As a local Indonesian originally from Jakarta and now living in Bali, I’ve encountered numerous colloquial terms that are specific to the island’s unique culture, one such term is “bule hunter”.

A slang phrase that has gained popularity in recent years. This is about the origins of “bule hunter,” who it’s for, and how to use it in the context of modern-day Bali, specifically in reference to local Balinese and Indonesian women.

Origins of “Bule Hunter”

The term “bule” (pronounced boo-lay) is a colloquial Indonesian word used to describe foreigners, particularly those of Caucasian descent. The word is believed to have originated from the Dutch word “buitenlander,” which means “foreigner” or “outsider.” Over time, it has evolved into a slang term that is now widely used in everyday conversation.

The term “bule hunter” emerged as a fusion of the word “bule” and the English word “hunter,” creating a phrase that refers to someone who actively seeks out relationships or friendships with foreigners, particularly wealthy or seemingly rich Caucasians. In the context of local Balinese and Indonesian women, “bule hunter” is often used to describe those who are interested in forming connections with foreign men.

Who “Bule Hunter” is For

“Bule hunter” is typically used to describe Balinese and Indonesian women who are interested in forming connections with foreign men. While some “bule hunters” may be genuinely seeking friendships or relationships, others might have more materialistic motives, such as financial benefits or gaining access to travel opportunities. It’s important to note, however, that not all local women who interact with foreign men should be labeled as “bule hunters.” The term is generally reserved for those who specifically target foreigners for their own personal gains or as a status symbol.

How to Use “Bule Hunter”

In conversation, “bule hunter” can be used as a lighthearted tease among friends or as a way to describe someone’s behavior or intentions when interacting with foreign men. Here are a few examples of how the term can be used:

As a joke among friends: “Hey, kamu jadi bule hunter nih sekarang?” (Hey, are you becoming a bule hunter now?)

Describing someone’s actions: “Dia terkenal sebagai bule hunter di sini, hati-hati ya.” (She’s known as a bule hunter around here, be careful.)

Discussing motives: “Aku rasa dia bule hunter, sepertinya dia mencari orang asing untuk mendapatkan keuntungan.” (I think she’s a bule hunter, it seems like she’s looking for foreign men to get benefits.)

While “bule hunter” might be a slang term that is often used in jest, it’s essential to approach the topic with sensitivity and respect for others’ feelings. As with any slang or colloquial expression, it’s important to consider the context and the people involved in the conversation before using the term.

The Bali Bule Hunter

The term “bule hunter” offers a glimpse into the evolving language and culture of Bali, specifically in relation to local Balinese and Indonesian women’s interactions with foreign men. As the island continues to grow as a popular tourist destination, the interplay between locals and foreigners will undoubtedly give rise to new slang expressions and social phenomena.

By understanding the origins and context of terms like “bule hunter,” we can better appreciate the rich tapestry of language and culture that makes Bali such a unique and captivating destination.


The Bali Guide