Visas, Gateways & border crossing

Gateway

Yangon International Airport (Mingalardon) and Mandalay International Airport are the main gateways, and there are direct air-links connecting Yangon with most South East Asian capitals.

Visas

A visa is required in advance. Tourist visas for Myanmar can be obtained from any Myanmar Embassy or Consulate world-wide. Tourist visas are valid for 28 days and can be extended for 14 days. A business visa allows a stay of 28 days, and can be extended up to 12 months on a case-by-case basis. Tourists arriving at Yangon International Airport on a Myanmar Airways International (MAI) service from Siem Reap, Cambodia or Guangzhou, China will be eligible for a Visa on Arrival without pre-arrangements. Another type of Visa on Arrival can be applied for in advance (about a week) only for residents of countries where there is no Myanmar Embassy.

Border crossings

Border crossings are permitted for Thai tourists with border passes and for third party tourists with visas at Tachileik, Three Pagoda Pass, Myawaddy and Kawthaung check points along the Myanmar-Thai Border; for Chinese tourists with border passes, and for third party tourists with visas at Lweje, Nam Kham, Muse, Kyukoke, Kwanlong, and Mont Lar along the Myanmar-China Border.

Local Time & Working hours

[UTC (GMT)+6.5 hours]

Government offices are open from 9:30am to 4:30pm, Monday to Friday. Banks operate from 9:30am to 3pm on weekdays. Shops and shopping centres are open from about 9am to 9pm daily, including holidays.

Money & Banks

The national currency is called kyat (pronounced ‘chat’). It is advisable to bring sufficient US dollars in cash as credit cards are not accepted apart from some outlets in major cities, and Travellers’ cheques are not widely used.

Foreign Exchange Certificates (FEC) are also in use in denominations equivalent to $20, $10, $5 and $1, and can be used by visitors, although it is not compulsory to exchange your US dollars into FEC. They are accepted by hotels, airlines, travel agencies, taxies, restaurants, and as entrance fees to pagodas, museums, and parks. Apart from US dollars other foreign currencies can be exchanged only at the airport, in major hotels and at the MTT information counter into FEC or Kyats. The exchange rate in May 2011 was 1$=805 kyats.

Health

Avoid eating food and fruits from street vendors if you cannot wash them properly. It is also not advisable to eat shrimps, saltwater fish and shellfish during the hot season. Visitors are strongly advised to use sunscreen as a protection against sunburn. There are pharmacies in all major cities but visitors with a pre-existing condition are advised to bring their own medication. In general it is recommended you bring your own medicines.

Travellers may be exposed to mosquito-borne diseases; malaria in border areas and forests, dengue fever in cities; use mosquito nets and protect yourself by using mosquito repellent, and wear light, long-sleeved clothing in infested areas.

Emergency Contacts

  • Police Station_ 119,
  • Fire Station_191, 252011, 252022.
  • Ambulance, Red Cross_383681,
  • Yangon General Hospital_256112
  • SOS International for Emergency Health_662866, 662857 (Ext:1717)
  • Traffic Police Ambulance_500005

For more information, visit www.myanmartravelsandtours.com