These pages contain a number of tips for travelers that are going to bring a visit to the Indonesian island of Bali soon. They are simple tips about the daily life on the island and what to expect when visiting the island. Many things will be just slightly different than at home, but it is important to locals that you at least somewhat adhere to their lifestyle.
The ultimate hassle in Bali is getting busted for selling or using drugs, an offense the Indonesians take very seriously. You'll be offered marijuana and hash along Jl. Legian in Kuta and Legian, but half the time you'll get ripped off and may risk being turned in by a police informer, hotel owner, or passerby. Indonesian authorities believe that foreign tourists have established a narcotic network on Bali.
It's no longer easy to bribe your way out of a drug bust. Nine year to life sentences for drug dealers is the norm, and there are always Westerners stranded in jail for drug convictions, abandoned by country and friends. Furthermore Indonesia has the death penalty for serious drug offenders and is still executing those on death row.
Late 2008 a new - much tougher - drugs-law was accepted by parliament, raising prison terms and death penalty to lower echelons of the system - smuggling and making drugs has always been a reason to convict people to a death sentence though. Don't be fooled by those telling you any kind of drugs are legal in Indonesia. They aren't.
Last revised on January 30, 2010
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