Going to Japan, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos for a total of 5 weeks -
Should i buy currency here or there? Should i get some starter money here and some there? If i get it there, can i use credit card to buy it or should i stock up on U.S. currency and exchange it there?
#1 sandy_28 has been a member since 4/7/2007. Posts: 2
as a general rule, it is better to buy your local currency in the country where you are going to use it. in other words, you'll get more baht for your money when you buy/exchange for baht in thailand than you would buying baht in japan or the states.
in japan, thailand and cambodia there are plenty of ATM's that accept ATM/bank cards. (laos still has very few international ATMs.) check with your bank to see which networks it uses and where you can get cash. be sure that you have a 4-digit PIN as well.
you can also get cash advances on credit cards in any of the countries you mentioned at banks and shops, although the fees add up pretty quickly.
in any case, i typically travel using my ATM card to get cash as needed from ATMs with a few traveller's checks and a bit of US cash as a back up.
US dollars are preferred for all but small purchases in cambodia, but the ATMs there dispense US dollars as well as Riel, so you won't necessarily need to be carrying a huge amount of cash.
there are several other posts on these topics with additional good tips from other travelfishers, so take a moment to see what folks have already written on these topics.
cheers. have a great trip.
im thinking of taking an ATM card to Cambodia, Loas and Vietnam. I am reading all different stories on whether to take a card or travellers cheques. Are there many ATM's available in those countries? are they in English?
i have been to europe and they were very simple to use. are those in these country simple to use aswell?
thanks for the advice
#3 jayne2402 has been a member since 11/7/2007. Posts: 12
There is only one cash point in the whole of Laos, at the airport supposedly, although I've never seen it.
Cash points in Thailand are plentiful and all banks supply an English Language option on the main screen.
#4 Guernseystu has been a member since 10/7/2007. Posts: 108
There are two cash machines in Luang Prabang. I tried one with my (American) citibank ATM card and it didn't work. Not sure why. Other foreigners have been able to get money out though.
Not sure about Vientiane.
#5 notacrime has been a member since 24/7/2007. Posts: 10
IN Vientiane Laos,
International ATM / Credit Card Services
BCEL ATM in Vieniane Capital and in Other provinces in Lao PDR are pleased to provide credit card services for Visa, Master Card, Diners Club, JCB, Maestros and Plus.
Withdraw up to 7.000.000,00 LAK daily, 700.000,00 LAK/ Time ( about 10 Times/ day )
#6 kam_taxi has been a member since 11/3/2008. Posts: 7