All internet connections in the country
suspended by the authorities since 15 Dec 1999.If your matter is
time-sensitive, please contact them via FAX as an alternative
at this time. We hopefully expect that these local email services
will resume soon? but sadly the way the Burmese junta is making
money form the Wa & amphetamines are becoming
endemic it could be ages. However your mails will be downloaded and stored
for future distribution when possible---so they say??. Administration firstname.lastname@example.org
Myanmar's Net Inc.
Burma (Myanmar) is a
slow developing country ruled by a
military regime. Tourist facilities in Rangoon, Bagan, Taunggyi and
Mandalay are OK but are limited in most of the rest of the country. The
country's political situation is relatively volatile as the military government
suppresses expression of opposition to its rule with brute force. Yangon
lnternational Airport is located 20 km from downtown Yangon.
VISAS: Travel in Burma is strictly controlled by the
Government of Burma. A passport and visa are required. Tourist visas are issued
for package/group tours as well as to foreign individual tourists
("FITS") for stays of up to four weeks. "FITS" must exchange
a minimum of U.S. dollars 300 for dollar-denominated foreign exchange
certificates (FEC) upon arrival. The military government rarely issues
journalist visas inquiries may be made at the nearest embassy or consulate of
Burma (Myanmar).The airport tax is US $10 for international passengers, payable
in FEC (Foreign Exchange Certificates). There is no airport tax on domestic
You can travel to the main tourist areas of Pagan, Inle Lake
and Mandalay. Travel to nearly all other parts of Burma is permitted,
although transportation is difficult. Those planning to travel to more remote
areas should contact the U.S. Embassy in Rangoon and/or Burmese authorities to
ensure that they can travel to their intended destination. The Thai-Burmese
border area in Southern Shan, Mon, Karen, Karenni, Chin and Rakhine states have
been the scene of a lot of fighting between government forces and various
insurgent groups. The Junta is trying to replace the Shan people with the pro
junta Red Wa who come from the Southern China area & Northern
Myanmar. It is envisaged that the Military Junta want to repatriate some
500,000 Wa people who control the drug trafficking and replace the
Shan people in Shan state, who incidentally are no longer growing
drugs. This has been achieved by the Burmese Army or SLORC forcibly
making the Shan leave their villages, destroying their cattle and
confiscating their belongings, burning villages, raping & using
their people for human mules to carry munitions & pillaging wherever they can. There
has been not one Shan village that has been untouched by the
brutality of the military. Added to this is the lack of pay for the
soldiers who then take it out on the Shan people who are innocent. It is estimated by the Thai
authorities & the US Embassy in Thailand that the Wa and Junta now work
together to undermine the Thai people by supplying Thailand
with amphetamines in the millions & heroin in bulk quantities.
Mae Sai & Mae
Sot borders are open:
The MTT office in
Tachilek has the authority to grant you a through passage, for $10
USD of course. Nothing is free in Burma. A 1
day visa fee is still $US5 or 250 baht. Overnight or up to 2
weeks visa is up from $US18 to $US20.
Travel to Burma/Myanmar: be aware that there is a
blacklist of people not welcome in Burma or those that they might be
looking for for whatever reasons. If you think that you are
blacklisted, I would suggest not crossing the border. They
mean business. Otherwise, if you are just a friendly tourist
they welcome you with open arms. Things not to talk about in
public or with anyone, is politics, rebels, drugs, or Aung San Suyi.
If one remembers the Briton jailed for anti-government propaganda,
last I heard he was surviving time in Keng Tung Prison, 17 year
sentence. And, not his first offence! Some never learn. IMPRISONMENT:
Warning if you are buying cigarettes from unlicensed dealers on
the Tachelik side of the Burmese border then don't. In September
2000 a tourist was jailed for a night because he had no tax receipt
from the cigarette vendor. Vendors sell cigarettes on the streets
but be warned. This also applies to liquour so buy at the duty free
shops and obtain a receipt. Remember Burma or Myanmar is the
cheapest place to buy Johnnie Walker Blue & Gold label--the best
whiskey. Who wants to spend a night in the Burmese
lockup!!!!!!Fines for cigarettes range from 200 baht per
packet (not carton of 10)= 2000 baht or they might put you in the
can for a night.
WHEN OPEN Myanmar border crossings if there is an incident in
Thailand the border will close regardless of whether you are still
in Tachelik. This will mean you will be stuck. The Myanmar Border
Office now keeps your passport & issues you with a voucher!! Be
prepared to remain in Tachelik until the border reopens or better
still avoid the days when their could be a disruption or a Thai/
Myanmar argument!! Unfortunately some foreigners take it upon
themselves to distribute subversive pamphlets in Tachelik and you
may find you cannot leave. Foreigners who live here become the
scapegoats. The border has a hot list of people they do not want but
as at Feb 10th the border is still closed.
Travel by Sea -
Cruise Ships go toYangon Port with Visa
on Arrival being granted on prior arrangement.
Travel Overland -
Overland entry with a Border Pass is
permitted at the following Border Check Points: Kyukoke, Namkhan and Muse on the
Myanmar-Yunnan (China) border; and Tachileik, Myawaddy and Kawthaung on the
Myanmar-Thai border. Tour to Kyaing Tong & Mong La = entry permit fee per
person = US20. Travellers going to Kyaing Tong must chage a min US$100.
Travel to Mong La= US$120. Car Entry Fee= 4 seter = $US30; 5-7 seater
=$US50; Above 8 seater =$US100. Documents required: 3 passport photos 1 x
1/2". Passport copy; entry permission is valid for 13 nights/ 14 days
only. Tourists must be accompanied by package tour or authorized agents.
Travel by Air - Myanmar is served internationally by:
Air China, Air Mandalay, All Nippon Airways (ANA) Bhutan Airlines, Biman, Indian
Airlines, Myanmar Airways International (MAI), Pakistan International, Royal
Brunei, Silk Air and Thai Airways International (TG).Yangon has direct air-links
with Bangkok, Bhutan, Brunei, Singapore, Hong Kong Calcutta, Chiang Mai, Dhaka,
Jakarta, Karachi, Kuala Lumpur, Kunming, London, Osaka and Singapore. Myanmar
Airways International (MAI), Thai Airways International (TG), Silk Air, Biman,
PIA, Indian Airlines, Royal Brunei, Air China, All Nippon Airways (ANA) and
Bhutan Airlines operate regular flights to Yangon. Air Mandalay operates Yangon-Chiangmai
- Yangon flights.
DOS & DON'TS:
Hotels and guest houses must give information about the
identities and activities of their foreign guests. Burmese who interact with
foreigners may be compelled to report on those interactions to the Burmese
Telephone services are poor in Rangoon and other major cities
and non-existent in some other areas. U.S. Embassy officials are not allowed to
travel outside Rangoon without the permission of the Burmese Government. It may,
therefore, be difficult to assist U.S. citizens quickly should an emergency
arise. The junta have made this country a model of intimidation & virtual
slavery using guns as their way of enforcing their reign.
Security in tourist areas is
generally good. The level of violent crime and crime against property is low.
There are occasional reports of pick pocketing. Tourist information is available
at the Arrival Hall of Yangon International Airport; Head Office in downtown
Yangon at 77-91 Sule Pagoda Road (Tel: 95-1-252859); Bagan Office
(Tel:95062-70217); Mandalay Office(Tel: 95-2-22540) at Mandalay Swan Hotel;
Taunggyi Office (Tel: 95-081-21611, 95-081-21302) at Taunggyi Hotel; Kawthaung
Office; Tachileik Office and Muse Office.
MEDICAL FACILITIES: Serious medical problems requiring
hospitalization and/or medical evacuation to the United States can cost
thousands of dollars. Hospital and medical services are available in Rangoon;
elsewhere, medical care is limited. Doctors and hospitals often expect immediate
cash payment for health services, and U.S. medical insurance is not always valid.
Take out medical insurance.
ROADS & TRANSPORT:
Rangoon’s main roads are
generally good. Traffic in the capital is increasing. There are few good
highways connecting Burma’s major cities; most in-country travel must be
accomplished by air. Travel between Mandalay and Rangoon is possible by land,
but roads are bad. Trains aren't that much better and not
punctual.There are 12 Highway Bus services running between Yangon and Mandalay
using air-conditioned coaches. Travelling time is about 14 hours with brief
stop- overs at Taungoo and Pyinmana.Limousine taxis and mini-buses are available
in Yangon for sightseeing and up country tours.
CUSTOMS REGULATIONS AND OTHER RESTRICTIONS
regulations are restrictive and strictly enforced. Photographing people in
uniform or any military installation could lead to arrest or the confiscation of
cameras and film.
Penalties for breaking the
law can be more severe than in the West. Persons violating the law, even
unknowingly, may be expelled, arrested or imprisoned. Penalties for possession,
use or trafficking in illegal drugs in Burma are strict and convicted offenders
can expect stiff jail terms, fines and even the death penalty.
Not all major credit cards can be used in
Burma, and generally only large international hotels in Rangoon and Mandalay
accept any. There are no automatic cash machines in the country to access
currency from overseas and it is not possible to cash a personal check drawn on
a foreign bank.
You can change dollars into Burmese Kyat at the market rate,
it is illegal to exchange currency except at authorized locations such as the
airport, banks and government stores.
Foreign Exchange Certificates (FEC) are required by foreigners
for the payment of plane tickets, train tickets and most hotels. Burmese Kyat
are accepted for most other transactions. It is possible to purchase FEC with
some credit cards at the Myanmar Foreign Trade Bank in Rangoon or any place that
exchanges foreign currency.
Postal Service -
Yangon Central Post
Office, 39, Bo Aung Kyaw Street, is open from 9:30 am to 4:30 pm., Monday
to Friday. Major hotels provide mail boxes; and postage stamps are available at
the Reception Counters.
Telephone - International phone calls can be made by
International Direct Dialing (IDD) phone or most major hotels.
The main tourist centres are located at a distance from Yangon,
and it is convenient for visitors to travel by domestic flights. Myanmar
Airways, Air Mandalay and Yangon Airways operate flights ot major tourist sites
including Mandalay, Bagan, Heho, Thandwe, Myitkyina, Tachileik and Kawthaung.
Yangon-Mandalay is tke main rail link with four express trains
running daily between Yangon and Mandalay. Furnisked coaches (Cherry and Padauk)
for a group of 4 or 8 persons are available. From Thazi on the Yangon-Mandalay
line, a branch line runs to Skwenyaung (the nearest station to Inlay Lake) and
to Taunggyi.From Mandalay, there are rail services to Pyin Oo Lwin, Lashio,
Monywa and Bagan. There is also a rail service from Yangon to Bagan which
operate on alternate days.
Dagon-man 01-277503 Station
Enquiry 01-274027 Malikha-Mandalar
Thaw Tar 01-221460
(GOODS TRAIN) 01-222700
INTERESTING MYANMAR SITES:LINKS
Yellow Pages A leading & largest online Yellow
Pages of Myanmar. The Printed Updated
Edition. Authorized user of the Internationally recognized "WalkingFingers Logo"
Zin Nanda Tun (Ms)
Myanmar has many rivers and a large delta where the Inland
Water Transport operates a huge fleet of double and triple-decker boats.There is
a regular service between Bhamaw and Mandalay and between Mandalay and
Pyay(Prome) via Bagan."The Road to Mandalay", a luxury boat operated
by E & Q Services, sails from Mandalay to Bagan during the open season.
Irrawaddy Princess,a catamaran, operates between Mandalay and Bagan and is also
available for charter to Bhamaw and Pyay (Prome). The north and western part of
tke country are very rugged and mountainous. Three parallel chains of mountain
ranges run from north to south.They begin from the eastern extremity of the
Himalaya to Hka-kabo Razi (5881 meters), the highest peak in
South-East Asia. The mountain chains separate the country into three river
systems the Ayeyarwaddy, Sittaung and Than-Lwin