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Transportation in Ubud could be a challenging part of your trip in Bali. If anything the whole island is known for, it’s definitely not the easy public transportation. That’s perhaps why the locals prefer to have their own cars or scooters, and that is why I often get a headache about getting around when in Bali. Based on my last trip to Bali, here are my notes on the transportation in Ubud (and pretty much everywhere else on the island), just in case you’re wondering for your upcoming trip there.
A post(card) from Vira, while she’s traveling.
Rent A Scooter in Bali
A scooter or the little motorcycle, usually with around 125 cc machine, works best for a town with narrow streets like Ubud. Here in Indonesia we call it ‘motor’. You can find a rental motor or motor rental at random spots in Ubud. The rental fee is usually IDR 50,000 per day, excluding gas. You could find it on your own or have the staff wherever you’re staying to arrange it for you. If you’re going to Ubud on high season, it would be wise to make an advanced booking because rental motors would sell out fast. Or, should I say, rent out fast. This happened to us on the weekend of the UWRF. (link)
Note: The rule is to wear a helmet when you’re riding a scooter. You might see people riding without one since the law is weak in the country and it does feel cool (literally) when wind is blowing your hair on a moving scooter. But I strongly recommend you to wear the helmet, else you could go back home in an ambulance.
Ojek or taxi motor
Since most Bali people own at least one scooter in a household, an ojek isn’t very popular there. I always found a hard time looking for ojek. If there was one, the rate is so high (compared to many other places in Indonesia, even Jakarta). Based on my experience, a 3-minute ride (1 km distance) from the Perama bus pool to the Taman Mesari guesthouse on Jalan Sandat cost me IDR 30,000. Good news is that now my favorite ojek service is operating in Bali, Gojek. You can try to order their service by the mobile app. It might not be so cheap if you’re going under 5 km distance because the minimum payment is IDR 30,000, but at least now ojek is an easier choice of transporation in Ubud!
Rent A Car In Ubud (with a driver)
If you cannot stand the heat and humidity of a tropical country, you might want to take the car, or ‘mobil’ as we call it. A car rental is also easily found in Ubud, with a rental fee around IDR 150,000 to 250,000 per day, for the car alone and excluding gas. It’s much more expensive than a scooter rent, but you can share it with up to 5 people or 6 if one of you is driving, depending on what kind of car. A hired driver would cost you about IDR 100,000 per day, usually charged together with the car rent. An extra of IDR 20,000 per meal is usually paid directly to the driver. The cars are usually equipped with AC and it’s a good choice for rainy season, which is usually from November to March.
Note: Do buckle up eventhough you’d see many people could careless about it here, but the potential damage just isn’t worth damaging your vacation.
Bus, Angkot or Train
Nope, non-existent. Not an option of transportation in Ubud. Angkots may be available in some other parts of Bali, but even that is pretty rare to find. That is perhaps why most of Bali people seem to have their own car or scooter, as they are also not fond of walking much.
Taxi (with meter)
If you don’t want the hassle and responsibility of renting a vehicle, then a taxi is always up for grabs. There are several taxi companies operating in Bali, but my personal trusted one is Bluebird simply because it’s familiar to me and they always use the meter. It is also available in Ubud. You might not see the taxi units on the street a lot, but you can order them by phone (+0361) 728200, or by their own mobile app (you can download here)
Transportation to and from Ubud
If you’re taking a taxi from the airport, you don’t have a (legal) choice but to take the official airport taxi. It’s an orderly system, where you just need to walk from Arrival Hall to the taxi stand not far from the Starbucks Coffee, then tell the officers where you’re going and they’ll tell you how much it will cost. They don’t use the meter system but at least you know how much to pay in advance. The ride to Ubud was IDR 250,000 per taxi (October 2014).
Perama is an established company of transportations including intercity bus and boats in Bali and Lombok, and I think to Flores as well.. They have routes from and to Kuta, Legian, Ubud, Lovina, Sanur, and a few others. The rate for Kuta-Ubud route is IDR 60,000/ pax (May 2015), and they can give you 10% discount on the following trip as long as you show them your last trip’s receipt. Check out their official website for a complete information.
There are a few others you could try, which I have only heard of. Kura-kura Bus looks interesting, and it’s something our blogger pal Meidiana has tried. She has written the review here.
There is also the Priority Plus shuttle services, which Mumun has tried on another route and you can read her review here.
So. You need to be confused no more about transportation in Ubud, Bali. It might not be easy breezy like that in Singapore or Kuala Lumpur, but I hope this guide will save you some hassle.