Is Renting a Scooter in Bali Worth it? 10 Tips to Know First

Renting a Scooter in Bali

Some of our favorite days in Indonesia have been cruising around the islands and hopping from beach to beach. In a place like Bali, renting a scooter is the perfect way to enjoy island life. There is a sense of freedom and excitement that comes with having a motorbike rental in tropical paradise like Bali. However, before you grab your Bali scooter rental there are a few things to know first!

10 Tips For Renting Scooter in Bali

1. You NEED to Know How to Ride 

If you’ve never ridden a motorbike before this isn’t the place to start! There is no shortage of horror stories we’ve heard over the years from tourists using their first Bali rental scooter. The last thing you want on your holiday is to end up in the hospital because it was your first time riding.

Bali is a massive island with so much to see and do. The hills are steep, traffic can be heavy, and there are countless winding roads to adventure on.

If you do know how to ride then do so with confidence! When done properly, renting a motorbike in Bali makes for the ultimate day of adventure.

Renting Scooter in Bali

2. Sim Card & Offline Map

As soon as you land at Ngurah Rai International Airport we recommend getting a sim card for your phone (or have an e-sim ready to go for when you arrive). We paid roughly $20 USD for one month of unlimited data.

The plans can be cheaper or more expensive depending on how much data you need. Having a sim card will come in handy while renting a motorbike in Bali. It’s especially important if you’re heading to the vast north or traveling long distances and get a little lost.

Make sure to pack an external charger if you plan to be out all day, too. Check out our day bag packing list for items we ALWAYS keep with us. You can also find all the inspiration you need with our Amazon packing lists. Including our electronics and camera gear, must-have medical items, and long flight essentials

If you don’t have a sim card you should at least have a map handy. Many of the Bali scooter rental shops will give you a small map but we didn’t find this super helpful. Instead, download an offline app like Maps.me to help you without wifi. 

Bali Scooter Rental

3. Learn the Different Areas of the Island

This brings us to our next point about renting a scooter in Bali! It’s important to know the regions of the island before you go. 

Most likely, you’ll start your journey in the south. This is where many of the popular beach towns are located such as Canggu, Uluwatu, and Kuta. 

When driving around these areas you may experience some congestion and traffic as opposed to the north. Yet, having a Bali scooter rental can be a great way to get around to the beautiful beaches, temples, and local warung restaurants. 

The north of Bali is the complete opposite of the south. In comparison, it will seem much quieter and jungly which is a nice change-up. 

Since it’s a long drive to the north you may want to hire a private driver. Once you get to your accommodation it will be easy to get a Bali rental scooter from there.

What we are saying is that Bali is absolutely huge! It’s not like some of the Thai islands where you can rent a scooter when you arrive and use it to get everywhere. To get between places book a transfer with your hotel then rent a new scooter to explore once you get there. 

20 Interesting Facts About Bali Indonesia to Know Before You Go

Bali Scooter Rental Tips

4. Book Your Bali Scooter Rental From Your Hotel 

So where do you get a Bali motorbike rental from? The first thing to know is that rental companies are everywhere. Bali scooter rentals are super popular and can be found on almost every street corner in the larger towns of the south.

The best way to go about renting a motorbike in Bali is through your accommodation. You can email them before you arrive to arrange it, or just ask when you get there. If for some reason your hotel doesn’t rent them directly they should be able to find one for you easily.

Why do we recommend this? First, you are staying at the hotel so they are invested in their motorbikes. It’s much different than getting them from some random rental company.

This is especially helpful at night as the owners will often make sure they are secure or parked in a safe area. Also, if something happens when you are out exploring (such as a flat tire) it is easier to call and get help.

Bali Accommodation: Compare multiple sites to get the best deal such as Booking.com and Agoda! Also,  Hostelworld should be your go-to source if you’re traveling on a budget. 

Bali Scooter Rental Guide

5. Steep Deposit or Passport

The main benefit of renting a scooter in Bali through your hotel is not having to deal with a large deposit! The hotel already has all your information on file including a copy of your passport. 

You may still be asked for a small cash deposit, but it is typically less than going to rent a scooter in Bali from a separate shop. If you are going to a place in town you will have to give them something to ensure that you are coming back with the bike. 

From our experience, you can’t use credit cards and will only have the choice of leaving your documents or a large sum of money. This can be nerve-racking especially when our #1 travel rule is to never give up your passport!

It’s hard to come to terms with leaving your passport with someone you don’t know for up to a week or longer. This is why it’s better to go directly through your hotel or get a local recommendation from them.

Renting a Scooter in Bali Guide

6. Damage Check Your Bali Rental Scooter

Don’t be fooled by the laid-back island vibe in Bali. If you bring back the scooter with damage on it, the rental place is definitely going to know upon return. 

This is why it’s so important to double-check your bike is in good condition for peace of mind. Take photos as you would with any rental car, and even a video circling it before your Bali drive.

You also want to be sure to get the right size bike if you have two people. The island has some steep hills and even mountains you’ll need to climb depending on where you’re going. 

If you get a type of scooter with too small of a cc engine, the 2nd passenger may be hopping off and walking up the hill behind you. As you can see, this actually happened to us on our way back from Nyang Nyang Beach!

Renting a Scooter in Bali Tips

7. Watch Out For the Island Heat

If you didn’t know, it gets extremely hot in Bali. This especially applies to the dry season when temperatures can reach their peak.

For this reason, try to plan your day out for the early morning or late afternoon. The temperature will be cooler and it makes for a much more enjoyable time. 

On our most recent visit to Bali we had a great routine. We would be up early to explore the island just after sunrise. Just before noon we would stop at one of the many amazing restaurants in Uluwatu. After lunch we would head back to our apartment or to a nearby cafe to work.

If you’re limited on time or only have one day with a Bali scooter rental, don’t worry! Just make sure to cover your shoulders, apply lots of sunblock, and drink water with electrolytes.

Bali Island Scooter Rental

8. Be Careful of Traffic On Your Bali Motorbike Rental

Without a doubt, the traffic is the worst part of renting a scooter in Bali. It can be downright hectic during rush hours and road conditions can be wild during the peak season.

Bali brings millions of foreign visitors and tourists per year to Southeast Asia. When you combine that with the cars and local motorbike riders, it can make for a wild driving experience.

One way to avoid major traffic jams is to take our advice above about going on a scooter ride during the morning hours. It can be nice to get out into the rice fields and backstreets to get away from the main roads. You may also enjoy visiting Bali during the off-season when there are far fewer travelers there. 

Always be patient on your Bali scooter rental adventures and be extra careful around corners. It’s so important to follow the road rules and local laws to ensure you don’t get in an accident. 

Tips for Renting a Scooter in Bali

9. Renting a Scooter in Bali Cost

So what is the daily cost of renting a motorbike in Bali? While it is an extremely popular tourist destination, know that it’s still very inexpensive to get a Bali rental scooter. 

On our last trip, we paid a 100,000 IRD daily rate which is roughly $6 USD. We even found it even cheaper for motorbike rentals by the week or month. If you know you’ll need one for a longer rental period be sure to ask about a discount. 

Renting a Scooter in Bali Cost

10. International Drivers License 

Having an international driver’s license is a must for renting a scooter in Bali. It’s common to be pulled over by local police and checked in the popular areas of the island. 

If you don’t have one it’s very easy to get before you leave your home country. Jake got his motorcycle license in the United States and then went to an AAA office to get it added to his international driving permit.

We want to stress that you need to have a motorcycle license from your home country. The reason this is so crucial is that almost all insurance companies won’t cover you if you get in an accident abroad without the proper license.

Make sure to check with your travel insurance to see if you’re covered! Police fines to watch out for are speeding and not wearing a helmet. Tickets can be expensive so it’s not worth the risk.

Is Renting a Scooter in Bali Worth it?

It definitely can be depending on what you’re trying to see and do. We enjoyed having our Bali scooter rental to bop around to the beaches and cafes. 

However, as you’ve probably noticed in this article, renting a motorbike in Bali doesn’t come without warning. So many foreign tourists end up in accidents or having a terrible experience due to the traffic. 

Do your best to avoid riding during peak hours in the main tourist areas of south Bali. Always wear a helmet and use common sense when driving your Bali rental scooter. 

For a different experience, you may also want to check out Nusa Penida. This island is far less busy and can be a good place to ride a motorbike after your trip to Bali.

Is Renting a Scooter in Bali Worth it

Have any questions about this article or want to share your own experiences renting a scooter in Bali? Let us know in the comments below. 

Safe Travels,
Brigitte & Jake

 Where in the world are we? Follow our daily adventures on Instagram @nothingfamiliar

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Bali

Indonesia Travel Planning 

 Flights: We always find deals using Skyscanner and Kayak. That’s how we got flights from Singapore to Bali for $60 USD, and Bali to Surabaya for less than $40! 

 Accommodation: Compare competitive sites for hotels such as Booking.com and Agoda. Also, Hostelworld should be your go-to source if you’re traveling on a budget. 

Transportation: 12Go is where we look first in Asia for ferries, trains, buses, and transfers! From speed boats to the Gili Islands and bus transfers around the country. 

Tours: Check out Get Your Guide for activities all over Bali. We recommend taking a sunrise Mount Batur hike with breakfast, an authentic cooking class in a local village, and the Ubud waterfall tour

 Travel Insurance: Never travel abroad without being covered. We’ve been using SafetyWing for the last few years on the road and they are there when we need them.

 Packing Lists: Here’s all the inspiration you need with our Amazon packing lists. Including electronics and camera gear, must-have medical items, and long flight essentials

Indonesia Travel

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2 Comments

  1. December 17, 2023 / 10:37 am

    I can’t imagine a better way to explore Bali, and these practical tips are super helpful! My daughter is headed there soon, and I’ve shared this post with her. Thanks!

    • Brigitte & Jake
      Author
      December 17, 2023 / 10:39 am

      Great to hear! So glad you found it helpful (-:

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