Money and Costs
Budget: less than CFA14,000
- Basic hotel double room: CFA6000–8000
- Street snack: CFA800
- Coffee: CFA500
- Local bus ride: CFA2000
- En-suite double hotel room: CFA25,000–33,000
- Two-course dinner in a local restaurant: CFA6000–8000
- Better coffee: CFA1000
- Short taxi ride: CFA3000
Top End: more than CFA70,000
- Hotel room: CFA50,000
- Two-course dinner at hotel buffet: CFA15,000
- Ornate carved stool: CFA25,000-50,000
- Day of 4WD rental with driver: CFA75,000
Bargaining for purchases at Cameroonian markets is expected, and is part of the good-natured interaction with vendors. Always ask the price before taking a taxi or engaging a driver for longer journeys, and check with a local whether it's a reasonable amount. You may be able to negotiate a deal when booking a hotel room.
The currency is the Central African franc (CFA), pegged to both the West African franc and the euro (at an unchanging rate of CFA655.957). Cash is king, especially in remote regions – bring plenty of euros or US dollars.
All Cameroonian towns now have ATMs, tied to the Visa network. It's a good idea to withdraw money during bank hours, as cards can become stuck in the machines and need to be extracted. Banks won't generally offer cash advances on credit cards. Western Union has branches throughout Cameroon for international money transfers.
Banks regularly refuse to change travellers cheques, and charge around 5% commission when they do.
Moneychangers on the street in Douala and Yaoundé will change money at good rates and without taxes or commission, but there's always an element of risk to such transactions. Express Exchange moneychangers change US dollars as cash; there are branches in many towns across the country.
For current exchange rates, see www.xe.com
- Hotels Tip CFA1000 or so for help with bags.
- Restaurants For decent service, 10% is customary.
- Taxis Tips are not expected, but add one for good service.
Central African franc (CAF)