Getting Local Currency In Advance
Replies: 9 - Last Post: Jan 31, 2013 3:46 PM Last Post By: jedgerandclyde
Jan 30, 2013 8:55 AM
Getting Local Currency In AdvanceHi Everyone!
I will be travelling Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos from March to May.
My question is whether I should get the local currencies ahead of time before I go or should I just stick with bringing USD only.
I'm specifically asking because I currently work at a bank and get preferred exchange rates and all associated fees to purchase the currency is waived for me.
I know this may be a no brainer question but value everyone's expertise so thought I would ask.
Jan 30, 2013 1:06 PM
1It is a no-brainer. How do preferred exchange rates and all associated fees to purchase the currency compare to exchange rates in the various countries? Does your bank handle kip and dong? Why exchange for riel since you won't be using much in the way of riel?
I think you need to do some research in greater depth than you can do here.
Jan 30, 2013 3:58 PM
Jan 30, 2013 4:04 PM
Jan 30, 2013 4:41 PM
4Well, that sounds reasonable, but you just don't need to do that, even if you could, in Cambodia/Laos/Vietnam. If you have U$D you'll be fine, or change a little at the airport when you arrive, airport rates are not bad in fact. The fixed fee taxi from the Phnom Penh airport is $9USD and they expect to be paid in U$D, NOT Riel.
Remember these are non-convertible currencies and are not traded outside the region/country.
Jan 30, 2013 5:38 PM
Jan 30, 2013 6:06 PM
6Just came back from these three countries. Cambodia you definitely only need US$, only once did someone refuse to accept USD when I was there and that was a lady in a market off the tourist trail selling fruit. Most other people were shocked if you tried to pay in Riel (and would have been quite impractical for anything over $2 or $3 as they most used riel as change when somethings less than $1). In Laos I think most places accepted USD but we quickly changed to using kip as converting was often confusing for them and they rate was often in their favour. Vietnam we only used dong but never tried to use USD (except at the airport and our bus from the airport to hostel) so I'm not sure it they would have accepted it.
Jan 31, 2013 7:28 AM
Jan 31, 2013 1:52 PM
8jedgerandclyde, As you say "perfectly sensible" but impossible in this case. I´m a retired banker and you can not get currency from those countries from a bank in the West. I think it may be illegal to export currency from those places, and no bank will get envolved with that. Readers will surely be upset if they try to follow your suggestion before traveling to those countries!
Jan 31, 2013 3:46 PM
9Being a retired Bankie myself, if you can't get local currency before you leave, well so be it, i am sure the bank officials would tell you that if you tried and if you done a little research on the country you would also find that out.
And nowhere in my post did i make any sort of comment about 'exporting' currency
And do i think to use the term 'upset' is a little strong.
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