Deciding to travel to Bali is the right choice for many travelers, especially those who enjoy cultural traveling to learn about local cultures and get to know the locals’ life. Once, travelers step on the island, the love for the island would spring out. It is not just because of the atmosphere, but also due to the best place to spend time for long term stay. The long-term stay could mean live in Bali either for retirement purposes or even to work here.
The island, which populated with 3.5 billion people, can offer many nice things on the surface, the glamorous life, parties, business opportunities or just a great hideaway for pleasures. There are many things that need to prepare before jumping out into this island and many things that are not counted in planning the move; such as the culture, locals’ life, business or work opportunities, living expenses, the law and many more. It is a big step out when it comes to the idea of living a dream life in Bali.
The dream could be in line with the local culture. The Balinese live in the community and they know all their neighbors. This community can not be separated in their daily life. They have the tendency to know what goes on in their environment. Do not be amazed when the local neighbors try to find out what you are up to and even your personal life you might not share with others. This is not surprising since they always share their life with others. Since they feel secure to share it and the trust among each other. Here will be a big gap between western and eastern culture. In western life, which is used to be individual, will encounter this new thing. It is always nice to know and learn.
Learning the national language should also be a good investment to live in Bali. Life will be much easier with the ability to speak in Indonesian. More advantages will be earned such as better deals in bargaining for prices, the locals would be more respect you as well as you would not be cheated by irresponsible people. The language is the bridge to make friends with locals. The local friends would help whenever you need help regarding the local situations. You may get any updates on the local places, living, accommodations or even help in the local bureaucracy, which can be smoother with local help.
This help can also in terms of any information on the business opportunities if you wish to set up something in Bali. This will avoid the wrong business to set up in the future. As in Bali, the business turn over is high. Research during your visit or stay what is the best opportunity to do. Besides, the permit or legal aspect should also be considered. The law is different in Indonesia.
The permit is different for work or business or even to stay long term in Bali. Tourist permits can not use for working here unless the work visa obtained and cost it around US$ 2,000. Though the visa is available to present, the competition with the locals is pretty hard. There are a lot of qualified locals with multi-skills under expatriates’ wages. The company here would choose the locals to employ rather than the expatriates with a higher salary.
The salary range is different from western countries to make the living cost is affordable. Many foreigners see the living cost is low when they live here. You can buy local food at the local warungs or food stalls very cheap. For nasi campur or complete rice with vegetable or selection of meat or fish plus drink will only cost around US$ 1 – US$ 2. You can adapt the local living to cut all the costs. However, only locals can live as local not the westerners. Expat somehow needs to spend their money on their own food if bored with rice or nasi campur. Imported food or stuff is expensive in Bali.
There are several numbers of supermarkets for ex-pats around 3 times more expensive than the normal price. Clubbing places, cafes, restaurants or coffee shops are way too expensive. Many ex-pats find the prices are quite similar to the European countries. Well again, it depends on the hang out places selected. There are many local places, which provide western food at affordable prices.
Get prepare before making this important leap in your life. Ask your self genuinely if this is what you really want. Your heart is driving you to find the answer since living overseas is not easy. It needs big adaptations to the local view and way of life. You need to understand and compromise with all differences occur. Your are about to experience many new exposures in Bali. You need to rethink what you need to do.