Foreign Exchange Guide to Laos
The domestic currency in Laos is the Laotian kip with currency code LAK. Read this foreign exchange guide to Laos and the Laotian kip with money transfer and travel tips plus Laotian kip exchange cross rates.
In this guide we review :
- Laotian kip info - general info about the Laotian kip
- Laotian kip in the markets - recent LAK moves and predictions from the FX markets
- Travelling in Laos - currency & money saving tips
- Buying Laotian kip cash online - travel money for Laos
- Sending money to Laos - save on Laotian kip bank transfers to Laos
- Laotian kip exchange rates - latest & historic exchange rates.
Laotian kip (LAK) general currency information
What is the Laotian kip currency code and symbol?
The three letter currency code for the Laotian kip is LAK and the symbol is ₭.
Which countries use the Laotian kip?
It is the domestic currency in Laos.
Laotian kip (LAK) in the markets
The interactive chart below shows the LAK to USD exchange rate for the previous 3 months with rate alerts for days when the exchange rate moved up or down significantly or for 30 day highs and lows.
Travel, Currency and Money saving tips for Laos
US cash and Thai baht is commonly used for larger purchases. Kip is a non-convertible currency, meaning once you have left Laos, its useful only as wallpaper!
Banks outside Laos will not accept nor exchange kip. International access ATMs dispensing US dollars can be found in most major tourist centres across the country.
You will need to have USD20 for the Cambodian visa and USD30 for the Laos visa.(Don't forget to have your passport photos handy). Just check the cost for your Lao visa - prices vary a little depending on where you are from.
You should use the ATMs for local currency (Kip). Some take USD, but not everywhere and local is preferred. Credit cards are not widely used - some very high end restaurants may have facilities but certainly no street restaurant will.
Public transport is relatively comprehensive and inexpensive, but very, very slow. Driving standards are woeful and seatbelts are close to non-existent, but speeds do tend to be slow. Motorcycle taxis are a very common way to get around. Don't expect the bus to leave on time, nor for your mojito to have enough mint in it.
The tourism industry is developing and considerable resources are being poured into training, particularly in Luang Prabang.
Outside of the main tourist centres, don't be surprised by the complete lack of tourist infrastructure. Don't let the slow buses put you off. Laos is a fascinating destination. It takes a long time to get around -- especially in the north -- so don't try to bite off more than you can chew.
In Laos, less is more: See fewer places for longer stretches and you'll have a better time.
Laos Trip Checklist
- Compare LAK travel cash rates - probably why you are here!
- Search Hotel deals - Save on your accomodation in Laos
- Lonely Planet - world's best travel guide (coupon and deals)
Travel money for Laos
Save money and time by Ordering your Laotian kip online from Travelex, you get better rates and can pick up the LAK cash locally or even on travel day at the airport.
Another popular option is to use a Pre-paid Travel Card. Your Debit/Credit Card provider will charge you 2% from market mid-rate, but your bank may also charge an extra 3% as an “Overseas Transaction Charge” plus “Overseas ATM” fees for withdrawing cash.
For card purchases if offered a choice of currencies always select to Pay in Laotian kip otherwise you may get much worst exchange rates.
Travel Money for Laos
Sending money to Laos
When searching around for information on how to get a good exchange rate when sending money to Laos you need to start with finding out the latest Laotian kip foreign-transfer exchange rate.
Then compare your bank's exchange rates to several licensed FX providers exchange rate and fees to see how much you can save (we make that calculation easy here).
Getting a better deal when sending money to Laos
When sending money to Laos it’s important to compare your bank’s rates & fees with those we have negotiated with our partner money transfer providers. To get a better deal you should follow these 4 simple steps :
- Open an account with a BER reviewed FX provider (id docs may be required)
- You specify the local or Laotian kip amount you want to transfer
- Make a local currency domestic transfer for the requested amount to the provider's bank account in your country
- Once your funds are received by the provider the converted LAK amount will be transfered to the recipient account you specify in Laos.
Use our Send to LAK calculator to compare the exchange rates of FX specialist providers rates versus your bank's standard rates you can hopefully save around 5% and maybe more - end result is more Laotian kip deposited into the recipient bank account and less margins and fees kept by the banks!