Some practical info !
Replies: 5 - Last Post: Sep 15, 2012 11:16 AM Last Post By: nowornever
Sep 11, 2012 9:36 AM
Some practical info !Hi folks,
I will visit Bangladesh at the end of October for the first time and i guess it will be an amazing experience! I just got some practical questions and i hope some peoples will know more about it!
1/ Is it possible when you arrive @ the airport in Dhaka to buy some alcohol in the tax-free zone or is it an better option to bring some spirits from the airport you re departing from?
2/ Is is possible to drink some alcohol in Bangladesh in restaurant or bars, are there some 'WINE-shops 'like Indian Rajasthan-style" as well?
3/ About the money, Are there some ATM's avaible only in the big cities? Is it stil possible to take money with a debetcard like Maestro? I know Visa & Mastercard will give no problems... Otherwise if i will bring cash to change into the local currency, should i bring US dollars or can i change Euro's as well?
Thnx guys for help !
Edited by: Joachim22
Sep 11, 2012 5:39 PM
1Hi Joachim. Welcome and hope you will have a wonderful time.
1) You can do either. But it is probably best to buy them from the duty free area of your departure airport. That way you spend less time in Dhaka airport after arrival. You are allowed 2 liters of anything. Just make sure they are bagged properly in order not to attract too much attention from others. Once in Dhaka you can also purchase alcohol in a store called Diplomatic Warehouse located in Gulshan Avenue between Banani and Gulshan 1 Circle. You will have to show your foreign passport.
2) I know that drinking in major hotels is not a problem. In other upscale restaurants in the Gulshan and Baridhara area, you may be able to take your own (but please check with them first upon getting there). In less than upscale restaurants, I would not drink at all.
3) ATMs are available widely (including in the airport). If you have a Maestro debit card, you will be able to withdraw cash from ATMs belonging to Dutch-Bangla bank and Standard Chartered bank (they are numerous in the big cities). Maestro is not accepted for point of sale purchases in shops, Visa & Mastercard are. You can bring cash into the country. Euros, Pounds and US Dollars are easily changeable at any bank (including at the airport). But US Dollar has the best exchange rate. I would arrive in Dhaka with USD 200 in your hand just so that you are not stuck if the ATMs in Dhaka airport are temporarily not working (which happened to me once).
Sep 12, 2012 2:45 AM
2Just to add a little bit, I am not too sure if one can bring more than 1 litre of alchohol with a foreign passport, so may be worth double chking!! And yes, its prolly best to get your alchohol from your departure port rather than buying it from Dhaka. Two reasons, 1. the choices are rather limited and 2. it would delay your clearing immigration keeping in mind the long queue!
Buying alchohol in the city will not be that easy, without a local connection. IMO getting to the bonded/diplomatic warehouse to buy stuff would be too cumbersome. And there is no store/supermarket or wineshop as you would find in other countries. Bangladesh being a muslim country, its not widely and socially acceptable to drink alchohol and therefore limited availability. In chai hotels you could drink but otherwise in upscale restaurant the norm is 'bring your own bottle'. There are bars in and around the city but again those places IMO are a bit dodgy and you would need local connection again!
And as for the cash, best is to carry some amount with you be it £/$ or euro, bring your cards as well, so you have both !!
Enjoy and travel safe :)
Sep 12, 2012 8:29 AM
3"IMO getting to the bonded/diplomatic warehouse to buy stuff would be too cumbersome."
Sorry to disagree with you on this one nature_BOY!! It is not cumbersome at all. Diplomats, NGO workers, foreign students and business people are constantly visiting Diplomatic Warehouse without any hassle. You mention local connection. Well, that would useless for visiting Warehouse because only people with foreign passports are allowed to purchase alcohol.
Sep 12, 2012 8:54 AM
4No need to apologise Riazo, that why I said 'IMO' :) The op is a first time traveller to Bangladesh, so its upto him to figure out whether he wants to locate the warehouse first and then get to it. It may seem easy for people who are in Dhk staying permanently or semi-permanently, to do this, but again IMO, may be not so easy for someone going there first time :)
Sep 15, 2012 11:16 AM
5alcohol is not allowed in bangladesh and i would say if you have to xray your luggage the bottle will be gone.... at least this is what happened to a friend of mine.
euro can be changed at moneychangers, you have to ask where to find them, i changed euros in chittagong and kulna without problems .
atms are also available.
alcohol is very expensive in bangladesh , i saw it on menues in hotels, but normally you cannot buy it anywhere until you know where to get it. means me as a tourist didnt saw any beer or anything like that in any shop, but i did not ask for it. so prepare yourself for some dry weeks....haha
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