Holiday-makers heading to Bali will now have to pay a $15 entry fee after a new tourist levy was activated.
The popular holiday destination introduced the “tourist tax” on Wednesday, which now means all foreign nationals will be required to pay a fee of 150,000 rupiah (about $15 AUD) upon or before arrival.
The extra cost will come on top of the existing $50 visa-on-arrival payment.
According to Bali Tourism Department head Tjok Bagus Pemayun, the new fee “applies only once during a trip to Bali” for all foreign nationals entering the province.
The Bali administration told Bali.com: “The levy is paid only once while travelling in Bali, before the person leaves the territory of the Republic of Indonesia.”
The administration confirmed travellers who leave Bali to visit other provinces will not have to pay the tax again but should they leave Indonesia, the tax will need to be paid once again.
The tourist levy will be used by the government to help preserve Bali’s natural environment, culture and contribute to more sustainable tourism.
“This money will be used in our efforts to establish sustainable tourism,” Indonesia’s Deputy Tourism Minister Ni Made Ayu Marthini told news.com.au.
“Primarily, these funds will be used to improve waste management, preserve cultural sites and the local environment.”
The tax will also be used to improve waste management and build quality infrastructure and transportation across the province visited by more than one million Australians each year.
Foreigners with diplomatic and official visas, Temporary Stay Permit Cards, Permanent Stay Permit Cards, family unification visas, golden and student visas, specific non-tourist visa holders and conveyance crew are all exempt from paying the tax.
However, they must apply for an exemption at least one month before entering Bali.
To pay the tax, travellers can visit the government’s Love Bali website or download the Love Bali app before arriving.
Visitors will be required to enter details including their passport number and arrival date before they are emailed with a levy voucher they will need to present at various checkpoints upon arrival.
There is also the option to pay at a bank counter at Gusti Ngurah Rai Airport or Benoa Bali Harbour, but this method is not encouraged by the government.
The introduction of the tourist tax comes after the Indonesian government last year cracked down on tourism and misbehaving travellers.
The government released an official tourist dos and don’ts list, a hotline to report bad behaviour and a special task force to monitor foreigners behaviour was set up.