Tourists in Bali provided with visa extension, buses and free stay

PHOTO: AFP

BALI - Tourism Ministry Crisis Center, also known as Bali Tourism Hospitality (BTH) has prepared small buses that can accommodate 12 people each to return to the hotel from Ngurah Rai International Airport that has been closed since Nov. 27.

Hotels in Bali are also offering free stay for one night and 50 per cent discount for the next day for tourists whose flights have been cancelled or for those who wish to extend their stay.

Travel agencies in Bali have also sent their employees to provide assistance for tourists.

Meanwhile, 15 assembly points, or shelters, for stranded tourists are available at the following places: Grand Inna Bali Beach Hotel, ITDC Nusa Dua, Krisna Oleh-oleh Sunset Road, Krisna Wisata Kuliner, Taman Ayu, Bali Bird Park, Bali Adventure Tours, Bali Safari and Marine Park, Kertalangu Tourist Village, True Bali Experience, Bencingah Puri Ubud, Pod Chocolate, Taman Sari, Ubud Adventure Center and Pod Chocolate Cafe Sunset.

Authorities raise Mount Agung's threat warning to highest level

  • Bali's Ngurah Rai airport was closed on Monday (Nov 27) until Tuesday morning.
  • On the neighbouring island of Lombok, the international airport resumed flights on Monday morning after it was closed on Sunday due to ash clouds.
  • Indonesia's disaster management agency (BNPB) spokesman, Dr Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, said in a statement that the volcano,
  • which began to spew lava on Saturday, has also continuously ejected ash while the sound of intermittent eruptions can be heard as far as 12km away.
  • Lava is molten rock or magma that has erupted from the volcano.
  • A bright glow from the lava on the volcano summit was often seen on Sunday night,
  • signalling that potentially greater eruptions are very imminent, Dr Sutopo said.
  • BNPB issued the level four warning alert, which is the highest possible, at 6am.
  • Residents have been told to evacuate from the danger zone, which has been expanded to between 8 to 10km from 6 to 7.5km.
  • "The estimated danger zones are dynamic and are under consistent evaluation,
  • and may change anytime depending on the most actual observation data," Dr Sutopo said.
  • He also warned residents to be alert for cold lava around Mount Agung.
  • "Cold lava floods have started to hit several places on the foot of the volcano," he said on Twitter.
  • All observation stations around Mount Agung have been recording tremendously higher intensity of tremors since Sunday, state news agency Antara reported citing Mr Gede Suantika of the Volcanology and Disaster Mitigation Centre.
  • The volcano, the highest point in Bali and located about 75 kilometres from the tourist hub of Kuta, has been rumbling since August.
  • More than 34,000 people have fled from a rumbling volcano on the resort island of Bali as the magnitude of tremors grows,
  • prompting fears it could erupt for the first time in more than 50 years, an official said.
  • Indonesia's disaster mitigation agency said the number of people fleeing their homes surrounding the volcano had tripled amid growing alarm that Mount Agung could erupt at any moment.
  • The airport has prepared buses and trains to divert passengers to alternative hubs in neighbouring provinces if the mountain erupts.
  • Flight disruptions due to drifting ash clouds are not uncommon in Indonesia, which sits on a belt of seismic activity known as the "Ring of Fire".
  • Bali officials said the island was still generally safe but urged tourists to stay away from tourism spots located within the danger zone.
  • Indonesia is home to around 130 volcanoes due to its position on the "Ring of Fire", a belt of tectonic plate boundaries circling the Pacific Ocean where frequent seismic activity occurs.
  • The volcano agency's chief Kasbani said Mount Agung had a history of major eruptions that eclipsed recent episodes in Indonesia, including the 2010 eruption of Mount Merapi in Central Java that claimed at least 350 lives.

BTH Bali has also reported that airlines are quick in taking care of the passengers, some provide hotel vouchers for those who have to extend their stay while others give money like Jet Star who gives Rp.150,000 (RM45.64) for passengers whose flights have been cancelled.

For international tourists, the Immigration Office is granting one-month visa extensions to those who are affected. So far there are eight international tourists who have extended their visas, one was from the United States, four were from Russia and the rest were from France and Germany.

 

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