Is Bali Still THE Place To Visit?

Bali has been one of the most popular tourist spots in the world, since Eat, Pray, Love was published, back in 2006.

It’s known for its affordable prices, trendy bars, and gnarly waves, not to mention a population that makes you feel immediately welcome with big toothy grins and friendly gestures.

Indonesia was hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, forcing the island of Bali —  which relies on tourism to form approximately 60% of its GDP — to close its borders to visitors for almost two years.

As such, businesses and homeowners suffered a huge loss during this time. Now, Bali is heaving with tourists again, but has the island priced itself out of the market?

While some renters managed to score monthly leases for as little as US$180 during the height of the pandemic, now many travelers find themselves scouring rental sites and Facebook groups only to be met with absurd prices for villas that have seen better days. 

Many villas are being listed for 4-5x the usual rental price and the prices seem to increase by the day. You could pay as much as US$8,000 per month for a 3-bedroom villa that in recent years would have been leased for under US$2,000, without electricity included.

All is not lost, as there are still some bargains to be had on the island, but you’ll need to act quickly in order to snap them up.

For many, however, this may be enough to put them off Bali altogether, but where could you go instead? 

Try Lombok. The island is just a boat ride from Bali and gives an insight into what the popular tourist attraction would have looked like 20 years ago.

Best of all, the prices reflect this. You can expect to pay between US$300 and US$400 for a room for a month, and if you wish to have your own place, you can find bungalows for as little as US$450 per month.

Like Bali, there is the option to opt for more luxurious lodging.

However, you can enjoy a trip to Lombok regardless of whether you’re on a shoestring budget or not, which is becoming more difficult with the current accommodation prices on the neighboring island of Bali.

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