Travel to BALI with me! – Ep. 43

It has been 3 years since I first stepped foot on this island. Back then I had just started my full time entrepreneurship journey, broken up with my ex boyfriend, and the goal of traveling to Australia. It’s one of my favorite islands on this planet and I can’t wait for you to learn about my favorite experiences through this episode. Here’s your dose of wanderlust and sunshine!

In this episode, we cover quitting my corporate job and making the decision to become a travel influencer (02:10), the path to investing in help from others to grow my business (9:00), and some suggestions for things to do in Bali (13:22).

Audio Transcript

The Wanderlover Podcast was created with a mission to enable travel and freedom through entrepreneurship. I’m your host, Danielle Hu, business mentor, content creator, and founder of The Wanderlover. Tune in every week for episodes about travel online business, social media, and mindset that will inspire you to take massive action towards living the life of your dreams. Hello, my loves. And welcome back to The Wanderlover Podcast. I’m your host, Danielle Hu, and this past week Ragz and I got back to Bali.

This is where we met two years ago. And as you may know, we quarantined in Jakarta for six days. And guess what? The day we flew back, not only was it our anniversary, but it was also the first day that they implemented a lockdown. So we landed and all of the restaurants are closed. They’re still open for take-away, but the restaurants are closed. The beaches are closed. Lots of co-working spaces are closed. And for the most part, it’s pretty sad, but I’m still just so happy to be back and to be surrounded by the energy that I’m so familiar with. The island is pretty small. I’ve seen so many of my friends just riding around on scooters.

(1m 27s):
I’m still really familiar with all of the streets and all the people here and guys I’m just really happy to be back. And so this episode is dedicated to this island. I first wants to start off by kind of doing a reflection of the first time I visited back in 2018 and this time now. So what has grown and changed in my life and my business. I then want to move on to just giving you some more information about Bali in case you ever want to visit in the future to definitely be on your bucket list. If you’re thinking about entering maybe in the next year or in the next few months, I’ll also give you information about that.

(2m 8s):
And lastly, what it’s like being in Bali for an extended period of time. So if you guys are not really familiar with my brand and who I am, I used to work in corporate finance in New York city up until 2017, July 11th, 2017 was my last full day at my corporate job. So this actually marks my four year anniversary since then I’ll do a whole reflections episode later in the future, but I quit my job. And in February to March of 2018, I broke up with my ex-boyfriend, who I was living with at the time and decided, you know what? I am going to fly to Bali.

(2m 48s):
I’m going to go to the other side of the world. At that point, I hadn’t gone to Australia yet. And one of my main reasons for quitting my corporate job was because I didn’t have the time to go to Australia. And that’s just something I really wanted to do. And I was like, I only have 15 vacation days a year. If I saved up all my vacation days, I could take like a three week trip to Australia, but it takes like two days to fly there. And that’s definitely not even enough time. How am I supposed to go? And if I did do this three week trip, I can’t take a vacation for the rest of the year. And so it was just really limiting and so I broke up with my ex-boyfriend.

(3m 28s):
I was like, I’m going to Bali and Australia. So that trip meant a lot to me because it represented a new chapter. I feel like Bali always calls your name at the perfect time in your life. When you need a new beginning, when you need some inspiration, it just magically shows up and it guides you and things like magical things happen that you just can’t explain. So for me, that trip meant so much because it was the beginning of my single life. It represented quitting my corporate job and really committing full time to being a travel influencer. And so Bali back in 2018 already had so much significance in my life.

(4m 13s):
I visited for three weeks, then went to Australia and then traveled around a bit more. But I decided that after months and months of just bouncing around, I wanted a new base. And so in September of 2018, I decided to move back full time and set up, shop everything. Since the first time I visited everything was just so accessible and comfortable. Like, yes, it’s a completely new country with different rules, different language, different foods, different culture, but everyone is so inviting. And it is pretty westernized. All of the really populated areas. Everyone speaks English basically.

(4m 53s):
So it was really easy to get settled in. There was fast wifi. There were co-working spaces. There was so much surf. And so I really just wanted to go back and it was calling my name. So from September, 2018 to September, 2019, I was based in Bali and I really had no intentionally or plans to leave until I met Ragz. And, you know, you just can never predict what life throws at you. And you might have all of these plans and all of these timelines. And sometimes they just go out the door and there’s nothing you can do about that. But that’s the beauty of life. Like you really just can’t control it.

(5m 34s):
And every time I come back to this amazing island, I’m so reminded of just how much can change in such a short period of time. And also how little control we have in this life, how short our lives are. And so why not just live it up, right? Like why not do everything we’ve always wanted to do? So now I’m back and it’s been three years since I first stepped foot here. Why do I love it so much? Why do I spend so much time in Bali? I think if I were to pinpoint it to one thing, it is the community of entrepreneurs and the community of people who quit their jobs, moved to Bali to pursue their dreams.

(6m 14s):
There is just such an abundance of entrepreneurs and like-minded souls that I feel like I belong here and this community feeling of belonging, no matter how many times, how many new communities I’ve changed and gone through, and just try to increase, integrate myself in around the world, there really is no better feeling than saying what you do and have people accept it and understand it with complete understanding. There’s really no other way to put it back. When I was in my corporate job, I would tell people about my dreams to travel, to start my own business. And it was met with critics and skepticism and just a lot of negativity, not intentional.

(7m 0s):
I don’t think it’s ever intentional. It’s just coming from a place where they don’t understand, but there is honestly no better feeling than to say what you’re doing and have people understand and support your goals and your entire lifestyle. So the lifestyle aspect that comes on top of entrepreneurship is the second best thing about being in Bali, because surfing, which is so near and dear to my heart, Bali has some of the best waves in the world, especially for long boarding, which is what I’m trying to improve on every single day. It’s so easy to just hop on a scooter, go down for a surf and come back and work from your Villa and have really fast wifi.

(7m 42s):
So that integrates with the entrepreneurship part, but I really value the convenience and the speed of the internet here. So for me and my lifestyle, you’ve heard me talk about life design over and over again, really define what it is you want out of your life. For me, it’s fast internet, it’s a business that I can run. That’s influential, impactful and makes me money no matter where I am around the world. And I want to be surfing. I want to be in a tropical destination, surrounded by like-minded entrepreneurs. And I found that in Bali, right? And so for me, this is one of the best destinations that I can thrive in around the world.

(8m 22s):
So I’m really curious to hear what it is you want out of your life, what your ideal day would look like. And DME maybe I’ll know of the exact place that you should be to really thrive in an environment that’s made for you. And who knows, maybe it’s folly also DME to let me know if it is okay. So moving on to my business and life reflections 2018 versus 2021, obviously the pandemic that happened and then it’s still happening was a major change. That really shifted what business I was in. And also how I run my business back in 2018, I had just broken up with my ex long-term partner and wanted to get out of New York city.

(9m 11s):
And I really wanted to pursue full time influencing. That was something I had on my passion planner on my vision board. And I just really wanted to create content around the world. So how I invested in my business looked like equipment. It was all about software and equipment. I bought a drone, I bought a GoPro, I bought a camera, I got all of the editing software. I had a community, I was in a bunch of Facebook groups, a bunch of Instagram groups to really help me with my online presence, but I had never invested in help back then. My mindset was completely different and unless I could have a physical asset in exchange for an investment, I refuse to do so.

(9m 54s):
So this looked like not investing in any marketing or coaching or advertising or anything that required money that I couldn’t see back instantly. I never really asked for help. I kind of shut down and went back into my strong, independent woman who don’t need no man kind of phase. And I refuse to get help from anyone. I was like, I can do this by myself. I had my heart broken and I just really closed myself off and thought that I could go through life by myself. It was working for a while, but it was not sustainable. At least for me, this was also before I started surfing before I really had any hobbies other than going to the gym.

(10m 36s):
Because back when I had a corporate job all the free time I had, I was like, I could spend one hour at the gym. And then that was it. I really had no hobbies outside of my work. I also loved backpacking and country hopping. I think that’s also just something that came out of having really limited vacation days and limited time. So every time that I had a long weekend, I would kind of add on two vacation days to that and go to a different country. And I really didn’t have the luxury of exploring a place for more than one or two weeks at a time. So three years, this is what I love about reflecting on the past, because it just shows that so much can happen in such a short amount of time.

(11m 20s):
You guys loved my episode about my Hawaii reflections between 2016 and 2021. So this is really similar. This is an episode where I basically tell you that so much can happen in a year. And let’s see where I am in 2021, after shifting my mindset and deciding, you know, what, I’m going to lean on other people for help, I’m going to start dating again and meet people on Tinder. That’s also how I met rags. I’m going to put myself out there. I’m going to do things that are outside my comfort zone. I’m going to start surfing and really commit to it and really get better at it. I’m going to invest in my business and marketing and advertising, and I’m going to ask for help when I need it in business.

(12m 5s):
So I invested in masters in coaches and you know what, after all of that, I’ve had multiple five figure months. I have a thriving business and even just started a second one with my best friend. I’ve expanded onto so many other platforms outside of Instagram, and I’m a better surfer. I’m a better girlfriend. I’m a better friend. There is just so much growth that I was not even able to comprehend back in 2018. So of course, some of that was this new direction that I chose to be on. I chose to pursue a full-time entrepreneurship. I chose to relocate to another country and through all of that, it may seem crazy at first, but I’m in a great, healthy relationship.

(12m 53s):
And I really think this is a testimonial of being able to serve and help others and make an impact and influence others after filling up your own cup. So I just think it’s cool. How all in all this island hasn’t really changed? The vibe is still the same. However, it’s been a few years since I’ve been back. And so I just love reflecting on how much of myself and my community and my business has changed in such a short amount of time. Next, I want to share some facts and information about Bali in case you ever want to visit, or if you just want an update on what’s going on around here, one us dollar is 14,000 Rubia.

(13m 36s):
So the local currency is known as Indonesian Rubia or abbreviated as IDR. And one us dollar is 14,000. It’s a lot of math. I usually take out my calculator whenever I have to calculate something. But when you go to the ATM and take out money, they will be in denominations, usually of a hundred thousand. And so it’s a lot of zeros. I wish they would just cut the last three zeros off, but sess levy credit cards are really widely accepted. I wouldn’t say it’s a cash based economy, although it is really handy to have cash on you at all times, the local language is Bahasa Indonesian. There’s a Duolingo for it.

(14m 17s):
So if you do have a trip plan and you want to brush up on your Bahasa Indonesian, you can start the lessons. That’s what rags and I have been doing. And just trying to use it as much as we can on a day-to-day basis. It’s a pretty simple language. I wouldn’t say there’s a lot of grammar, a lot of things to think about. It’s just mainly memorizing vocabulary. It’s pretty easy to pick up on the airport that everyone flies into is Denpasar abbreviated. DPS. It’s funny because there’s another airport in Indonesia called or something like that. And it starts with Bali, but that is not the Bali airport. So just make sure that you are flying into the right airport and the right island.

(15m 0s):
There are so many different areas of this island and each one has its own charm. So for the more touristy areas that a lot of people go to our OOD, Chengdu, seven yak and UWA too. So OOD it doesn’t touch water at all. And it’s known as the more jungley kind of Yogi and lots of different temples, lots of different waterfalls. It’s more in tune with nature. There are beautiful hotels. There’s also a monkey forest. So if you see photos on Instagram with people taking selfies with monkeys, it’s in ooVoo.

(15m 42s):
It’s beautiful for me. I would not personally choose to be based up there because I love surfing and I need to be by a water, but it’s amazing to visit also during my first trip, after researching all of the different areas, I went down to Chengdu. So Chengdu is currently where I’m based right now. There’s so many cute cafes. There’s so many different breaks for surfing, surfing at all levels. Co-working spaces, gyms, anything that you can think of, Chengdu probably has it. You can get your nails done. You can get massages. It’s really convenient under Chenango a little further south is Semon yak. So this is where a lot of the really big hotels are where a lot of the beach bars are beach clubs.

(16m 28s):
And then farther down south is what we call the Bukit or oo Watsu. So this is where I think the best Bali waves are located. If you’re a really good surfer and you love getting barreled, the Buka is where you want to be. It’s less developed, so less things going on, but be you to full crystal clear beaches. And there’s also just so many different trails, so many different cliff bars with amazing views. And it’s really another experience. There’s no way to describe how refreshing it is when you go from somewhere like seminar or Chengdu down to , it’s completely different.

(17m 9s):
And that’s another thing I just love about this island is you can scoot around on your scooter for 30 minutes and be in a completely different world. So like I said, we are currently living in Chengdu one minute from the beach. I love, love, love our place, but we do want to find something longer term instead of renting month to month. So I will keep you all posted on that. I’ve also gotten a few questions on Instagram about how we were able to enter during this time we are in lockdown. I think rags and I got really lucky because they’re starting to get stricter and stricter with the rules, but we entered going through a visa agent and applied for a business visa.

(17m 52s):
So with the business visa, it’s valid for 60 days and extendable up to six months, we had to quarantine in Jakarta for six days. And then afterwards, we were allowed to fly to Bali. And the day we flew, not only did they change the rules, but they also mandated that you need to have at least your first vaccine in order to fly. So if you’re not vaccinated, you can’t technically get into Bali. I also have a friend who flew after Jakarta to labile and Bocho, and she told me last night that all flights leaving the island were being canceled. And so I think they’re really starting to crack down. And if you guys need more guidance on answering, join the Facebook group laws and regulations in Indonesia, that’s where I really keep up to date with everything happening around COVID around restrictions, around rules in Indonesia.

(18m 43s):
It’s super helpful. Okay. Last but not least. I want to share what it’s like being in Bali for an extended period of time, time. I’ve spent quite some time here and I would love to just give some insight on what it’s like being an ex hat here in a foreign country. So right now we have the ability to stay up to six months. Bali is very small. Everyone’s super connected. Usually the entrepreneurs that I associate with, they’re also friends with other entrepreneurs, right? And so once you find your community, you really connect with everyone else in that community. That’s what I love about it too. It was kind of in New York when I spent a lot of time there, I love just running into people in the streets and then being like, oh my gosh, you know this person.

(19m 27s):
And I feel like these are the connections that give you the most opportunities because it’s so aligned with what you’re doing and what kind of lifestyle you’re living. I think with anywhere else, the longer you stay somewhere, the more you find your groove. So when you’re traveling, whether it be on vacation or just like a short weekend trip, you’re really just on the go, right? You’re go, go, go. It’s really hard to find a system and find a routine. And over time, every time I come back to Bali or every time I came back to Bali, I would just party. Like I would have fun and be on vacation for maybe a few days. And then afterwards I’ll be like, right. We need to work, need to get back on track and really figure out what kind of day-to-day routine is the most sustainable for myself, my energy levels and my business.

(20m 13s):
And I think being in an area or a location where everything is so accessible. So I drive a scooter. I had no idea how to drive a scooter before I arrived here. But it’s really easy to learn. Once you can just like hop on a bike and go anywhere on the island, you can really design your days exactly as how you want to. You don’t have to worry about traffic. You don’t have to worry about, you know, commuting. And so this is what I really like about this island compared to we were just in Hawaii. So even in Hawaii, like the traffic was getting so insane. And to the point where I almost didn’t want to go to my favorite surf spot because of the traffic.

(20m 56s):
And I think when it gets to that point, it limits you on your full potential. Because when there are these barriers, I’m not saying it’s impossible, but you just dread putting in the effort to go to somewhere that would support your goals. On the other hand, everything here is so conducive to my goals when it comes to networking with other coaches, networking with other influencers, shooting content, growing my luxury media production company, growing my audience and surfing. So these are the reasons why I’m back. It sounds like I’m being sponsored by Bali tourism board. And I’m not, these are my genuine thoughts.

(21m 36s):
I hope you guys learned something about life design, about what it’s like traveling full time and finding your bases. And it gives you some ideas of how you may want to design your life in the future. But as always, if you have any questions, my DMS are always open. I’ll link. My travel Itinerary. A few of you have been requesting and the show notes and yeah, you guys, I’m really excited to share more about this island and create content and help coach and serve more and more of you at wall on here. Have an amazing week. And remember you are capable of doing anything you set your mind to.


✧ 1 Week in Bali Itinerary:
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✧ Start Your Hustle Intensive:

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