The Easiest Way To Extend
Your 30 Day Visa on Arrival in Bali
Ever thought about retiring on a tropical island, if only for a few months? We sure have! It's no secret that we love Bali and especially Ubud where we have rented a villa and lived for several months at a time. Hence, the reason why we try to stay as long as we can! But did you know that living in Bali for an extended period of time is fairly easy if you plan in advance? The only real issue, which is easily arranged, is getting the right visa for Bali. We have gone through the process several times and we'll cover the entire process of how to extend your 30 day visa on arrival in Bali.
We’ll walk you through what we think is the easiest way of extending your visa in Bali but also explain how to extend it on your own as well as highlight the different visas that are available.
That’s right, for anyone looking to visit Bali there is not one but three different visas with different purposes. It might sound overwhelming and excessive, and even though that might be true, it is not too hard to grasp.
Table of Contents
The 3 Types of Indonesian Tourist Visas
1. The first tourist visa is called the Bali visa on arrival (VOA). This is a free 30 day visa that most people who visit Bali automatically receive. The visa allows you to stay in Bali and the rest of Indonesia for a total of 30 days. After those 30 days are up, you have to leave the country and there is no way of extending your stay. That means even if you plan to stay for 31 days, you must opt for the second visa and apply for the Bali visa extension.
2. The second visa is technically also a visa on arrival and it’s valid for 30 days with the possibility to extend it once for an additional 30 days, totaling 60 days before you have to leave. It’s important to note that the 60 day VOA starts on the day you arrive in Bali and is not equal to 2 months. Make sure you count correctly otherwise you will be charged an overstay fee of 300,000 IDR for every day you overstay. To be eligible for this visa extension, you need to pay $35 at immigration when you arrive at the airport. Just remember that there is a separate line for this visa than the standard free 30 day Bali visa.
3. The third Indonesian visa is a 60 day tourist visa that you can extend 4 times with 30 days each totaling 180 days, 6 months. Unlike the other tourist visas that you receive on arrival, you need to apply for this one outside of Indonesia. We got the 60-day visa once in Penang, Malaysia. However, the consulate in Penang has stopped issuing the 60 day extendable visa and Indonesia has gotten stricter with the rules so your best bet is to try and apply in your home country.
To apply for the third visa, you will have to submit certain information to the embassy or consulate you use such as proof of income and an onward flight. Make sure you contact the Indonesian embassy in advance and double check what information is required.
In addition to these three visas, there are other visas that foreigners can apply for such as a social visa (which works similar to the 6 month tourist visa but requires a local Indonesian sponsor), retirement visa, business visa, and actually residency in Indonesia. Naturally, these visas have strict requirements and are only available for a select group of people.
How To Extend Your 30 Day Visa in Bali
We put together the following guide for the two extendable visas that we mentioned above because the extension process is the same for the Bali visa on arrival and the visa you apply for outside of the country. As mentioned, the first visa, the free 30 day visa on arrival, cannot be extended.
So, you have arrived in Bali and you have an extendable visa, now what? Well, you have two options. You either extend the visa on your own by visiting your local immigration office or you use a Bali visa agent. So far, we have only used agents and that’s what we’ll focus on as we truly believe it is the easiest way for extending your visa in Bali. Although, we do outline the process of extending the visa by yourself further down on this page.
Note that the visa process takes at least 7 business days with the possibility of several delays so you need to apply on time. Bali, like many other regions in Southeast Asia, is known for its abundance of holidays, ceremonies, and other reasons to close down government services - so always double check the local calendar before you start and get started early.
To make things more complicated, you're not allowed to extend the visa in Indonesia until two weeks before it expires. In other words, you need to start the application process more than a week before the visa expires but no more than two weeks before it expires.
Bali Immigration Offices
Where you’re located in Bali at the time when you need to do your visa extension will factor in which office you use. Currently, there are three immigration offices in Bali. Keep in mind that the visa extension in Indonesia requires 3 seperate trips to the office in a span of a week up to 10 days, so you will need to stay put for the duration of the extension.
- The Denpasar immigration office is the main one and would be most convenient for those located in the Southeast of Bali such as Canggu and Seminyak, as well as Ubud.
- The immigration office in Jimbaran is obviously more convenient for those located in Nusa Dua, Uluwatu, Kuta, and Leigan.
- Lastly, there is a third immigration office in Singaraja if you happen to be in Lovina or anywhere in the North of Bali, or if you’re diving in Amed.
Why Should You Use a Bali Visa Agent?
Using a visa agent is by far the easiest way to extend your visa in Bali, especially if you happen to be in Ubud. Not only will you save yourself two trips to the Bali immigration office, but there is also an almost guarantee that you will get the visa extension and eliminate all possibilities of making mistakes during the process. Also, you won't have to submit an onward ticket leaving Bali or do any of the paperwork.
The cost of applying for the visa extension in Bali on your own is 355,000 IDR which equals roughly $26. Using a visa agent in Bali to do the extension costs around 605,000 IDR for a total of $44. If you’re asking us if those $18 extra dollars are worth it to not have to waste time and spend money going back and forth to the immigration office sitting in traffic two times on your own, the answer would be you bet it's damn worth it!
There are visa agents all over Bali and most of them are fairly trustworthy, but make sure you double check reviews or better yet ask for suggestions in local Facebook community groups before you start the process. Don’t forget that the visa agent will be in charge of your passport for 7 days or more so you want to use someone you can trust.
We have always done the visa extension in Ubud and have used an agent called Elisabeth Suli who was recommended to us on Facebook. Elisabeth is well-known in Ubud and many expats and digital nomads rely on her for their visa extensions. She does run a tight shift and can come off sometimes as slightly abrupt, but she is highly efficient and gets the job done. She also owns a few popular local businesses including the Mexican restaurant Pacha Mama, which means she has a reputation to uphold and would not rip you off.
Elisabeth’s office is located in Penestanan across the street from Alchemy. It can be a bit tricky to find since it’s not marked and is located behind a tourist information office, inside a local compound. We suggest you either ask for directions at Alchemy as they know her well or call in advance at 0813 3842 4617.
The Visa Application Process
Once you find Elisabeth Suli or another agent’s office the process is easy. You will give them your passport and a phone number that you can be reached on and pay the fee. As of February 2018, the last time we did the extension, it cost 605,000 IDR per visa. She will make sure that your visas are valid and extendable and then tell you that she will text you one day before you have to go to the Denpasar immigration office.
Make sure you have a working phone number that she can contact you on.
If there are no delays and the immigration office in Bali is open as per usual, Elisabeth will contact you the following week and you will have to visit immigration the following day. You can either drive to the immigration office in Denpasar on your own or set up transportation there and back. Elisabeth can help you set up transportation.
Prodecure Once You Arrive to the Denpasar Immigration Office
Regardless of whether you used Elisabeth or any other Bali visa agent, they will meet you at the office and all the paperwork will be done for you. At this point, you will be handed a number and told to wait until that number is called. Since this is Indonesia and things tend to take much longer than needed, you might end up waiting for a few hours. It can seem annoying but just remember that it’s far better than applying for the Bali visa extension on your own when you have to visit the office on at least three separate occasions.
When your number is called you will be directed to a room where your picture and fingerprints will be taken. After that, you’re free to leave.
Note that there is no guarantee that you will get your photo and fingerprints recorded just because you’re at the immigration office. The immigration office in Bali is known to be slow with many technical issues. If the process for any reasons runs late, you will be told to return the following day for the same process.
After the immigration has received all your information they will process it for the visa extension. At this point, you are pretty much done and will only have to wait to get your passport back. The passport with the visa extension will typically be returned to you in three business days but the agent you use will inform you of exactly when and where to get the passport. When using Elisabeth Suli you will be told to return to her office in Ubud to pick up your passport a few days later after the visa extension has been processed.
Applying for the Bali Visa Extension On Your Own
Did you think the visa agent process seemed complicated? Just wait for what we’ll tell you next.
When you extend your visa in Bali on your own, you will have to visit the immigration office on at least three occasions. We say at least because that is the minimum amount of visits needed and there might be more depending on delays, holidays, technical issues, etc.
During the first visit, you will fill in the Indonesian visa application form. At this point, you will have to fill in the application and provide documents such as your passport, onward flight, a copy of your passport, and a copy of your visa page. You will also have to pay the fee for the extension. When the process is done the officer will take your passport and you will be given a receipt. The receipt is the only thing connecting you to your passport so please don’t lose it. You will also be given a day to return.
Before your next visit, you will have to pay for the visa extension. Payments can be done at most post offices and some banks in Bali, but the easiest option is to pay at the orange minivan located outside of the Denpasar immigration office. The Bali visa cost is 355,000 IDR and you will have to keep the payment receipt for your next visit.
On the second day, you will have your picture and fingerprints taken. This day is fairly straightforward but one of the longer ones due to the overworked office and all the technical issues they experience. Most of this day will be spent waiting in line until your designated number is called. See more information about the second day in the Bali visa extension agent guide above.
On the third visit, you will come to pick your passport up. All you have to do is walk up to the pick-up window and hand them your receipt. Then wait until they call your name and get your passport with the new visa. Make sure you double check all the dates and information before you leave the office.
The third visit is normally planned for within a week of the second visit.
That is all you have to know about how extend your visa in Bali, just remember that you might be forced to visit the immigration office on more occasions or provide extra paperwork depending on where you’re from and who handles your visa extension. The most important part is to start the application on time, otherwise, you will have to pay an overstay fee of 300,000 IDR per day.
Due to the complicated process and the many visits we do recommend you use one of the visa agents in Bali to apply for the extension. It will save you both time and visits to the immigration office.
Apparently, as of the end of January 2018, you can apply for the Indonesian visa online, although, we still haven’t heard of anyone succeeding with it and would not recommend it just yet. That being said, we would be very happy if an online visa application in Bali was available and functioning since it would make the process much less of a headache. As is always the case in Asia, anything can change at any time so be prepared.