This is our annual PSA reminding readers to rush to your nearest ATM if you are in Bali this week, as cash withdrawal machines on the island will be offline during Nyepi (Day of Silence), which falls on Wednesday.
Trisno Nugroho, the head of Bali Office of Bank Indonesia, stated in a written statement made available to the public today that ATMs on the Island of Gods will be gradually switched off starting tomorrow at 10am.
“We encourage people who need cash to [withdraw] before [ATMs] go offline,” he said.
The ATMs will go back online on Thursday at 7am, or the morning after Nyepi.
Trisno assured that it will be business as usual for non-cash transactions, such as via internet banking and mobile banking.
This year, Nyepi coincides with the start of Ramadan, the holy fasting month for Muslims. The country’s central bank projected that the demand for cash in Bali during this period will rise by 5 percent from IDR2.829 billion (US$183,826) last year to IDR2.985 billion (US$193,163) this year.
“Bank Indonesia has allocated IDR4.364 billion (US$283,569) in cash, or 1.5 times more than the public needs,” Trisno said, addressing the central bank’s policy on cash demands.
Nyepi is an annual day of self-reflection and meditation, where the Balinese Hindu people observe a day of silence and fasting to cleanse themselves of negative energy and renew their spirits for the year ahead.
Every year, the island almost completely shuts down during Nyepi. No one is allowed to leave their homes, hotels, or villas, and all businesses are closed – only pecalang (Balinese traditional security officers) are allowed to patrol outside. There are no lights, no music, and no noise allowed, and even the airport shuts down for the day.
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