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Money on safari

Cash

US Dollars cash is the preferred option to bring when travelling to Uganda. Once in Uganda, we advise guests to change some dollars into local currency for use as spending money on the road e.g. for drinks, curios.

We suggest a combination of small denomination notes (USD 1, 5, 10, 50) as well as USD 100 bills – make sure they are POST 2006 as generally only post 2006 series are accepted in Uganda and have the ‘large heads’ on – (the older notes depict the various senators with ‘smaller heads’ – this may sound a bit cryptic, but when you compare the notes it will become clearer).

Please ensure that all USD bills are in good condition, i.e. without rips, tears and any mark. Note that whilst more convenient in terms of changing currency and not having to carry around huge amounts of local money, there is normally a surcharge on the smaller notes when changing them.

Keep your slips; you are able to change surplus local money back to cash if you have proof of purchase when leaving the country.

Traveller’s cheques are difficult to change and really bad rates of exchange generally apply, and are often very difficult to cash, even in large towns and especially over weekends and after hours. Throughout the rest of the country, changing TC’s is almost impossible.

ATM Machines

ATM Machines – they are often not working although there are now some in Entebbe, Kampala and also some in larger upcountry towns.

They pay LOCAL MONEY only and the client needs an international use PIN code to draw money and it can only be done with certain cards. Maximum Ush2 million per day (about USD 600 equivalent) but also depends on the clients own individual bank set up so may well be less.

Please also be aware that the traffic in & out of Kampala is terrible and so going to the bank can take up to one hour just standing in traffic in the city.

Spending money – you will need to cater for drinks, curios, tips etc – USD 20-40 / day/person plus the odd dinner not included (please refer to your itinerary)

Exchange rate USH 3,600 Approx. = 1 USD

Credit Cards

There are only a few banks in Kampala (to our knowledge) that are authorized to give cash advances on credit cards. Visa cards are generally fine BUT MasterCard is NOT guaranteed and will only be cashed IF they clear certain internal security checks.

There is a limit on amounts that may be drawn, and only during banking hours. Exchange rates will be poor, and they may also charge a hefty service fee.

Payment for services by credit card can only be done by VISA card or MASTERCARD in some places. Only large hotels generally accept this means of payment and they will also levy a fee of at least 5% on top of any bills.

So the long and short is to keep your credit card for EMERGENCIES ONLY.