The Solution to Bali’s Traffic Problem?


Traffic is a huge problem in Bali. In fact, we try to avoid going into Ubud in the car at all during the busiest months of June, July and August because it can take an hour or more to get across town (a couple of kilometres). There have been numerous ideas for a solution to the problem in Ubud such as pedestrianizing roads and creating an out of town car park for the tourist buses, but like most ideas here, they go nowhere.

I have my own transport issues. I’d love to be able to have more independence and get out and about with the kids. I’ve talked before about how I really want to get over my fears of driving a motorbike and just get on with it because it would open up so many opportunities for me. However there’s no getting away from the element of danger when you’re on a motorbike, especially when the kids are involved.

My friend recently moved to Bali and immediately started taking driving lessons. Good on her but I don’t see myself doing the same any time soon. The idea of driving a car terrifies me even more than driving a motorbike. There’s so much more to be aware of plus cars are harder to manouver because of their size and the roads here aren’t exactly built for large vehicles.

So I was actually pretty fascinated to read about this new i-ROAD technology from Toyota, that’s being tested in Japan (of course Japan! everything cool starts there!). It’s basically a kind of eco-friendly cross between a motorbike and a car – it’s easy to handle and takes up less space like a motorbike but offers more protection than a motorbike (and would be much more pleasant to drive in the rain!). I’d feel totally happy about putting Maya or Kiran in the back of one of these without worrying about getting in an accident or them falling asleep and falling off – i’m never quite at ease about them being on the motorbike.

The iROAD is designed for short trips in cities as a kind of alternative to public transport. The idea being that you can drive your car as normal to an out of town car park and then use one of these vehicles for the last part of your journey (some cities have bicycles you can borrow, this is the same concept just with a cute electric futuristic car!)

I think this would work great for Ubud and i could totally see myself driving one, unlike our big car/minivan thing, which i dont’ see myself EVER driving!

Plus the fact that it’s electric means that it’s greener, ┬áso less pollution, less breathing in petrol fumes and no stressing about petrol running out (which it does here, frequently).

What do you think?

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Toyota. The opinions and text are all mine.

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