Kep, Cambodia

smoking a hand rolled cigarette, on the shores of Kampot, Cambodia

It's all fun and Games

if you know what you're doing.  Where's a doctor when you need one?  Where's the ATM machine? (there aren't any here). Why is it so crowded today, when there was nobody here yesterday?  (Holiday, perhaps?)

The two official currencies of Cambodia are the Riel and US Dollar.  Most small purchases are made in Cambodian Riel, and larger amounts (over a few dollars) are made in US currency. The current exchange rate is about 4,100 Cambodian Riel to one US dollar.  You can exchange Thai Baht and Euros in some places as well.  Some banks have VISA and Master Card withdrawal services. Travelers checks can also be exchanged.

There are a few ATMs in Kep, and more coming (lots in Kampot)..  Only a few places take credit cards in Kep, and they can advance you some cash for a small fee.  Kampot has the nearest banking services.

Money Part 2
Dollars, dollars, everywhere, but you can't spend them all. Be careful when accepting large bills, as there are a few counterfeits out there. Also be warned: dollars with small rips, writing on the bill, or too old will not be accepted anywhere. Don't accept it, don't expect other people to accept it. Cambodian currency can be torn, taped, or look like it was printed at Angkor Wat 1,000 years before, and it's OK to use.

Most places don't have any prices marked on items.  It is always prudent to ask how much something is, before agreeing to purchase it.  In many places, you will be given a price that is several times the normal price.  It's then up to you to bargain the price down.

Help, I need a doctor
Medical services are very basic in Kampot, less than basic in Kep (nonexistent on Bokor Mountain), and a bit better in Phnom Penh.  Malaria is common in the jungles, but not in Kampot and Kep.  Most all drugs can be purchased over the counter at a few pharmacies in Kamot town, mostly around the traffic circle.  Outside of Kep, towards SihanoukVille, is the Sonja Kill Hospital, the best on the Cambodian Coast.  There are a couple pharmacies in Kep, just ask around.

Customs and Culture
Cambodia is a Buddhist country. Monks walk around in the morning, collecting food and money to maintain the Wats (Buddhist Temples).  The Cambodian people are very polite and respectful, and expect the same in return.   

Every week or two comes a yearly holiday.  Banks and government institutions are closed, but most other places are open for business.  In Kampot and Kep, holidays are usually a bit crowded with tourists from Phnom Penh.  If you see a holiday comes on a weekend, expect the following Monday to be a holiday as well. Khmers like to party like the rest of us!

Some people have it here, some don't.  If you are having it, make sure (guys only) to wrap it up.  "Number One" in Cambodia is a condom, not a number, and it cost about 15 cents each.   Use it.   Free AIDs test at the Sihanouk Ville Hospital.

You can get your Cambodian Visa at any border, if you don't have one already.  A tourist visa cost $25 (plus whatever else they can get), and you must have 2 photos.  It's good for 30 days and can be renewed once for 30 days for $50, while you're in the country.  Also, in Sihanoukville, you can get a visa for Vietnam within minutes, and at the best price in the world at the Vietnamese Consulate.

Police are everywhere in Cambodia.  But it's usually hard to find one when you need help.  Remember, if you want service, the $120 monthly salary of police doesn't cover all their cost.  If you need help, expect to pay for it.   Kampot and Kep are very safe towns, and most of the legal trouble foreigners have here is when they're drunk.  To be expected.

When calling Cambodia from overseas, the country extension is 855.  Any phone number starting with a "0", you should not dial the "0".   You can get a tousist SIM card for a few dollars, and almost every bar, hotel, restaurant in Kep has free Wi-Fi.  Cheap phones are about $10 here.  A few internet cafes also have cheap overseas calling.

Check out Rith Travel & Tours and Anna Express Travel while in town.




About Us | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | ©2005-2017.  Kep Web.   Cambodia