Just say the word, ‘Bali’, and you’re immediately in a tropical state of mind. You’re thinking about chilling in paradise.
Bali has a certain vibe that you simply can’t find anywhere else. One visit and you’ll see it lives up to its reputation. Nowhere on planet earth offers the same marvelous mix of sun-kissed pleasure, surfing and spirituality. Whether you’re a backpacker searching for a good time, a family looking to bond, or a wanderer seeking a higher ground, Bali is for you.
From the yoga studios of Ubud to the temples of Canggu to the surf spots of Uluwatu, Bali delivers every step of the way. This is a place where you can have a transformative, unforgettable experience.
Obviously, if you wish to visit and spend time in Bali, Indonesia, you’re not alone. The good news is that you can actually visit the Indonesian island for cheap. Although flights, hotels, food, and activities add up, cost-saving travel strategies do exist.
Perhaps you never considered it, but a savvy way to visit Bali on a shoestring budget is to teach English and get paid to live there. Teaching English as a Foreign Language is the perfect opportunity to get paid to travel abroad in Bali. International TEFL Academy (ITA) offers the gold standard in TEFL certification for teaching English abroad and teaching English online. ITA can certify you to teach English and help you land a job at a school in Bali. Salary is quite solid, typically being over $1,000 – $1,200 per month (plenty to live comfortably on the island).
Another one of the cheapest ways to visit Bali is to volunteer there. For example, International Volunteer HQ, one of the world’s most trusted and affordable volunteer abroad organizations, offers 9 different volunteer projects in Bali at their Lovina, Ubud and Nusa Penida locations. Another volunteer organization, GoEco, also offers a variety of service opportunities in Bali, including an education program in Ubud.
Volunteer programs allow you to explore Balinese culture more deeply, while keeping your travel cost-effective. Their projects have a reasonable price tag. Plus, the programs typically include accommodation and meals, among other things. This removes major expenses that come with traveling.
So, read these 10 tips on cheap ways to visit Bali. You’ll figure out an inexpensive way to experience the nature, beaches, history, culture, and entertainment of Bali.
1. Search for Cheap Flights to Bali
There are low-priced flights to Bali out there. Here’s a strategy to snag one of those flights:
- Consider going during months when flights are cheapest. According to Kayak, flights to Bali from the USA are cheapest in April. You can easily save around $500 by flying during April instead of November.
- Start looking at least 6-8 weeks in advance. For most regions, flights to Bali are cheapest when well in advance. Research published by Frommer’s shows international airfare is generally most affordable when booked 6 weeks in advance.
- Fly with low-cost airlines. For example, low-cost carriers like AirAsia and Jetstar feature routes throughout Asia and Australia, including to and from Bali. Prices are usually below market averages.
- Search for flights on student travel sites, such as StudentUniverse. If you’re a student, these specialty sites will tailor deals and discounts for you.
Additionally, be flexible with dates. Flying on a Tuesday instead of a Saturday could save you hundreds of dollars.
2. Go to Bali During Non-Peak Season
Travel + Leisure data shows when tourism to Bali is highest:
- High Season: June-August; November-December
- Shoulder Season: April-May and September
- Low Season: January-March and October
Going during the low season will be the cheapest way to visit Bali. The risk you may take is that rainfall is typically higher during these times. However, it may be worth the payoff because hotel, airline, and sightseeing prices are all much lower during non-peak season. Shoulder season is also usually cheaper than the high season months, with less weather risk. For example, April is a great month as airfares are usually still low and it’s considered the beginning of Bali’s dry season.
3. Volunteer to Help Children in Bali
Volunteering in childcare and education is a great way to give back to the local community during your time in Bali (and save money on your trip in the meantime). It’s also a great way to immerse yourself in the local culture and make meaningful connections.
One organization that offers reputable volunteer programs in Bali, Indonesia is International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ). Founded in 2007, IVHQ has placed more than 131,000 volunteers in programs around the world. Known for low fees, impactful initiatives, and projects that align with UN Sustainable Development goals, IVHQ is a top choice for those wishing to volunteer in Bali.
With IVHQ, you have a few options for volunteering to help children in Bali, including:
- Childcare in Ubud: Volunteer in a kindergarten in Ubud and help set the youngsters there up for a better future. Duties include teaching English, playing games, and sharing your culture.
- Teaching in Lovina: Help improve access to education within the local community which can help kids stay in school, continue with further education and opens doors to better employment opportunities later in life.
- Health Education in Ubud: Teach basic health skills in schools, or, if qualified, run community health campaigns. In the long run, your help empowers the local community to take care of their own wellbeing and live healthier lives.
As a volunteer, you’ll get to see the sights and enjoy activities during free time, all the while having food and lodging covered by your volunteer organization. If you volunteer in Ubud, the Tegalalang Rice Terrace, Ubud Monkey Forest, temples and shrines, and other famous sites are nearby. If you volunteer in Lovina, the beaches and coral reefs are right at your doorstep. IVHQ’s low fees help you get the most value from your volunteer experience and save money on your overall Bali trip.
4. Save on Lodging in Bali
Outside of transportation to Bali, your next biggest expense may be your accommodation. This is where you can save a lot of money. Just look at this price data from Bali.com:
- A guesthouse or hostel in Bali costs between $10-$15 per night.
- A mid-range hotel or guesthouse costs between $30-$60 per night.
- A luxury hotel or accommodation can cost between $100-$500+ per night.
If you go with budget or mid-range lodging, instead of a 4- or 5-star lodging, you can save hundreds of dollars on your trip. A lot of the guesthouses may not offer all the amenities you’d like to see, but they’re typically plenty comfortable to enjoy a good night’s rest. If you’re looking for savvy cheap ways to visit Bali, then saving on hotels is a definite must.
5. Volunteer to Rescue Sea Turtles in Bali
Sea turtles have a special place in the hearts of Balinese, as they play a vital role in promoting the health and growth of coral reefs. All species of sea turtles living around Bali are endangered, and there’s been a lot of focus on helping the Hawksbill, Green, Olive Ridley, and Loggerhead turtles thrive again.
When you volunteer to rescue sea turtles in Bali, you not only get to help the local environment, but you also get to experience the beauty of the island. Plus, most volunteers have food and lodging covered (which makes volunteering with turtles one of the great cheap ways to visit Bali).
There are many sea turtle rescue programs in Bali, so it can be hard to know which programs are truly impactful and reputable. We recommend the following two programs.
Founded in 2006, GoEco is a leading ecotourism and volunteer company. Rated a Top Volunteer Organization by GoAbroad, GoEco has been recommended by USA Today, the Guardian, Boston Globe, and other major publications. They carefully vet every project to ensure high standards of quality and safety.
The Bali Sea Turtle Rescue program currently offered by GoEco is truly one of the best. You’ll be placed on the tropical island of Nusa Penida, which is near Bali. There, you’ll work closely with sea turtles and contribute to conservation strategies. Daily tasks include cleaning and feeding the turtles at the center, assisting with public outreach, and collecting turtle eggs brought by fishermen who’ve saved them from the exotic wildlife trade market.
Right next to Bali, Nusa Penida is known for its gorgeous beaches and incredible nature. You’ll stay at a volunteer house that’s right near all the action.
Founded in 2007, Volunteering Solutions has helped more than 17,000 volunteers to date. With 150+ projects across 27 countries, Volunteering Solutions has programs in popular destinations including Bali. They’re known for their affordable, high-quality and impactful service projects.
The Turtle Conservation Project in Bali currently offered by Volunteering Solutions allows you to make an impact and save money on your travel to Bali. As a sea turtle volunteer, you’ll monitor hatching sites, help rescue turtles as needed, assist with care of turtles at the conservation center, and participate in community education workshops at the center.
You’ll be located on Serangan, a small island known for its turtles, sacred temples, and incredible natural beauty. You’ll also get to stay close to the beach!
6. Use Miles or Points to Travel to Bali
If you’re reading this article, chances are you’re open to various cost-saving methods. Using miles or points is one of the cheapest ways to visit Bali.
On sites like The Points Guy and Nerd Wallet, you can learn how to get to Bali for free or low cost with lucrative travel credit card signup bonuses and other miles- and points-earning hacks, such as doing surveys and shopping online.
With a clever strategy and some work, you can get enough miles to pay for your hotel or flight, or at least get a solid discount. For example, Chase Bank regularly offers credit card signup bonuses that award enough miles to pay for round-trip international airfare.
7. Teach English in Bali
Tourism plays a big role in the Bali economy, with 6 million tourists visiting the province each year. Bali needs English teachers to help prepare their children and young adults for the future. English language skills are needed in Bali to succeed in tourism, hospitality, and even fields such as healthcare and finance.
One of the great cheap ways to visit Bali is to go there to teach English. Thanks to great organizations such as the International TEFL Academy (ITA), the process can be seamless and enjoyable. You just need a bachelor’s degree and TEFL certification to teach English as a second language. ITA helps you obtain that certification at a low cost online. There are in-person TEFL certification classes as well (see ITA’s website to find a course near you).
Getting TEFL certified through the International TEFL Academy will set you up for success teaching English. Founded in 2010, International TEFL Academy (ITA) offers the gold standard in TEFL certification for teaching English abroad. ITA provides the finest internationally accredited TEFL courses both online and in-person in 20+ locations across the globe. ITA certifies 5,000 people per year, and their graduates are teaching in over 80 countries and online, including in Bali.
Furthermore, once you have that TEFL certification, ITA will help you land an English teaching job in Bali. Through your job, you’ll earn a salary that’s enough to live comfortably on the island, as well as get employment benefits such as housing and insurance. As an English teacher, you’ll be able to help the youth of Bali, all the while having income to enjoy the region during your free time. How amazing is that?
8. Budget Wisely on the Ground in Bali
You do want to have fun. After all, going to Bali offers the vacation of a lifetime. And spending can easily get out of hand while there. To avoid overspending, head to Bali with a budget and a plan. You’ll still enjoy a great vacation, while saving hundreds of dollars.
Follow these tips while there to save money:
- Eat like a local: Avoid the Westernized restaurants that charge $10 for avocado toast. Instead, head to the local eateries (the warungs) and enjoy a traditional Indonesian meal. You’ll eat well on the cheap.
- Rent a scooter: You don’t need to hire a driver. Renting a scooter will ensure you can get to where you need to go, at a fraction of the price.
- Visit off-the-beaten-path destinations: Bali is a huge island. Lesser-visited spots offer you the chance to spend less on everything from lodging to food. For a budget-friendly beach stay, consider Sanur. For some relaxing time in the mountains, opt for Munduk.
9. Find a Package Deal to Bali
Bundling has become a way to save money on everything from insurance to home internet and cable. It’s also one of the top 10 cheap ways to visit Bali. By bundling your travel, or booking a flight, hotel, and insurance together, you can save hundreds of dollars, if not more, on your trip.
There are many ways you can find package deals to Bali. When you book on a site such as Priceline or Expedia, you’ll have options to bundle your flight, hotel, car rental, insurance and more. Just look in advance, and you’ll find a good price.
Looking to go beyond the usual spots? GoEco, a leading volunteer tourism company, has a terrific travel package. Their Culture Week in Bali package allows you to immerse yourself in authentic Balinese culture. During the Culture Week, you’ll visit Tirta Empul temple (the famous holy water temple), take Balinese language classes, attend a traditional dance show and more. The package deal is incredibly affordable, with food and accommodation taken care of throughout the week.
10. Volunteer to Build Schools & Community Centers in Bali
Not only is volunteering one of the greatest cheap ways to visit Bali, but it’s also the way to travel responsibly. You get to uplift the local community, plus immerse yourself in Balinese culture and make lasting connections with other travelers and locals.
Many communities across Bali have a need for construction and renovation assistance. From schools and community centers to homes, your labor can go a long way in improving the infrastructure of towns across the province.
If you’re looking for a high-quality construction volunteer program to join in Bali, look no further than this Construction and Renovation Project in Lovina offered by International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ) — the world’s leading provider of volunteer travel programs. Volunteer duties include:
- Painting buildings
- Repairing classrooms
- General maintenance at community centers
- Making signs
- Gardening and landscaping
During the volunteer project here, known for its beautiful black sand beaches, dolphins, and coral reefs, you’ll stay at a volunteer house with a pool and tropical garden. Sounds like fun? You can sign up on IVHQ’s website today.
Putting the 10 Best Cheap Ways to Visit Bali into Action
While you can’t use all of these tips at once, you can use a mix of them to save thousands of dollars on your trip. For instance, you could use miles for your flight, while volunteering to help locals and save on food and accommodation while in Bali. That would keep your vacation costs incredibly low.
Do you have any other cheap ways to visit Bali? Feel free to share on Facebook, X, or LinkedIn and add in your thoughts. We’d love to hear from you.
Now, all that’s left to do is put these cheap ways to visit Bali to work — and go have the best vacation ever.
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