To all fellow travelers coming into Laos from Vietnam, I thought I’d share a very important piece of information. Don’t bring Dongs into Laos!!! Because ATM are still few in between, we though we’d be safe and bring in extra cash. As it turns out, the exchange rate from Dongs to Kips is just horrible. The best rate we found was 0.30 – the actual rate (on ex.com) is 0.41. Usually it’s in the mids 0.20. I don’t know about you, but that makes a huge difference! Do yourself a favour and change your money into Kips in Vietnam, or at least into US dollars. At least they have that exchange rate right!
Note that the border also uses the same poor exchange rate, so it’s best to pay for your visa-on-arrival in Kip or US dollars.