I would like to first of all wish everyone a belated Happy New Year 2014! I spent the first few days of the new year in bed with some kind of fever. Fortunately all better now and looking forward to the start of a new year.

I always like the feeling of a new year. It is a great time to stop and reflect and think about the things you would like to accomplish for the coming year. I am not one to create new year resolutions, but I do set some personal goals. Our son is now already two years old and will be starting playgroup this year, which will hopefully give me some extra free time.

My wife and I are expanding our small business which is exciting. The tourism market in Bali seems to continue to grow there seems to be still a great deal of interest from foreigners looking to move to Bali, despite the ongoing problems of traffic, crime and pollution.

Looking back on 2013, if I had to think of a few highlights for expats living in Bali, I would have to say:

– At least for foreigners married to an Indonesian spouse, the visa application has definitely become smoother.
Immigration are even doing home visits to check if the marriages are bona-fide. If you have been married for two years, you can apply for a KITAP which is valid for a whole 5 years! Immigration have even been holding seminars around Bali explaining the whole process.

Siloam Hospital opened in Bali, also taking over BIMC. I have been reading people’s experiences on the web about Siloam and they all seem pretty positive. It is a bit of extra peace of mind knowing there is a reliable health option now available in Bali.

– There seems to have been some improvement with internet speed as more fiber is getting laid around the island. I have noticed decent improvement with my Telkom Speedy connection.

– There were a couple of large infrastructure projects completed in 2013 in time for the APEC meeting. Traffic seems crazy as ever. The expansion and renovation of the airport seems to have had mixed reviews.

Do you have plans to move to Bali in 2014? Let me know if you have any questions or if there is anything I might be able to help with, by writing a comment here.

Wishing you all the best for 2014!