Australian tourists who are due to visit Bali in the coming weeks have even been issued a warning by Smartraveler, the Australian government travel advice bureau.
Australian tourists are the most frequent international arrivals in Bali.
According to advice issued by the Australian Government on 5th February, tourists should be mindful of public displays of political activity in the coming weeks. Indonesia will have a general election on 14th February.
Political rallies have been being held around the country, including in Bali, and so far, everything has been peaceful.
The advice from Smartraveler reads, “The Indonesian Presidential election will take place on 14th February. Frequent political rallies and possible protests are likely to occur in the lead-up to the election.”
@mothershipsg A guide to Indonesia’s presidential candidates: Prabowo Subianto. The former general will stand in the general elections on Feb. 14, 2024 as the candidate for the Gerindra party. #tiktokindonesia #worldnews #tiktoksg #sgnews ♬ original sound – Mothership
The warning notes that tourists must “Expect traffic delays and restricted access to locations if protests occur. Avoid protests and demonstrations and monitor local media for the latest updates.”
The concluding advice is “Exercise a high degree of caution in Indonesia overall due to security risks. Higher levels apply in some areas.”
Those higher degrees of precaution are required for travel to the province of Papua, as has long been the case.
The list of safety considerations for Indonesia by Australia’s Smartraveler is comprehensive.
They say, “There’s an ongoing risk of terrorist attack in Indonesia. Be alert to possible threats. Take official warnings seriously and follow the advice of local authorities. Popular tourist areas may be the target of terrorist attacks.”
The safety considerations also apply to natural disasters, of which Bali is prone. Smartarveler reminds tourists that as many of Indonesia’s volcanos are active, it’s important to be aware that this can happen at any time.
They note that volcanic and seismic activity can happen at any time and continue for long periods. In fact, this is why local authorities in Bali say that tourists should minimize time at the crater of Mount Agung for this very reason.
@abd.wah Gunung Agung 3.142 mdpl #agungmountain #mountagungbali ♬ Right Now speed audio – 1D Audioz
However, these safety recommendations are longstanding and considered fairly standard. With the general election coming up, all parties and leaders have committed to ensuring that public safety is upheld at all times, including the after of tourists.
Local leaders in Bali naturally want to see a peaceful and demographic election period and are concessions to make sure that tourists’ expenses on the island are not impacted by the process.
Speaking at the beginning of the campaigning period, the Chairman of the Bali Tourist Transport Association, Nyoman Sudiartha, said, “Our hope is that we will work together to maintain Bali tourism; this is also the hope of all parties.”
Speaking separately, the Managing Director of Pacific Holidays, Nyoman Astama, said, “I am optimistic that the election will run smoothly…once again, we hope that the elections will run smoothly, so that Bali tourism, which has just revived, will be maintained.”
The three presidential candidates are Ganjar Pranowo, who is predicted to win in Bali Province, Andes Baswedan, and Prabowo Subianto.
Prabowo Subianto has made commitments to achieve greater food, energy, and water security should he be elected as president.
He also wants to see growth in the maritime sector. He comes from an elite family and is committing to continuing President Joko Widodo’s vision for Nusantara, the new Indonesian capital city in East Kalimantan.
Ganjar Pranowo is the favorite candidate in Bali. He is not part of any elite group, and this is one of many reasons why he is receiving a lot of support from younger voters.
During his visits to Bali over the campaign period, tens of thousands of young people have come out to show their support. He wants to, amongst other things, expand the social welfare system.
The third candidate is Andes Baswedan. He does not belong to any political party, but all three major parties have backed him to a degree.
He is big on growth and wants to see the creation of 15 million more jobs in Indonesia.