Getting Around Bali’s Tourist Areas 2013.07.26

taxi

How to reach tourist destinations So you've arrived in Bali. Beach! Shopping! But how do you get there? In this section we'll cover the different options you can take to reach the popular resort areas in Bali.

Three ways

  • Hire Car with Driver
  • Taxi
  • Sightseeing Tour

Hire Car with Driver

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If you want to visit several attractions in one day or plan on going to a distant location, a popular choice is the car charter. Many hotels can arrange a car with driver, usually for time periods of four hours eg. four hours/eight hours/12 hours. 
Rates vary depending on the type of car  (passenger car/people carrier), duration (eight hours/12 hours) and whether you hire the car from a hotel or a tour company. As a guideline,  it's about Rp.500,000 to Rp.700,000 for eight hours in a four-seater car.
Recommended for:
  • I want to visit many places in one day
  • I want to go to places further away, such as Tanah Lot and Ubud
  • I want to travel without having to carry my luggage around

How to arrange

  1. Book through a travel agent before your trip
  2. Book online directly with a tour company before your trip
  3. Book online or via telephone after you arrive in Bali
As there are many tour companies that hire cars, it is also possible to arrange in person once you've arrived in Bali. However, remember that during peak and high seasons it might be a good idea to organize in advance, especially if you have a special request such as requiring a Russian-speaking driver. Hiring a charter car through your hotel may be more expensive, but you pay for the convenience and knowledge that you'll have a safe driver taking you around.

Rough Price

Hotel Car hire 8 hours Rp.800,000 - Rp.1,200,000
Tour Agent Car hire 8 hours Rp.500,000 - Rp.800,000

Tipping Drivers and Guides

You may feel badly for your driver and/or guide when stopping for lunch at a restaurant, however many restaurants actually provide meals for drivers. If not, they'll simply go to one of the cheap little local warungs for a bite to eat. It's also of course okay to ask your driver and/or guide to join you for a meal if you want to eat together. Tipping is generally between Rp50,000 and Rp100,000. For more information, please refer to our post about tipping here: Tipping
Note
What is included in the price varies from company to company.  For example, some charters may come with both a driver and a guide, and not only a driver. Petrol is usually included, but that's not always the case. It's a good idea when booking to find out exactly what the price covers (petrol/entrance fees/insurance etc.), as well as what happens should your trip go over the agreed time. Also make sure you know whether your car will have air-conditioning or not - it can make a huge difference to your comfort while exploring the island.

Taxi

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If traveling just short distances, taxis are the most suitable way to get around. The areas of Nusa Dua, Jimbaran, Kuta, Seminyak, and Sanur are well-serviced by meter taxis and you never have to wait too long to have one stop. 
Freelance or private taxis don't use a meter and the price needs to be negotiated and agreed before your journey commences. The most reliable metered taxi company is Blue Bird, who run services along many of the southern resort areas in Bali.
The flag-down fare is now Rp6,000 and goes up in increments by Rp.450/100 m when picked up in the street the hotel. You can also call them to arrange a pick-up (useful when you have to be at the airport early in the morning, before regular taxi services start) starting from Rp25,000.
Recommended for:
  • Traveling short distances
  • Moving within popular resort areas
  • Early morning or late night

How to arrange

  1. Call the taxi company yourself (usually have English-speaking staff)
  2. Ask hotel or restaurant staff to arrange

When calling for a taxi

You can either call yourself or you can ask your hotel or restaurant staff to call on your behalf. With Blue Bird, it's possible to arrange an early morning pick-up or a late night collection as they are open 24 hours. Blue Bird Taxi: 0361 70 1111

Price

Nusa Dua - Kuta Rp.70,000 - Rp.100,000/40 - 60min
Kuta - Seminyak Rp.10,000 - Rp.30,000/10 - 20min
Kuta - Sanur Rp.40,000 - Rp.70,000/30 - 40min

Tipping Drivers

It is not habit to tip a taxi driver in Bali. Many drivers will claim not to have small change, and in this way keep a tip for themselves. Other times passengers may just round up their fare, for example giving Rp30,000 for a fare of Rp28,000.

Have Small Notes

For example, if the fare comes to Rp25,000 and you only have a Rp100,000 bill, the driver may say that he has no small money to give you change. If you're lucky, there may be a supermarket you can ask him to stop at so that you can get some change, otherwise it's a good idea to have a couple of smaller Rp10,000 and Rp20,000 notes handy when taking a taxi.
Note
When getting in to a taxi, always ask the driver if he has a meter or not. If the answer is "no", ask how much the journey will be before you set on your way. Some taxis also operate by meter during the day and use a negotiation system at night. This is especially the case in downtown areas such as Kuta and Seminyak, where taxis run late into the night.

Sightseeing Tours

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In the case of the more famous tourist destinations, it's also possible to join a sightseeing tour that includes transport and a meal for the driver and/or guide.
Many tour companies visit places of interest like Pura Luhur Uluwatu, Tanah Lot, Goa Gajah, Ubud and Besakih. Although more expensive than hiring a car yourself, you don't have to think about arranging an itinerary or choosing a restaurant for lunch.
Recommended for:
  • Visitors with not much time to arrange something themselves
  • Seeing famous tourist attractions

How to use

  1. Book through a travel agent before your trip
  2. Book online directly with a tour company before your trip
  3. Book online or via telephone after you arrive in Bali

Price

Uluwatu Temple Tour Rp.400,000 - Rp.600,000 per person
Tanah Lot Temple Tour Rp.400,000 - Rp.600,000 per person
One-day Ubud Tour Rp.800,000 - Rp.1.200,000 per person

Tailor-made Tours

Some tour companies can change their tour schedule to accommodate certain requests, such as "I want to visit another temple" or "I want to have a luxury dinner somewhere".

Tipping

As with the Car Charter, you don't need to worry about meals for the guide or driver.
Note
Tour companies will give a time to be collected and dropped off again at your hotel. These however can be delayed significantly by road works, construction and religious ceremonies. It's therefore a good idea to book spa sessions and dinner reservations well after your estimated time of arrival, in the case of delays.


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