Planning your relocation Bali? Understand the costs, find the best international school, and settle into balinese life with minimal hassle. This essential guide offers direct advice on creating a comfortable life in Bali’s warm and culturally vibrant setting. Bypass the fluff and dive into specifics with a focus on what truly matters for families and individuals moving to this tropical haven during their relocation to Bali.

Key Takeaways

  • Bali is a popular relocation destination for expatriates due to its rich culture, scenic beauty, friendly community, warm climate, and affordable cost of living, with the necessary preparations including visa arrangements, secure housing, and health insurance.
  • International schools in Bali, including IB World Schools, bilingual/multilingual schools, and eco-friendly institutions provide high-quality, diverse educational options that cater to different needs and focus areas, with considerations for curriculum, extracurricular activities, and teacher qualifications.
  • Financial planning for relocation must account for various expenses such as visa fees, health insurance, and international school tuition, which varies across different schools and may include additional one-time enrolment fees and sibling discounts.

Why Relocate to Bali?

Scenic view of Bali landscape with lush greenery and traditional architecture

Bali boasts:

  • A vibrant cultural heritage
  • Breathtaking landscapes, encompassing verdant jungles and emblematic terraced rice paddies
  • An amiable local community known for its hospitality
  • Consistently warm temperatures that provide a haven from the chill of colder climates
  • Opportunities to embrace an al fresco, wellness-oriented way of life
  • Irresistible opportunities for swimming and island exploration within this tropical haven

Bali is appealing because it offers expatriates cost-effective living options. Affordable extended-stay housing in villas combined with access to Western comforts and supermarkets enable one to live economically without sacrificing quality while immersing oneself in Indonesian culture and venturing out into other parts of Southeast Asia.

Preparing for Your Move

Making a successful transition to Bali requires detailed preparation and thoughtful organization. Assessing visa choices, finding the right accommodation, and arranging for complete health insurance coverage are all essential steps. Expats have access to various living options that cater to different budgets – from affordable local ‘kosts’ accommodations to upscale villas with swimming pools. Employing the services of a property agent coupled with advice from both expat and local community members can provide crucial guidance on choosing suitable neighborhoods.

It’s equally critical to allocate funds properly for initial expenditures when moving. These outlays involve fees associated with obtaining visas and acquiring adequate health insurance policies. One would typically need around $550 USD annually for a KITAS (limited stay permit card) visa and an estimated $700 USD per individual each year for medical insurance coverage.

Finding the Perfect International School

Selecting the right international school is a critical decision in ensuring your family’s transition to Bali goes smoothly. The island boasts numerous top-tier international schools that provide diverse curricula and innovative teaching styles tailored to meet the demands of your child’s education on an international scale.

We’ll delve into different choices available, assisting you in making an informed selection for your child’s educational journey.

IB World Schools in Bali

In Bali, schools designated as IB World Schools deliver an education of global caliber that meets international standards. This includes the provision of the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program alongside other programs within the international baccalaureate framework. The curriculum in these institutions is extensive and designed to equip students with readiness for worldwide engagement. When selecting one such school, it’s important not only to look at its academic offerings, but also to consider additional factors like available extracurricular opportunities, faculty credentials, and class size dimensions.

Presently in Bali, four such international schools exist that offer this distinguished IB curriculum.

Bilingual and Multilingual Schools

In Bali, bilingual and multilingual schools create a dynamic learning environment that fosters cognitive growth and cultural understanding by teaching students in various languages. At the Gandhi Memorial Intercontinental School (GMIS), students benefit from an international curriculum offered in Mandarin, Bahasa Indonesia, Hindi, and French.

Several other educational institutions on the island also provide opportunities for language immersion.

  1. Bali Island School (BIS) is the oldest international school in Bali, offering the IB program across all grades and focusing on holistic education.
  2. Canggu Community School (CCS) combines the British curriculum with a vibrant community spirit, offering a range of programs from the Early Years to A-Levels.
  3. Dyatmika School provides a unique bilingual curriculum, preparing students for both the Cambridge IGCSE exams and the Indonesian National exam.
  4. Green School Bali stands out for its innovative approach to education, with its eco-friendly bamboo campus and a curriculum centered around sustainability and environmental stewardship.
  5. For French nationals or those interested in the French curriculum, Lycée Français de Jakarta (LFJ) offers a comprehensive French education, and while there isn’t a Lycée Français in Bali, many schools offer French as part of their language programs.
  6. Montessori School Bali follows the Montessori method, focusing on self-directed learning within a thoughtfully prepared environment.

Eco-Friendly and Sustainable Schools

Students participating in eco-friendly activities at Green School Bali

Schools like Green School Bali are leading the way in environmental education. Their unique curriculum emphasizes sustainability and experiential learning within a natural environment, educating students on environmental issues and equipping them to be future changemakers. The award-winning bamboo campus of Green School Bali is set within the island’s jungle environment, offering a wall-less, nature-immersed learning space that resonates with its sustainability goals.

Other educational institutions like Trihita Alam Eco School and Sekolah Montessori ERDKINDER offer varied holistic education frameworks that weave sustainability and eco-friendly practices into their educational approach, nurturing a profound connection between children and the environment.

When it comes to children accompanying a parent studying in Indonesia, the appropriate visa choice depends on their age and whether they intend to study themselves:

Student Visa for Kids:

  • Eligibility: This option applies to children who are enrolled in their own academic program in Indonesia. Minimum age requirements may vary by institution.
  • Process: Similar to the adult student visa process, requiring a separate study permit and KITAS conversion from a VITAS.
  • Benefits: Allows full-time study and potential work rights after completing their studies (depending on program and regulations).

Dependent Visa for Kids:

  • Eligibility: This option applies to children under 18 who are not enrolled in their own academic program but accompanying a parent with a KITAS (work, student, etc.).
  • Process: Sponsored by the parent’s KITAS holder, requiring an initial VITAS and conversion to a dependent KITAS once in Indonesia.
  • Benefits: Allows them to reside with the parent legally and enjoy certain benefits like travel within Indonesia.
  • Limitations: Cannot engage in formal studies or paid work.

Here’s a table summarizing the key differences:

FeatureStudent KITASDependent KITAS
PurposeFor children actively enrolled in an academic programFor children accompanying a parent on a KITAS, not enrolled in studies
Age eligibilityVaries by institution (minimum age typically applies)Under 18 years old
Study opportunitiesFull-time studies allowedNo formal studies allowed
Work rightsPotential work rights after completing studies (depends on program and regulations)No work allowed
ProcessRequires separate study permit and KITAS conversionSponsored by parent’s KITAS (duration of dependent KITAS is 1 year)

Further Considerations:

  • Regardless of visa type, children need a birth certificate and medical records translated into Indonesian.
  • Specific requirements and costs can vary depending on nationality and other factors.
  • Always consult the official Indonesian authorities (Directorate General of Immigration, embassy/consulate) for the latest information and personalized guidance.

I hope this clarifies the student visa and dependent visa options for kids in Indonesia based on their individual circumstances. Remember, choosing the right visa ensures a smooth and compliant stay for your children while you pursue your studies!

Adapting to Life in Bali

Expat family enjoying a cultural event in Bali

Adjusting to life in Bali means:

  • Fully appreciating and showing consideration for the community’s customs
  • Learning essential phrases in Bahasa Indonesia as well as Balinese, which will help you win over local residents and facilitate your children’s integration into international schools.
  • Utilizing the extensive expatriate community that is present in Bali, offering supportive networks along with opportunities to cultivate social ties.

Bali provides several transportation options including:

  • Dependable taxi services and ride-hailing applications that may have area-specific limitations
  • Distinctive regional transit methods like the Kura-Kura Bus, Perama Shuttles, and Bemos
  • Leasing cars or motorbikes is a favored approach among foreigners due to its flexibility and ease.

Balancing Work and Family Life

Bali’s infrastructure is conducive to a lifestyle that effortlessly blends work with family life. Thanks to fast internet and communal working environments such as Livit in Sanur, individuals can enjoy fruitful remote working while also building connections with other expatriates and digital nomads. Families often favor Sanur for its peaceful beaches, serene vibe, and extensive variety of eateries.

Choosing a more minimalist way of living in Bali could lead to:

  • A reduction in material goods
  • Smaller living spaces which mean less upkeep and thereby more time spent with family
  • Utilization of services that take over everyday household tasks like cooking, cleaning, and doing laundry so families have additional opportunities to bond
  • It’s recommended to slowly transition into the local rhythm allowing sufficient time for establishing daily routines that are considerate of both career commitments and familial needs.

Navigating the Indonesian Education System

Relocating families to Bali should acquaint themselves with the Indonesian education system, which is guided and regulated by the Ministry of Education and Culture. This system’s primary purpose is to develop students’ abilities as human resources, preparing them for competitive participation in international contexts.

To effectively maneuver through this inclusive educational framework requires a grasp of its objectives, focal points, and obstacles. This includes comprehending the national curriculum. As Indonesia experiences growth within its tertiary education sector, it confronts difficulties in maintaining educational standards that meet labor market demands. Efforts at a local level strive to address disparities in academic quality and accessibility throughout Indonesia’s varied regions.

Extra-Curricular Activities and Sports

Across Bali, international schools cater to high school students by providing an extensive selection of extracurricular activities. Schools such as Canggu Community School and Bali Island School enrich student life with diverse programs including:

  • Creative arts
  • Building and engineering with lego
  • Theatrical performance
  • Drama classes
  • Intellectual brain games
  • Various dance styles
  • Aquatics like swimming
  • Surfing lessons
  • Innovative coding club

These opportunities do not just augment the educational experience for secondary school students, but also support their physical growth, collaborative skills, and development of essential life competencies.

Institutions such as the Montessori School Bali take education a step beyond by integrating unique cultural experiences into their curriculum. They offer specialized activities like capoeira and traditional Balinese dancing which embody the local culture combined with global perspectives. This approach is instrumental in nurturing culturally sophisticated individuals who are prepared to engage actively within the global community.

Financial Considerations

When considering the move of your family to Bali, it’s crucial to factor in the financial implications. The decision should encompass assessments of tuition costs, initial enrollment fees, potential discounts for siblings and the general living expenses on the island. For instance, enrolling a three-year-old at Bali Island School will cost about Rp 51,975,000 per year, with this fee scaling up according to educational level reaching around Rp 278,250,000 for students entering Grade 12.

There are also additional one-time charges during the first year such as an application fee and a capital levy that parents must bear in mind. Educational institutions like Bali Island School have provisions for sibling discounts while others including Green School offer scholarship opportunities specifically aimed at local Balinese students. It is essential to have an all-encompassing view of these expenses in order to effectively plan your budget prior to making Bali your new home.

Tips for a Smooth Transition

For families relocating to Bali, ensuring a smooth adjustment is key, and this includes registering children at international schools. Reliable childcare services are essential for family equilibrium. Establishments like The Garden Early Learning Centre in Canggu and Umalas Kids Club aid parents in harmonizing their professional responsibilities with family life. This makes the entire transition process less burdensome and more enjoyable for all members of the family.


Relocating to Bali and choosing the best international school for your children is a life-changing decision. It’s a journey that involves careful planning, understanding the local culture and education system, and adapting to a new lifestyle. But with thorough research, proper preparation, and an open mind, this journey can lead to an enriching and rewarding experience for your entire family. Welcome to your new adventure in Bali!

Frequently Asked Questions

How many international schools are in Bali?

In Bali, Indonesia, there are a total of 22 international schools, each providing a diverse range of extracurricular activities. They feature native teachers and vary in class sizes, tuition fees, and the availability of school bus services to accommodate varying needs and preferences.

Can you relocate to Bali?

Certainly, by acquiring the suitable visa beforehand, it is possible to move to Bali where one can benefit from both its affordable cost of living and a flourishing community of expatriates.

High-standard healthcare services are available at private clinics throughout the island.

How much money do you need to move to Bali?

Typically, to maintain a comfortable lifestyle in Bali, your monthly budget should range between $2000 and $4000. This will vary based on the lifestyle you choose to lead.

The island provides an idyllic tropical haven that doesn’t come with an exorbitant price tag.

What are some considerations when selecting a school in Bali?

When choosing a school in Bali, it’s important to take into account various elements like the curriculum offered, pedagogical approaches employed, opportunities for extracurricular involvement, credentials of educators, class sizes as well as the quality of amenities. This holistic consideration will assist you in making an informed decision regarding your child’s education.

The aforementioned criteria have substantial implications on the academic journey that your child will undertake. Hence their careful evaluation is crucial.

How can I adapt to life in Bali?

Embracing the local culture, getting familiar with the language, and understanding Bali’s transportation systems are essential steps to adjusting to life on the island. Connecting with expat communities can offer valuable support and opportunities for socializing.

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