers are becoming more frustrated and take the rules of the road into their own hands. 


Despite announcements earlier this year that Bali would ban all tourists from hiring motorcycles, or driving on the island, it remains the case that tourists can still drive in the province but only if they have all legalities in order. 


Tourists must have a valid international driving license or Indonesian driving license, have vehicle insurance, wear a helmet and sensible clothing, obey the road laws, not drive under the influence of alcohol, and ensure that medical and travel insurance covers hospital bills in the event of a traffic collision.

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Lace Travels

Thursday 21st of March 2024

[…] just whoever can fit. While being in Bali, I saw that bikes can’t get in the way of cars, Tourists Urged To Think Twice About Driving In Bali As Collisions Double In A Year  – The…. These rules took me a few days to learn, and even after becoming familiar it still felt unsafe. […]


Monday 1st of January 2024

Indonesia was colonized by the White Dutch for over 300 years, you would think that after independence that they would adopt driving like in Europe and in the US. It’s always hard to adapt driving on the left hand side like the Anglo Saxons do (sigh!!!!) when you are more familiar driving on the right hand side. More accidents would occur with foreign tourists in Indonesia who are more adapt to driving on the right hand side and rather not used to driving on the left hand side.


Saturday 6th of January 2024

@Randy, it has nothings to do with left driving. As a “white” Dutchmen I adopt driving on the left side pretty easily. But more important is to put in a defensive style of driving. (What most Balinese and foreigners are lacking) Also being aware of the pretty bad condition of the roads (potholes), the bad technical state of many scooters (not fully functional brakes, or other technically disfunctions), animals like dogs crossing the streets and above all: the lack of any proper training driving any vehicle by locals and foreigners.


Sunday 31st of December 2023

Last year 2022 there was almost no traffic on the island. It seems the more busy on the street the more safe it is. So statistically definitely more safe these days then in 2022


Sunday 31st of December 2023

Just how many of the school students have a license a letter from the school is good what sort of a crazy idea is that


Saturday 30th of December 2023

I'm often out on the road early morning in my car. 99% locals that early in the morning rush. The lack of training, judgement, common sense and respect for others among local drivers is just unbelievable. Basically everybody try to trip up others or put others in dangerous situations.

Having obtained my Indonesian SIM by passing both "theory" test which need 23 out of 30 questions correct and a short "driving" test it is clear that the test program do not filter away dangerous drivers whatsoever. And online numerous agents offer foreigners to bypass the tests outright. I guess similar agents are used by locals as well. No wonder the roads are the wild west.

The police cannot do anything as they have the same "training" and drive the same way.

From working in Jakarta our company had all company drivers to go through a safe/defensive driving program. This resulted in more relaxed and safe driving style, maybe also because driver knew they would be fired if they went back to old habits. Mandatory training is therefore the only way forward.


Monday 1st of January 2024

@Exp, “Having obtained my Indonesian SIM by passing both “theory” test which need 23 out of 30 questions correct and a short “driving” test it is clear that the test program do not filter away dangerous drivers whatsoever.” Of course not...why would you think that a written and driving test would filter out bad drivers?? You are NO exception.

Indonesians and foreigners take the same driving and written test. Good luck with driving on the left hand side of the road for those who are more familiar driving on the right hand side including myself. Sigh. Why does Indonesia had to adopt the Anglo Saxon left driving side of the road??? For Pete’s sake it was a former Dutch colony therefore driving on the right side of the road would somehow be more logical after their independence. Sigh...


Monday 1st of January 2024

@Exp, whatever it is foreigners are also contributing to the corrupt system in Indonesia. No one wins. Remember that...