Holidaying in Bali During COVID-19, By An Aussie Expat

Thoughts From an Aussie Family, Who Holidayed in Bali During Covid…

Social media is a great connector of people. Katrice and I first met “online” after she had made some comments on the Bali Buddies Facebook page about having just moved to Jakarta in early 2020. I got to meet her in person recently while her family enjoyed a vacation in Bali. I asked her some questions about what it’s like to holiday in Bali during this time…

Like This Post? Pin it!

You can save this page to your Pinterest board for later. 

Tell Us a Bit About Yourself and Where You’ve Been During the Pandemic

This time last year, my husband, myself and our two boys (now 14 and 11), were in the thick of preparing for our international move from the Central Coast in Sydney, Australia, to Jakarta, Indonesia.  This is our first time living abroad and we love it!

We arrived in Jakarta in mid-January this year and our furniture was 2 months behind us, so we spent our weekends out and about, discovering our new home and host country. In February we visited Yogyakarta in Central Java and postponed a trip planned to Lombok in March due to travel restrictions and Covid-19 uncertainty.

In June we started coming out of our hard lockdown here in Indonesia and we began exploring again, cautiously visiting different areas of Java by car and boat.  We’ve since flown domestically three times, taking our postponed trip to Lombok and The Gillies in August and have most recently visited Bali in October.

Have You Visited Bali Before Covid?

My first trip to Bali was 30 years ago!  Now I’m showing my age… Over the years I’ve been back to Bali several times with friends, on work trips and with my own family.

What Was the Airport Experience Like?

We were so impressed with the health and safety protocols in place when we took our first ‘Covid times’ domestic flight in August, it gave us the confidence to keep doing it.

To enter the airport in Jakarta you walk through a thermal scanner and have your paperwork checked (non-reactive Covid-19 test results). Everyone wears a mask and is courteous with distancing. At the check-in counters and throughout the airports, there are many hand sanitiser stations.

We’ve now flown on all four domestic carriers here in Indonesia and every time there is a seat between us (even as a family). Masks are worn in flight too.  My husband and I have considered the possibility of continuing to wear masks on flights for the foreseeable future to help limit our exposure to illness in general, not specifically Covid-19.

When we arrive at our destination, our temperature is checked again, our non-reactive Covid-19 paperwork is checked again and our EHAC barcode is scanned.  EHAC stands for Electronic Health Alert Card which is a quick, easy online form that is required to be completed electronically for domestic travel within Indonesia or for international arrivals into Indonesia.  This is used for contact tracing for Covid-19.

What Is It Like to Be in Bali During This Time?

We had a fabulous time in Bali with mixed emotions.  To be able to experience Bali with fewer tourists was lovely for us but seeing how difficult it is for the people of Bali weighs heavily on me, knowing there’s only so much you can do to help.  In saying that though, you see how resilient, community-minded and hopeful the Balinese people are, especially when faced with these tough times.  I think Bali over the years has not only been appealing as a destination, but tourists fall in love with the people and the Balinese people still have some of the best smiles in the world!

How Did You Feel About Covid and How the Businesses Are Handling It in Bali?

We have been impressed by how adaptive Indonesians are, their attitude and innovation. Businesses and people adopted and implemented health and safety protocols to minimise the spread of Covid-19 very early in the year. What is clear though, is that businesses in Bali are going to need support from International tourism soon, before the impact of closed international borders becomes unsustainable.

Were There Things Open? Did You Meet People? Did You See Other Foreigners?

We were surprised by how many foreigners we met in Bali. Covid-19 has pushed a lot of people into digital and remote work and school environments, so we met many foreigners who have chosen Bali as their physical location.

There are a lot of businesses and hotels on hiatus in the popular tourist areas but there’s definitely enough open to still have variety, signature Balinese service and a wonderful time.

Do You Plan to Visit Again Anytime Soon?

ABSOLUTELY!!! We would love to see our family for Christmas but while that’s not possible, we’re happily planning Christmas and New Year in Bali.

Itinerary Planner

Bali Buddies brand new Bali Itinerary Planner


Karlie and Emma present Bali insiders podcast

Travel Deals


Bali Buddies Tips

Like This Post? Pin it!

PS. Some links in this blog are affiliate links and if you make a purchase, at no extra cost to you, we receive a commission. We thank you in advance as it helps to keep this website going.

Bali Buddies is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn fees by advertising and linking to and affiliated sites.

For more information, please visit our disclaimer page.

Recent Posts

Apurva Jalak Family Club

Best Family-Friendly Resorts in Bali

From huge free-form swimming pools to interactive games rooms and traditional crafts activities, Bali’s top family hotels know exactly how to keep the little ones entertained. Here’s our edit of Bali’s best hotels for families in each area of the island.

Read More »