I guess I'll just take it and run with it. Several businesses have banned Korean tourists for:
1. Selling extra keys for their luxury hotel rooms to others who wish to use the hotel’s swimming pool without staying there,
2. Loading oceanfront gazebos with their luggage early in the morning to reserve their spaces
3. Launching online discussion forums to teach others how to complain and make requests for special accommodations in English.
credit: Steve Han, Iamkoream.com
This is a very bold and loud move. It is especially not to be taken lightly, considering these businesses have obviously had much experience with Korean people, and are aware of their short tempers and quickness to take offense. For more information on this uniquely Korean trait, I recommend the Wikipedia article on “Han” as well as Anthony Bourdain's discussion with Korean-American graffiti artist David Choe on the subject.
I find this news to be very interesting for two reasons.
1. Koreans bring in a huge amount of money to developing Asian countries via tourism. Korean tourists are very numerous in Southeast Asia and the Pacific. For a city with a large tourism industry like Bali to essentially decide: “I would rather lose money and hurt the local economy than continue to allow Koreans to enter my business,” is a decision of huge economic gravity.
2. Unlike businesses in Korea and Japan who ban entry to all foreigners, Bali has no problem with foreigners. In fact, much of their economy is quite dependent on tourists. The bans that have been enacted by Balinese businesses are specific to Korean tourists. It's not that Indonesians are xenophobic. Much of their economic growth comes from foreigners. It's just they've decided that the income isn't worth it, if it means being patronized by Koreans.
It's had to say that banning foreigners seriously reflects poorly on 'foreigners'. That label includes every other culture on Earth. It's not very specific. Banning one specific nation, like earlier this year, when the SATs banned Korea for widespread cheating, is a lot more specific, and thus has a lot more descriptive power.
I am not in the service industry, I just know a bit of economics. If a Balinesian business decides to throw away the money instead of taking Korean customers, that is because it feels it is better off in doing so. From my perspective, I might think, “Wow, you'd rather make less money?” but from an inside perspective, there is some Balinesian hotel owner replying, “What do you know? You don't deal with Korean tourists.”
That's some serious money they're throwing away, and what that tells me is that is some serious disdain that Koreans have incurred.