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Easiest way to get 20.000 Thai Baht in Vientiane


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I would like to play safe and bring the 20.000 Thai Baht into Thailand that Immigration sometimes wants to see.

 

So what is the easiest way to get 20.000 Thai Baht (or the equivalent in USD) in Vientiane?

 

I remember from Vietnam that it was a pain to go to an ATM and withdraw the many Dong needed and then have them exchanged to THB/USD. The amount that you could withdraw from ATMs was heavily capped. I would assume it is similar in Laos?

 

I have seen that the Thai banks have branches in Vientiane (I have a Thai Bank Card).

 

Any tipps?

 

It is true that I can bring Thai Baht or USD, right?
What about a mix of both?

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Assuming you have no cash, you'd have to start making maximum daily withdrawals several days before going back to Thailand, or go into the biggest bank you can find and ask for a cash advance with your bank card and passport.

Edited by pr9spk
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SCB, BAY and BKK banks (and maybe other Thai banks)  have branches in Vientiane.  Not sure if you can get cash with your card, but I suggest they could assist you if you are a customer with them.

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3 hours ago, vi2004 said:

I have seen that the Thai banks have branches in Vientiane (I have a Thai Bank Card).

A Thai ATM or debit card (i.e. a card not allowing international withdrawals) won't help you in Vientiane, as the subsidiaries of Thai banks in Laos are not part of the Thailand banking system.  

 

20,000 baht is about 5.3 million Lao kip. As banks often have a daily withdrawal limit, you may need more than one day to withdraw the money. 

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Thank you very much.

I have used my German credit card yesterday to withdraw Kip but forgot about the 20.000 THB until 2 hours ago.
I have seen a Kasikornbank opposite the Thai Consulate though.

I will check out some ATM and their withdrawal limits.
And I guess I will check with the money exchange guys beforehand to make sure that they have enough Thai Baht at hand.

Does Thai immigration accept THB and USD?

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I've crossed at Nong Khai many times, also many times for just a visa exempt, i have never been asked for cash and have never seen anybody being asked for it (and only once seen somebody denied, but this was because he had two visa exempts from land borders in this year already), so it's probably just not nessecary.

If you still want to get cash, there are ATMs right behind the "Thailand exit building", theoretically you could just walk the 200m over there before going in the "Thailand entry building" to withdraw the money, i really doubt you would have any problems doing this even if it could be considered illegal.

But LAK is easily exchangeable at the border and imho the IO should accept your cash being in LAK.

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20 minutes ago, jackdd said:

I've crossed at Nong Khai many times, also many times for just a visa exempt, i have never been asked for cash and have never seen anybody being asked for it (and only once seen somebody denied, but this was because he had two visa exempts from land borders in this year already), so it's probably just not nessecary.


I guess you are right.


I was just thinking about being on the safe side - just in case.
How crazy would it be being denied entry and at the same time having my Kasikornbank card with me that would easily give me the needed money at any Thai ATM? ?
 

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1 hour ago, vi2004 said:

Thank you very much.

I have used my German credit card yesterday to withdraw Kip but forgot about the 20.000 THB until 2 hours ago.
I have seen a Kasikornbank opposite the Thai Consulate though.

I will check out some ATM and their withdrawal limits.
And I guess I will check with the money exchange guys beforehand to make sure that they have enough Thai Baht at hand.

Does Thai immigration accept THB and USD?

Bank in Laos cannot change Kip to any other currency

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So i guess you'll be returning by land and not flight ?

 

If by flight, easy, there's ATM everywhere in the international arrival zone before the immigration in DMK / SUV
 

If by land, does someone knows if there's some ATM in the "no man's land" between LAOS and THAI immigration offices ?

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16 hours ago, PREM-R said:

SCB, BAY and BKK banks (and maybe other Thai banks)  have branches in Vientiane.  Not sure if you can get cash with your card, but I suggest they could assist you if you are a customer with them.

No, you cannot make withdraws and they can't help you. You can use the ATM in Laos but the fees are outrageous. Best to bring cash.

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1 hour ago, fullcave said:

No, you cannot make withdraws and they can't help you. You can use the ATM in Laos but the fees are outrageous. Best to bring cash.

The reason I suggested that the OP could go into the Vientiane branch of his Thai bank was because I remember a few years ago,  a friend of mine spent the night with a young lady in Vientiane, when he woke up she was gone and so was all the money from his wallet.  He had his account with BAY and went to their office on Lane Xane; as you suggest they did not have an ATM that he could use to withdraw Thai baht but they did telephone his branch (Hua Hin) in Thailand and were consequently able to provide him with cash (Thai Baht) to get him home.  This was maybe 10 years ago, no idea if this would still be possible, but it would always be worth asking.

Edited by PREM-R
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12 hours ago, Pepper9187 said:

So i guess you'll be returning by land and not flight ?

 

If by flight, easy, there's ATM everywhere in the international arrival zone before the immigration in DMK / SUV
 

If by land, does someone knows if there's some ATM in the "no man's land" between LAOS and THAI immigration offices ?

This has come up before re' ATM's before Imm' in SUV and unless very recently installed I've yet to see/find one.

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13 hours ago, Pepper9187 said:

So i guess you'll be returning by land and not flight ?

 

If by flight, easy, there's ATM everywhere in the international arrival zone before the immigration in DMK / SUV
 

If by land, does someone knows if there's some ATM in the "no man's land" between LAOS and THAI immigration offices ?

There are no ATM machines air side before immigration at either Bangkok airport

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1 minute ago, Lovethailandelite said:

There are no ATM machines air side before immigration at either Bangkok airport

There are (or were) at Suvarnabumi... but not for Thai Baht withdrawal... you can only withdraw US$ which for the purposes of passing immigration into Thailand is sufficient as the requirement is THB 20,000 or an exchangeable currency equivalent. 

 

(slightly off topic - this is also useful when traveling to 'other countries' where your ATM cards may not work and you need to withdraw some US$ backup / emergency money - I usually travel with US$1000 backup).

 

 

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3 minutes ago, richard_smith237 said:

There are (or were) at Suvarnabumi... but not for Thai Baht withdrawal... you can only withdraw US$ which for the purposes of passing immigration into Thailand is sufficient as the requirement is THB 20,000 or an exchangeable currency equivalent. 

Not in the arrival hall there. This has been discussed many times in other topics.

There are some bank currency exchange booths there where it might be possible to do a cash withdrawal using the card.

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1 minute ago, ubonjoe said:

Not in the arrival hall there. This has been discussed many times in other topics.

There are some bank currency exchange booths there where it might be possible to do a cash withdrawal using the card.

 

Arrivals / Baggage hall no... but as you say, next to the currency xchange booths there are SCB ATM machines.

 

I have used them before, but the ATM's air-side on departure level... But its been a while, so I'm not 100% sure they are still there. 

 

I don't think its possible to get to the departure level from the arrivals level without an onward flight (transit / boarding pass). But there are definitely ways to get cash for arriving passengers who just need passport and a card (usually a credit card through).

 

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12 hours ago, ubonjoe said:

Not in the arrival hall there. This has been discussed many times in other topics.

There are some bank currency exchange booths there where it might be possible to do a cash withdrawal using the card.

I was able to get money out from my account at Kasikorn Bureau de Change at DMK before immigration, however last week flying into Suvarnabhumi I thought I would just check at Kbank's BdC and was told that it was not possible there as they claimed their system was not linked to the network. Whether true or a fob off I do not know but no guarantee so rather hit and miss.

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Jeez! Wherever you travel make sure you have a K of mixed currencies, Dollar, Euro,  Sterling, and Swizz frank. One thousand quid emergency money. And 3 to 5 bank cards ffrom different banks.

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On 9/17/2018 at 6:28 PM, sanemax said:

Bank in Laos cannot change Kip to any other currency

One workaround to this policy is to use the bank/ money-exchange in the Laos border-area to exchange kip to foreign-currency. 

 

@vi2004- But, as others have pointed out, it is very unlikely you will be asked to "show the cash" at Lao/Thai points of entry.

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So, as expected I wasn't asked for money by Thai immigration.

But this is how you can "easily" get 20.000 THB in Vientiane - it's pricey though.
BCEL Bank ATM will give you a maximum of 1.500.000 kip per withdrawal with international credit card or Thai debit card.

To get 20.000 THB in kip you have to withdraw 4 times which costs almost 400 THB in withdrawal fees.

Then you can exchange all these kip to THB at any exchange booth (without showing an ID).

Very expensive way to get peace of mind though - including unfavorable exchange rates.

 

 

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6 hours ago, vi2004 said:

So, as expected I wasn't asked for money by Thai immigration.

But this is how you can "easily" get 20.000 THB in Vientiane - it's pricey though.
BCEL Bank ATM will give you a maximum of 1.500.000 kip per withdrawal with international credit card or Thai debit card.

To get 20.000 THB in kip you have to withdraw 4 times which costs almost 400 THB in withdrawal fees.

Then you can exchange all these kip to THB at any exchange booth (without showing an ID).

Very expensive way to get peace of mind though - including unfavorable exchange rates.

 

 

Sorry for misleading by saying there were ATMs in the arrival area, i was quite sure there were !

 

So, someone said there was currency exchange counters in the arrival zones right ? does anyone knows if they can provide "cash by card" service ?

 

Not sure how to call it in English, basically it's when you give your CC / DB to a bank and they charge is like if you bought something, then give you the cash in exchange.

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On 9/19/2018 at 6:41 PM, Pepper9187 said:

Sorry for misleading by saying there were ATMs in the arrival area, i was quite sure there were !

 

So, someone said there was currency exchange counters in the arrival zones right ? does anyone knows if they can provide "cash by card" service ?

 

Not sure how to call it in English, basically it's when you give your CC / DB to a bank and they charge is like if you bought something, then give you the cash in exchange.

They will only give cash to there Bank account holders. They are they are there predominately for Thais returning too Thailand. 

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