The Bali regional government has raised a proposal to implement a fee of 150,000 rupiah (US$10) for international travellers entering the destination from next year, with levies being directed to cultural preservation and tourist infrastructure development.
The proposal was presented by Bali governor I Wayan Koster in parliament earlier this month.
Elaborating on the plan, Tjok Bagus Pemayun, head of the Bali Provincial Tourism Office, said the tourist fee was conceptualised to “maintain Bali’s nature, culture, and environment in a sustainable manner, ensuring that tourists can continue to enjoy Bali with a sense of security and comfort”.
While implementation details are still pending, the plan has attracted support from Bali tourism industry stakeholders.
Ida Bagus Agung Partha Adnyana, chairman of the Bali Tourism Board, told TTG Asia that the tourist fee is common in other countries and tourism players are unanimous about wanting the collection to support quality tourism development through improved infrastructure, raise service quality through training, and to promote sustainable tourism experiences.
He stressed the importance of transparency in money utilisation and the establishment of smooth collection procedures to avoid delays at airports.
When asked if the tourist fee would dampen travel interest, Hatta Pradhana, spokesperson of Dwidaya Tour, said: “Bali is one of the best tourist destinations in the world, so we believe the fee will not significantly impact arrivals to Bali.”
He quipped that the fee is equivalent to A$14 – the price of two cups of coffee in Australia. Australia is currently Bali’s biggest source market.
In response to concerns about other Indonesian destinations potentially adopting similar levies and resulting in various tourist fees across the country, Sandiaga Uno, minister of tourism and creative economy, said the government would look into regional regulation.
Sandiaga added: “Bali can pioneer this initiative because it is a top destination. If other destinations (achieve the same level of tourism success), we can consider (the application of a tourist fee). However, any tourism levy must be based on (thorough studies).”