The suspended “VIP” fast-track arrival service at Bali’s international gateway, Ngurah Rai Airport, is still operating – with some holiday villa companies continuing to offer the service.
It was officially suspended in April, when Ngurah Rai introduced biometric screening of arriving passengers.
“The VIP service has indeed been suspended, but we can still provide it,” an employee of villa-rental firm Bali Experience said on Friday.
He said the company had contacts at the airport who they worked with to shepherd arriving holidaymakers swiftly through lengthy Immigration and Customs queues.
Arrivals have been returned to normal because the fingerprinting and photographing security measures have themselves been suspended temporarily while additional counters are installed in the arrivals hall. But they can still take hours at peak times.
The Bali Experience employee said it only provided the service, at a cost of US$35, for clients who booked villa stays through the company.
The company advertises a “VIP Airport Service” on its website, saying: “Our airport representative will be waiting inside the airport arrival hall directly outside your gate to greet you when you arrive.”