Cambodia Angkor Air is the only airline currently operating domestic flights in Cambodia. This airline uses French-Italian ATR turboprop planes (Avions de Transports Régionaux)- a type of plane well suited for the local conditions, airports and distances. The configuration is 70-seats (ATR 72) in rows of 4 seats with a middle aisle. Entry-exit is at the back of the plane. Standard one-class configuration. Cambodia Angkor Air is owned by Vietnam Airlines and Cambodia and also operates some international flights with plans for expansion within the region. AIRLINES (INTERNATIONAL) The following airlines currently fly into Cambodia: Thai Airways, Bangkok Airways, Air Asia, China Airways, EVA Air, Malaysia Airlines, Silk Air, Korean Air, China Southern, Dragon Air, Vietnam Airlines, Asiana Airlines, Lao Air, Jetstar Asia, Shanghai Air and Angkor Airways.
An international airport tax of 25 USD per person is payable in cash when departing Cambodia on an international flight. Departure tax is included on domestic flights.
Comfortable lightweight clothing in natural fabrics such as cotton is most suitable for traveling in Cambodia.
The dress code is fairly casual as in most parts of the tropics but it is advisable to cover arms and legs in the evenings to protect against biting insects. A lightweight raincoat and umbrella are a good idea in the rainy season and umbrellas can also offer useful shade from the sun. Shoes (and socks!) must be removed before entering any religious building or private home. It is therefore useful to wear shoes without too many laces and which can easily be taken off. We provide small towels to clean your feet before putting back on your shoes.
Cambodia uses 220V, and a mixture of flat 2-pin, round 2-pin or 3 pin plugs. It is recommended to bring a universal plug adaptor. Power outages happen occasionally but most hotels have their own generator.
Western style entertainment is easy to find in Cambodia and Phnom Penh and Siem Reap has a wealth of good restaurants and a large number of bars and some nightclubs. In the rest of the country, entertainment is still emerging, but some tourist-oriented restaurants and bars can be found in many places throughout Cambodia.
As in many Asian countries, the staple food of the Cambodian diet is rice. This is usually served with dried,
salted fish, chicken, beef or pork. Fish is often fresh from the Tonle Sap Lake and is eaten with a spicy peanut sauce called tuk trey. Popular dishes include sam chruk, a roll of sticky rice stuffed with soya beans and chopped pork and amok, a soup of boneless fish with coconut and spices. In Siem Reap and Phnom Penh, Western food is widely available.
No vaccinations are required except for yellow fever if you are coming from an area where the disease is present. However, visitors should be inoculated against typhoid, cholera, hepatitis A & B, tetanus and polio.
Malaria is present in Cambodia and it is advisable to take precautions especially if traveling off the beaten track. Please consult with your doctor or a doctor specialized in tropical countries before traveling.
HOURS OF BUSINESS
Offices are usually open from Monday to Friday from 07:30 or 08:00 until 17:00 and often close for lunch between 12:00 and 14:00. Shops open early and close any time between 18:00 and 22:00. Most shops are open 7 days a week.
Medical facilities are rather limited in Cambodia and it is essential to take out a good medical insurance policy before traveling. Insurance should cover the cost of an evacuation flight out of Cambodia (most of the time to Bangkok or Singapore) which is sometimes necessary either on a regular flight or on a special flight. For adventure tours such as cycling proof of purchase of a travel insurance policy will be required. In Siem Reap the Royal Angkor International Hospital (affiliated with the Bangkok Hospital Medical Center) has been fully operational since November 2007.
Internet access is widely available in every major city in Cambodia. In Phnom Penh and Siem Reap there are many Internet cafes from which to stay in contact with your home. In outlying regions, many hotels provide internet access.
Cambodia’s national language is called Khmer and unlike the other languages of the region, is not a tonal language. The written script originated in southern India. As in other former French colonies the educated older generation often speaks very good French while the younger generation prefers English. Outside the major centers of Phnom Penh and Siem Reap most people speak only Khmer.
The currency of Cambodia is called the Riel. There is however no need to change your currency into the local currency (Riels) as is common with most Asian countries. US Dollars are accepted in many places and are used to pay for airline tickets, airport taxes, visa fees, hotel and restaurant bills. Please note that ripped, torn, or old bills will not be accepted. ATM machines, which distribute US dollars, are found throughout Siem Reap and Phnom Penh. Banks are open Monday to Friday from 08:00 to 15:00 and Saturday morning until 12:00. In the major cities there are exchange bureaus and most hotels will change US Dollars although for other currencies it is usually necessary to visit a bank. Traveller’s checks can be exchanged at banks and some hotels but can be difficult to change outside of the major cities. Visa Card and MasterCard are now accepted in many hotels, restaurants and shops in Phnom Penh and Siem Reap. However, US Dollars are still the most reliable form of money to carry.
Normal print film are available in Cambodia but professional quality films (like slide films) are very difficult to find and it is better to bring your own. In cities like Phnom Penh and Siem Reap, digital photos can easily be downloaded and loaded onto a CD-ROM in case you run out of memory.
PUBLIC HOLIDAYS 2011
New Year’s Day
Victory over Genocide Day
Chinese New Year
Paris Peace Accords
Former King Sihanouk’s Birthday
Human Rights Day
Buddhism is the dominant religion in Cambodia with 90-95% of the population being Buddhist. Islam is practiced by a small percentage of the population, mainly the Cham people residing near the Vietnam border, and Christianity and Hinduism are religions of less than 1% of the Cambodian people.
Despite its turbulent history, Cambodia is a safe country to visit. All tourist areas have been cleared of landmines and UXOs with only a small portion remaining in the very remote areas. As a global rule, never leave your belongings unattended and always maintain eye contact or a firm grip on cameras and shoulder bags
Cambodian handicrafts include silks, woodcarvings, rattan weavings, handmade papers and the krama-the traditional Cambodian scarf. Phnom Penh and Siem Reap’s local markets are the best places for shopping and there are also dozens of charity-run shops throughout the country where you can shop for a cause. Ask your guide for more information.
If you have worldwide coverage, you can bring your own mobile phone and use it to make domestic or international calls. Check with your mobile phone provider for the costs before using it abroad – it may be expensive. Internet cafes offer the best deals with programs such as Skype providing cheap, decent quality overseas calls.