At the domestic airport in Yangon, the flight announcment is done the good old way. Traffic staff just walk around in the departure hall and announces the flights “manually”. They simply calls out your flight number and hold up a board. All departures are using the same gate and they even take off at the same time, creating a small caos at this small airport.
All the flights start early in the morning from Yangoon, and they fly a particular route, either to Heho, Bagan and Mandalay or vice versa.
One must not be surprised if they change the routing and fly over your destination, or they add an extra stop, without further notice.
Before arriving in Myanmar, we were warned about the safety of the airlines and in particularly airlines run by the military regime. But even though we were somewhat hesitant when we saw the airline’s slogan Safefy (?),Reliability and Comfort, but it appears that Air Mandalay kept their promise and had full control of the passenger’s safety .
Travelling without a credit card is almost impossible to imagine today, but in Myanmar they simply don’t accept debit or credit card. So before our departure, we had set up a travel budget, to make sure we had enough dollars. Setting up the budget was not as difficult as sticking to it. Every day we must make an estimate of how much money we used, which sends us back to our student days, and that is an eye opener, so I guess it is a meaning in it.
Since they do not accept cards, one would think that it was relatively easy to change money, but it is a rather bureaucratic affair. The entire transaction is divided into six, meaning there are six officers to make sure everything goes by the book.
1 Sign up, and accept your money and passport
2 Prints the authorization
3 Endorses the application, before it is handled to the bank manager with your passport
4 Get the money from the safe and logs it.
5 A new round of counting by the assistant manager.
6 A final endorsement, before you get the money
The Dollar notes must be brand new and without any folds, if not, you will simply get less value for your money. It all takes about 30 minutes …
Terje is born on the day of the elephant, he therefor felt for watering the statue, and paying his respect!