Illegal Guides at Tanah Lot Untouchable

DENPASAR

Civil Service Police Unit officers for Bali province are having difficulty capturing illegal tour guides in the Tanah Lot area due to a lack of cooperation when entering the region.

The backlash to police enforcement seems to be based on a belief that a crackdown on illegal guides will result in lower income to the region.

However, Chief of Bali Province Satpol PP I Made Sukadada claims that police control will actually improve tourism in the area.

In addition to Tanah Lot, police actively seek out illegal tour guides at a number of attractions such as PuraBesakih, Goa Gajah, Goa Lawah, PuraUluwatu.

Police claim they are concerned that the presence of unlicensed guides will tarnish the image of Bali tourism.   To date, Sukadada claims the court has sentenced six illegal tours guides this year, but that thirty guides are currently going through the process of being prosecuted.  This in contrast to 352 illegal guides processed with the court last year.

Usually a guide is considered illegal because they have not completed the proper schooling or paid for a guide permit, although their language skills might be adequate.

In response, the Bali Provincial Tourism Office plans to revise tour guide regulations, including lowering the education requirement to three months of training instead of six months.

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