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ESSENTIAL INFORMATION - Money
Updated: Jul2013

Money

At the time 1 USD = 980 Ks to the USD. Before passing through customs at the airport there is a government service offering generally the best rates to the US$. Banks are now accepting US $, European €, Singapore $ and FEC (but only at banks outside of the airport). XE.com is still one of the best websites out there for checking international exchange rates.

ATM Machines
Currently KBZ and Co-op have ATM’s that will accept International cards, though not all machines. We have listed branches that have external ATM machines in anticipation of the future. If you spot one, then please email us. US sanctions have started to ease so hopefully soon travelers will have access to all currency machines directly. A withdrawal charge of 5,000K is applied though.

Banks
Opening times for banks and dedicated currency exchange outlets differs. Banks are generally open Monday to Saturday from 0900-1500, though not all exchange currency (closing at 1400 on Saturday). Dedicated currency exchange outlets (such as KBZ) are open 7-days a week from 0900-1500, closing early on Saturday and Sunday at 1400. Banks are closed on full-moon festivals.

Euro or Dollar?
There’s much debate on the Internet about this topic – hopefully if you’re travelling from the Euro zone, this will help set your mind at rest.
All hotels charge in US$ or occasionally they will accept Kyats. You will always get a better rate by paying in US$. We’ve not heard of any hotel that has an issue with handling $100 bills. The money that they give you in return has already passed the scrutinous eye of the hotelier; that said, check them again yourself.
All sites of interest require US$ and when they do accept €, they are treated like for like (i,e. $5 = €5), so it makes sense to pay in US$. The best places to use your worst dollar notes are at sites where you have to use US$ as an entrance fee.
Comparing the exchange rate of the US$ and the € against the GB£, you will get 47 Kyats more for your money exchanging € as opposed to US$. So if you’re travelling from the Eurozone, bring some along for exchange

In summary, you will need US$ for hotels and sites, but bring your € for exchanging into Kyats.

Exchange Rates
The Kyat is now tracked on xe.com and fluctuates between 840-860 for 1US$

General Information
As with the banks if you are changing currency with the hotels/ black-market, then you will get a better exchange rate for $100 bills than $50 bills descending accordingly. Black-marketeer’s hang out near most of the tourist attractions, where we were offered rates varying between 860-880Ks to the dollar, which for us didn’t seem like a risk worth taking.

The general rule of thumb is to keep you currency in pristine condition (a suitably sized pencil case has proven ideal for this task and it fits under your pillow at night!). Every site that we’ve visited had plenty of dollars to be able to give change. Be prepared to hand back currency that you are not happy with. The best places to use your worst dollar notes are at sites where you have to use US$ as an entrance fee.

Branches of Yoma Bank are now accepting slightly soiled/ marked dollar bills for exchange, though you must also give them some nice notes at the same time! In addition, we’ve been told by a local guide that they also give a better rate of exchange for smaller notes than other banks. 

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  • Myanmar: The true land of smiles?



    Powered by Noodles

    "Trip report March 2013" 
    Chelsea & Laim
     give us a factual report on Myanmar. Read there blog for the finer points and this report if you want the hard facts. Great report. [more]


    Time Travel Turtle
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    Michael Turtle 
    is a journalist turned traveller; and it is clear in his writing. One of the best travel bloggers we've ever read. [more]


    Pia Regan
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    Pia really gives some inspiration to get off of the beaten path and to just get stuck in and help where you can. Thanks to Pia for allowing us to re-publish this blog. [more]




     

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    Back again!
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    Martin Clarke's second trip to Myanmar in 6 months and once again we're getting hard facts with a few opinions. Useful and solid information. [more]

     

    Honeymooning in Myanmar?
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    We weren't at the wedding but we're really pleased that we could help with their honeymoon planing. Thanks for the report. [more]

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     


     

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    Daniel Fishers's first proper blog took that many hits we managed to talk him into writing another one for us.


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    The map for Bago follows the route described above for cycling. And now the "map man" is back from Myanmar all of our others will be updated soon.


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    Inle Lake, Myanmar 

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    Posted 23 Jul 2013 18:21 by Elli Murr
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  • Myanmar Charities: The Leaping Lemur Group
    There are no charges for receiving information on this site, because this is about sharing the latest information and not making money. That said, please take the time to look at some of the charities that we've highlighted beneath, and if you want to "pay" for the information you've downloaded, then look into some of these worthy causes.
    Elli xx

    The Burma Children’s Fund supports orphanages and pre-schools in various parts of Burma in order to provide shelter, health care and education for orphans and children. We will only support orphanages, clinics and pre-schools for infants and younger children where we know that the staff are dedicated and that the money they receive is spent on the children and for the direct benefit of the children. Children in Burma cannot control their own destiny and this is why our goal is “To Support their Future". [more] 

    Burma Campaign UK
     works for human rights, democracy and development in Burma.Burma Campaign UK is one of the leading Burma campaign organisations in the world. We play a leading role in raising awareness about the situation in Burma, and pressuring the international community to take action in support of the people of Burma. Founded in 1991, Burma Campaign UK is one of the leading Burma campaign organisations in the world. We play a leading role in raising awareness about the situation in Burma,  and pressuring the international community to take action in support of the people of Burma. [more]

    Friends-International
     works with marginalised urban children and youth, their families and communities to become productive, independent citizens of their country. We do this by listening to and being guided by those who matter the most to us - the children and youth we work with everyday. Friends-International has been assisting marginalized urban children and youth across the world since 1994. We now run and support projects for these children and their families in Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Indonesia, Honduras, Mexico, Egypt and Myanmar. Friends-International and its partners reach out to over 50,000 marginalised young people -particularly street children and youth – each year. We offer a range of comprehensive services as part of our holistic approach to assisting children and their families to improve their lives. [more]
     
    Compassionate Hands is a home-grown charity, founded by Snow Aye after the cyclone Nargis struck the southern delta region of Myanmar on 2nd May 2008. Since the start of Compassionate Hands, many people have volunteered to help realise various projects, ranging from emergency relief efforts after the Cyclone, to digging wells and helping children with AIDS. Many volunteers are from Myanmar itself, but also foreigners from other Asian countries, the United States and Europe are involved.... [more]
    Posted 27 Jun 2013 20:17 by Elli Murr
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  • A sample from our facebook page. Follow us for regular updates.


    Garden of Reflection,
    Chiang Mai, Thailand:
     
    There is no glory for a lazy person however good looking

    Temple,
    Krabi Thailand:

    Solitude and silent reflection seems to be moving with the times

    Almost Famous,
    Pai, Thailand:

    Toilet humour, bar humour and a great quiz.
    Posted 26 Jun 2013 21:11 by Elli Murr
Showing posts 1 - 1 of 1. View more »


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Over 1,000 downloads of "A travellers Guide to Myanmar". 
We've had over 27,000 hits in just 7 months! For some, that's nothing, for the charities we support, approx. 2% of our visitors visit on.Which means all of our hard work is worth it. 

Thanks if you've visited one of  the many charities that we promote.

We're always working on our next update for Myanmar, but also busy writing for Thailand, Malaysia and getting ready to hit Cambodia! Can you help? 


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Definition of Charity: 
"Generosity and helpfulness especially toward the needy and suffering"

This is all about giving something back to the people of the countries that we've visited, to thank them for the wonderful experiences that we've had. There are no charges for receiving information on this site, because this is about sharing the latest information and not making money. You'll also note, there are no pop-ups or sponsored links to businesses. So, please take the time to look at some of the charities that we've highlighted on our charities page, and if you want to "pay" for the information you've received, then look into some of these worthy causes. Otherwise we'd gladly accept any support to help keep this site alive.

You will be directed to an Email window. 
If not, then email: volunteer@
TheLeapingLemur.com

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