If you remember my #cofficebali posts then you know that I worked from Bali for a month. (Thank you again, to my #theremoteexperience family!) Months after that trip, I keep on seeing countless posts on social media about Bali, particularly, posts of digital nomads in Bali. And since I experienced being a digital nomad in Bali for a month, I realized it might be helpful for those of you who want to dabble in working remotely from outside the Philippines.
My top pick would have to be Bali, Indonesia. Aside from it being one of my favorite countries, I have practical reasons for you to take to the bank.
Cheap flights are available all year round
A lot of airlines fly from Manila to Denpasar and vice versa. You won’t have a problem looking for and booking cheap flights. This is also good to know since living in another is pretty costly, every expense matters!
You don’t need to worry about visa
This is such a huge deal for me ’cause I personally hate dealing with the admin stuff. Thankfully, Bali doesn’t bother you with that. As a Filipino, you can stay in Indonesia with for a maximum of 30 days. If you’ll stay longer than that, you have to go to a local tourism office so they can fix it for you OR go for a “visa run” A.K.A. go to a neighbor country for a few days and come back.
Locals are very friendly
Nothing beats Asian hospitality, period. Locals speak good English too and if you listen closely, some of their words are similar to ours.
Everything Looks Picture Perfect
This shouldn’t be a deal breaker but I know it’s on your mind. So yes, Bali is picturesque. You have temples, cafes, villas, rice terraces, and the like to take photos of. It’s paradise, after all.
Coffee is freaking good
Bali’s weather is one of the ideal places to grow coffee beans, so naturally, coffee culture is also pretty big here. Also, I think the fact that Australians have a strong community here means they have established cafe businesses and passed on their ways. So you get a good mix of Australian and Indonesian coffee beans practices.
Tip: Don’t leave without trying Civet coffee (Luwak coffee) is pretty smooth.
You can easily rent a scooter
One of the things I wish I did was to learn how to ride a scooter so I can rent one. Since I lived in Bali for a month, having my own means of transportation was very convenient. Aside from that, the freedom is priceless. You can go anywhere as long as you have Waze with you (and as long your but can bear it. LOL!)
Insider tip: Don’t worry about having an international license, as long as you stay in one area, the local traffic enforcers won’t mind. I mean, I even see children riding scooters–WOW.
It’s a haven for digital nomads
My initial reaction when I stepped into Bali was “Wow, so many foreigners.” They might have even outnumbered the locals. It was pretty bizarre for me. But that’s the beauty of Bali. Everyone wants a slice of paradise, more so digital nomads. This is good because you meet people of your kind–NETWORK. Make connections, make friends, make business partners.
Cost of living is manageable
Okay, I’m not saying everything is dirt cheap but it can be if you know where to look and if you’re willing to sacrifice a few things. Personally, I suggest you opt for a hostel and invest in a co-working space. If you’re going to live in Canggu, Dojo Bali is the obvious choice. CEOs, creators, and people in the industry will be there. You can network and surf on lunch break. They’re also proactive in setting up events.
The food can go as low as 150/meal (Nasi Goreng) and as high as 350/meal (if you order at fancy restos, of course). This is your choice, but overall, this is a pretty good price range. Average laundry price is 120/20 pcs or clothing (more or less). A Go-Jek (like Grab/Uber but motorcycles) can cost 50-150/ride. Island day trips can go as high as 3,000/person. Try to go with a group so it’s cheaper. Overall, prices are similar to PH prices, so this is a big win.
It’s perfect for a reset
I’m talking about a physical, spiritual, mental, and emotional reset. The overall vibe of Bali is laidback. The food choices are 80% healthy (Aloe Vera shots, anyone?). There are gyms/yoga/fitness centers everywhere. Spas are, of course, sprawled in the area too. Looking for parties? Bali has a lot those. What I’m trying to say is, it’s easy to stay healthy in Bali because it’s ingrained in the country, especially to those areas with Australian communities.
Have I convinced you yet? If not, feel free to comment below with your questions and I’ll happily answer them! But…I know this is still personal preference so–you do you, boo. I just hope I was able to help you decide through this post.