Hundreds of tourists flock to immigration offices in Bali seeking visa extensions

File photo of Immigration Office at Ngurah Rai International Airport. Photo: Facebook
File photo of Immigration Office at Ngurah Rai International Airport. Photo: Facebook

Nearly 2,000 foreign nationals in Bali are requesting to extend their visas, following travel restrictions around the world that make it impossible for some to return to their home countries. 

The regional office for the Ministry of Law and Human Rights recorded at least 1,830 foreigners who have applied for emergency stay permits in Bali since early February, according to a report from Kompas. 

“They were registered at the immigration offices in Ngurah Rai [Badung], Denpasar and Singaraja,” I Putu Surya Dharma, a spokesperson from the regional office, said. 

Surya added 1,469 of the applicants are Chinese nationals, followed by dozens from the UK, US, and Italy.

According to reports, immigration offices across Bali were packed with foreign nationals yesterday, as the urgency of the global situation appears to have forced them to extend their stays. 

There are more than 381,000 confirmed coronavirus cases worldwide, according to a dashboard created by Johns Hopkins University’s Whiting School of Engineering, which tracks COVID-19 data in near real time. This includes 16,000 who have died from the viral disease and more than 100,000 people who have recovered. 

As of yesterday afternoon, Indonesia has confirmed 579 cases of COVID-19, including 49 deaths and 30 recoveries. 

Some countries, such as Poland and Lithuania, are reportedly repatriating their citizens with chartered flights from Ngurah Rai International Airport this week. 

Meanwhile, more and more tourist destinations across the island have announced temporary closures until at least the end of this month, including popular spots Tanah Lot, Jatiluwih Rice Terraces, Bali Zoo and Garuda Wisnu Kencana Cultural Park.

Read more news and updates from Bali here.

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