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Bali Travel Guide – Arrival

TIME : 2016/2/27 14:55:46

When you arrive at Denpasar and move through Immigration you then grab your luggage and will immediately experience the friendly people of Bali. Two or three Balinese porters will grab your luggage and your first thought will be that they are going to steal it! In fact, they are there to ‘help’ you get through customs – Let them help – it is a traditional thing in Bali. It is expected that you will give each of them a tip – this can either be a A$1 coin each or, say, 4-5000 Rp (refer tipping page).

Your tour operator or the Hotel will meet you once through customs. If you are not using one, catch a taxi as detailed below.

When travelling throughout the shopping precincts of Bali (and you don’t want to walk) taxis are a very easy and cheap means of travel. We found that the White official taxis and the Blue official taxis are the best. Some of the others will refuse to put the meter on so that they can negotiate a better price. I don’t really mind because it is so cheap anyway, but be aware of this practice when you first hop in the cab. A fare from the Padma to Kuta Square (the main shopping area – see below) will cost between 4000 Rp and 5000 Rp (80 cents and $1) This is a trip of about 6 kms. Tipping of taxi drivers is also expected (refer tipping).

In addition to the taxis that proliferate the island, private taxis (or Beemo’s) are aplenty. These are not metered and you need to negotiate a price with the driver before hopping in. They are everywhere and many will be parked outside your Hotel just waiting to pounce. They don’t hassle you, just give you the hand movement as in holding and turning a steering wheel. This is the way in which they ask you (even from across the road) if you want to hire them. Pam and I used them almost exclusively on our first trip even to go to Kuta Square but tired of the bartering eventually and grabbed a taxi.

It’s a good experience and worth a go. When you say that you are going to Kuta Square “How much?” they will start at some ridiculous price like 15,000 Rp. Remembering that a taxi will cost about 5000 Rp you would offer them that. They will say 10,000 Rp, you will then say 6000 they will say “no!!”. So you will then start to walk away. They will yell out “OK!!”. Get the picture?? It’s fun if you treat it as an experience and remember that bartering is a very important part of their culture.

We found a great Beemo driver on our trip last year and traveled up and down the Island with him. Several friends of ours have since used him and have been very happy. The prices below and alongside the “Things to do” page are approximately what we negotiated last time. (They usually start about two or three times higher and so the bartering begins. His name and number is:

GEDE (pronounced – Gidday!) YASANA
Phone: 0812 3912628

When (if) you contact him, speak slowly. He speaks good English but slow talking helps. He is trustworthy and drives well (for a Balinese). If you mention David and Pam to him, he will remember us.

The hotels will have tour operators associated with them or simply providing services to them. Our opinion is that they are highly priced and therefore not good value.(usually in US$)
In the “Things to do” page we have listed our favorites for you to consider. We suggest that you simply negotiate a price with a Beemo driver and then you can stop when and where you wish. GEDE is good in that he explains things to you as he goes.