Everything you need to know for your first Bali holiday!



As I understand it, if you are involved as the driver of a minor accident with a local person, you could be deemed to be in the wrong, even though you were not necessarily the cause of the accident. It may sound harsh but remember you are in a different country where different rules apply.The reason you are in the wrong is possibly because there is no one else to blame. You are also perceived to be a wealthy tourist in a friendly but poor country.

The best tip I can give you in this situation is to pay up whatever the other person is prepared to do a deal at and get out of there quick. If the police get involved it may cost you more.

Avoid drunken brawls or becoming abusive to police because they don’t share the same sense of humour and the situation can become nasty for you. In the event you intend riding or being a passenger on a motorbike, I recommend you obey the law of the land and wear a safety helmet and protective footwear. If you ignore this warning, you are inviting police to make life difficult for you by demanding you pay a rather large fine. Do not argue with them because you wont win and it could cost you more.

IMPORTANT: Any motor Vehicle or Scooter/Motorbike riders, please take note. Make double sure you have an international drivers licence, vehicle insurance and importantly, travel insurance. Like most things you buy, you will only get what you have paid for. Please be a responsible person by reading and understanding your travel insurance policy. I recommend 1 Cover travel Insurance.

 It never ceases to amaze me seeing people being asked by police to stop for not wearing a helmet when riding a motorbike. The object of stopping you is to get into your wallet and I have often witnessed both sexes peeling out thousands of Rupiah for on the spot fines.
If you object to being fined on the spot, you will be escorted to the police station where it will cost you a lot more.
It really is a dumb decision not to wear protective helmets for the rider and passenger. Apart from being an expensive exercise if you are caught, additionaly your travel insurance cover will be waived in the event you are involved in an accident.
This means you could also face very expensive repair costs to the motorbike but even worse is the thought of severe damage to yourself and with no insurance cover because you were not wearing a helmet.
There are many motorbike accidents occuring daily on the island causing death and also severe body damage.
To see what I mean, take a seat in the waiting room of the BIMC hospital for an hour to see the wounded arriving by ambulance or in a wheel chair.
A sad ending to what should have been a relaxing Bali holiday.

If you are caught in possession of drugs, penalties are very severe to say the least. Be vigilant at all times and look after your mates interests at night because it is possible, you could be setup at an after dark establishment.

When you are out and about in the nightclub scene, consider taking it in turns by one or two of you in the party to remain sober and alert to everything going on around you, which will help keep you from becoming involved in something you wish you had avoided.

On occasions, taxi passengers have been propositioned to buy drugs from some drivers when travelling in their cab during the day or night. Remember, the risk and the price you will pay if you are involved in a setup. Nightclubs are probably the worst places for coming in contact with dealers so be aware at all times of the scary possibilities associated in this event.

When you are in Indonesia be aware that local laws and penalties, including ones that appear harsh by Australian standards do apply to you. If you are arrested or jailed, the Australian Government will do what it can to help you but can’t get you out of trouble or out of jail.

Information on what Australian consular officers can and cannot do to help Australians in trouble overseas, is available from the Consular Services Charter.

Penalties for drug offences are severe and include the death penalty. Penalties for possession of even small amounts of recreational drugs include heavy fines and imprisonment. Police target illegal drug use and possession across Indonesia and in particular popular places and venues in Bali and Jakarta.

Other serious crimes, such as murder and piracy, may also attract the death penalty.

Gambling is illegal. Tourists have fallen victim to organised gambling gangs, particularly in Bali, resulting in the loss of large sums of money and threats of violence if travellers are unable to pay the debt.

Some aspects of Sharia (Islamic) Law have been introduced in Aceh and are enforced by local Sharia police. Travellers should seek to inform themselves of relevant provisions. Visit the Indonesian Embassy website for further information.

You should obey signs that prohibit photography. If in doubt, seek advice from local officials.

To be in charge of a motor vehicle or motorbike on the road in Indonesia, you will require an Indonesian or international driver’s licence appropriate to the type of vehicle. An Australian licence is not sufficient

Under Indonesian law, foreigners cannot own real estate. If you are considering buying property in Indonesia, you should first seek advice from a legal authority.

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