You’ve jetted off on a plane to hit the tropical roads of Bali for a once in a lifetime adventure. There’s so much to do up and down the island, and you want to get around on your own without having to rely on pricey taxis.
Well, renting a motorbike in Bali is the go-to. It’s super easy to get around, you’re less likely to get stuck in traffic, and you will be totally independent!
There is a lot more that goes into renting a motorbike safely in Bali than you might expect.
Here is everything you need to know to ensure you are safe, legal and having fun!
Renting a Motorbike in Bali
There are loads of local rental places and companies that are able to help you out with renting a reliable scooter while in Bali. But, your scooter riding prep will start from the comfort of your own home!
What to Do Before Renting a Motorbike in Bali
- Check the license requirements: Before renting a motorbike in Bali, you’re gonna want to get an international driving license. These are pretty easy to obtain in your home country, and will make your life driving in Bali much easier.
- Have the right insurance: There are many insurances that won’t cover you if you are driving without the right license, or driving a scooter at all! Be sure you have checked the terms and conditions of your insurance before hopping on a bike.
- Familiarise yourself with local laws and customs: Do a quick check of the laws and customs for driving in Bali to make sure you know the basics.
- Research the appropriate price: Ask around a little and find out what the usual price for renting a scooter is, and what kind of scooter would be suitable for you.
- Find a reliable rental: Motorbike rentals are very easy to find. There is a lot that goes into finding a good rental service, check out the next section!
- Have your own safety gear: Your scooter hire will probably come along with a helmet. More often than not, these helmets have been passed around and dropped many times. Do the right thing and buy your own to ensure it is still fully functional – plus, it’ll smell much better 😉
Finding a Reliable Motorbike Rental Service
One of the most important things to think about when planning to ride a motorbike in Bali is find a reliable rental service. The quality of the bike can be life or death. If the brakes are a bit dodgy, or the lights aren’t working, you could find yourself in a serious accident.
There are a couple of ways to find a reliable motorbike rental:
Firstly, you can talk with friends and trusted locals on the island about where they would recommend. Finding someone who has already used the service will be the best way to get a good idea of the service.
Next, you can use a trusted company like Bikago. They promise the easiest rental process with super reliable, and well cared for, vehicles. There is a selection of popular models, and they’ll deliver to you!
Lastly, you’ll probably find that your accommodation in Bali is able to setup some kind of rental for you. Whether it be from their or a rental they work with, you can ask for help to get the hang of it and be on the road in no time.
You’ve got your bike, now you need to think about the safety tips that’ll make your ride all the more comfortable and safe.
- Wear the damn helmet!: I get it, they aren’t cute, they ruin your hair and more often than not, they sit a little weird or are a bit stinky, but wearing a helmet will literally be life or death. Having your own helmet is recommended, as you can ensure it hasn’t been dropped, and you can get a fun colour! Whether you are the driver or the passengers, just do it. And, if you get caught by the police you can pay a hefty fine.
- Wear appropriate clothes and shoes: You might be thinking, we are on a tropical island, why should I cover up in this heat? Let me give you one very good reason – road rash. Sure you might look great for Insta riding around in your bikini, but one little knock from a bad driver and you’ll be sprawled along the road with some serious road burn ruining your look. Cover up as much as possible and wear proper shoes, driving barefoot is just dumb.
- Keep your valuables in the seat: Browsing Google Maps as you are driving along small streets is the number 1 way to get yourself robbed. Thieves target tourists on bikes with their phones in their hands, bags on their shoulders and easy access to shiny jewellery. When you are heading off on a ride, pack your bag in the seat and make sure your phone is hidden away. If you need to follow a map, setup directions so you can hear through your headphones.
- Don’t try and drive like the locals: As a newbie on the roads of Bali, you aren’t gonna want to try and tackle the streets the way the locals do. Keep within your confidence zone, don’t try and zip in and out of traffic on the hectic roads on your first try. Slow and steady wins the race.
If You Aren’t Confident, Don’t Do It
Sure, the majority of expats, tourists and backpackers try their hand at driving a motorbike while in Bali. However, if you don’t feel confident and it doesn’t feel like something you want to do – then don’t do it! There are so many other easy ways to get around Bali that will save you stress and keep your safe.
Ride hire apps like Grab and GOJEK have the option for motorbike taxis. You will still have the same speed and be able to avoid car traffic, without having to drive yourself!
If you are on the island for an extended amount of time and don’t want to drive yourself, you can find a local driver or friend who you can pay to take you where you want to go. Whether on a monthly basis or adhoc, having someone you trust to get around will make a huge difference!
Trying out a motorbike while in Bali is on all the to-do lists, but that doesn’t mean you have to be driving yourself.
Renting a bike is easy, but isn’t recommended for everybody. You want to make sure you have everything you need to be driving safely, and know the rules of the road.
If you end up on the island for 6 years without driving a bike, like me, there’s no shame!
Featured image: Tanjung Benoa