Header Notice

Winter is here! Check out the winter wonderlands at these 5 amazing winter destinations in Montana

How To Live In Bali As An Expat


Modified: December 28, 2023

by Serene Edmonds



Living as an expat in Bali is a dream for many. With its stunning beaches, rich culture, and laid-back lifestyle, this tropical paradise has become a magnet for foreigners seeking a new adventure. Whether you’re a digital nomad, a retiree, or someone simply looking for a change of scenery, Bali offers a unique experience that is hard to resist.


Renowned for its warm hospitality and diverse expat community, Bali has a lot to offer in terms of opportunities and experiences. This article aims to provide a comprehensive guide on how to live in Bali as an expat, covering everything from the basics of moving to legal requirements, accommodation options, cost of living, working opportunities, healthcare, education, transportation, and social life.


Bali, known as the “Island of the Gods,” is part of Indonesia and is located in Southeast Asia. It is famous for its stunning landscapes, vibrant festivals, and spiritual traditions. The island offers a unique blend of modern amenities and traditional Balinese culture, making it a fascinating place to call home.


Whether you’re drawn to Bali’s tranquil beaches, lush rice fields, or vibrant nightlife, the island caters to a wide range of interests. You can spend your days surfing the waves in Canggu, exploring the ancient temples in Ubud, or indulging in the trendy cafes and shops of Seminyak. With its endless charm and natural beauty, Bali offers something for everyone.


Living in Bali as an expat provides a chance to immerse yourself in a different way of life. From the daily offerings seen on every doorstep to the colorful Hindu ceremonies that take place throughout the year, you’ll have the opportunity to learn and embrace a culture that is deeply rooted in spirituality and tradition.


However, like any endeavor, living in Bali as an expat comes with its own set of challenges and considerations. It’s important to have a good understanding of the legal requirements, cost of living, and practical aspects like healthcare and education. By being well-prepared and informed, you can make the most of your time in this captivating island.


In the following sections, we will dive into the various aspects of living in Bali as an expat and provide useful insights and tips for a smooth transition. From navigating visa regulations to finding the right neighborhood to call home, this guide will help you navigate the exciting journey of living in Bali as an expat.


Moving to Bali: The Basics

Moving to Bali as an expat requires careful planning and preparation. Here are some essential factors to consider before making the move:

  • Visa Requirements: Before relocating to Bali, you’ll need to ensure you have the appropriate visa. The most common options for expats are the Social-Cultural Visa, which allows you to stay for up to six months, or the Visa-on-Arrival (VoA), which grants a 30-day stay and can be extended. Working expats will generally need a work permit (KITAS) sponsored by an employer.
  • Cost of Living: Bali offers a comparatively low cost of living, particularly when compared to Western countries. However, it’s important to factor in the cost of accommodation, food, transportation, and other daily expenses. Major areas like Seminyak and Canggu tend to be pricier, while more remote areas like Ubud can be more affordable.
  • Accommodation: Bali offers a range of accommodation options to suit different preferences and budgets. From luxurious villas to affordable apartments and shared housing, you’ll find plenty of choices. It’s advisable to research and visit different areas to find the one that suits your lifestyle and needs.
  • Transportation: Getting around Bali can be done via motorbike, car, or using public transportation options like taxis and ride-hailing apps. While motorbikes are a popular and convenient mode of transport, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the local traffic rules and regulations.
  • Healthcare and Insurance: Bali has a good healthcare system, with private hospitals and clinics offering quality care. Expats are advised to have comprehensive health insurance that covers both emergency medical treatment and routine check-ups. It’s important to research and choose the right insurance provider before moving.
  • Banking and Finance: Setting up a local bank account is advisable for ease of managing finances in Bali. International banks such as Citibank and HSBC have branches on the island, and there are also local banks to choose from. It’s recommended to compare services and fees to find the best fit for your needs.

Moving to Bali as an expat is an exciting adventure, but it’s essential to be well-prepared. Researching and understanding the basic necessities such as visa requirements, cost of living, accommodation, transportation, healthcare, and banking will significantly contribute to a smooth transition and enjoyable experience in this beautiful island.


Legal Requirements for Expats

When moving to Bali as an expat, it’s essential to familiarize yourself with the legal requirements to ensure a smooth transition. Here are some key considerations:

  • Visa: Expatriates planning to stay in Bali for an extended period need to obtain the appropriate visa. The Social-Cultural Visa (also known as the Temporary Stay Permit or KITAS) is commonly used by expats. This visa allows you to live in Bali for up to six months and can be extended. Working expats will typically require a work permit (also known as the Foreign Worker Permit or IMTA) sponsored by an employer.
  • Visa Extensions: If you’re planning to stay longer than your initial visa allows, you will need to apply for a visa extension. It’s important to start the extension process before your current visa expires to avoid any legal issues. Many expats hire the services of an agent or a visa agency to assist with the extension process.
  • Tax Obligations: As an expat living and working in Bali, you may be subject to Indonesian tax regulations. The specific tax obligations will depend on your employment status and income. It’s advisable to consult with a tax professional or accountant to ensure compliance with local tax laws.
  • Work Permits: If you plan to work in Bali as an expat, you will need a valid work permit (KITAS) sponsored by your employer. The process involves obtaining several documents, including a sponsorship letter from the employer, a work agreement, and a recommendation from the Department of Manpower. It’s essential to work with a reputable employer who can guide you through the process.
  • Property Ownership: As a foreigner, owning property in Bali can be complicated due to strict regulations. The general rule is that foreigners cannot own land freehold, but they can lease land for an extended period. It’s advisable to seek legal advice and work with a reputable notary to ensure compliance with property ownership laws.
  • Driver’s License: If you plan to drive in Bali, you will need an Indonesian driver’s license. Expats can obtain an Indonesian driver’s license by converting their international license or by taking a driving test. It is important to note that international driving licenses are only valid for a short period in Indonesia, so it’s advisable to obtain an Indonesian license.

It’s crucial to adhere to the legal requirements when living as an expat in Bali. Misunderstanding or neglecting the legal obligations can lead to fines, deportation, or other legal consequences. It’s highly recommended to consult with reputable legal and immigration professionals to ensure you are compliant with Indonesian laws and regulations.


Accommodation Options

Finding the right accommodation is a key aspect of living in Bali as an expat. The island offers a wide range of options to suit different preferences, budgets, and lifestyles. Here are some popular accommodation choices:

  • Villas: Renting a private villa is a popular option, especially for those seeking more space, privacy, and luxury. Villas in Bali come in various sizes and styles, ranging from traditional Balinese designs to modern and contemporary. They often come with amenities like swimming pools, gardens, and full-service staff.
  • Apartments and Condos: Bali offers a range of apartments and condos, particularly in popular areas like Seminyak, Canggu, and Kuta. These options are more affordable compared to villas and offer convenience and proximity to amenities and entertainment. Some buildings even offer shared facilities like swimming pools and gyms.
  • Shared Housing: For those on a tighter budget or seeking a more communal living experience, shared housing or co-living spaces are available in Bali. These arrangements involve renting a room or joining a community of like-minded individuals in a shared house or apartment. It’s a great way to meet new people and lower living costs.
  • Guesthouses and Homestays: Guesthouses and homestays are popular options, especially for short-term stays or solo travelers. These affordable accommodations offer comfortable rooms, often with shared common areas. They provide a chance to experience the local culture and interact with friendly hosts.
  • Long-Term Rentals: If you’re looking to stay in Bali for an extended period, long-term rentals are worth considering. These can be found through local rental agents, online platforms, or by networking within the expat community. Long-term rentals often require a minimum lease period of six months to a year.

When searching for accommodation in Bali, it’s important to consider factors such as location, budget, proximity to amenities, security, and access to transportation. Popular areas for expat living include Seminyak, Canggu, Ubud, and Sanur, each offering a distinct atmosphere and lifestyle.


It’s recommended to visit the properties in person or consult with a local real estate agent to ensure the accommodation meets your expectations and requirements. Additionally, it’s important to review the terms and conditions of the rental agreement and communicate any specific needs or preferences with the landlord or property manager.


Overall, the accommodation options in Bali cater to a wide range of preferences and budgets. Whether you prefer the privacy and luxury of a villa, the convenience of an apartment, or the communal experience of shared housing, you’ll find a suitable place to call home in this enchanting island.


Cost of Living

One of the many reasons expats are drawn to Bali is its relatively affordable cost of living compared to many western countries. However, it’s essential to have a clear understanding of the expenses to plan your budget accordingly. Here are some key factors to consider when assessing the cost of living in Bali:

  • Accommodation: The cost of accommodation in Bali varies depending on factors such as location, size, amenities, and lease duration. Villas in popular areas like Seminyak and Canggu can range from $800 to $3000 per month, while apartments and shared housing options can be found for as low as $300 to $800 per month.
  • Food and Dining: Bali offers a wide range of dining options to suit different budgets. You can find affordable local warungs (small local restaurants) where a meal can cost as little as $2 to $5. For those looking for a more upscale dining experience, restaurants in tourist areas can range from $10 to $30 per meal.
  • Transportation: Getting around Bali can be relatively inexpensive, especially if you use a scooter as your primary mode of transportation. Renting a scooter can cost around $50 to $100 per month, while fuel costs are generally affordable. The availability of ride-hailing apps like Gojek and Grab also offers convenient and cost-effective transportation options.
  • Groceries: The cost of groceries in Bali can vary depending on whether you opt for local produce or imported goods. Local markets and supermarkets offer an array of affordable fruits, vegetables, and staples. On average, a weekly grocery bill for a single person can range from $30 to $50.
  • Utilities: Monthly utility costs, including electricity, water, internet, and gas, can vary depending on your usage and the type of accommodation. On average, expect to pay around $50 to $100 per month for these utilities.
  • Entertainment and Recreation: Bali offers numerous recreational activities and entertainment options, ranging from yoga classes and spa treatments to surfing lessons and cultural excursions. Costs will vary depending on the activity, but you can generally find affordable options that range from $5 to $20 per session or activity.

It’s important to keep in mind that these figures are estimates, and individual spending habits can vary. Expenses can fluctuate based on personal choices, lifestyle, and preferences. Additionally, it’s advisable to have some savings or a financial cushion for unforeseen expenses or emergencies.


Overall, Bali offers a relatively affordable cost of living compared to many western countries. With careful budgeting and an understanding of the local pricing, you can enjoy a comfortable lifestyle while taking advantage of the island’s many attractions and experiences.


Working in Bali

Bali has become an attractive destination for remote workers, entrepreneurs, and digital nomads due to its vibrant community and relaxed lifestyle. Here are some key aspects to consider if you’re planning to work in Bali:

  • Visa and Work Permit: To legally work in Bali, you will need a valid work permit (KITAS) sponsored by an employer. The process involves obtaining a sponsorship letter, a work agreement, and a recommendation from the Department of Manpower. It’s important to work with a reputable employer who can guide you through the process and ensure compliance with Indonesian labor laws.
  • Remote Work and Entrepreneurship: Bali offers a conducive environment for remote work and entrepreneurship with its co-working spaces, café culture, and networking opportunities. Popular areas like Canggu and Ubud are known for their digital nomad community and offer a range of co-working spaces that provide amenities like high-speed internet, networking events, and a collaborative work environment.
  • Internet Connectivity: Bali has considerably improved its internet infrastructure in recent years, providing reliable internet connectivity. Many accommodations, cafes, and co-working spaces offer high-speed internet access. However, it’s recommended to have a backup option such as a portable hotspot or a local SIM card to ensure uninterrupted work.
  • Networking Opportunities: Bali has a thriving business and expat community, offering ample networking opportunities. Attend workshops, seminars, and events related to your industry to connect with like-minded professionals and expand your professional network. Networking can lead to collaborations, partnerships, and valuable career connections.
  • Cultural Sensitivity: While working in Bali, it’s important to be mindful of the local culture and customs. Balinese people are known for their warm hospitality, and integrating with the local community can enhance your working experience. Learn some basic Indonesian phrases and respect local traditions to foster positive relationships.
  • Business Etiquette: Balinese business etiquette is influenced by both Indonesian culture and international standards. It’s important to dress professionally, be punctual for meetings, and show respect to colleagues and clients. Building personal relationships and trust is highly valued in business interactions in Bali.
  • Opportunities and Challenges: While Bali offers a supportive environment for remote work and entrepreneurship, it’s important to note that the job market is competitive. Opportunities are often found through personal connections and referrals. Recognize that building a sustainable career in Bali may take time and effort. Additionally, be aware of tax obligations and comply with Indonesian tax regulations.

Working in Bali provides a unique opportunity to merge a fulfilling professional life with a stunning tropical setting. However, it’s important to navigate the legal requirements, embrace the local culture, network effectively, and be dedicated to professional growth to make the most of your work experience in this beautiful island.


Healthcare and Insurance

Ensuring access to quality healthcare is an important consideration when living as an expat in Bali. Here’s what you need to know about healthcare and insurance:

  • Healthcare Facilities: Bali has a range of healthcare facilities, including private hospitals, clinics, and international medical centers. Facilities like BIMC Hospital, Siloam Hospital, and Kasih Ibu Hospital provide comprehensive medical services and facilities. It’s advisable to choose a healthcare provider that meets your needs and has English-speaking staff.
  • Medical Insurance: It’s essential for expats to have comprehensive health insurance that covers both emergency medical treatment and routine check-ups. International health insurance is recommended to ensure coverage for any medical expenses you may incur. Take the time to research and select a reputable insurance provider with a network of healthcare providers in Bali.
  • Specialist Care: Bali may not have all specialist services readily available, and in some cases, you may need to travel to neighboring countries like Singapore or Australia for specialized treatment. Having international health insurance that provides coverage for medical evacuation or repatriation can be beneficial in such situations.
  • Pharmacies and Medications: Bali has numerous pharmacies where you can purchase over-the-counter medications and refill prescriptions. However, it’s important to note that not all medications may be readily available. If you have specific medical needs, consider bringing an ample supply of any necessary medications from your home country.
  • Health Risks: Bali, like any tropical destination, has its share of health risks. These may include certain mosquito-borne diseases such as dengue fever and malaria, as well as food and waterborne illnesses. It’s important to take necessary precautions such as using mosquito repellent, practicing good hygiene, and drinking bottled or filtered water.
  • Vaccinations: Before moving to Bali, it’s recommended to consult with a healthcare professional or travel clinic to ensure you are up to date on your vaccinations. Common vaccinations include hepatitis A and B, typhoid, tetanus, and influenza. Depending on your travel plans, additional vaccinations may be recommended.

Having comprehensive health insurance and access to quality healthcare services is essential for your well-being as an expat in Bali. It provides peace of mind knowing that you can receive appropriate medical care when needed. Make sure to research insurance providers, understand your policy coverage, and keep important contact information easily accessible.


Lastly, taking care of your physical and mental well-being is crucial. Adopt a healthy lifestyle, practice regular exercise, maintain a balanced diet, and prioritize self-care. Bali offers a wide range of activities such as yoga, meditation, and wellness retreats that can support your overall health and well-being.


Education for Expats

For expat families moving to Bali, ensuring access to quality education is a top priority. Bali offers a variety of educational options to cater to the needs of expat children. Here’s what you need to know about education for expats in Bali:

  • International Schools: Bali has a number of international schools that follow internationally recognized curricula such as the International Baccalaureate (IB) or British National Curriculum. Some well-known international schools in Bali include Bali International School, Canggu Community School, and Green School Bali. These schools offer a global education experience and a range of extracurricular activities.
  • National Plus Schools: National Plus Schools in Bali provide a hybrid curriculum that combines the Indonesian national curriculum with additional subjects taught in English. These schools cater to both expat and local families and offer a good balance between local and international educational approaches.
  • Homeschooling and Distance Learning: Some expat families opt for homeschooling or distance learning programs for their children. This offers flexibility and allows for a customized curriculum tailored to the child’s needs. International online education platforms like K12 and Calvert Education provide comprehensive remote learning options.
  • Preschool and Early Education: Bali offers a range of international preschools that provide early childhood education in a nurturing environment. These preschools focus on early development, English language acquisition, and building foundational skills.
  • Language Support: Many international schools in Bali provide language support programs, especially for non-English speaking students. These programs help expat children integrate into the school community and adapt to the language of instruction.
  • Extracurricular Activities: International schools in Bali offer a wide range of extracurricular activities, including sports, arts, music, and cultural clubs. These activities provide opportunities for students to develop their talents, build social connections, and enhance their overall educational experience.
  • Tertiary Education: For expat students looking to pursue higher education, Bali offers limited options. Most expats choose to study at universities or colleges in neighboring countries like Australia, Singapore, or Malaysia.

When choosing an educational institution for your children in Bali, consider factors such as curriculum, accreditation, facilities, teacher qualifications, and the overall learning environment. It’s important to visit schools, speak with faculty members, and seek recommendations from other expat families to make an informed decision.


Lastly, keep in mind that admission to international schools can be competitive, so it’s advisable to start the application process well in advance. Understand the requirements and deadlines for enrollment and gather all necessary documentation to ensure a smooth transition for your child’s education in Bali.


Transportation in Bali

Getting around Bali is an essential aspect of daily life for expats. Here’s what you need to know about transportation options in Bali:

  • Motorbikes: Motorbikes are a popular mode of transportation in Bali, offering flexibility and convenience. Renting or buying a motorbike is common among expats, and it’s relatively affordable. However, it’s essential to have a valid international or local driver’s license and wear a helmet at all times. Familiarize yourself with local traffic rules and exercise caution while on the road.
  • Taxis and Ride-Hailing Apps: Taxis are widely available in Bali, especially in tourist areas. Blue Bird taxis are popular and known for their reliability and use of meters. Additionally, ride-hailing apps like Gojek and Grab are widely used and provide convenient and affordable transportation options for both short and long distances.
  • Public Transportation: Bali has limited public transportation options, mainly in the form of public buses called “Bemo” or “Kopang.” These are inexpensive but may not be the most convenient or comfortable choice. Bemos mainly operate on fixed routes, and schedules can be irregular. For longer distances, intercity buses provide affordable transportation between major towns.
  • Car Rentals: Renting a car in Bali is another option for transportation, particularly for families or those seeking more comfort and convenience. Many rental companies offer a variety of vehicles, including compact cars, SUVs, and vans. Having an international or local driver’s license is necessary, and it’s advisable to have comprehensive insurance coverage.
  • Bicycles: Bali’s relatively flat terrain and scenic landscapes make cycling a popular option for short distances. Renting or buying a bicycle is an eco-friendly way to explore the island and navigate smaller streets or beach areas. Be mindful of traffic and stay on designated cycling paths when available.
  • Walking: Bali’s small towns and tourist areas are relatively walkable, allowing for leisurely strolls and exploration. Walking can be a pleasant way to discover local shops, cafes, and attractions. However, be cautious of traffic and follow pedestrian signals to ensure safety.

It’s important to note that traffic congestion can be a challenge in certain areas, particularly during peak tourist seasons. Plan your travel accordingly to avoid rush hours, which are typically in the morning and late afternoon. Additionally, be aware of theft and take necessary precautions when parking or leaving your vehicle unattended.


Overall, Bali offers a variety of transportation options to suit different preferences and budgets. Choose the mode of transportation that best fits your needs and be sure to prioritize safety and follow local regulations for a smooth and enjoyable travel experience on the island.


Language and Cultural Integration

Embracing the local language and culture is an important part of living as an expat in Bali. Here’s what you need to know about language and cultural integration:

  • Bahasa Indonesia: While English is widely spoken in tourist areas, learning some basic Bahasa Indonesia can greatly enhance your experience in Bali. Locals appreciate the effort to communicate in their language and it can help you navigate daily interactions, negotiate prices, and connect on a deeper level with the local community.
  • Greetings and Etiquette: Balinese people are known for their warm hospitality. Learning basic Balinese greetings and customs, such as saying “Selamat pagi” (Good morning) or “Terima kasih” (Thank you), can go a long way in building rapport and showing respect. It’s also important to dress modestly when visiting temples and participating in religious ceremonies.
  • Cultural Sensitivity: Bali is rich in cultural traditions and customs. Showing respect for Balinese culture means being mindful of local norms and adapting your behavior accordingly. For example, it’s important to take off your shoes when entering someone’s home or a temple, never point with your feet, and accept and give items with your right hand.
  • Participating in Local Activities: Engaging in local activities and festivals is a great way to immerse yourself in Balinese culture. Attend temple ceremonies, watch traditional dance performances, or participate in cooking classes to gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of Balinese traditions.
  • Building Relationships: Building relationships with locals can greatly enhance your cultural integration. Take the time to engage in conversation, listen attentively, and show genuine interest in learning about their culture and traditions. Participating in community initiatives or joining social clubs can also provide opportunities to connect with like-minded individuals.
  • Respecting Sacred Sites: Bali is dotted with numerous sacred sites, including temples and holy springs. When visiting these locations, it’s important to dress modestly, be quiet and respectful, and follow any instructions or guidelines provided. Be mindful of taking photos without disturbing the spiritual activities taking place.
  • Embracing the Balinese Lifestyle: Bali has a laid-back and spiritual lifestyle that is deeply ingrained in the local culture. Take the time to slow down, enjoy the simple pleasures, and adopt a more relaxed approach to life. Join yoga or meditation classes, indulge in traditional Balinese spa treatments, and savor the local cuisine to fully immerse yourself in the Balinese way of living.

By embracing the local language and culture, you can foster meaningful connections and create a more fulfilling experience as an expat in Bali. Be open-minded, respectful, and willing to learn from the locals, and you’ll find that Bali’s rich cultural heritage will enrich your life in countless ways.


Social Life and Community

Bali offers a vibrant and welcoming expat community, making it easy to build a social life and establish connections. Here’s what you need to know about social life and community in Bali:

  • Expatriate Associations: Bali has various expatriate associations and organizations that provide a platform for networking and socializing. These groups, such as chambers of commerce and professional associations, host regular events, workshops, and social gatherings, allowing expats to connect with like-minded individuals.
  • Joining Social Clubs and Activities: Bali offers a wide range of social clubs, sports groups, and hobbyist communities catering to various interests. Whether you enjoy yoga, surfing, photography, or cooking, there is likely a club or community that aligns with your hobbies. Participating in these activities is a great way to meet new people and form lasting friendships.
  • Café Culture and Co-working Spaces: Bali is known for its vibrant café culture, with numerous cozy coffee shops that also serve as social hubs. Spending time at local cafes or co-working spaces allows for casual interactions with fellow expats and digital nomads. These spaces often organize events or networking sessions, facilitating social connections.
  • Expatriate Events and Gatherings: Keep an eye out for expat networking events, social gatherings, and themed parties, which are often organized by expatriate communities or through word of mouth. Attending these events allows you to expand your social circle and create meaningful connections with fellow expats.
  • Volunteering and Giving Back: Bali has a vibrant volunteering scene, providing opportunities to contribute to the local community and meet like-minded individuals. Engaging in volunteer work can range from environmental conservation projects to teaching English in local schools. Volunteering not only gives you a sense of purpose but also allows you to connect with locals and other expats who share similar values.
  • Expanding Your Cultural Horizons: Bali is a melting pot of cultures and attracts expats from all over the world. Embracing cultural diversity is a great way to broaden your horizons and establish connections with people from different backgrounds. Attend cultural events, join intercultural dialogue groups, and explore different cuisines to immerse yourself in Bali’s multicultural atmosphere.
  • Local Expat Websites and Forums: Online expat communities and forums provide a platform for connecting with other expats, exchanging information, and seeking advice. Websites like Bali Expat Forum and InterNations offer a wealth of resources and opportunities to engage with the expat community in Bali.

Building a social life and community in Bali is relatively easy due to the friendly and inclusive nature of the island. Be proactive, open-minded, and willing to step outside of your comfort zone to make the most of the social opportunities available. By embracing the social life and community in Bali, you’ll not only forge connections but also create a support system and a sense of belonging in your new home.


Safety and Security Tips

Maintaining personal safety and security is a priority for anyone living as an expat in Bali. Here are some important tips to enhance your safety and security while in Bali:

  • Keep Valuables Secure: Be mindful of your personal belongings and keep valuable items secure at all times. Avoid displaying expensive jewelry or carrying large amounts of cash. Utilize hotel safes or secure storage options for important documents and valuables.
  • Be Cautious with Personal Information: Protect your personal information and be cautious when sharing sensitive details with strangers or online. Be wary of phishing scams, fraudulent schemes, and only provide personal information to trusted sources.
  • Stay Aware of Your Surroundings: Be attentive to your surroundings, especially in crowded tourist areas and public transport. Stay alert and mindful of your belongings to prevent theft or pickpocketing incidents. Avoid walking alone in secluded or dimly lit areas at night.
  • Respect Local Laws and Customs: Familiarize yourself with the local laws and customs of Bali. Observe and respect local traditions, etiquette, and cultural norms. Adhering to the local regulations helps maintain a harmonious relationship with the community and aids in avoiding unnecessary conflicts.
  • Use Reliable Transportation: When using transportation services, opt for reputable taxi companies or licensed ride-hailing services like Blue Bird or Grab. Be cautious when using unlicensed transportation as they may not adhere to safety standards or may overcharge passengers.
  • Be Mindful of Traffic: Traffic in Bali can be congested and chaotic. Exercise caution when crossing the road and always use pedestrian crossings where available. If driving a motorbike or car, follow road rules, wear a helmet, and be aware of other vehicles and pedestrians.
  • Emergency Services: Familiarize yourself with emergency contact numbers in Bali, including local police, ambulance, and fire department. Save these numbers in your phone or keep them handy in case of emergencies.
  • Secure Accommodations: When selecting accommodation, prioritize safety features such as secure locks, well-lit common areas, and 24-hour security. Do research and read reviews to ensure you choose a reputable and safe place to stay.
  • Stay Informed: Stay updated on local news, safety alerts, and any travel advisories issued for Bali. Register with your embassy or consulate and subscribe to travel advisories or safety updates to receive important information in a timely manner.
  • Trust Your Instincts: Trust your instincts and intuition. If a situation seems unsafe or uncomfortable, remove yourself from it. Avoid risky behaviors and exercise caution when engaging in adventure activities or water sports.

By adhering to these safety and security tips, you can minimize potential risks and enjoy a safe and secure experience while living in Bali. Remember that vigilance and common sense go a long way in maintaining personal safety and peace of mind in your new home.


Tips for a Smooth Transition

Transitioning to life in Bali as an expat can be both exciting and challenging. Here are some valuable tips to help ensure a smooth and successful transition:

  • Research and Preparation: Before moving to Bali, conduct thorough research on the country, its culture, customs, and regulations. Familiarize yourself with the visa requirements, cost of living, potential housing options, local traditions, and healthcare facilities. This knowledge will help you make informed decisions and adapt more easily.
  • Visit Before Moving: Whenever possible, consider visiting Bali before making the final move. This will allow you to get a feel for the different neighborhoods, explore potential housing options, and assess the overall suitability of the island for your lifestyle and needs.
  • Connect with Expatriate Communities: Reach out to the expat community in Bali through online forums, social media groups, and local events. Building relationships with fellow expats can provide valuable insights, support, and a sense of belonging. Expats can offer advice, share their experiences, and help you navigate the challenges of living in a new environment.
  • Learn the Language: While English is widely spoken in tourist areas, learning some basic Indonesian phrases can go a long way in daily interactions and building relationships with locals. Enroll in language classes or use language learning apps to improve your communication skills and show respect for the local culture.
  • Embrace Cultural Differences: Be open-minded and embrace the cultural differences you encounter in Bali. Respect local traditions, customs, and religious practices. Show genuine interest in learning about Balinese culture and engage in activities that promote cultural integration.
  • Stay Flexible and Patient: Living in a new country can be challenging at times. Be patient with yourself and the process of adapting to a new culture and way of life. Embrace the slower pace, different work styles, and potential language barriers. Cultivate a flexible mindset and be adaptable to unexpected situations.
  • Explore the Island: Take the time to explore the beauty of Bali. Visit the stunning temples, immerse yourself in nature, and discover hidden beaches. Engaging in outdoor activities like surfing, hiking, or yoga can help you connect with the island’s natural wonders and find a sense of peace and balance in your new surroundings.
  • Seek Support Services: Consider engaging the services of a relocation expert or expat support agency to assist with the logistics of moving to Bali. They can provide guidance on visa processes, housing, schools, and other practical matters, saving you valuable time and effort.
  • Keep an Open Mind and Positive Attitude: Approach your new life in Bali with an open mind and a positive attitude. Embrace the challenges as learning experiences and focus on the opportunities and adventures that lie ahead. Embracing the island’s unique lifestyle and adapting to its rhythms will enhance your overall experience as an expat in Bali.

By following these tips, you can navigate the process of transitioning to Bali as an expat more smoothly. Embrace the opportunities, be open to learning, and savor the unique experiences that this tropical paradise has to offer.



Living in Bali as an expat offers a unique and enriching experience. The island’s stunning landscapes, rich cultural heritage, and warm hospitality create an inviting atmosphere that attracts individuals from all over the world. By understanding the basics of moving to Bali, navigating the legal requirements, and embracing the local culture, you can create a fulfilling and rewarding life in this tropical paradise.


From finding the right accommodation and understanding the cost of living to exploring career opportunities and integrating into the local community, this guide has provided comprehensive insights into various aspects of expat life in Bali. By following the tips for a smooth transition, you can navigate the challenges and make the most of your time in this vibrant and diverse island.


Remember to prioritize your safety and security, keep an open mind, and be patient as you adjust to a new way of life. By immersing yourself in the local culture, connecting with the expat community, and embracing the opportunities for adventure and personal growth, you’ll create lasting memories and forge lifelong friendships.


Living as an expat in Bali offers a chance to explore the wonders of the island, embrace a laid-back lifestyle, and create a sense of belonging in a community that values diversity. Whether you’re seeking a new career path, a change of scenery, or simply a tropical escape, Bali has the potential to be your dream destination. So, pack your bags, open your heart, and embark on this incredible journey of living in Bali as an expat.