Living in Bali as a Digital Nomad

Many digital nomads call Bali home. What do you need to do to legally live in Bali while freelancing or working on an online business?


Bali is still a popular location for digital nomads, even during the COVID-19 pandemic. It is so because of its affordable living cost, friendly digital nomad and local communities, and the available amenities and attractions.

Moreover, it is not difficult to legally stay in Bali as a digital nomad. As long as you are not working for an Indonesian company and not earning revenue from Indonesian sources, it is not an issue to stay in Bali with a visit visa.

Cost of Living in Bali as a Foreigner

The living costs in Bali are relatively low. In fact, a foreigner can live comfortably in Bali for about USD 1,000 to 1,900 a month.

The most significant expense is housing. A villa in Bali can cost between USD 500 to 1,000 per month. 

Rental fees in Bali vary greatly depending on the location and features of the property. Villas closer to the beach often cost more.

If you’re on a tight budget, you can also rent a room in a boarding house, or kost as it’s known locally. A room in a kost can cost as little as USD 300 per month and often includes utilities.

The following table shows a sample breakdown of living expenses in Bali for an individual living in a villa.

ExpenseCost per month
HousingUSD 500 to 1,000
Utilities (electricity, water, internet, mobile phone service)USD 100 to 150
Villa maintenance (housekeeper, gardener)USD 100 to 150
Food (groceries, eating out)USD 150 to 300

Bali Visas for Digital Nomads

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Indonesia does not allow people from most countries to enter with a free visa on arrival anymore. Moreover, Indonesia no longer allows multiple-entry visit visas. 

A single-entry visit visa is currently the only option available. Visit visas are also known as business visas or social visas. 

However, Indonesia has tightened the options, and digital nomads can only visit Bali for business purposes (business visa).

Business Visa

As said before, the business visa is currently a single-entry visa. If you leave the country, your business visa will automatically be canceled.

The business visa is valid for 60 days from the day you enter Indonesia if you are outside of Indonesia during the application process. If you are in Bali already during the process, the visa is valid for 30 days.

However, you can extend your business visa by 30 days up to four times in Indonesia. This type of visa is suitable for digital nomads who intend on visiting Bali for a short time during the pandemic without getting a temporary stay permit.

A foreigner can get a business visa for the following reasons:

  • Discussing matters of trade transactions
  • On-site observation and discussions on trade terms (import-export business)
  • Conducting businesses activities where the visa holder is not engaged as an employee
  • Attending international shows and exhibitions
  • Attending meetings in Indonesia
  • Investigating commercial possibilities of capital investment with possible partners in Indonesia
  • For journalistic purposes
  • Making a non-commercial film

Get a business visa in Bali.

Emerhub will facilitate your visa application and extension.

Taxes of Digital Nomads in Bali

If you are interested in spending more than 183 days in Bali or intend on applying for work and stay permits, you will need to handle your taxes in Bali.

Doing so qualifies digital nomads as tax residents in Indonesia. Hence, you must report your global income and declare taxes to Indonesia. 

You will have to report taxes yourself as Indonesia uses a self-reporting system. But, Emerhub’s experts are ready to help you with your tax and visa-related concerns. 

Our team has extensive experience handling taxes, visas, and work permits for expats and digital nomads. We will facilitate your tax reporting and application and extensions or renewals of your visa.

Representative Office and Work Permit in Bali

If you want to set up a legal entity in Indonesia without making a large investment, you can open a representative office. Note that a representative office cannot earn revenue in Indonesia.

A representative office can act on behalf of its foreign parent company as long as it does not generate income in Indonesia. A representative office can also hire local and foreign employees. It can also sponsor work permits for its foreign employees.

Interested in moving to Bali? Get in touch with us and our consultants will assist you with your concerns about living and working in Bali. Fill out the form below to get started.

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