Riding a Scooter in Bali – Everything You Need to Know – Every first time visitor to Bali will notice something as soon as they leave the airport. There are scooters everywhere! This is not too much, because the special means of transportation on this island are motorbikes.
And with countless scooters roaming the streets in what can only be described as a total riot, the considerations of actually using a scooter in Bali can be overwhelming. However, that doesn’t have to be the case.
Here, I will give you everything you need to know about using scooters in Bali. Individually, I’ve visited Bali more than a dozen times as a tourist, renting scooters every opportunity. Currently, I have been on the island for 18 months and have my own scooter, which by now I have visited almost every inch of the island.
Riding a Scooter in Bali – Everything You Need to Know
Using a scooter in Bali is not so scary, and can be really exhilarating. IF you follow the rules of common sense, which I will give you at the end of this article. Number 9 is absolutely correct!
UPDATE JULY 2023 – Currently there is a lot of talk in Indonesia and Bali regarding the prohibition of tourists riding motorbikes. This is just a discussion, and not a rule. I will update the following article if there is a transition.
It needs to be written if the reason for this discussion is because travelers fail to comply with the conditions that I mentioned in the following article regarding licenses, helmets and safety. Expect to do the right thing and this rule may never be enforced!
Steps to rent a motorbike in Bali
Scooter rental is really easy in Bali. You can literally get them anywhere on the street, especially around recreational areas. You DO have to be vigilant, though. Finding a key carrier with an office, such as a tour company’s office, is the safest and easiest way to rent a scooter on the road.
Otherwise, just walk almost any street and you’ll find a line of scooters advertised for hire. You have to bargain for a price, and you MAY get it a little cheaper than somewhere else, but that doesn’t mean you’re getting good quality.
Scooters in Bali ALWAYS check your scooter before you rent it. Check the brakes, ignition, tires, and the sound of the scooter at idle. See how much gas they have, and make sure you know they want it full when you return it. Next, check the overall condition of the bike and take photos if you feel the need. In short, do everything you would do if you rented a car from home.
Prices for scooters in Bali are cheap. If you haggle on the street you can likely find as low as 70k rupees for a day’s rent. If you work longer, you may find it cheaper. Some, you can expect to pay around 100k rupees daily, but this depends on the type of scooter you rent.
Common scooters like the Honda Vario can be the easiest and cheapest to charter. If you want to get a fashionable Vespa or Scoopy, or a much more powerful Yamaha Nmax (which I have) then you will pay a little more expensive. In the end, 70k rupees for just under $5USD so it doesn’t break the bank when you pay an extra 10k rupees for a good bike.
If you are hesitant to rent, and just want to go on a scooter in Bali without the hassle, then you can check out THIS link. Through Bikago you can rent good reliable scooters, and have them delivered directly to your resort. There’s no better way to get going without wasting time!
Plus they have locations all over Bali, making it convenient, and each rental comes with curbside assistance if needed. They may be a little more expensive, but with that you get an edge, collateral, easy and fast transport, and you know they’ll help you if something goes wrong.
What do you need to rent a scooter in Bali
To rent a scooter in Bali, you will need:
– International Driving Permit
– Helmet (usually included with your scooter)
– Travel insurance
With some “road rental” places you get away with not having an international driving license. I would NOT recommend you do this. If you are planning a vacation and thinking about using a scooter in Bali, then get your International Driving License before you leave home. If the police stop you and you don’t have any, then the fare can be very expensive for you.
Don’t try to drive without a helmet. Obviously, there are security arguments I shouldn’t review. You DO NOT want to end up in the hospital in Bali. However, the police will kick you out for not wearing a helmet, and while many locals do not, YOU should! It may seem unfair, but it doesn’t make a valid argument with the police. Another expensive lesson when you get caught.
When it comes to travel insurance, it is always the best idea to have. When renting a scooter in Bali, it is a good idea to be prepared for the worst. Hopefully there are no problems, because you already have it when you come to Bali. If you are looking for the best place for insurance, you can not go through SafetyWing. Watch it HERE.
At its core, it comes down to common sense and setup. Follow the rules, and you will be fine and happy on your scooter in Bali, Indonesia.
Where can you ride one?
In essence anywhere!
Just as I mentioned earlier in the article, scooters are a special means of transportation in Bali. Each road is made considering a scooter. Indeed, I have actually been on several “roads” throughout Bali that you will NOT go through or travel by vehicle. Scooters are one access.
I’ve been to waterfalls in Papua in central Bali before and every way was inaccessible to the small vehicle we rode on. We had to return by motorbike to get to the waterfall.
One of my favorite places in East Bali, called Lahangan Sweet, can only be reached by scooter or 4wd which is very good.
Drive in East Bali – you can go anywhere. If you visit the rice fields around Bali, see how the local employees go out to the farthest garden. They ride their scooters onto a track that is only wide enough for one scooter at a time. This island is MADE for scooters. Riding a scooter in Bali is the best way to see the island, in my opinion.
You can also take your scooter to other islands. It might be wise to make sure your rental shop is happy with you doing, but it’s easy to take your scooter by ferry across to Lombok or the other way to Java. This makes it easy and simple to see other places, and iconic views such as Mount Ijen in Java.
If you are not sure about using a scooter, then you can always rent a vehicle with a driver. It’s just as easy and can be done HERE.
On this link you can find drivers, air-conditioned vehicles and guides to take you anywhere you want to go during the day. Watch THIS ARTICLE for more info.
Fill your Bali scooter
This is easy, if you know where to look for it.
In essence, there are three steps to fill your Bali Scooter.
– At a proper gas station, the name is Pertamina.
– At a small roadside stall called Pertamini.
– In some small stalls on the side of the road where petrol is put in Vodka bottles.
The first choice is the best. On all special roads in Bali you will find regular gas stations. They look like any gas station in the world, and they say “Pertamina”. Just grab and follow the other scooters.
If not, just take it to any bowser and someone will help you. Just get off your scooter, open the gas tank and they will do all the work for you. Just say “Full” and they will fill it for you. Pay the clerk at the bowser and off you go!
The 2nd option is not much different, and can be found in the larger hamlets around the island. This includes the type of manual pump you pick up and load your scooter on it. It’s just on the side of the road or outside some of the bigger warungs.
The latter option is very popular in recreational areas especially, and there are every second stalls along the way. You’ll see gasoline placed in Vodka bottles outside the shop. This is generally 10k rupees for 1 liter of petrol, and they will generally empty two bottles into your scooter for you.
Last Tips for Riding a Scooter in Bali
There are a lot of things to tell you about using a scooter in Bali, but there are a lot more things to tell you if you DON’T. Some of these can be covered under common sense provisions, but sadly some people are not. Just remember this. As confident and wise as you are on your scooter in Bali, not everyone is the same as you. There are some morons out there (for wanting to keep this PG) and you need to remember that.
That’s my final guide for motorbike riding in Bali. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve probably read it! Number 10 is what happens EVERY day.
- Literally no one follows the rules of the road in Bali. At least, it looks something like that.
- People will drive plates through red lights. DO NOT follow them.
- It is MANDATORY to wear a helmet and clothes when riding a motorbike in Bali. You WILL be fined if you don’t. You MAY be able to get away with it for a while, but don’t take the negatives for granted.
- Locals will drive as if they don’t care about death, or just aren’t sure they will. DO NOT ride like them. Think about safety first. The hospital is full for some reason.
- If a gap seems too small to fit through, it is TOO SMALL TO FIT!
- When you decide the gap is too small, I can guarantee the locale will adjust.
- No matter how close to the roadside you think, someone will adapt you. awake!
- When driving anywhere in Bali you must have your eyes on the back and sides of your head. Some people will exist from the least probable location without acknowledgment.
- Locals WILL be out gangs, stalls, and literally anywhere without being witnessed. They will drive on the wrong side of the road. Always wanting the worst.
- When I learned to ride a motorbike in Australia, I was taught to use it as if YOU were invisible, and everyone else was drunk. This is the condition for living in Bali.
Have you checked my Instagram yet? If you want to know where I was and all the great places I went BEFORE they were on my website, follow me. I publish about some of the lesser seen places, guides and guides to visit, and tutorials and travel ideas. Watch it here.
For further information on how to get around in Bali, watch the following link regarding the options available to you!
Riding a scooter in Bali – Summary
Riding a scooter in Bali is exhilarating, and is the most beautiful way to see this island. There are places at the top of the mountain that I stopped with my scooter to enjoy the panorama, in some places you can’t stop with a car. There’s no finer move to drill down.
But, you MUST be logical. DON’T join the crazy crowd trying to drive without a helmet, without clothes and possibly without a driver’s license. They take a huge negative impact and it is not comparable! Using a scooter in Bali should be an exhilarating experience. Don’t make it one that you regret.