Health and Safety
Please be aware that your health can be at risk in Cambodia due to poor sanitation and lack of proper medical facilities. Rural areas have few, if any, pharmacies and hospitals so make sure you travel with a full supply of any prescribed medicine you take. If you need medical assistance, we recommend Royal Angkor International Hospital in Siem Reap, (t: 063761888) and International SOS Medical & Dental Clinic in Phnom Penh (t: 023216911). Each traveller is responsible for his or her own health. First and foremost, make sure that you have travel insurance for your trip. You should also consult your doctor or local travel clinic for the latest information and advice on travelling to Cambodia before departure.
Please note:If you have a medical condition or allergy which requires particular attention, carry a doctor’s letter with you that describes the nature of the condition and treatment needed. We also recommend you pack a medical kit, including paracetamol and a diarrhoea remedy.
There are many vaccinations needed when travelling to this part of the world. It is important you ensure you have adequate protection against disease. Book an appointment with your doctor or travel clinic, no less than two months before your departure.
Travel insurance (compulsory)
Passage To Cambodia does everything possible to ensure a safe and enjoyable trip. However, travel inevitably involves some risk and this should be recognised by holiday-makers. Travel insurance is a cost effective way of protecting yourself and your equipment should any problems occur such as cancelled trips, delays, medical emergencies, baggage loss or damage. It also gives you peace of mind. Please also ensure your travel insurance covers all activities planned on your trip.
Culture & Customs
Etiquette and cultural differences
Experiencing different cultures is one of the joys of travelling and it is important that these differences are respected. Cambodia has cultural norms and taboos which we encourage visitors to understand and abide by.
Temple visit etiquette
Foreigners are always welcome in temples. However, it is important that a few simple rules of etiquette are followed:
Please note: The central tower of Angkor Wat is closed to visitors on Buddhist holidays.
Food and drink
It is not advisable to drink tap water in Cambodia. Bottled water is cheap and widely available.
Khmer cuisine, considered one of the healthiest in the world, has much in common with the food of neighbouring Thailand, although it is generally not as spicy. It is also similar to Vietnamese food, due to its shared colonial French history. The most well-known Cambodian dish is amok. Amok is a coconut based curry traditionally cooked with fish, however it is not uncommon to have it with chicken.
There are many religious public holidays in Cambodia. The main one is the Khmer New Year which takes place from 14 to 16 Aprilevery year. The celebrations usually go on for about a week. The second biggest is Pchum Ben. This national holiday was established for Buddhists to pay their respects to deceased relatives. It is also known as Ancestor's Day, and usually celebrated in September or October.
Donations and gift giving
Cambodia is a very poor country with little in the way of social services and you are likely to see poverty. Please read the following advice about donations and gift giving.
Tipping is a personal matter and travellers are encouraged to tip any amount they feel is appropriate. For your convenience, we have included a suggested tipping guide below:
Chambermaid: $1 per day
Guides: $5-$10 per day for guides (depending on group size and performance)
Drivers: $2-$5 per day, per person
Restaurants: In smart establishments you may find that the tip is already included in the bill. In local restaurants tips are not expected but you may wish to leave loose change on the table.
Khmer food: from $5
Western food: from $7
Soft drinks: $2.50
Local beer: $3.50
Bottled water: Small $1.50, large $2.50
SIM card: $3
DVDs: $2.50- $3
The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office advice on travelling to Cambodia:
The Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade advice on travelling to Cambodia: http://www.dfat.gov.au/geo/cambodia/index.html
The official tourism website for Cambodia:
Passport with at least six months validity from date of entry
Photocopy of passport
Visa or a passport photo and US$30 for visa on arrival
Foreign currency (US$) and/or ATM card
All relevant tickets
Long-sleeved shirts and trousers (recommended for evenings)
Electrical adaptor: 220V, 50Hz; 2 pin plugs
A small bag/backpack for day and overnight trips
Appropriate shoes for trekking, cycling and walking
Medication/first aid kit
Please note: Domestic airlines impose baggage weight restrictions of around 20kg maximum, so travel lightly where possible.