General Information of Myanmar

Myanmar Flag

Getting There

There are three international airports in Myanmar: Yangon, Mandalay and Nay Pyi Taw (Capital). Yangon Airport is located 15 km (approx. 45 minutes) to the North of the centre of Yangon. The international and the domestic airport are not in the same building; they can be reached by local taxi or within walking distance of 5 minutes.

Mandalay airport is located 45 minutes outside the city. International and domestic terminal are in the same building. Nay Pyi Taw airport international airport is located 25 minutes outside the city.

Passport And Visas

All foreigners are required visa for entry into the country. Visa can be obtained from Myanmar embassy or Consulate general office in world-wide. Visa processing time is between 5 and 10 working days at most Myanmar Consulates or Embassies. Tourist visas are valid for 28 days.

E-visa

Start from 1 September 2014, e-visa can applied by online through the website of the Ministry of Immigration and Population.

http://www.myanmarevisa.gov.mm/HowToApply.aspx

Language

Myanmar has unique languages all its own. There are more than 100 ethnic groups in Myanmar, all with their own languages and dialects. Bamar is the mother tongue of Myanmar and is also the official language. English language is widely spoken and well understood in areas where tourists are travelling through. Helpful tour guides who can speak major foreign languages can be booked through our tour company. About 85 percent of Myanmar people are Theravada Buddhist. The rest embrace Christianity, Islam, Hinduism or animism.

http://www.myanmarevisa.gov.mm/HowToApply.aspx

Local time

Local time is GMT + 6.5 hours.

Foods

Myanmar food is mainly served with rice and curry. Other cuisines that are popular are Chinese, Indian, Thai, Japanese, Korean, and European. Most local people are content to have a plate of rice and curry for their lunch. Good restaurants can easily be found in Yangon, Mandalay, Bagan and Inle, and serve quality food with reasonable price.

Climate and Weather

Myanmar is the destination for a year round and has three main seasons.

There are the hot season (March to May), the rainy season (May to October) and the cool season (November to February). Each season has its own attractions.

Taxi

All of taxis are negotiated fare before the beginning of the trip and never use meters.

Currency

Myanmar currency is “kyat” (pronounced chat). Notes are issued in denominations of 50, 100, 200, 500, 1000, 5000 & 10000. There are licensed money changers can help you exchange US$ to local money in the major cities. There are numerous ATM machines now available in Yangon and Mandalay.

ATM

Merchants in Myanmar can now accept Master Card payments through CB bank. ATMs are available 24/7. ATM are relatively new in Myanmar, hence a certain tolerance is needed in case of malfunctioning of the machines.

Telephone, mobile and internet

For many years SIM cards in Myanmar have been very expensive, but nowadays Myanmar has the two network providers: Ooredoo(link) and Telenor(link). You can purchase a sim card (Cost-1500 kyats) every shops of mobile.

Customs Regulations

Foreign visitors are allowed to bring up to USD 10’000 without declaration. Baggage will be X-rayed or inspected before arrival and departure.

Gem stones (set or unset), jewellery, silverware or handicraft purchased in Myanmar will only be allowed upon production of a special cash memo or receipt issued by authorized dealers.

Export of antiques and archaeologically valuable items such as fossils, artefacts, old coils, bronze or brass weights, inscribed stones, historical documents, and all religious images are prohibited.

Duty Free Allowance

Travellers are allowed 400 cigarettes, 250g of tobacco, 150ml of perfume or cologne, 2.0 litres of liquors, electrical and electronic goods not more than UDD 500 and in value portable video camera, HD camera or DV camera and 1 spare (set) battery. Yangon International Airport provides duty free shops with reasonable price. More information at (http://myanmarvisa.org/customs-regulations.html)

Things to bring

We are advisable to bring a first-aid kit and should be bring insect repellent, sunscreen or UV protection body lotions for emergency and brand medicine for fever, diarrhea, insect repellent and bandages. Medicine is widely available in all areas but it is safer to use products you know are reliable. Never drink tap water and drink only bottle water. Ice in most large high standard hotels is made from purified water.

Electricity

Shopping

Myanmar is particularly renowned for its lacquer ware, precious stones and jewelry. Lacquer ware is available most notably in Bagan but also in Mandalay and Yangon. Precious stones and jewelry can be purchased from any of the approved shops and government shops that populate Yangon, Mandalay and all other major towns and cities. Visitors are advised to ignore touts who may approach them to exchange foreign currency, or to sell gems of dubious quality as such offers, although apparently attractive, are breaking strict laws.

Tipping

Tipping is quite common in Myanmar today and a small tip is always welcome. The amount of tip should be depending on their good services, size of the tour group and duration of drive or tour for drivers and guides.

Airport Tax

Most airlines now include the international and the domestic airport tax in the ticket.

Travel Insurance

An adequate travel insurance policy to cover medical and accident is highly recommended. It is advisable to purchase travel insurance in your own country.

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