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Money & Banking in Cambodia

Money & Banking are usually one of the top priorities for many people at home or abroad. With so many banks based in Phnom Penh which one would be the right one for you?

Does it even make any practical sense for you to open a local bank account or not? Well depending on your length of stay in the Kingdom the answer may well be yes…..

Here at Your Cambodia we present to you a quick snapshot based on our experience of money and banking in the Kingdom of Wonder.

 

Who to bank with?

Below you will find a quick snapshot of our favorite banks here in Cambodia, this is of course based on our opinion and our experiences over the past decade, we do advise that you take the time to sit down and talk with all the banks to decide which one is best for you.

But here is our quick break down to get you started.

ABA Bank.

The Your Cambodia teams bank of choice. They have a fantastic ATM network and some of the most well trained staff in their branches.

Setting up a personal bank account with ABA is generally a very simple and stress free process. You will need a copy of your passport, long stay VISA and perhaps proof of address from your landlord here in Cambodia. They give you the choice of either Visa or Mastercard debit facilities and for those of you who love your mobile & internet banking services they have one of the most user friendly online systems in the country.

ABA boasts over 50 branches and over 190 ATM’s country wide.

Please visit their website here

ANZ Royal.

Popular with many Aussie and New Zealanders ANZ Royal has been in Cambodia since 2005 ANZ Royal is a joint venture between the Australia New Zealand Banking Group Limited and Cambodia’s Royal Group.

To open a personal account with ANZ as a foreigner you will be asked for a copy of your passport, long stay visa, a confirmation letter from your employer stating that you work here and probably a proof of residence. Normally ANZ require a heftier opening balance than ABA above and have a monthly charge of $1 for a balance of $500 or $3 for a lower balance.

ANZ boasts over 23 branches and over 127 ATM machines country wide.

Please visit their website here.

Canadia Bank.

A good old favourite for many of us who have been here around 10 years or more due to Canadia having a fairly decent ATM network and relative ease for opening an account. As a foreigner you will need to provide a copy of your passport, long stay visa and proof of residency.

As a Canadia customer you get free withdrawals from their ATM’s and they have recently launched a debit card facility bringing them a little closer to ABA & ANZ above. They do have an online banking facility as well. Canadia have now established a presence in Laos also.

Canadia has around 40 branches and around 110 ATM’s across the country.

Please visit their website here.

Maybank.

One of the most recognisable South East Asian banks Maybank Cambodia has had a presence in the Kingdom since 1993. With that length of service you would do well to seek their advice on finance in Cambodia.

Maybank currently has around 23 branches country wide, however 13 of those branches are in Phnom Penh.

Please visit their website here.

 

ATM Withdrawal Fees

So your feet are firmly on the ground and you’ve located your nearest ATM facility, but before the purchasing can begin one thing you should be aware of is that most ATM’s in Cambodia charge at least $5 per transaction, plus you will probably be charged by your bank in your native country also. Now depending on your spending habits all those charges can add pretty quickly.

So if you are planning on staying in the Kingdom for longer than a year, why not open a local bank account? In terms of ATM coverage ABA bank currently appears to boast the most accessible ATM network with ANZ running a close second, the advantages being that having an account with either bank will not only allow you to withdraw your cash without any annoying charges but you can also use each of their ATM machines without charge regardless of who you bank with.

 

Dollars or Riel?

Most ATM’s will dispense your money in US dollars and most seem to be set to default to giving you the largest possible denominations. For example, if you request to withdraw $100 you will probably be given a $100 note. Now when you come to spend your $100 note it is possible your outlet of choice may not be able to provide you adequate change. So it is advisable to always request an amount from the ATM that will be dispensed using smaller notes or do your best to break the large bills whenever you can at banks, hotels or mini marts etc. 

Of course it is possible have an optional Cambodian Riel facility account allowing you to request Cambodian Riel be dispensed from the ATM (depending on who you bank with) some people are comfortable with this others aren’t it’s really just personal preference. One thing you will find is that when it comes to getting change in smaller denominations many places will offer to give you Riel, especially for anything under 1 dollar. Make sure you are aware what these notes are. Below is an approximate value for the most common Cambodian Riel notes.

20,000r = $5

10,000r = $2.50

5,000r = $1.25

2000r = 50 cents

1000r = 25 cents

500r = 10 cents

 

Money changers.

If you like to really get involved with the locals and you spend a lot of time in the markets then you almost can’t fail to notice the local money changers. Typically they are sat at a glass booth with you guessed it, lots of money inside. They will be able to break down and change your notes for you either into USD or Cambodian Riel for a small fee. 

 

WING.

Big green boxes with one to two people sat inside at almost every market and on most back streets across the country. WING is essentially a money transfer service where you can send or receive small or large amounts of cash across the country for a fee. The fee generally increases with the amount of cash you send / receive and make sure you agree which party will be paying the transfer fee. Rates are fairly competitive and they can be a very quick and easy alternative to using a bank to transfer cash in country and they are more accessible then money changers in the markets depending on where you are.

WING also provide a very handy bill payment system that works in the same way, you can top up your mobile phone or even pay your internet bill every month at one of their booths.

Please visit their website here.

 

So there you have it, a quick snapshot of money and banking here in Cambodia. If you have any additional useful info to add to this post then please drop us a line and don’t forget to keep your eyes peeled for more useful information coming soon via our social media channels.

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