Bali’s ban on sex outside marriage has raised red flags for tourists, with many lovers thinking of alternative holiday destinations.
Dean Long, CEO of the Australian Federation of Travel Agents, said his members are taking calls from worried future tourists.
“We have already seen Australians inquire about when these changes come into effect,” Long told A Current Affair.
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“We haven’t seen cancellations and it’s really important that Australians know they can travel at Christmas and even Easter, knowing that the laws haven’t changed yet.”
According to Long, tourists may be taking their spending money to other tropical destinations.
“We definitely will see destinations like Vanuatu and Fiji in 36 months’ time,” he said.
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“I think (they’ll) be able to pick up their market share as Australians will change the way that they holiday as a result of these laws.”
Karlie Cummins is the founder of Bali tourism company Bali Buddies.
She’s confident that Bali will remain an ideal destination for those seeking love.
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“I definitely think there’s a lot of success on the island, there’s a lot of love stories floating around and a lot of fun holiday stories that we see and hear from everyone,” Cummins said.
She added that the law seemingly only applies if a person’s relative refers them to authorities.
Bali’s Governor, Wayan Koster, said tourists have nothing to worry about and authorities won’t be checking the marital status of tourists when they come to the island.
“Bali is Bali as usual, which is comfortable and safe to be visited,” Koster wrote in a statement.
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