Money in Cambodia

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Jan 5th, 2008, 02:07 PM
  #1
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Money in Cambodia

Time is ticking away and now it is only 3 weeks until we depart on our vacation to Thailand and Cambodia. Thanks to everyone who has contributed directly by answering my questions and indirectly by asking questions of your own and posting reports. I have got almost everything organized(I hope) but I was wondering about cash in Cambodia. We are taking cards(Visa and Master) but we also take some cash in case the ATM is down when we need it. We have been advised not to convert our Aussie Dollars to US dollars for Thailand and just exchange Aussie dollars for Baht when we arrive. Can we easily exchange Aussie Dollars in Cambodia or would we be better to take US Dollars to Cambodia?
skittle is offline  
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Jan 5th, 2008, 04:22 PM
  #2
 
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If you have an ATM card, there are ATMs all over Siem Reap in Cambodia which dispense US dollars so you shouldn't have a problem.
Not sure about other areas of Cambodia, especially small towns, but Phnom Penh should be the same.
I took USD to Cambodia last month, but really didn't need to because we could have just used the ATM.
You should have no problem exchanging Aussie Dollars if you have to in a pinch.
As for Thailand, there is an ATM on every corner which dispense Thai Baht.
Kristina is offline  
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Jan 5th, 2008, 07:38 PM
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Thanks Kristina. Loved your report and that of your Mum. I don't completely trust ATM cards as my daughter had an experience in Thailand of her card being frozen because the bank suspected fraud(there was none). There was a breakdown in communication about her travel plans.Problems of this nature are always very difficult to sort out when you don't speak the language(and sometimes even when you do). So I guess what I am asking is it better for my 'back-up' cash to be in US dollars or are our Aussie Dollars OK. We will probably exchange cash at the airport at Phomn Pehn.
skittle is offline  
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Jan 5th, 2008, 07:44 PM
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Make sure you call your bank well before you leave and let them know you are traveling to Thailand and Cambodia so they do not freeze your account. Do the same with any credit cards you plan on using.

I don't see why you'd have trouble exchanging AUS$ in either Thailand or Cambodia as both get plenty of Australian tourists. Doesn't make sense for you to exchange to USD before you get there if you don't need to. I have no idea where (AU vs. CAM) you would get the better exchange rate.

Glad you liked my report. I'm still working on it, even tonight...
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Jan 6th, 2008, 12:02 AM
  #5
 
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Hello skittle,
I spent more than 6 months in Cambodia (mostly Phnom Penh) during the last years.
Have not seen many Aussies there yet.
There are several ATMs in PP now and one of the most convenient is right in the middle of Riverside and run by surprise! surprise! one of your banks.
But better change some USD in Bangkok. For instance the visa on arrival is charged with 20 or 25 USD. And the exchange service at the airport is outside and not always available.
The US bucks are the no. 1 currency in Cambodia. Everything can be paid with them and the local currency riel is not needed normally. But take a lot of small bills with you, because often it is not possible for people even to change a 10 USD bill. Another reason the riel is not popular is that you get more than 4000 for a single USD.
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Jan 6th, 2008, 01:56 PM
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It'd be easier to find places to change US dollars. The best thing to do is probably to bring ATM card, and then both US dollars and Traveler's Cheques in US dollars as backup. I used my ATM card the entire time and ended up coming back home with all of my traveler's cheques.
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