When you wish to change your cash at the money changer, go to authorized and licensed money changers. They will give you the correct change at the latest Bankers exchange rates, and they will not try to cheat you out of a few thousands of Indonesian rupiahs. In any case, you still have to count your changed notes in front of the money changers.
I had one bad experience when I tried to change my Malaysian Ringgit to Indonesian Rupiahs. I happened to go to a money changer in one of the souvenir shops that lined the Kuta streets. They displayed a very good exchange rate (no commission charged) and I thought I was getting a good deal.
However, later I found out that I was cheated out of a few thousands of Rupiahs notes becos of the confusion with the number of zeros on the Indonesian Rupiahs (thousands vs. millions, etc.). I found out that I was short of cash when I tried to buy some stuffs later. When I went back to the same money changer the next day, I told him of the short-change problem. I assumed he made a mistake but no! The guy didn't even blink an eye nor looked surprised; he just gave me back the correct change. He knew he was cheating and he had hoped that I was a dumb tourist, not returning to his shop looking for him!
Well, I knew better now. Never again will I get cheated when I exchanged monies.
Unique Suggestions: If you have to go to an unauthorized money changer because the exchange rate is very good and you don't want to pay high commission rate, make sure you count your changed notes in front of the money changer. Don't get cheated!
Fun Alternatives: Alternatively, go to a licensed and authorized money changer or to a Bank. You may pay a commission for changing the money but at least you will not get cheated or rip-off.
Keep an eye on those time share locals selling shares, they will not stop at anything to get your attention or to get you to buy.
Never Ever say "YES" maybe they are giving a holiday away with it but still dont take it.
Just walk past and say "NO THANKS", its really not worth it.
Unique Suggestions: If some one comes up to you selling them just walk past and say no.
Alot of time share people hang around Kuta Markets just at the front next to or around Matahari's in Kuta Square.
Fun Alternatives: "as above"
Taxi's are the best way to get around anywhere, but always catch a Taxi with a meter in it, mostly taxi's now days in Bali have meters but some dont.
If you get into a taxi that doesnt have a meter or a Bemo (bus/privately) always bargain with a price before taking off as they can get alot of money out of you.
I always catch a Blue taxi company owned called 'Blue Bird Company' as i remember, they are always good.
Also just remember to look at the top of the taxi if the light is on thats means no one is in it so flag it dont and give it a wave if you want that ride. (just be careful sometimes they can trick you with the lights.)
Unique Suggestions: If you get in a taxi or bemo without a meter and they dont give you a good enough bargain just shut the door and leave or just walk away. Simple as.
Fun Alternatives: Just try and find a Blue Taxi. Or if you like hire a car for your stay just remember to get insurance.
Kuta beach is a well known tourist trap on the beach. You walk past many people asking "Do You Want Massage" etc, All you have to say is NO but if you want to get a massage or buy somthing like watches, rings, ciggies, lighters etc from walkin men, do so, but pay a cheap price dont get ripped of they always want double of what you want.
Unique Suggestions: As stated above just say "NO", or "NO THANKYOU" or TIDAK" (No in Indonesian).
But if you plan on saying "NO" make sure you dont share eye contact for long other wise they will keep following you.
Most of the sellers understand and lay of you staright away when saying "NO" etc.
Please buy somthing from then as Bali suffers with their economy.
Fun Alternatives: Just walk past dont say anything or make eye contact, or either just dont go their.
Visitor should be aware that these monkeys are attracted to shiny object, so cameras and jewelry should be left behind or well hidden under clothes or in a bag before setting off to explore.
Unique Suggestions: The main attraction here are the hordes of Balinese monkeys that inhabit both the trees and the temple.
Fun Alternatives: Sangeh & Ubud Monkey forests
I love Bali in overall. I agree with million people that come here and like this beautiful island. One thing that I found myself a bit exhausted is everything for sale. I should not complain since I met wonderful people along my journey. But true, you see all size of signboards, selling this and that, people approaching you to offer this and that, list of shops, hotels and restaurants, galleries, etc,etc. Yes, it helps a lot though….that’s why I am very happy to go to villages where the scene of ‘businesses’ is not too obvious. And I found only few places in Bali that are not touched by hassle bustle tourism business.
Unique Suggestions: Well....it's not a trap though...
Fun Alternatives: Ignore them..
if you decide to use services, the best is finding recommendation from people who have done it
Don’t expect too much peace when you enter tourism spot. Suddenly you find yourself surrounded by traders trying to sell you something. In some places, I found the price they offered is cheaper than in a shop. But, they can be annoying sometimes. Last time, I took a look for small crafts from one lady, but bought it from another lady, because it was cheaper . It resulted that I was questioned, why I didn’t buy from the first one. The determined lady followed me even when I entered to the car, leaving me with a sneak of guilty feeling for the cheaper price I got. She told me that she didn’t sell anything since morning (my visit was in a quiet season)
Well my dear fellow, sometimes the local traders can be annoying, but whatever they do, just stick with politeness. Although I know, it takes more effort.
we went to ubud from Sanur in a bluebird taxi and the taxi driver tried to charge us a surcharge as we weren't going back but we told him that he new we were only going one way and didn't say that there would be a surcharge so told him that we were paying him what the meter said and that was it gave him the money and got out of the car....he cursed at us and drove away!
don't be fooled into paying more than you have too! Some will try and get more money than its worth we had a guy trying to give us a ride down the road for 30000 and we said not with out the meter lucky we did the trip was only 10000.
generally they are ok but just the odd one that tries it on!
Fun Alternatives: only used bluebird taxi and they must turn on there meter if they wont get out and get another one
Prices of petrol are a lot cheaper
than other parts of the world.
But it is still costly to the Indonesian
living off of the local wages.
At the gas pump,
it is a good spot to be cheated
a few thousand Rupiahs if you are a foreigner.
If you don’t fix your eyes on the hose and pump,
it’s very possible that they will over charge you.
Be careful of selected money changers especially those along legian where they charge high commission rates.
Better rates (no additional charges) are found around Kuta square, nearby the Matahari department stores.
At street corners and at shopping malls, you might be stopped by someone asking you to participate in a survey, or trying to hand you a scratch & match coupon. You will probably win a t-shirt or a free tour, and you will then be asked to collect your gift from another place, with a free taxi ride and snacks included.
No obligations, simply hear them out for 45 mins, collect your free t-shirt and off you go!
Welcome to Bali folks-it's TIME SHARE HEAVEN.
Unique Suggestions: If you do have 2-3 hours to spare, you may want to have a look around at the resort that is on offer. Your tour will usually come with a free return taxi trip to and from your hotel or shopping mall or where ever it was that they first found you. Snacks or drinks may also be on offer.
Fun Alternatives: We DID have some time and had NOT visited Nusa Dua, so took this as a side-trip or sight-seeing tour. The resort we visited cannot be named here, because they may be upset that I've listed them as a "tourist trap".
To be fair, the time-share resort & apartments were lovely, with a very inviting pool, gardens and a fantastic beach-front. The staff were professional and friendly. They did ask us to join the time-share, but there was no real high-pressure sales pitch. Yes, we did collect our t-shirts and won some discount vouchers as well.
A very interesting experience, and a tempting offer, but sorry, we already belong to another time share scheme.
Ibu or auntie will be following you every step you go on the beach of kuta trying to convince you to give you a manicure or pedicure, braid your hair or even give you a massage for the price of Rp 100.000. You go " yeah why not, its not that expensive but! once you sit down and agree to her, suddenly..out of nowhere a flock of the other ibu-ibu and bapak bapak (uncle) will come and persuade you to buy their shares. You will never be at peace
Unique Suggestions: If they ever come up to you, just ignore them and nod or smile. Never engage in a friendly chat unless you are really keen on buying whatever it is that she wants to sell
Yeah in this touristy paradise called Bali, you HAVE to try to bargain for everything, even when they have all the prices fixed on a board.
There's no harm trying anyway.
If they insist on their price, try acting uninterested and leave, see if they call you back for re-offer :D
Also check their neighbor shops and competitors.
They also have at least 3 different prices for most of the things there, be it tourist spots, attractions or sea sports:
International tourist price (in USD, the most expensive)
Domestic tourist price (in Rp, usually half the above price)
Local price (depends on your bargaining and balinese languange skills)
People say that Kuta is the nicest beach on Bali, but it's not really worth it when you've got beach hawkers constantly pestering you.
Unique Suggestions: I took my daughter out to the beach and found an empty plot of sand. It wasn't more than a few minutes before I was swarmed by a group of women wanting to braid my daughter's hair and paint her nails. My daughter is only 3 and she's already quite the princess, so she jumped at the chance. There were about 4 different ladies surrounding our beach towel and I was attempting to bargain with them all at once. Admittedly, I wasn't a very good bargainer in all the chaos. I agreed to a price in all the confusion. Later, I worked out that I was being charged $18 for the braids and $12 for her nails. I had to do some forceful bargaining to change the price after the fact. I sat there and asked myself what I would pay them in Vietnam (where I currently live): just a couple dollars each. So that's what I ended up giving each of them. They weren't very happy about it, but I realise now that their strategy is to bombard you like this so you're too confused to think straight. Best thing to do is not to deal with them until you've got a price in mind first. If you get caught off guard like I did, it's still not to late to work it down to a reasonable amount. Just keep your cool and be firm.
Fun Alternatives: Best thing is to avoid this whole scene and go to other beaches and destinations on Bali.
Always count your money after you have changed it no matter where you change it... This is MANDATORY. On a previous visit (many years earlier) I was going to be ripped off about AU$40 when I changed my travellers chqs. Because of the amount of notes you get when you change money its easy to mis-count the notes. After all the insistance that I had received the right amount of Rupiah they seemed to see it my way when I said I'd come back and re-arrange their shop with a baseball bat. They flick the notes to the ground when they think your not looking and then tell you that you havent given them enough..... BE CAREFUL!!
Fake lottery tickets is another one going around. I first found out the hard way about this one when I was in Bangkok previously, so luckily I knew the scam straight away. Every ticket is a winner and you'll be scammed for something. A free trip here or dinner there... Dont Believe them when you say you are a very lucky winner.... Everyone wins.
Unique Suggestions: Be polite then find some excuse to get the hell out of there...lol
Fun Alternatives: Insist you are not interested. They'll EVENTUALLY get the hint.
Where can I begin? I will keep this brief though: 1. NO hot water in rooms 2128 or 2134 (I had both...more
Jl Abimanyu (Dhyana Pura), Seminyak, Indonesia
Good for: Couples
I have now stayed at Tegal Sari 6 times, my husbad and I discovered it about 8 years ago when...more