Cambodia travel guide
It might be one of Southeast Asia's smallest countries, but Cambodia can compete with the big boys when it comes to must-see sights. Once the preserve of trailblazing backpackers, this formerly war-torn nation is now firmly established on the Asia travel circuit. That luxury yachts ply their trade on Tonle Sap, Southeast Asia's largest freshwater lake, is a mark of just how far Cambodia has come.
Carving the country in two is the mighty Mekong River, which remains the lifeblood of Cambodia, running as it does from the bustling capital, Phnom Penh, to Vietnam's Mekong Delta. A journey down this iconic waterway is one of the great pleasures of Southeast Asia – boats of all shapes and sizes drift, chug and spray their way along the Mekong, carrying piglets, clay pots, bananas, motorcycles, you name it.
Away from the water, the ravages of war have become unlikely tourist attractions in Phnom Penh and other cities. Crowds gather at former prison camps and the notorious Killing Fields to contemplate Cambodia's darkest hour, a period of unimaginable suffering that took place under the brutal regime of Pol Pot.
The crumbling remains of the Khmer Empire are the biggest draw in Cambodia, though. After building up a kingdom that stretched into neighbouring Thailand and China, the Khmers fell, leaving behind an extraordinary collection of temple complexes, most notably Angkor Wat, which owns the bragging rights to being the largest religious monument in the world.
Then there are more typical Southeast Asian attractions – frenetic cities crammed with rickshaws, strange and exotic food, blissful beaches, tropical jungles teeming with wildlife, and a densely-forested hinterland full of tribal villages.
There are few places that have been through as much as Cambodia, but this optimistic nation has belied its tumultuous history and emerged as one of the warmest, most welcoming destinations in Southeast Asia.
181,035 sq km (69,900 sq miles).
15,827,241 (UN estimate 2016).
86.8 per sq km.
King Norodom Sihamoni since 2004.
Prime Minister Hun Sen since 1985.
Coronavirus travel health
Check the latest information on risk from COVID-19 for Cambodia on the TravelHealthPro website
See the TravelHealthPro website for further advice on travel abroad and reducing spread of respiratory viruses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
There are limited flight options into Cambodia primarily via Seoul or Singapore. You should check with their airlines about requirements in order to take flights.
Entry and borders
See Entry requirements to find out what you will need to do when you arrive in Cambodia.
Returning to the UK
When you return, you must follow the rules for entering the UK.
You are responsible for organising your own COVID-19 test, in line with UK government testing requirements. The National Institute of Public Health in Phnom Penh is able to provide a health certificate for travel, other health providers may be available. You can also call the COVID-19 hotline on 119 for advice.
Be prepared for your plans to change
No travel is risk-free during COVID. Countries may further restrict travel or bring in new rules at short notice, for example due to a new COVID-19 variant. Check with your travel company or airline for any transport changes which may delay your journey home.
If you test positive for COVID-19, you may need to stay where you are until you test negative. You may also need to seek treatment there.
Plan ahead and make sure you:
- can access money
- understand what your insurance will cover
- can make arrangements to extend your stay and be away for longer than planned
Travel in Cambodia
On 22 May, the Royal Cambodian Government relaxed COVID-19 measures in Phnom Penh lifting the curfew in yellow zones, and permitting in-restaurant dining and alcohol sales.
The curfew in Siem Reap has been extended until 4 June.
You’re expected to wear a face covering in public places. A fine may be imposed on those that refuse.
Hotel and private rental accommodation is available throughout Cambodia. Some hotels have closed and remain so, and we advise that you contact hotels directly when booking. The majority of hotels will ask to take your temperature on arrival and ask you to complete a declaration in relation to your recent travel history and whether you have any symptoms related to COVID-19.
Some services and facilities in hotels may not be available e.g. leisure facilities.
Public places and services
Many public places and services such as gyms, casinos, karaoke rooms and nightclubs remain closed until further notice. You should contact venues ahead of events.
We strongly recommend that you wear masks, clean your hands and maintain social distancing in all public places.
Healthcare in Cambodia
For contact details of English speaking doctors visit our list of healthcare providers.
If you think you have COVID-19 symptoms, you should dial +855 (0)12825424 and local authorities will be able to advise you on what action you should take.
Your emotional and mental wellbeing is important. Read guidance on how to look after your mental wellbeing and mental health.
View Health for further details on healthcare in Cambodia.
Many medications that would require a prescription in the UK can be bought over-the-counter in Cambodia. However, you may not find a brand you are familiar with and many pharmacies sell counterfeit or out of date products. The main branch of Pharmacie de la Gare in Phnom Penh can provide medications without a prescription and can deliver medications across the country. Before you travel, you should discuss with your doctor alternative brands of medication for your condition.
See also the guidance on healthcare if you’re waiting to return to the UK.
COVID-19 vaccines if you live in Cambodia
Wherever possible British nationals should aim to be vaccinated in the country where they live. As further information is available about the national vaccination programme, this page will be updated. Sign up to get email notifications.
The Royal Government of Cambodia has announced that all foreign nationals who are currently residing and working in Cambodia can get vaccinated against COVID-19 at no charge, in accordance with Cambodian COVID-19 Vaccination Plans. There is no need to register with the British Embassy.
If you live in Cambodia, you should follow the process set out by the Royal Government of Cambodia, which will be handled by the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training (MLVT) or your local authority, depending on your visa status. The vaccination programme covers those with Ordinary Visas (Visa E) and work permits issued by the MLVT. In this case you will need a valid passport, valid visa and valid work permit and should register via your employer, your landlord or building management.
If you hold a different type of visa, including Visa K, foreigners married to Khmer citizens, retirees or another type of legal long term residence, you will need a valid passport and visa to register alongside Khmer Citizens, via the local authority, your landlord or building management.
The vaccination programme in Phnom Penh is being rolled out district by district. You should contact your employer, landlord or building management to confirm which vaccination site you should attend.
It may take time for you to successfully register as processes are implemented. If you do not have a valid visa you should contact the General Department of Immigration to rectify this or consider returning to the UK.
The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) is the UK authority responsible for assessing the safety, quality and efficacy of vaccines. It has authorised the Pfizer/BioNTech, Oxford/AstraZeneca and Moderna vaccines for temporary supply and use in the UK. Find out more about MHRA approval for these vaccines.
British nationals living overseas should seek medical advice from their local healthcare provider in the country where they reside. Information about vaccines used in other national programmes, including regulatory status, should be available from the local authorities. This list of Stringent Regulatory Authorities recognised by the World Health Organisation may also be a useful source of additional information. Find out more information about the COVID-19 vaccines on the World Health Organization COVID-19 vaccines page.
For information on financial support you can access whilst abroad, visit our financial assistance guidance.
If you need urgent consular assistance, contact your nearest British embassy, high commission or consulate. All telephone numbers are available 24/7.
While there is calm in Phnom Penh and across Cambodia, political rallies and disputes are still possible often at short or no notice and have the potential to trigger violence. You should monitor local media closely and avoid all protests and demonstrations, as they could turn violent.
Although most visits are trouble-free, crime can still occur. Most incidents are bag snatchings, often by thieves riding past on motorbikes. Bag straps have been cut and bags/phones snatched from those on foot and passengers in tuk-tuks and motorbikes, often causing injury. Hotspots for petty crime include the riverfront and BKK areas of Phnom Penh, and the beaches and tourist areas of Sihanoukville and nearby islands.
In recent years, there were incidents of female travellers, including British nationals, being sexually assaulted in Siem Reap and Sihanoukville. This includes incidents of lone women being sexually assaulted by men claiming to be motorbike taxi drivers in the Pub Street area of Siem Reap. Be vigilant at all times, especially when walking alone.
Take sensible precautions to protect yourself and your belongings:
- use a hotel safe for your valuables
- minimise the items you carry with you; if you carry a bag, make sure the strap is over your shoulder, away from the road to deter thieves on motorbikes from snatching it
- take extra care at night and in isolated areas
- be particularly vigilant travelling at night by bicycle or motorcycle, especially if you’re alone. Stick to well-used, well-lit roads and carry a personal alarm if possible
- avoid placing bags in the front basket of bicycles
- be wary of pickpockets, especially on public transport and in crowded areas
- if you travel by bus, make sure cash and valuables you have are secured - there have been incidents where passengers have had items taken from bags while asleep
- tuk-tuks with metal grills on the back and side can offer some protection against bag snatching
Police have reported instances of drink spiking and violence in the evening in some bars frequented by foreigners. Be vigilant, particularly in and around late night bars and don’t leave drinks unattended.
Parties, including organised dance parties on islands off the coast of Sihanoukville as well as in other locations, may place you at risk of sexual assault, robbery, injury, arrest, and lost belongings, including travel documents. These islands are often isolated and access to medical or emergency assistance is likely to be limited or non-existent. You should take appropriate precautions for your personal safety.
Local law enforcement responses to crimes, even violent crimes, are often limited and may fall far below the standard expected in the UK. Foreigners attempting to report crimes have reported finding police stations closed, emergency telephone numbers unanswered, or police unwilling to investigate crimes. Police will often not speak any English.
Cambodians are friendly, but you should be wary if a Cambodian or other foreign national befriends you quickly and invites you to their home or hotel on the pretext of meeting their family.
Penalties for drug offences in Cambodia are severe and can include long jail sentences for possession of even small quantities of recreational drugs. Drugs have also caused a number of deaths of overseas visitors to Cambodia. These are suspected to be a result of purity issues, or adulteration by unknown substances.
The local equivalent to the UK ‘999’ emergency lines are 117 for police, 118 for fire, and 119 for ambulance. If you need to report a crime in Phnom Penh, go to the Central Security Office at Number 13,Street 158, near Wat Koh. In Siem Reap, the Tourist Police office is next to the ticketing booth for the Angkor temple ruins. In Sihanoukville, Battambang and other towns in Cambodia, seek advice from local police on which police station you should report to.
There have been reports of police charging fees for some services, including issuing police reports. Issuing a police report for crimes should not carry a fee. If you suspect an inappropriate fee is being demanded from you, you should report the matter to the British Embassy Pnhom Penh, including details of the police station.
While there is good internet, Wi-fi and mobile phone coverage in the main cities and towns of Cambodia, many of the islands and remote areas may not be covered. Make sure your friends and family are aware that you may be out of contact.
Be especially alert to the local security situation in border regions and at land crossings between countries. Seek local advice before you set off. Stay on clear pathways as there may be landmines or unexploded ordnance. At the more remote crossing points, conditions can be basic. Some visitors have reported local officials and tour operators asking for unofficial fees or inflating visa prices at land borders. Make sure you know the correct visa requirements and fees before you travel.
Cambodia does not have the same health and safety standards as in the UK. Please be aware that safety advice will be minimal and there may not be warning signs at tourist sites.
You should get permission from the district head, provincial governor or national tourism authority for any travel perceived as out of the ordinary, including business, extensive photography, or scientific research of any kind.
Heavy storms during the monsoon season from June to October can cause disruption and damage including flooding and landslides. Travel to some provinces can be seriously disrupted during this time. Poor drainage leads to flooded roads, causing major traffic congestion in Phnom Penh, so you should allow additional travel time if you’re heading to the airport. The Mekong River Commission posts official updates on the Mekong River on its website. Monitor local news and weather reports, and international weather updates from the World Meteorological Organisation.
Lakes, caves and waterfalls are particularly prone to dangerous flash flooding during the rainy season from June to October.
Cambodia-Thailand border crossings are now closed until further notice. The line of the international border near the Preah Vihear temple (Khaoi Pra Viharn in Thai) was disputed by Cambodia and Thailand. Since 2008, there have been occasional clashes between Thai and Cambodian troops in the area. There have also been disputes over control of the Ta Moan and Ta Krabey temples, which lie close to the Thailand-Cambodia border. In 2013, the International Court of Justice ruled that Cambodia has sovereignty over the whole territory of the Preah Vihear temple.
Although relations between the two countries concerning the border have improved, you should take extra care when travelling in this area, and follow the instructions of the local authorities.
Cambodia remains heavily affected by landmines and unexploded ordnance. Mined areas are often unmarked. Don’t stray off main routes in rural areas, including around temple complexes and don’t pick up metal objects.
Cambodia has one of the highest rates of road traffic accidents in the region. There are high numbers of fatalities and serious injuries. Many accidents are due to poor vehicle and driver safety standards. Travel after dark significantly increases the risk of accidents.
You’ll need a Cambodian driving licence to drive a vehicle, including a motorcycle. If you have an International Driving Permit, you can apply for a Cambodian licence. Some local travel agencies can arrange this for a fee. Driving or riding a motorbike without a licence may invalidate your travel insurance in the event of an accident. Your vehicle may also be impounded.
Travelling as a passenger by motorcycle taxi (‘motodop’) is dangerous. Vehicles are poorly maintained and driving standards are low. There is also a risk of bag snatching, particularly in Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville.
The police can impose an on-the-spot fine if you ride a motorcycle without a helmet. Riding without a helmet may also invalidate your insurance. The police have also been known to stop tourists without Cambodian driving licences and advise them to return their motorcycles immediately. Sometimes a fine is imposed. In Sihanoukville, it’s a requirement for police to issue a receipt when issuing a fine for a traffic violation.
Before you hire a vehicle, check your travel insurance policy to ensure that you’re covered (as either a driver or passenger for motorcycles) and check the small print of the rental agreement. Don’t use your passport as security for motorcycle or car rental. Owners have been known to hold on to passports against claimed damage to the motorcycle or scooter.
Accidents have occurred due to overloaded or poorly maintained boats. There have also been reports of tourist boats continuing to operate despite weather warnings, particularly between Sihanoukville and the nearby islands. In 2016, 2 incidents (one off the coast at Sihanoukville and the other on the river near Kampot) saw tourist vessels sink.
Boat travel on rivers becomes difficult in the dry season (March - May). Water levels in rivers and lakes are high during the rainy season (June to October).
There have been attacks against ships in the South China Sea and surrounding seas. Mariners should be vigilant, reduce opportunities for theft, establish secure areas on-board and report all incidents to the coastal and Flag State authorities.
Adventurous activities and swimming
If you’re considering jungle trekking, use a reputable tour guide. There’s no licensing system for tour guides, so seek advice from other travellers, your hotel and look at online reviews before hiring a guide.
Take care when swimming, diving, kayaking or white water rafting in rivers or close to waterfalls, particularly in the rainy season from May to October. Currents can be extremely strong and there have been fatalities because of this. Jellyfish can be found close to the shore, particularly during the rainy season. Their sting can be fatal. If in doubt, take local advice from hotel management and dive centres.
If you rent jet skis or water sports’ equipment, make sure adequate safety precautions are in place. Rent only from reputable operators, thoroughly check for damage before use and insist on training.
The standards maintained by diving schools and rescue services are not always as high as in the UK. Check a dive operator’s credentials carefully before using them and make sure you’re covered by your insurance. If you have not had any previous diving experience, ask your dive operator to explain what cover they offer before signing up for a course. Make sure safety equipment is available on the boat, particularly oxygen. You should also ask about contingency plans including the ability to call for help while at sea and to evacuate divers to the nearest hyperbaric chamber if necessary.
Although there’s no recent history of terrorism in Cambodia, attacks can’t be ruled out.
Attacks could be indiscriminate, including in places visited by expatriates and foreign travellers. There have been a small number of grenade/bomb attacks and shootings. Most have been linked to business, personal and traffic disputes.
There’s a heightened threat of terrorist attack globally against UK interests and British nationals, from groups or individuals motivated by the conflict in Iraq and Syria. You should be vigilant at this time.
If you’re arrested and convicted of a crime in Cambodia you can expect a long prison sentence. Pre-trial detention can also last many months.
The legal process in Cambodia is unpredictable, lacks transparency and is open to interference from powerful political and business interests. The investigation and trial process falls far below the standard expected in the UK. British nationals in Cambodia should be aware that there are limits to the assistance the British Embassy can offer to those with concerns about the fairness of their trial, as we are unable to interfere in the legal processes of a host country.
The conditions in Cambodian prisons are extremely poor and overcrowded. Medical facilities in prisons are also extremely poor. The UK has no prisoner transfer agreement with Cambodia so if you’re found guilty you can expect to serve your full prison term in Cambodia, have your visa revoked and be removed when released.
Sexual abuse against children is a serious crime. The UK and Cambodian authorities are committed to combating travelling child sex offenders. Those who commit sex offences against children abroad can also be prosecuted in the UK.
Don’t become involved with drugs of any kind. Penalties for possession, distribution or manufacture of drugs, including Class C, are severe. Drugs have also caused of a number of deaths of overseas visitors to Cambodia. These are suspected to be a result of purity issues, or adulteration by unknown substances.
Never take photographs in or near airports or military bases. Ask permission before taking pictures of people, especially monks and other religious figures.
The Cambodian authorities have issued an official code of conduct for visitors to Angkor Wat and other religious sites, including a dress code. You should not wear skirts or shorts above the knee or tops that reveal bare shoulders. If you don’t follow the dress code you may be refused admission to the sites.
There are no legal restrictions on same-sex sexual activity or the organisation of LGBT events in Cambodia, but public attitudes can be mixed. There is no legal protection against discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation, but the British Embassy has no recorded cases of discrimination towards LGBT travellers. The LGBT community is becoming more visible, including through gay clubs, club nights and the work of some human rights organisations. Pride events are held annually in Phnom Penh. See our information and advice page for the LGBT community before you travel.
There are new procedures for foreign and Cambodian citizens who wish to marry in Cambodia. More detailed information can be found in this guidance.
Adopting Cambodian children
The Department for Education (DfE) has suspended all adoptions of Cambodian children by UK residents. A new Inter-Country Adoption Law came into effect in Cambodia on 1 January 2013. The Department for Education will continue to monitor the adoption processes in Cambodia and review the suspension accordingly.
Commercial surrogacy is banned in Cambodia and the commissioning of commercial surrogacy is subject to penalties including imprisonment and fines. The FCDO and Home Office have produced guidance for anyone considering surrogacy overseas.
The information on this page covers the most common types of travel and reflects the UK government’s understanding of the rules currently in place. Unless otherwise stated, this information is for travellers using a full ‘British Citizen’ passport.
The authorities in the country or territory you’re travelling to are responsible for setting and enforcing the rules for entry. If you’re unclear about any aspect of the entry requirements, or you need further reassurance, you’ll need to contact the embassy, high commission or consulate of the country or territory you’re travelling to.
You should also consider checking with your transport provider or travel company to make sure your passport and other travel documents meet their requirements.
Entry rules in response to coronavirus (COVID-19)
Full details of entry requirements can be found on the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, although this has not yet been updated to reflect the latest changes to the quarantine restrictions detailed below.
Entry to Cambodia
If you wish to enter Cambodia you will need to:
- get a visa before arrival — the visa exemption policy, visa on arrival and e-visa arrangements are suspended indefinitely
- get a medical certificate, no longer than 72 hours prior to the date of travel, from a competent health authority stating you do not have COVID-19. This certificate should bear the stamp of the facility issuing it and be signed by a qualified medical practitioner to certify the test result. You should not use the NHS testing service to get a test in order to facilitate your travel to another country. You should arrange to take a private test
- have proof of insurance that includes a minimum of US$50,000 for medical cover
It is currently not possible to enter or depart Cambodia through land borders as the Cambodia-Laos, Cambodia-Thailand and Cambodia-Vietnam land borders are closed.
Testing/screening on arrival
All foreigners arriving in Cambodia will now be subject to a COVID-19 test on arrival (as well as requiring a COVID negative test before flying). You will need to remain at a hotel or government facility until the results are known, which may include an overnight stay.
The government is now imposing charges on foreign arrivals for lab testing, medical treatment and accommodation under health measures to prevent a second wave of COVID-19 transmission in Cambodia.
All foreign passengers need to deposit US$2000 for the COVID-19 service charges at the airport upon their arrival. Once deductions for services have been made, the remainder of the deposit will be returned. This can be paid either by cash or credit card.
The service fees are listed as below:
- US$5 for transport from the airport to waiting centre, US$100 for one COVID-19 test, US$30 for overnight stay at hotel or waiting centre and US$30 for 3 meals a day while waiting for test result.
- If one passenger tests positive for COVID-19, all those on the same flight will be quarantined for 14 days. Each passenger will have to pay US$100 for a COVID-19 test and US$84 a day to pay for the stay in a hotel or quarantine facility, (the charge includes meals, laundry, sanitary services, doctors and security services).
- For a COVID-19 positive patient, they will be charged US$100 per COVID-19 test (maximum four tests), and US$225 a day for hospital room, medical treatment service, meals, laundry and sanitary services. In addition, in case of death the cremation service charge is US$1,500.
- If issuance of a COVID-19 health certificate is needed, for example for future travel, foreign nationals will need to pay US$100 for a lab test and US$30 for the certificate.
From 12 December 2020, the implementation of the sponsorship scheme for foreign travellers will be temporarily suspended. All travellers to Cambodia will be tested on arrival and then required to quarantine for 14 days at a facility designated by the Cambodian government. This may be at a hotel (at your own expense) or at a government facility. The conditions at government facilities are very basic and it is not guaranteed that families will be kept together.
You will be expected to comply with these requirements regardless of any existing medical needs you may have. If you’re not able to submit to these requirements, you should think carefully about whether to travel to Cambodia at this time.
All travellers are required to take a COVID-19 test on the 13th day of quarantine at either the Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hospital in Phnom Penh or the Chak Angre Clinic in Phnom Penh.
Anyone testing positive for COVID-19 will be admitted to the Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hospital for monitoring and treatment. Their identity will also be publicly disclosed to facilitate track and trace mechanisms.
The Ministry of Interior’s General Department of Immigration will deny visa extensions for foreigners who are not registered on the Foreigners Present in Cambodia System (FPCS). See Foreigners Registration
The latest information on visa extension arrangements from the relevant authorities is:
tourist visa: for all short term visitors who arrived on or after 1 January 2020, tourist visas will be automatically extended and any overstay fines will be waived. You do not need to go to the immigration department office for any kind of exit visa/stamp before departing. You can proceed directly to the airport to depart through the normal immigration channels
other visas: for non-tourist visas such as EG visas, there is no automatic extension in place and these can be renewed at any time in the usual wa.
Regular entry requirements
Currently you need to get a visa before arrival.
Visa fees, conditions and photograph requirements are subject to change. Check the Ministry of Foreign Affairs & International Co-operation website for the latest information on fees, conditions and photograph requirements and on how to apply for an e-visa.
Tourist visas issued by a Royal Cambodian Embassy abroad may appear to have a longer validity than 1 month. The validity of the visa refers to time you have to enter Cambodia. The visa is valid for 30 days from the actual date of entry into Cambodia. Make sure your passport is stamped on arrival, and keep the departure form. If you lose your departure form, you’ll need to contact immigration officials before you leave the country to make alternative arrangements.
You can be fined, detained and deported if you overstay your visa. There is a fine of $10 per day for overstaying the validity term of your visa. There is no limit to this fine. Those who overstay more than 30 days will need to leave Cambodia in addition to paying the fine.
If you lose your passport and need to leave Cambodia on a UK Emergency Travel Document, you will need to get an exit visa. See UK Emergency Travel Documents
The Ministry of Interior’s General Department of Immigration will DENY VISA EXTENSIONS for foreigners who are not registered on the Foreigners Present in Cambodia System (FPCS). The FPCS will be used to record and manage foreigners’ information when they arrive at any entry point and record their data when they leave Cambodia. Its main objective is to protect foreigner safety and security in case of an emergency during their stay in Cambodia. Registration applies to all foreigners present in Cambodia, including tourists and residents.
The Immigration Department has clarified that registration is the responsibility of the host (landlords/hotel owners) not of the foreign resident/tourist. Foreigners will not face any fine if they are not registered, but will not receive their visa extension until the landlord/hotelier has input the foreigners details in the system.
You should check with your host to confirm that they have registered you on the app, and if not, then to ask them to do so.
If you have no landlord/own your own home, you would need to register yourself.
The FPCS app is free to download on iOS and Android. There is a video tutorial from the General Department of Immigration on how the app works (although the video has Khmer narration, the images are with English text: FPCS Video Tutorial
The in-app tutorial is in English. There are 6 steps for registration:
- create an account (phone number, password)
- upload a copy of your passport
- verify information
- enter valid phone number and password
- add information about accommodation
UK Visa Application Centre and services
- the UK-VFS Visa Application Centre in Cambodia re-opened on June 22 2020. For visa application appointments, slots are now open for applicant booking
- applications for new passports must also be processed through the VAC. New passports may take longer to be issued, due to restrictions imposed on workplaces during the pandemic
- for consular related enquiries, submit your enquiry at <www.gov.uk/contact-consulate-phnom-penh>
If you lose your passport and need to leave Cambodia on a UK Emergency Travel Document, you will need to get an exit visa. See UK Emergency Travel Documents
The Cambodia-Laos, Cambodia-Thailand and Cambodia-Vietnam land borders are closed to travellers.
Recent changes to visa requirements for Thailand may affect travellers wishing to make regular crossings at the land border between Cambodia and Thailand. See travel advice for Thailand for further information.
For further information about regional travel, see the travel advice for the specific country.
More general information on land border crossings from Laos and Vietnam is available e at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs & International Co-operation website.
Your passport should be valid for a minimum period of 6 months from the date of entry into Cambodia. Entry is normally refused if you have a damaged passport or pages missing.
Your passport should also be valid for a minimum period of 6 months for any subsequent renewal or extension of your visa that you apply for from within Cambodia.
To work in Cambodia, you’ll need a valid business visa and a valid work permit. Business visas are issued by the Immigration Department and are usually available on arrival in Phnom Penh airport, or at the Immigration Department. You may be able to apply for a Business visa in advance at your nearest Cambodian Embassy. Your employer will need to apply for your work permit from the Department of Labour and Social Affairs.
The Cambodian government is now enforcing these rules more strictly than in previous years. There is some uncertainty about whether the government will impose charges retroactively on individuals who did not have valid work permits previously. Procedures are subject to change and you should always consult the relevant Cambodian government department for the latest advice.
Yellow fever certificate requirements
Check whether you need a yellow fever certificate by visiting the National Travel Health Network and Centre’s TravelHealthPro website.
UK Emergency Travel Documents
UK Emergency Travel Documents (ETDs) are accepted for entry, airside transit and exit from Cambodia.
If you’re leaving the country using an ETD issued in Cambodia (and therefore containing no entry stamp), you’ll need to get an exit visa from the Cambodian authorities once you have your ETD. Exit visas cost $30 and must be obtained from the Cambodian Immigration Department in Phnom Penh, 332, Russian Boulevard, Phnom Penh, Cambodia. The exit visa will take up to 3 working days to be processed by the Cambodian authorities.
Check the latest information on risk from COVID-19 for Cambodia on the TravelHealthPro website
See the healthcare information in the Coronavirus section for information on what to do if you think you have coronavirus while in Cambodia.
At least 8 weeks before your trip, check the latest country-specific health advice from the National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC) on the TravelHealthPro website. Each country-specific page has information on vaccine recommendations, any current health risks or outbreaks, and factsheets with information on staying healthy abroad. Guidance is also available from NHS (Scotland) on the FitForTravel website.
General information on travel vaccinations and a travel health checklist is available on the NHS website. You may then wish to contact your health adviser or pharmacy for advice on other preventive measures and managing any pre-existing medical conditions while you’re abroad.
The legal status and regulation of some medicines prescribed or bought in the UK can be different in other countries. If you’re travelling with prescription or over-the-counter medicine, read this guidance from NaTHNaC on best practice when travelling with medicines. For further information on the legal status of a specific medicine, you’ll need to contact the embassy, high commission or consulate of the country or territory you’re travelling to.
While travel can be enjoyable, it can sometimes be challenging. There are clear links between mental and physical health, so looking after yourself during travel and when abroad is important. Information on travelling with mental health conditions is available in our guidance page. Further information is also available from the National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC).
If you need emergency medical assistance during your trip, dial 119 and ask for an ambulance. You should contact your insurance/medical assistance company promptly if you’re referred to a medical facility for treatment. You should also see our list of medical and dental services.
Public health facilities in Cambodia are very poor. Private clinics and hospitals in Phnom Penh are often better equipped, but are of variable quality and can be expensive. Many treatments and procedures are not available in Cambodia. Many people travel to neighbouring countries for medical treatment. The standards maintained by Cambodian emergency services are extremely poor in comparison to the UK and evacuation may be necessary for medical emergencies and anything other than minor medical concerns. Make sure you have adequate travel health insurance and that you also have accessible funds to cover the cost of any medical treatment abroad and repatriation as some hospitals will expect payment by you at the time of treatment.
There are no proper mental health care facilities in Cambodia. Professional treatment including medication is difficult and expensive to obtain. Emergency mental health treatment is likely to need an air ambulance transfer to a country offering appropriate facilities.
Local pharmacies provide a limited supply of medications. Many sell counterfeit or out of date products. Make sure you bring adequate supplies for the duration of your stay.
UK health authorities have classified Cambodia as having a risk of Zika virus transmission. For information and advice about the risks associated with Zika virus, visit the National Travel Health Network and Centre website.
Severe cases of dengue are rare in travellers but you should avoid mosquito bites particularly between dawn and dusk. The mosquitoes that transmit dengue are most abundant in towns, cities and surrounding areas.
There is currently no medication or vaccination available for travellers to prevent dengue but if you experience symptoms you should seek medical advice immediately. For further information visit the National Travel Health Network and Centre website.
ATMs are available in Phnom Penh, Sihanoukville and Siem Reap and in some other major towns. Take care when withdrawing cash and be aware of your surroundings.
Not all ATMs and banks accept foreign debit and credit cards. Check with your bank before you travel. Credit cards are not widely accepted, but some hotels and businesses in larger cities will accept them.
The US dollar is the main currency in Cambodia but the Cambodian Riel is becoming more widely used. Prices in hotels, shops and restaurants are now usually quoted in US dollars and Riel. Change of less than $10 will generally be given in Riel at a rate of around 4000 Riels/US$1.
There have been recent reports of counterfeit dollar notes being given as change in shops and clubs. Difficulties can also be encountered when trying to spend damaged notes. You should check that notes you receive are genuine and are not damaged or torn. Banks and money exchange shops will sometimes replace damaged notes but will often charge for this service.
It may not be possible to exchange Northern Irish and Scottish bank notes.
If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission. If you need urgent help because something has happened to a friend or relative abroad, contact the FCDO in London on 020 7008 5000 (24 hours).
Foreign travel checklist
Read our foreign travel checklist to help you plan for your trip abroad and stay safe while you’re there.
The FCDO travel advice helps you make your own decisions about foreign travel. Your safety is our main concern, but we can’t provide tailored advice for individual trips. If you’re concerned about whether or not it’s safe for you to travel, you should read the travel advice for the country or territory you’re travelling to, together with information from other sources you’ve identified, before making your own decision on whether to travel. Only you can decide whether it’s safe for you to travel.
When we judge the level of risk to British nationals in a particular place has become unacceptably high, we’ll state on the travel advice page for that country or territory that we advise against all or all but essential travel. Read more about how the FCDO assesses and categorises risk in foreign travel advice.
Our crisis overseas page suggests additional things you can do before and during foreign travel to help you stay safe.
Refunds and cancellations
If you wish to cancel or change a holiday that you’ve booked, you should contact your travel company. The question of refunds and cancellations is a matter for you and your travel company. Travel companies make their own decisions about whether or not to offer customers a refund. Many of them use our travel advice to help them reach these decisions, but we do not instruct travel companies on when they can or can’t offer a refund to their customers.
For more information about your rights if you wish to cancel a holiday, visit the Citizen’s Advice Bureau website. For help resolving problems with a flight booking, visit the website of the Civil Aviation Authority. For questions about travel insurance, contact your insurance provider and if you’re not happy with their response, you can complain to the Financial Ombudsman Service.
Registering your travel details with us
We’re no longer asking people to register with us before travel. Our foreign travel checklist and crisis overseas page suggest things you can do before and during foreign travel to plan your trip and stay safe.
Previous versions of FCDO travel advice
If you’re looking for a previous version of the FCDO travel advice, visit the National Archives website. Versions prior to 2 September 2020 will be archived as FCO travel advice. If you can’t find the page you’re looking for there, send the Travel Advice Team a request.
If you’re a British national and you have a question about travelling abroad that isn’t covered in our foreign travel advice or elsewhere on GOV.UK, you can submit an enquiry. We’re not able to provide tailored advice for specific trips.