Useful Information

Culture

Myanmar lies on the crossroad of two of the world's great civilizations - China and India - but its culture is neither that of India nor that of China exclusively, but a blend of both interspersed with Myanmar native traits and characteristics. Buddhism has great influence on daily life of the Myanmar. The people have preserved the traditions of close family ties, respect for the elders, reverence for Buddhism and simple native dress. Myanmars are contented and cheerful even in the face of adversities and known for their simple hospitality and friendliness.

Business Hours

  • Bank: 09:30 - 15:00 (Mon - Fri)
  • Offices: 09:00 - 17:30 (Mon - Fri)

Currency

Myanmar currency is Kyat and the denominations are Ks : 1, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, 500, 1000, 5000 & 10000.

Exchange US dollar bills taken to Myanmar must be in PERFECT CONDITION.

Dollar bills should be brought to Myanmar in differing denominations: take plenty of $10, $5 and $1 bills to pay for hotels, flights and historical sites, and take $100 or $50 bills for exchanging to kyat (larger denominations usually get a better rate).

Blemishes of any kind – creases, marks, folds and so on – may result in getting a far worse rate of exchange or the money may not be accepted at all. Also, pre-2006 dollar bills or ones with the letters AB and CB at the start of the serial number (at the top left corner of note) may not be accepted. Euros are generally accepted as an exchange currency and do not have to be in pristine condition. It is therefore advisable to carry US dollars in a safe, flat folder – not in a wallet.

Airport Tax

Departure tax for international flights is US$ – 10 per person, payable in US$.

Customs

Foreign currencies (above USD 2000), jewellery, cameras and electronic goods must be declared to the customs at the Airport. Exports of antiques and archaeologically valuable items are prohibited.

Inoculation & vaccination

Medical certificates of inoculations are essential especially for visitors coming from an infected area or yellow fever zones. Vaccination certificate is not necessary.

Shopping

Bargaining is an art long-practiced in Asian countries including Myanmar. Myanmar arts and crafts, mostly pure handmade, are best souvenirs and prices are very reasonable. Lacquer-ware, wood and ivory carvings, tapestries, silverware, brassware, silk and cotton fabric and shoulder bags are some of the favorite items. Finest Myanmar ruby, sapphire, jade and pearl are available at Myanmar gems shops.

Clothing

Light casual wear preferably cotton is suitable for all year round. You would need a cardigan or light sweater for the cool season especially when visiting Northern Myanmar in the cool season. An umbrella will be useful during the rainy season. If possible dress modestly at all times. Sandals or slippers are convenient, as all footwear must be removed before entering temples and pagodas. Visitors are required to dress decently on the precincts of religious buildings. Ladies should not wear shorts, briefs or bra-less T-Shirt in such places. Shoes and socks or stockings must be removed at all Pagodas and Monasteries.

Highway Bus Terminal

There are two highway bus terminals, namely Dagon Ayeyar Highway Bus Terminal in Hlaing Tharyar Township and Aung mingalar Highway Bus Terminal in Mingalardon Township.

Time

The Myanmar Standard Time is six and half-hours in advance of GMT.

Electricity

Domestic power AC 220-250 50HZ.

Do In Myanmar

  • "Mingalarbar" when meeting each other
  • Wear decent clothes to the pagodas or monasteries
  • Let the oldest be served first
  • Show respect to monks, novices and nuns
  • Offer articles with both hands
  • Keep the feet on the ground
  • Bend a bit when crossing close in front of the elders
  • Dress and act decent
  • Speak slowly and clearly
  • Seek permission on retrieving an article above a person's head
  • Bring some medicines to be safe
  • Behave in a proper manner

Don't In Myanmar

  • Don't wear the shoes and shorts at the pagodas and monasteries.
  • Don't sit with back against Buddha Image
  • Don't offer to shake hands with a monk
  • A woman should not touch a monk
  • Avoid being a nuisance when taking photograph
  • Don't handle Buddha Images or sacred object with disrespect
  • Don't keep Buddha Images or sacred objects in inappropriate places
  • Don't step on a monk's shadow
  • Don't touch anybody on the head
  • Don't touch a woman on any part of the body
  • Don't point a finger straight in the face
  • Don't step over any part of the person
  • Don't gamble
  • Don't go where you are advised not to go Avoid use trafficking, handling, procession of Narcotic drugs