Stay Safe in Myanmar
The government harshly punishes crime, especially against visitors; as a consequence, Myanmar is very safe for tourists in terms of crime and personal safety, and it is usually safe to stroll alone on the street at night. In fact, he is less likely to become a victim of a crime in Myanmar than he is in Thailand or Malaysia. However, like in any other area, a lack of crime does not imply a lack of crime, and it is not a justification to disregard common sense. Petty theft is the most frequent crime you should be concerned about as a foreigner, therefore keep your things insured. Physical and verbal abuse of foreigners is uncommon, especially on city walks near pubs.
Since 2005, there has been a scarcely noticeable rise in the extremely low incidence of street thefts in Yangon and Mandalay. There were isolated bombs many years ago: on April 26, 2005 in Mandalay; on May 7, October 21, and December 5, 2005 in Yangon; and on January 2, 2006 in Bago.
Begging has become a significant issue in key tourist destinations like as Bago and Bagan, despite cultural taboos. Children and “mothers” with infants are often the ones who beg because they are more successful at eliciting sympathy. Most beggars are members of bigger beggar unions or are looking for quick cash, since visitors are often considered affluent. Furthermore, begging is not essential for the poor’s survival since they may still receive free food from the closest monastery if they cannot afford to pay for it. If you want to donate, keep in mind that most Burmese make $ 40 per month performing manual work, thus giving a beggar $ 1 per month is very kind.
Theravada Myanmar’s primary religion is Buddhism, and it is common for monks to make alms rounds in the morning. Unfortunately, there are many imposters that spend their time in popular tourist destinations, taking advantage of naive tourists. Keep in mind that alms rounds are just for collecting food, and real monks are not allowed to receive or even touch money. Monks are not permitted to eat after midday, nor are they permitted to sell goods or seek contributions using high-pressure methods. Genuine monks are often seen in single-file lines with their alms bowls. It is a scam if you encounter a solitary monk begging strangers for money.
Myanmar is one of the world’s most corrupt nations. Officials and other officials may solicit bribes discreetly or create difficulties (missing paperwork, closed offices, etc.) in order for you to propose one. Pretending not to comprehend or requesting to talk with a supervisor may be effective. Visitors of Caucasian ancestry, on the other hand, are seldom targeted, while those of Asian descent (including South Asians and East Asians) may be compelled to pay bribes, but the biggest portion of the issue is ordinary Burmese.
Bribes are seldom offered to Westerners, despite the fact that the majority of bribes are US $ 1 or less and are offered by individuals earning as low as USD30 per month.
The inadequate road infrastructure and a combination of very old cars on the country’s roadways best characterize the road conditions. However, compared to, example, Vietnam, driving behaviors are not as aggressive, making road safety pleasant for nearly everyone. Although it is uncommon, young people sometimes compete on the roadways, resulting in a few fatalities in recent years. Bus drivers are among the most dangerous dangers, but this has been less of an issue since 2010 as a result of new and severe fines placed on bus drivers involved in accidents.
Surprisingly, Burma has a mix of cars with steering wheels on the right and left, and the majority are right-hand drive, although driving is generally done on the right side of the road.
Avoid driving in Burma unless you have prior experience in nations with badly disciplined drivers and extremely outdated cars.
Several rebel organizations continue to operate along the Thai and Chinese borders in the Myanmar regions of Mon and Chin (Zomi). Traveling to these areas generally requires the acquisition of a government permission. Due to rebel activity, the government also limits travel to Kayah, Rakhine, and Kachin states on occasion. The excursions, however, are not limited to the districts of Yangon, Bago, Ayeyarwady, Sagaing, Taninthayi, Mandalay, and Magwe. Some locations that were previously listed as closed have reopened without prior notice, while areas that were previously deemed open may reopen without prior notice. Furthermore, local immigration authorities may interpret the rules differently.
Because the cost of a computer and an Internet connection at home is too expensive, most individuals visit cybercafés. However, new mobile operator licenses have enabled many city dwellers to access to the internet for the first time. In Myanmar, the most popular applications and services are Facebook and Viber. To monitor Internet use, the government takes screenshots of PCs at cybercafés every five minutes. If you do not want your privacy to be compromised in this manner, record your navigation for Thailand or another location. And the connection is very sluggish, so forget about YouTube or any other video streaming.
Myanmar has been under a powerful military dictatorship for the last 40 years, and it ended in 2012 with a reputation for repressing dissidents, like in the instance of democracy campaigner Aung San Suu Kyi’s former house imprisonment. There were almost 1500 political detainees (prison sentences of 65 years and hard work in remote camps were given to the leaders of the Saffron Revolution). Some have lately been published. If you are in Myanmar, avoid political activity and do not criticize the administration.
Discuss the policy with individuals who have gotten to know you. However, the risk is mostly with people you speak with, therefore you should be concerned about their safety. Allow him to lead the discussion. Keep in mind that many telephone lines have been tapped. And you’ll be on the next aircraft if you need to wave a democratic flag in front of a police station.
However, under the current administration, freedom has usually grown by a modest but significant amount in recent months. Some politically critical pieces have been published in official publications, and a satirical film that criticizes the government’s censorship policy has been released, which was not feasible in 2010. The return of tourists to Myanmar may encourage people to be more receptive to political debates.
However, avoid doing anything that might make the military or police feel uneasy, such as: B. Recordings of police and military facilities or vehicles.
Stay Healthy in Myanmar
To the typical Westerner, hygiene in Myanmar may seem deplorable, yet it is easy to remain healthy with some simple measures such as preventive medicine, food and drink hygiene, and antibacterial ointment. Never drink from the tap. Restaurants are legally obliged to utilize ice produced and supplied by bottled water businesses, thus asking ice in the most essential locations is usually safe. Always drink bottled water and make sure the lid is shut, not just screwed on. Dengue fever, Japanese encephalitis, and malaria are all common. Malaria and TB drug-resistant strains are prevalent in many regions. Vaccines against hepatitis are strongly recommended, as is the oral cholera vaccine. The Burmese use a spoon and a fork at the table, or their fingers when it is more practical. It may feel more comfortable to rinse them completely before eating. At regular intervals, antibacterial wipes or alcohol rubbing by hand are an excellent idea.
“If you can’t fry, roast, peel, or boil it – forget it,” as the saying goes in any poor nation.
Myanmar has a high HIV prevalence. (In 2014, 0.7 percent of the population)
Myanmar’s health-care system is underfunded. If you become sick in Myanmar, you may go to the doctor in large cities for mild ailments like coughs and colds. However, for more severe medical treatment, hospital facilities are typically unsanitary, and medical supplies are often in low supply. Pun Hlaing Hospital, a privately owned hospital situated in a rural hamlet of Yangon named Hlaing Thar Yar, is the only hospital that comes near to contemporary standards, therefore one can anticipate extremely expensive costs there. Because the government owns the majority of hospitals, funding is limited. The majority of government officials and affluent residents go to Thailand or Singapore for more severe medical care and hospitalization, and they should do the same. Just make sure you have enough insurance, since organizing a drift in an emergency may be very costly.