Bali Expatriation Guide

Moving to a new country can be an exciting and life-changing experience. Bali, known for its beautiful landscapes, vibrant culture, and warm hospitality, is a popular destination for expatriates looking to start a new chapter in their lives.

This guide will provide you with essential information about expatriating to Bali, covering visa requirements, finding accommodation, cost of living, healthcare facilities, education, transportation, safety, cultural etiquette, weather, popular expat communities, social life, job opportunities, and starting a business.

Visa Requirements

Before relocating to Bali, it’s crucial to understand the visa requirements. The Indonesian government offers different types of visas, including tourist visas, social visas, and work permits.

Depending on the purpose and duration of your stay, you need to choose the appropriate visa category and fulfil the necessary documentation and requirements.

You need to know that you will only have access to short term visas unless you create a company in Indonesia, which currently costs around 3600$ (KITAS).

Finding Accommodation

Finding suitable accommodation is an important aspect of expatriating to Bali. The island offers a wide range of options, from luxurious villas to affordable apartments and houses.

It’s recommended to research various areas and consider factors such as proximity to amenities, safety, and your lifestyle preferences.

Prices can be around 500$ a month for decent accomodations but can go up quite a lot if you are in trendy areas like Canggu!

Cost of Living

Understanding the cost of living in Bali is essential for planning your finances. While Bali can be relatively affordable compared to many Western countries, the cost varies depending on your lifestyle choices.

Expenses like accommodation, food, transportation, healthcare, and leisure activities should be taken into account to ensure a comfortable living standard.

Since Covid, the cost of living has gone up all around the world, and while you can still live in Bali for around 1000$ per month, you will need to spend considerably more depending on your lifestyle and where you decide to live in Bali!

Healthcare Facilities

Bali provides a range of healthcare facilities, including private clinics and hospitals that cater to expatriates’ needs. It’s advisable to secure health insurance that covers medical expenses and emergencies.

Researching the availability of specialized healthcare services and proximity to your place of residence is recommended.

Education and Schools

If you are relocating with children, it’s important to explore the education options in Bali. The island offers a variety of international schools that follow recognized curricula. Researching the quality of education, extracurricular activities, and admission processes will help you make an informed decision about your child’s schooling.


Getting around Bali is not easy, with roads in poor conditions, constant traffic jam. Motorbikes, taxis, ride-hailing services, and public transportation are commonly used. You will need to be patient as it can take hours to make 10-20kms in Bali…

Familiarize yourself with local transportation networks, road rules, and consider obtaining an international driving license if you plan to drive in Bali.

Safety and Security

While Bali is generally considered safe, it’s important to exercise caution and be aware of your surroundings. Take necessary precautions, such as securing your belongings, avoiding isolated areas at night, and staying informed about local customs and regulations.

Cultural Etiquette

Respecting the local culture is crucial when living in Bali. Understanding and adhering to cultural norms, traditions, and etiquette will help you integrate into the community and build meaningful connections with locals. Learning a few basic phrases in Bahasa Indonesia can also be beneficial.

Weather and Climate

Bali enjoys a tropical climate, characterized by two distinct seasons: the dry season and the rainy season. Familiarize yourself with the weather patterns to plan your activities accordingly. It’s advisable to pack appropriate clothing and essentials based on the climate.

Popular Expat Communities

Bali attracts expatriates from around the world, and there are several popular communities where you can connect with like-minded individuals.

These communities often organize social events, networking opportunities, and provide support for newcomers. Joining these communities can help ease your transition and make new friends.

Canggu, Uluwatu, Sanur are all good expats hubs!

Social Life and Entertainment

Bali offers a vibrant social scene and a wide range of entertainment options. From beach clubs and restaurants to cultural events and outdoor activities, there’s something for everyone. Embrace the island’s diverse offerings and immerse yourself in its unique blend of traditional and modern experiences.

Job Opportunities

While many expatriates choose to relocate to Bali for its lifestyle and natural beauty, it’s essential to consider job opportunities. Bali’s economy relies heavily on tourism, hospitality, and entrepreneurship. Research the job market, explore remote work possibilities, or consider starting your own business if you’re looking for employment opportunities.

Starting a Business

Bali presents opportunities for entrepreneurial-minded expatriates. Starting a business requires thorough research, understanding local regulations, and identifying market gaps. Seek professional advice and guidance to navigate the process successfully.


Expatriating to Bali offers a chance for a fulfilling and enriching experience. By understanding the visa requirements, finding suitable accommodation, managing the cost of living, accessing healthcare facilities, and embracing the local culture, you can make a smooth transition to your new life on the island.

Read this article in Spanish to find more on expatriation in Bali