Q & A / Travel tips in Cambodia

 

Question:

Why don’t you include the entrance fees and audio tours in your tour price?

Answer:

Because nowadays travelers have different needs with different status.

  1. School students under 18 and university students are free for entry to Genocide Museum (Prison S21) with student ID or passport or any ID which shows the age.

  2. Children under 12 are free for entry at the Killing Fields. (Over 13 is considered as adult and required to pay full fare at Killing Fields. University students are not free for entry, must pay for entrance fees at Killing Fields)

  3. Audio tours at Prison S21 & at the Killing Fields are optional. Some visitors don’t take the audio tours, so they only pay for the entrance fees.

So our tour price is designed to meet these needs. Instead of charging $27 all in one, our tour price is only $15, and you have the freedom to decide what you like to do and pay.

 

Question:

How much are the entrance fees and audio tours?

Answer:

The entrance fees of Genocide Museum (Prison S21) are $3.

The entrance fees of Killing Fields are $3.

Audio tour at Killing Fields is $3. Audio tour is available in 15 languages.

Audio tour at Genocide Museum is $3 as well. It is available in English and French.

*Audio tour at Prison S21 is about 2 hours, a bit long. But you can choose the highlight tour marked in red numbers on the prison map. The highlight tour is about 1 hour.

 

Question:

Why others groups have tour guides and we don’t?

Answer:

  1. There are different tour operators on the market. Guided tour is $43 per person for half day tour.

  2. Some groups are in-bound tours; they pay for the tour in their own countries for everything including accommodation, meals, tour leader, local tour guide, entrance fees etc. In-bound tour group normally spend very little time at each site.

  3. Some groups hire an in-house guide at the museum at some cost. Guides can be hired at S21 at $2 per person (minimum 2 people). In-house guided tour is about 40 – 60 min. You are expected to pay at the end of the service. Please note that some times the in-house guides are not available if they are all busy with other groups. But you can always ask at the ticket office.

 

Question:

Should I hire an in-house guide or just visit the museum by myself?

Answer:

  1. An in-house guide can give you more specific information about the exhibition and in-depth stories. But they only show you the exhibition on the ground floor.

  2. If you visit the museum by yourself, you can walk to the upper floors with more exhibitions.

  3. Sometime the guides are all busy with other groups and not available when you arrive. And most of the in–house guides have day-off at the week-end.

  4. Many visitors like to visit the museum by themselves. There are a lot of readings at the museum.

  5. When the audio tour is available at the museum, you can take the audio tour instead.

 

Question:

Should I take the audio tour at Killing Fields?

Answer:

There is not much written information at Killing Fields. We suggest you to take the audio tour.

 

Question:

How far are Killing Fields? How long it will take to get there?

Answer:

Killing Fields are located outside of Phnom Penh; it takes about 40 min by driving from Genocide Museum to the Killing Fields, if the traffic is bad, sometime it takes 1 hour to get there by driving.

 

Question:

To go to Killing Fields, what is the difference among different transportations, tuktuk and taxi or tour bus?

Answer:

Tuktuk: Tuktuk is handy to find in Phnom Penh. It will cost $20 – $30 (depending on the numbers of the passengers) for a round trip including S21. But most of the tuktuk drivers don’t speak English, so communication is limited, only “How are you?” “Where do you want to go?”And you cannot get more useful information from the drivers. The main problem is the pollution in Phnom Penh. As there are 1.5 millions motorbikes registered in Phnom Penh, the major transportation for locals is motorbike, and there are a lot of cars on the road, so the air is heavily polluted. And the traffic in Phnom Penh is always busy (Khmer New Year and traditional Khmer holidays are exception, as most of the residents in Phnom Penh go to provincial home town, the city is empty, no traffic at all), if you take a tuktuk, you will find yourself surrounded by many motorbikes, tuktuks, cars and trucks on the way to Killing Fields; it is dusty, noisy, extremely hot and smelly when passing by a few open sewage; inhaling the badly polluted air and fume from the bikes and cars for 2 hours (round trip) on a tuktuk is not easy for many tourists who use to live in clean fresh air environment. And tuktuks are not insured in Cambodia, there is no protection for passengers when accident occurred.

Taxi: taxi fare to Killing Fields varies from different companies. Most taxi drivers speak little English, communication and information is limited. There is no enough leg room for European people.

Phnom Penh Shuttle Bus Tour

  • Free pick up and drop off from most centrally located hotels and guest houses: when the tour is finished, drop off at riverside can be arranged for free of charge for passengers who stay in hotels far away from riverside.

  • Choice of morning and afternoon departure: visit time will be efficiently arranged, avoiding lunch time at Killing Fields where food is more expensive.

  • Air-conditioning: our tour bus keeps you safe, cool and comfortable with more leg room and bigger sightseeing windows. No dust, no bad smell, no noise, no heat.

  • Recorded English commentary: English commentary will be played on board, you get more information about the sites you will visit.

  • Documentary: an English documentary of 50 minutes will be played on the way to Killing Fields, you will learn more about Khmer Rouge regime and the recent history of Cambodia.

  • Tour assistant: an English speaking tour assistant on board will help you during the tour (tour assistant is not tour guide, this is not a guided tour)

  • One bottle of drinking water: drinks sold at Killing Fields are more expensive than in the city.

  • Free WiFi: you can keep in touch with friends and family while sightseeing.

  • Tour price: if you are solo traveler, our price is cheaper than taking a tuktuk and with much more service; if you are couple or travel in pair, our price is same as taking a tuktuk and again with much more service; and we offer family discount as well, please contact us by email for more details.

  • Supporting  Working Scheme of Youth Cambodia: we employ university students to work part-time. As most of the universities teach half day, many students will work part-time to support their studies. And we pay our workers higher than the government standard.

 Travel tips in Cambodia

  • Buy a $2 mobile sim card to have a new local phone number and buy $2-$5 phone card to charge your new number. It is very useful when you need to contact some local business such as hotel, travel agent, restaurant etc. And you can always ask your hotel reception to call for you. Normally they don’t charge you for the phone call at the reception.

  • Pollution is a real problem in Phnom Penh due to the major transportation for locals: motorbike. If you want to take a tuktuk, don’t forget to buy some masks at a Pharmacy or mini mart. You really need them especially when there is traffic jam at the intersection. You don’t want to be a human vacum cleaner.

  • Wear a hat cause the Sun is very strong. Wear a lot of sunblock when you go out. Drink a lot of water. Wear long sleeve shirt and long pants of cotton material, cause the Sun really burns your skin.

  • If you plan to visit the Royal Palace or a pagoda, please remember: no camisoles, no tank tops, no shorts or mini skirts/dresses, always wear a shirt with sleeves, bottoms must cover the knees. Scarf is not accepted as cloth. This dress code applies to men and women.

  • If you need to go somewhere by tuktuk, always bargain for the fare.

  • Don’t eat at the street-side stalls cause you might end up being sick.

  • Get a city map from your hotel /guest house or from any travel agent when you go out. They are free!

  • If you want to buy something in the market, you always can bargain.