Me and my boyfriend plan to travel to Bali in July/August, and are thinking of hiring our own car to travel round the whole island over a few weeks. We want to do this to have the freedom to go where we want, when we want. Does anybody have any idea how much it would be to hire a car for 4-6 weeks? And is this the best idea?
#1 lott9 has been a member since 20/3/2014. Posts: 4
Hi there. Honestly I don't think this is a good idea. Traffic is a big problem on the island and local drivers know how to beat it. Apart from that, the streets and alleys are so narrow and confusing that you could be lost forever, specially in Ubud area, where all the houses, temples, streets and rice fields look the same (amazingly beautiful, by the way). A good idea is to pick a base and hire a scooter to drive around. Then you move from place to place hiring scooters on the spot (is about 6 or 7 dolars a day). Have a nice trip
#2 felipedatt has been a member since 26/7/2012. Posts: 6
Having your own transport is a great way to see Bali. I agree with felipedatt that a motorbike is preferable (assuming you're competent on one are licensed etc) but otherwise a car is great - particularly for two people. Yes congestion and finding a park can be a problem at times, but you can manage.
You can rent something like a newish Toyota Avansa for around 250-300,000 per day - less if you took it for a longer period, more if you want it with a driver. Cheaper cars can be had for around 150-180,000 per day, again, longer hires will get you a discount.
You do need an International drivers (or riders) license to drive legally in Indonesia - in practise people who don't pay off the cops when theya re pulled over, but there are travel insurance implications for driving/riding unlicensed.
I disagree that it's not a good idea to hire a car. I've done it several times and because it has allowed me to explore areas that i would have otherwise missed, it resulted in a much more rewarding experience. Even though it's painful navigating through traffic sometimes, it's doable, as long as you realise that all road rules as you know them have gone out the window! You need to figure out how locals do it, maintain patience and you'll be fine.
Not sure I agree with Somtam about the bikes being a good idea though (other than in quieter areas as a day trip maybe OR unless you are very experienced). The advantage of a car is that you can lock your stuff in the car and while you pop into a restaurant or explore places during your journey. I'd be more concerned leaving stuff on a bike. Of course, there are also travel insurance coverage implications when hiring a bike, too, esp if you don't have a motorbike licence.
If you follow the advice above, and don't hire a car and only hire a scooter locally, you are then reliant on public bemos or hired drivers for transport. Bemos are cheap but uncomfortable for longish journeys (but a great chance to meet locals); hired drivers are bloody expensive in Bali. Or you can take the tourist shuttle buses but that will restrict you in terms of where you can go.
Thankyou for all your replies, really helpful!
felidepatt.. What would you suggest for travelling from place to place, a driver or public transport?
My boyfriend is dying to hire a motorbike, but like you say the safety and comfort of a car seeing as there is 2 of us and I have never rode before, it seems a much more practical idea! How do we go about hiring a car? Is it pretty straightforward when we get out the airport?
Also I've read about hiring a GPS with the car which might help prevent getting so lost, has anyone done this before, did it work out well? We also considered buying one that would work out there which could work out cheaper.
#5 lott9 has been a member since 20/3/2014. Posts: 4
Cars are extremely easy to hire. Any guesthouse should be able to point you in the right direction. If you have never ridden a motorbike before then I'd say Bali probably isn't the best place to learn Though, that said, plenty do.
I don't know about hiring a GPS - if you have an unlocked smartphone, then Google- or Apple-maps should be enough when combined with an inexpensive local sim card. It's what I use and I only get lost half the time
Yeah I'm not sure I fancy learning on those roads, haha!
That's great thanks, how did you go about getting your sim as well?
...can you tell this is my first big travelling trip?!
#7 lott9 has been a member since 20/3/2014. Posts: 4
Ok thanks, do you know what SIM cards you'd need on the other Indonesian Islands (Java/Kalimantan/Nusa Tenggara are where we'rethinking of going)? Would you be able to use the same one?
#9 lott9 has been a member since 20/3/2014. Posts: 4
Hire a car. Can get one from Kuta for $10 (100,000) per day. If you're on a budget that is... otherwise the price goes up sharply if you want one with insurance, working AC, seatbelts etc... but the $10 job does just fine. Motorbikes are also very cool, but slightly less convenient for such a long trip if you have lots of luggage.