FAQs

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A: People worry about catching exotic tropical diseases in Cambodia, but the commonest problems are traveller's diarrhoea, sunstroke, and dehydration. Of the tropical diseases, malaria is the chief concern. The only place that is free of malaria is Phnom Penh. Angkor IS a malarial area, though Ratanakiri and the Western provinces present a greater risk. Dengue fever is more common though less serious (but jolly unpleasant). There is a small risk of Japanese encephalitis and filariasis.
A: First make sure you are up to date for the standard things. like tetanus, diptheria and polio. Typhoid and hepatitis A are also recommended. Optionalextras for frequent or long stay travellers, especially if staying in rural areas, are rabies and Japanese encephalitis.
A: Good hygiene will help a lot. Drink only bottled water, and use bottled water to clean your teeth. Wash your hands before eating; try and use restaurants that look reasonably clean. Fruit and vegetables should be washed or peeled. Only take ice in your drinks if it's the tubes or cubes - crushed ice may have been chipped off a big block of ice that has been kept in unsanitary conditions.
A: There are several companies offering expatriate health insurance in Cambodia. I don't know much of the details as their websites are useless, but one carrier is Forte Insurance. There was Indochine Insurance but the government-operated Caminco, under various err, strategies, forced them out of existence. If you opt for coverage with a Cambodia-based carrier make sure it covers evacuation and care in Thailand (or Singapore or Hong Kong) because if you have a major problem that's where you'll want to be.
A: Pizza Company and Swensen's Ice Cream are in both Phnom Penh and Siem Reap. KFC is in Phnom Penh and Dairy Queen is at the Phnom Penh Airport. Locally there us Lucky Burger/Lucky 7 in both Phnom Penh and Siem Reap and Sokimex Express also functions as a fast food joint. McDonald's is not here... yet
A: For detailed food recommendations and listings please see the relevant sections on the following toa guides: Siem Reap Phnom Penh Sihanoukville
A: In Phnom Penh just about any cuisine you can think of is represented somewhere by a restaurant and represented fairly well. Siem Reap also has a generous supply of western and other Asian cuisine restaurants though the quality of the food in Siem Reap tends to be tourist and not fine-dining. If Khmer food doesn't do it for you, you'll find plenty of satisfactory alternatives in either of these locations. Sihanoukville has plenty of eateries with western food, Kampot has a couple, and in Battambang there are a few places with western food as well. Anywhere else and you're going local.
A: Well, yes. Which is why I thought to include this question. And what should you do about it? Send the food back and complain? Well, you could, unfortunately this should not allow you to think that they'll still get it right. When I'm presented with something I didn't order, a common enough event, I determine first, is it something I feel like eating just the same? And second, will it cost me any more money? If the answers are respectively yes and no, then I just shut up and eat what they brought. However, if either answer is respectively no or yes then things get complicated. And trust me, sorting out a simple food order can become a real test of patience and resolve. And you probably think I'm exaggerating
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