Bali and Indonesia visa fees waived: 14 ways to spend your $US35 saving

Fifty dollars won't get you far in Australia. In fact in some cities a "pineapple" won't even get you out of the airport and to your hotel.

But Indonesia is different. In Indonesia – in places like Bali, Lombok, the Gili Islands and Komodo – $50 will get you a long way indeed. And that's good news, because a few weeks ago the Indonesian government elected to scrap the tourist visa cost of $US35 (about $A50, give or take today's exchange rate) for all Australian travellers, meaning entrants into the country now get just that little bit more spending money.

Indonesia continues to be one of Australians' favourite destinations – according to SkyScanner.com.au there was an almost 70 per cent increase in flight bookings from Australia to Indonesia from March 2015 to March '16 – which means there will be plenty of people over there with an extra $50 in their pockets. Here's how to splash the cash.

Spend seven nights at a guesthouse in Denpasar

We're not guaranteeing luxury – however, there aren't many places in the world where you can do a homestay with a local family for $7 per night. But that's what's on offer in Denpasar. (www.hostelworld.com)

Get a massage in Ubud

In fact, get three massages. At Jaen's Spa in Ubud, a one-hour Balinese massage will set you back $14, which leaves plenty of money free for a second or third go. (www.jaensspaubud.com)

Take a two-hour surfing lesson at Lombok's Kuta beach

Always wanted to learn to surf? Adventure Lombok offers two-hour introductory lessons in Lombok for $47. Boardshorts and attitude cost extra. (www.lombok-tourism.com)

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Buy 20 Bintang beers in Kuta

At about $2.50 for a beer in most Kuta bars, there's no excuse for not getting your round in. Still, we'd recommend splitting your 20 Bintangs into a few sittings.

Take a return flight between Denpasar to Lombok

Domestic air travel within Indonesia is ridiculously cheap. For about $46 you can fly return from Denpasar to the nearby island of Lombok. (www.skyscanner.com.au)

Charter a boat to visit all three Gili islands

Spend the day luxuriating on your own private charter boat, while also making time to check out the beautiful Gili Islands, for only $40. (www.lombok-tourism.com)

Organise private transfers from Denpasar to your hotel

Anyone who's been to Bali will know about the fight to get a taxi – and the fight to get the right fare – that occurs in the crowded arrivals hall. Mitigate that by booking a private transfer for $52. (www.viator.com

Take 50 rides on an ojek motorcycle taxi in Jakarta

There's never a dull moment aboard one of Jakarta's cheapest and most hair-raising forms of public transport: the ojek. Motorbike taxi rides usually cost about $1.

Do a half-day cooking class at Casa Luna restaurant in Ubud

Love Balinese food? Of course you do. Learn how to make dishes like chicken satay and gado-gado at home with a half-day cooking class at Casa Luna for $40. (www.casalunabali.com)

Spend a night in a beachside cottage in the Gili Islands

Rather than just tour the Gili Islands, you can stay overnight in a beachside cottage on Airbnb for about $50. Alternatively, rent a bungalow in nearby West Nusa Tenggara for the same price. (www.airbnb.com)

Gorge yourself on 100 plates of street food in Denpasar

There's no more affordable way to feed yourself in Indonesia than with street food. Dishes like nasi goreng and gado-gado go for $0.50 at the stalls in Denpasar.

Check out Komodo National Park

A mere $45 will secure you entry into the famed Komodo National Park, including permits, conservation fee and a guided Komodo dragon-spotting trek. (www.viator.com)

Have a cocktail at Ku De Ta in Seminyak

A signature watermelon and mint martini at Seminyak's coolest beach club will only set you back $12, which means you might as well throw in a Montecristo Cuban cigar ($35). (www.kudeta.com

Have a slap-up meal in a five-star restaurant in Jakarta

Indonesia's big bad capital has its fair share of fancy eateries, and a full meal at one of the finest is still only likely to set you back about $50.

Do you have any other suggestions of the best way to spend $50 in Indonesia? Post your comments below

See also: 20 things that will shock first-time visitors to Bali

See also: Airline review: Tigerair's new budget flights to Bali

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