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Work and Jobs in Bali

Almost everyday I receive emails from people asking how to find work in Bali, so I thought I would write an article on the challenges foreigners face.

Some countries are quite open about allowing foreign workers, believing it can help with skill shortages and providing industries with a range of qualified and skilled workers to choose from. Unfortunately, Indonesia is not one of those countries and they view foreigners coming to work in Indonesia as simply taking away jobs from local people. Of course it is difficult to argue with this, as Indonesia is a developing country with widespread poverty and under-employment.

The cost to employ a foreigner is around $2,000 a year for a company, which is just the cost to organize the working visa. If there is a similarly qualified and skilled local worker, it makes little economic sense to employ a foreigner.

While it is not impossible to find work in Bali the typical avenues of finding jobs advertised on the internet or in a newspaper, are extremely limited. There are typically no job websites targeting foreigners, so it only leaves networking with companies and finding work through word of month. Here are some job areas that foreigners work in Bali.

English Teaching

There are a couple of English schools in Bali that employ foreign teachers. The pay is low however, at around 8 million rupiah per month and competition is fierce for the few jobs available. Schools that advertise regularly include:

English Town and English First

Dive instructors

Bali is a popular place to learn diving and there seems to be a large number of foreigners working as dive instructors. I would suggest doing an internet search of the bigger dive operations in Bali and contacting them directly. Language skills are definitely a big plus.



For qualified chefs with experience, there are a few well known restaurants and of course large hotels and villas that employ foreign chefs. This agency regularly advertises for staff:

Hotel and Villa Managers

Many general manager positions of large 5-star hotels are filled by foreigners. Usually these positions are filled internally. I think you would have to be very lucky to find a job at a hotel while you are in Bali. Most jobs will be filled by locals and the government has made it pretty clear they don’t like to see foreigners working at hotels in Bali.

I have met some foreigners however working at private villas in management roles. High end villas sometimes employ foreigners in management and training positions. You sometimes see jobs advertised in the Bali Advertiser and being on the ground in Bali is definitely going to be an advantage.


With the huge number of projects being developed in Bali, there are a few foreigners working in the construction industry. The roles available include construction and project managers. You probably have a good chance of finding work at a foreign operated company if you have the qualifications and experience.

Property sales

Real estate is booming in Bali and a lot of money is coming in from overseas. While foreigners cannot own property in Indonesia directly, many are still interested, and you can find some foreigners employed in property sales roles. Apply directly at the well known agencies such as Ray White and Exotiq.

IT Management

While this market is still in its infancy, there are a few IT companies starting to open offices in Bali. It is still very low key and while you see quite a few advertisements for local programmers you are going to have to really get out and network to find opportunities as a foreigner. Here is an interview I did with one person working in an IT company in Bali.

What about you?

Are you looking for a job in Bali? Tell is in the comments!



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9 Responses to Work and Jobs in Bali

  1. Don pauley March 27, 2013 at 8:19 am #

    When I move to Bali I want to take pictures with my scarrlet macaw
    And the tourists, as I did in Hawaii ,and thailand. What woorks best
    For me is on the streets and beaches, 2-3hrs a day, probebley Kuta.
    I would appricate any advice you might have
    Thank you don pauley

  2. Ross April 22, 2013 at 10:39 pm #

    Make sure you have a work permit!!

  3. I Ketut Suparnata September 7, 2013 at 4:54 am #

    are u guys fed up with some thing those not working properly in the house. just ring/ text the fixing man KETUT at 087 863 286 896. We will come with speaking English and skilled technician to solve your problem. From mechanical to electrical. From sanitary problem to blocked plumbing. Even freelance pool treatment and all kind of home appliances. Affordable and reasonable prices offered.

  4. aurelie September 26, 2013 at 7:51 am #

    slmt pagi.
    i stayed one year in indonesia last year. I tried to find a job, but without success. I get back my job in France, i am a manager in an insurance company in Paris. My husband is from Lombok. He is in France now, but our dream is to go back Id. We are still waiting to develop our project in LBK. I wanna find a job in an management position. I hope i can get one day the chance to find an amazing job in Bali.

  5. Ariel January 19, 2014 at 11:03 pm #

    Selamat pagi,
    I stayed for a month in Bali, and realized that I would love to live there after my studies are over. I felt very at home there because I can speak a fluent Indonesian and I look like a mixed Indonesian. Do you know if their is any jobs in the engineering field in Bali? Thank you for your time.

  6. Daniel April 13, 2014 at 6:39 am #

    At the moment im in East Timor.
    Every time i have a few days of im in Bali, love the Island, People, everything.
    I always worked in Hospitality, so i might get lucky finding a job.
    My point is to move there later this year, or as soon as i get a job.
    Any news, let me know


  7. Chris Waters March 14, 2017 at 1:30 pm #

    From my view, the best jobs for expats should be invisible jobs like Wedding Organizers or Event Organizers, I know some people expats work for it together with locals by website. Seems just need a stay visa!

  8. Felix June 18, 2017 at 3:41 am #

    I live in Bali for couple of months now and i am seriously searching for work. Anyone with idea of a good recruiting company;

    Searching for work in under the following:
    Real Estate Agent
    Health & Environment Safety Supervisor/ Manager.


  1. 10 ideas to make money in Bali without (potentially) hurting your visa status - Bali Expat - December 4, 2016

    […] Working in Bali without a working visa is a big no-no where hundreds of foreigners get deported every year. Unfortunately there are times when we could all need a bit of extra cash, whether it is to save for a flight home or pay for an unexpected medical bill. Here are some ideas to make a bit of cash on the side, visa restrictions notwithstanding. […]

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