All hands on deck: Bali’s tourism players explore possibilities to attract domestic tourists

File photo of a Balinese dancer. Photo: Indonesian Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy
File photo of a Balinese dancer. Photo: Indonesian Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy

Bali’s tourism players are exploring different opportunities to attract more visitors from other parts of Indonesia. In a bid to revive the local economy deeply battered by the pandemic, they are considering slashing prices of flight tickets, promoting hotel vouchers, and arranging promotional gatherings.  

Yesterday, the Indonesian Hotel and Restaurant Association (PHRI) and the Indonesia National Air Carriers Association (INACA) agreed to form a partnership aimed at offering cheaper packages for domestic tourists looking to travel to Bali.

The associations will act as facilitators for hotels and airlines to discuss possibilities for collaboration, which, according to INACA chairman Denon Prawiraatmadja, can result in attractive and affordable travel packages that would attract more tourists to Bali.

Meanwhile, Bali Dwipa Tourism Industry (BDTI), a group comprising local tourism practitioners, just announced plans to invite 150 travel agents from across Indonesia to visit the island next month.

“By adopting ‘We Love Bali’ as a theme, the event we will be hosting on Sept. 4-6, we hope will be able to help recover the tourism sector in Pulau Dewata,” BDTI chairman Fransiskus Adi Rahmawan said, adding that they hope to rebuild confidence among domestic travelers in order to boost travel amid the pandemic. 

I Made Ramia Adnyana, deputy chief of the Indonesian Hotel General Managers Association (IHGMA) in Bali, also noted that hotel vouchers have been growing in popularity during this time. Made says voucher sales are helpful to cover hotel expenses, with the majority of buyers purchasing vouchers for hotels in Kuta and Nusa Dua with validity period until Dec. 20. 

Given that Indonesia won’t be reopening its borders until the end of 2020, officials and businesses appear to be counting on domestic tourists to help recover the tourism industry. It was previously estimated that the ongoing global travel halt offers a potential of more than US$15 billion for domestic tourism as Indonesians turn to traveling within the country’s borders.  

In addition, Bali’s economy is the hardest hit in the country amid the COVID-19 pandemic, with Bank Indonesia (BI) reporting an economic slowdown of 10.98 percent in the province for the second quarter of this year.


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