Bali floats $150 tourist tax
Visitors returning to the holiday island of Bali could be hit with a “tourist tax” of up to $150 under a proposal being considered by the Indonesian government.
The Australian Financial Review reports President Joko Widodo’s government is considering the levy of between $US30 ($A45) and $US100 ($A150) to curb bad behaviour and stop Bali being seen as a cheap holiday destination.
Indonesian Tourism and Creative Economy Minister Sandiaga Uno has floated the idea in recent months and on Tuesday told reporters it was still in the discussion phase.
It follows comments from Bali Tourism Board chairman Ida Bagus Agung Partha Adnyana in March, announcing plans to put foreign language billboards around tourist hotspots with guides on how to behave.
Bad behaviour in Bali is again on the rise as tourist numbers begin to return to pre-Covid levels.
Mr Adnyana said the tax would improve the quality of tourists.
“Income from the tourism tax would help fund a range of measures and prevent Bali from becoming known only as a cheap destination,” he said.
“Cheap destinations bring in cheap tourists who tend to cause a lot of problems.”
Indonesian Hotel General Manager Association vice-chairman Komang Artana claims some of that behaviour includes foreigners acting as tour guides and renting out motorbikes and mopeds to fellow tourists, thereby depriving locals of much-needed tourist dollars.
As of mid-April, six Australians have been deported from Bali, although it’s not clear if these were for behaviour or visa issues.
They’re among 101 foreigners deported so far in 2023, including 27 Russians, eight Britons, and seven each from Nigeria and the US.