(Axel Boer) #1
Cash-Only Economy
Myanmar ATMS don't accept international cards. With few exceptions, credit cards and trav-
ellers cheques aren't accepted either. Budget carefully and get the right kind of bills before
your plane lands in Yangon. Otherwise, you'll end up in fi nancial trouble.
US dollar bills must be 2006 or later bills that have colour and are in absolutely perfect
condition: no folds, stamps, stains, writing marks or tears. On the black market, $100 bills
get a better rate of exchange than lower values ones – but bring some of those, too.
We know of only one Yangon hotel (Parkroyal; p 53 ) that is willing to provide cash against
a credit card, but it does so at 12% commission. For more on money matters, see p 364.

Important Numbers

Country code % 95
International access code % 00
Ambulance (Yangon) % 192
Fire (Yangon) % 191
Police (Yangon) % 199

Exchange Rates
The US dollar is the only foreign currency
that’s readily exchanged and/or accepted
as payment for goods and services. The
offi cial exchange rate (US$1 equals around
K6.5) is less than a tenth of the black-mar-
ket rate, so do not change money at airport
exchange booths or at banks. The best plac-
es to change money in Yangon are Bogyoke
Aung San Market (p 67 ) and your hotel.
Recent black-market rates in Yangon:

Australia A$1 K
Europe €1 K
Japan ¥100 K


» Cash only. Credit
cards generally not
accepted. Bring only
pristine US bills for

» Needed by everyone.
Maximum stay 28 days,

Mobile Phones
» No international
roaming. Prepaid SIM
cards available for
locally bought phones.

Transp or t
» Buses and trains –
both are pretty slow,
especially trains.
Flights to major tourist
spots can get booked
up quickly in high

We b s i t e s

» Lonely Planet (www.
Good for pre-planning.

» Irrawaddy (www.
Thailand-based news
and features site.

» Myanmar Image
Gallery (www.
Pictures and text on
myriad Myanmar-
related subjects.

» Online Burma/
Myanmar Library
org) Database of books
and past articles on

» Demoractic Voice of
Burma (www.dvb.no)
Norway-based media

Arriving in

Yangon International
Airport If you haven’t
pre-arranged a transfer
with you hotel or travel
agent, a taxi from the
airport to the city
centre will be $8. Bring
single bills with you
(see below) so that you
don’t have to change
money in the airport.
Also see p 71.

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