Cutting down on the Kips and Dongs.
Replies: 6 - Last Post: Jun 20, 2012 7:22 AM Last Post By: Francois
Jun 19, 2012 12:38 AM
Cutting down on the Kips and Dongs.I am an American who currently lives in China who is going to take a trip to Laos and Vietnam next month.
When I was in Laos in 2004, the exchange rate was about 10,000 Lao Kip to $1. The bank I exchanged my money gave me two bricks of 5000 Kip notes for $100 USD which was quite cumbersome. They were oddly tight fisted about giving up the 20,000 kip note, the largest denomination at the time, which was worth then $2 dollars USD. TWO dollars.
I see now that the highest Kipper is 100,000, which is something like $13 USD or around 80 RMB. Would the bank give me those in exchange? I do not want to carry bricks of money like last time. The 100,000 Kippers will pay for my hotel stays, not to mention thinner in my pocket.
Vietnam money is much more insane than Lao money though. Denominations from 1000 to 500,000 with everything in between. I really hated that money, and again, are they willing to trust me with the BIG money (500,000 D is worth $24 USD) and not carry all the small multi colored paper?
I have seen some responses online about if someone can use their Bank card from China in Vietnam with mixed results. Any help from anyone who has been in China and Vietnam would be very helpful.
Jun 19, 2012 12:56 AM
1When you exchange at say a BCEL Bank nowdays, you'll normally receive 50,000 kip notes and it's rare to receive 'bricks' of 5K notes anymore. Yes, back then, the U$dollar/ kip ratio was much more advantageous towards the U$ at around U$1=10,000 but now it hovers at 8,000kip=U$1 or about 20% less. And of course, most things have gone up. I guess you could drop into a bank and request 100,000K notes but the 50s are more prevalent.
Jun 19, 2012 2:24 AM
Jun 19, 2012 2:41 AM
3At banks when exchanging to Kip, you'll normally get 50,000 Kip notes, but the ANZ in Vientiane 100,000 are also now being given. Also, ANZ ATMs now give out 100,000 Kip notes.
Jun 19, 2012 2:44 AM
Jun 20, 2012 12:23 AM
Jun 20, 2012 7:22 AM
6You can get almost any mix of bills in Dong at the banks, but as HenningWessel wrote the bigger notes are tough to use - most taxi drivers can't give you change for a 500K on short trips, and even the 200K might not work in small markets. The 100K bill is the most common and useful in the cities - it's only worth 5 bucks or so but you can still carry a few dozen without much of a bulge...
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