We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

invited to dinner at balinese friends place

Busselton, Australia
Level Contributor
122 posts
30 reviews
Save Topic
invited to dinner at balinese friends place

Hi everyone, I know I have read things about being invited to Balinese friends place - our friends have invited my partner and I and another couple (our friends) to their place for dinner. They are going to come and pick us up. I am very nervous for a number of reasons, the biggest being what do I take with me as a gift or contribution for them? The boys want to get him a fishing rod which is great, but what about his wife and 10 yr old daughter?? Any ideas? Then there is the whole question of will the food be ok to eat? I doubt they have a fridge, but I really don't know - Any advice would be great appreciated - we are going on Wed night = Thanks so much Nads

Newcastle, Australia
Level Contributor
690 posts
22 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: invited to dinner at balinese friends place

Last year we were invited back to our drivers family compound for dinner on our last night.

He picked my 2 daughters and myself up at our hotel and we travelled to his home.

His wife and mother prepared a traditional Balinese feast.

We too were at a loss as to what to give as a gift, and were very mindful not to 'insult' them by being over-extravagant.

In the end I ended up putting $50AUD in an envelope and gave it to Nyoman when he dropped us back at our accommodation at the end of the night.

Our situation was different though, as he was a hired driver through a company, so we ensured that he was paid by us for the fantastic time he gave us whilst in Bali.... (he would have only received a small percentage of what we paid the company).

The food was fantastic, and we had no trouble as a result of eating with them..... This is an experience that myself and my two daughters hold dear to our hearts and was a highlight of our trip to Bali as we were invited into the home of someone that we ended up considering our friend.

I think you will love the night with these beautiful people, but it is up to you really what you would consider a lovely gift for the wife and child....

Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
12,336 posts
93 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: invited to dinner at balinese friends place

First of all, don't worry about the food. Your friend will be very mindful that you can't tolerate some of what they do with food and will use clean water etc to prepare the food. Go and enjoy and the biggest compliment you can give them is to eat well and enjoy the food.

A gift of towels or practical items would be greatly appreciated as often items like this are scarce in a Balinese compound. For the daughter, sticker books or anything a normal 10 year old would like. For the mother a nice luxury item like nice smelling shower gel or lotions (perfumes tend to go off in the heat unless they live in the mountains where it is cooler).

Don't be surprised, if they live in a compound with other family members, if the whole family doesn't eat with you as this is common. Balinese don't usually sit for family meals but graze all day from the food that is prepared every morning.

Just relax and enjoy what is sure to be one of the best experiences of your life. Something you will remember for ever.

Busselton, Australia
Level Contributor
122 posts
30 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: invited to dinner at balinese friends place

Thanks guys - I do realise this is a wonderful opportunity to spend some time with these lovely people -

Whinnie what other practical items would you suggest if you don't mind please?

Thanks

Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
12,336 posts
93 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: invited to dinner at balinese friends place

We often take up a box of food items, some luxury that they wouldn't buy for themselves and some everyday items, like oil, which is quite expensive by Indonesian standards but necessary. Iced tea is another favourite. Fresh food items are cheaper for them to buy, but grocery items that won't spoil are good. If part of the family works in the rice fields though, don't give them rice, as part of their wage will be paid in rice and it's like taking ice to eskimos, lol.

Framed photos, if you take photos of the family, get one or 2 printed out and put them in a frame for them, or make up an album.

Sheets are hard to buy because the beds may not be our normal sizes.

Sarongs, proper ceremony type ones, not our tourist type, are popular as well.

As it's your first visit it's a bit harder because you don't really know what they need and don't need, but if you return you will have a better idea of what would be handy to them once you have seen the compound. Other items would be floor mats, clothes airers to dry clothes on when it's raining, fans etc but not until you have some knowledge of their circumstances.

Adelaide
Level Contributor
850 posts
1 review
Save Reply
5. Re: invited to dinner at balinese friends place

I know this doesn't help as in what to give them but remember before you step foot into a indo house to take your shoes off I forgot once and they freaked :/)

Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
14,195 posts
33 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: invited to dinner at balinese friends place

I always take some bright red lipstick for the ladies for their ceremonies. They seem to love that. The last few trips I've discovered that they don't have those paint with water books which are a real hit with the kids. I also take paint brushes to go with them. Cadbury chocolate is a favourite too.

Busselton, Australia
Level Contributor
122 posts
30 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: invited to dinner at balinese friends place

Just letting you all know we had a wonderful evening with our friends - the best part of our trip so far!! Will be seeing them again this evening. We got him a fishing rod, tackle box and all the bits and pieces in Denpasar at a fishing shop - total cost $50 and the size of the smile on his face was priceless! For the daughter we got a bag with books, pens, coloured pencils etc and were rewarded with a lovely picture to bring home and she signed her name on it - For her a set of new towels and some body wash and chocolate and she cried! We also took food for their dog Aston who was an absolute delight! We will never forget the experience

Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
12,336 posts
93 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: invited to dinner at balinese friends place

Oh I'm so glad you had such a wonderful time.

Australia
Level Contributor
12,777 posts
31 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: invited to dinner at balinese friends place

Sounds like a perfect evening Nads. Your gifts were a good choice :)

Bali, Indonesia
Level Contributor
1,824 posts
10 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: invited to dinner at balinese friends place

Nice to hear.

I know this is to late but I also like to add that in Indonesia, it isn't rude to leave food on your plate and it's actually quite common. If you finish your plate your host will be under the impression that you are still hungry and serve you more.