Bemo. That is a word you’re likely hear a lot in Bali. That is the name of the local bus service on the island. These are essentially minivans, which offer unscheduled bus service around the island. There are two kinds: the public bus service and the private bemo. More common in the north of Bali, these can still be hired around Kuta. The idea is that you get a shared rate, but in the case of tourists it isn’t uncommon for the driver to only take single parties and thus the rate is comparable to that of a traditional taxi. Before you begin the trip be sure to barter with the driver and agree upon the fare.

The public bemos and larger buses do run on set routes and these are the most affordable method of getting around the island. If you’re staying mostly around Kuta, chances are you’re unlikely need to even take the ride on a public bemo. Consider that a blessing. These buses often take a long route, can be overcrowded and it isn’t uncommon to see some livestock sharing the ride with you!

Taxis are more common in the south of Bali, and the rates can generally be quite reasonable. Be sure that the driver does use the meter, as it is common for them to offer a flat rate that is certainly in their favor.