Thousands of local tourists are expected to stay in Bali during the long holidays — Indonesian Independence Day and Idul Fitri, which will start next week.
Putu Budiasa, head of the Denpasar tourism office, said that the government would impose mass leave for employees of government and private institutions on Aug. 21 and 22.
Indonesian Independence Day falls on Aug. 17, while Idul Fitri will be observed on Aug. 19 and 20.
“All offices, as well as banks, will not operate for at least six days and therefore most residents will have quite a long period of leisure time,” Budiasa said.
Bali has always been the perfect holiday spot for non-Muslim Indonesians from Jakarta, Surabaya, Bandung, Medan and other cities.
“They usually spend their vacation here in Bali, while their Muslim brethren have to go to their hometowns to celebrate Idul Fitri,” Budiasa said.
Hotels in Kuta, Denpasar, Sanur, Jimbaran, Nusa Dua and Ubud are geared up to receive guests for the upcoming holidays.
“Most hotels here will have high occupancy rates of more than 60 percent, especially in favored destinations like Kuta and Sanur,” said Perry Markus, secretary of the Bali branch of the Association of Indonesian Hotels and Restaurants (PHRI).
However, Markus predicted that the surge of domestic tourists would not be too drastic. “They just spent school holidays here in June and July, and most children have returned to school. So I don’t think there will be a significant increase,” Markus said.
Ketut Ardana from the Bali branch of the Association of Indonesian Tour and Travel Agencies (ASITA) said the average length of stay among domestic tourists ranged from four to five days.
“Many hotels in Bali have long promoted their Lebaran (Idul Fitri) holiday packages for stays of three to five days,” Ardana said.
In addition to hotels and airlines, land transportation companies will also benefit from these long holidays.
Ketut Eddy Dharma Putra, chairman of the Bali chapter of the Land Transportation Owners Organization (Organda) admitted that the upcoming holidays would be peak season for land transportation companies.
“We have provided hundreds of inter-province buses to cater for passengers who want to spend their holidays outside Bali. Vice versa, we are also providing facilities for those who want to come to Bali,” Dharma Putra said.
For the upcoming holidays, most buses, especially executive class, have increased their ticket prices by at least 20 percent of the original fare.