Tourism authorities in Bali and Indonesia are pushing the industry to create a safety certification to protect customers and businesses. Ida Bagus Ngurah Wijaya, a panelist who specializes in tourism, called for the island to establish a set of health and safety criteria to help regulate the industry.
Wijaya said, “Bali has a unique destination, second to none in the world. Bali competes with Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, to European countries. This must, of course, be maintained so that Bali is of higher quality, the management is higher quality, and our target is premium class tourism”.
He mentioned that Bali has consistently topped the lists of the world’s most prestigious destinations for the past 15 years. He drew the attention of the audience of tourism professionals to the fact that the security aspect of the industry requires immediate attention while highlighting the distinctive character of the island, the abundance of natural beauty and cultural history.
Wijaya explained, “For our tourism workforce, it has been proven that we are needed worldwide. But for our destinations or tourist objects, the quality must continue to be improved so that we can still compete with other countries”.
He mentioned the bamboo swings that can be found at some of Bali’s most popular tourist attractions, such as the Tegalalang Rice Terrace. He continued, “It’s not bad, but bamboo and wood have an age. When should they be replaced, and so on. The same goes for rafting, there must be certification, what is allowed and what is not allowed”.
After two serious incidents made headlines last month, safety standards for rafting trips in Bali have come under fire. On October 3, an American tourist went missing. Unfortunately, he is currently presumed dead after falling from a raft on the Ayung River. A week-long search and rescue operation yielded no trace of him.
The 62-year-old American citizen disappeared after the raft collapsed and was thrown off course by a sudden surge of water during a flash flood. Nine passengers and two guides survived the accident.
Tourists can also benefit from safety protocols. An American visitor was brought to the hospital on Wednesday, Nov. 2, after slipping while trying to climb the rocks at Aling-Aling Waterfall
Climbing at Aling-Aling Waterfall is not safe, but climbing and jumping from Kroya Waterfall, which is further down the jungle trail, is safe. Tourists will always be responsible for their own decisions, but more information about public safety can help them make more educated decisions.
Wijaya advocated for better local legislation to safeguard tourists and, by extension, tourism businesses. To maintain the quality of tourism experiences across the island, he proposed developing a safety certification in collaboration with the local authorities.