About Bali Denpasar International Airport (DPS)
Address: Meet And Greet Service, Bali, 80361
Bali Denpasar International Airport (DPS) is located 17 km (10.2 mi) southwest of central Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia. You’ll find airport car rentals from Avis, Hertz, Enterprise, and Europcar in the arrivals area of the terminal.
For first-time visitors, driving in Bali may be unlike anywhere you’ve ever driven before, distinguished by a laid-back atmosphere that matches the anything-could-happen attitude of local citizens. Getting around Denpasar in particular will require a certain amount of patience — as well as knowledge of unwritten rules — not typically required for big city driving. That said, Bali is a relatively large island that’s very difficult to explore without a car.
Denpasar’s aging infrastructure equates to chaotic traffic conditions, particularly in the city center, where sidewalks simply don’t exist. Therefore, you’ll be contending with other cars, trucks, motorcycles, bicycles, carts, pedestrians, and livestock — a combination even more experienced drivers will struggle to navigate. Fortunately, things get decidedly less intense as you get away from central Denpasar — but still expect slow-going across the island. The Balinese are in no hurry to get anywhere, and you’re expected to follow suit.
Denpasar’s central location is advantageous for exploring the rest of the island, but be advised that there’s one main highway — Jl. Raya Denpasar-Gilmanuk Bypass — that runs along the south coast to West Bali. All other coastal and inland routes are one to two-lane roads of varying consistency. Meanwhile, be advised that Balinese roads are named, rather than numbered.
Choosing your car
A small number of countries and airports around the world have a certain quirk about car rentals — they’re limited to makes and models from one country. There are some German cities that only rent German cars. In the case of Bali Denpasar, you have a wide range of vehicle types, but they’re all from Japanese manufacturers — Toyota, Mazda, and Nissan — that’s alright, because Japan’s automobile industry has a reputation for reliability and efficiency. So, single travelers and couples will be happy with mini, compact, and economy cars. Families and groups of 5 or less might be a bit more comfortable in standard, intermediate, and fullsize sedans. For rural roads, all-wheel drive SUV is ideal for rugged terrain. Larger groups and families with cargo will need a 7-9 seater minivan.
Tips and advice for renting a car at Bali Airport Denpasar
Bali’s speed limits vary from 30 km/h to 70 km/h on the highway, but few drivers will ever reach top speed. The average flow on the Raya Bypass is 40 km/h. Road conditions are not optimal for high-speed cruising.
Petrol stations are scarce, even in Denpasar.
Quick tips: Drive on the left, overtake on the right. Always use your horn to signal the driver ahead that you intend to pass.
One of the main unwritten rules of driving in Bali is you’re responsible for what you see in front of you. That means vehicles entering the roadway from a side street will constantly pull out into traffic because they know you can see them — and culturally obliged to yield right of way. Since you’re technically not “in front of them” — you’re either on the right or left — they’re not on the hook for your passage. It’s weird, but you’ll get used to the flow of things — eventually.
Driving outside central Denpasar at night is strongly discouraged.
The main tourist areas of Kuta (8 km / 4.8 mi) and Ubud (23 km / 13.8 mi) are within short striking distance of Denpasar.