Let me start by saying you were wrong if you felt it’s just about tea plantations and magnificent beaches. There’s so much more – the tropical fruits, the temples, the people, the trains! No wonder it’s been one of the highlights of New Year! However, we have a few things to remember to take full advantage of our time in Sri Lanka and to leave behind all the concerns. This article will deal with those tricks and tips exactly!
1. Cash Bring!
Greater restaurants and hotels can accept cards, but the country still relies on cash. Many local shops selling local water bottles and snacks will only accept cash. It may be less costly for you to take cash off an ATM, and not to swipe your card anywhere, since every transaction typically has a fixed charge. I find it easier to withdraw the most cash an ATM can afford to use my U.S. debit card to pay cash everywhere. A fee of 300 – 500 LKR is added to each transaction. Money bills can be easily traded for all banks in all cities and can easily and very competitively convert your dollars or pound bills. Or for more ease, you can do that at Colombo Airport when you get to land. The average is 3-4% higher, but hey! Rather than wander the city to find an exchange of money, right?
2. Sign Language Master’s
Language in the country is a little bit of an obstacle. Just a few people know English reasonably well to send you the right road direction. Ok, the earlier your sign language is learned, the happier you are! You’ll find a Chauffeur speaking English if you’re lucky. But be prepared even then to speak slowly and raise the level of patience. And you’re going to behave like you heard what you had to say, and then take you to the wrong location! Often it can be overwhelming, but these are the little details that make your holiday unforgettable, right?
3. Airport sim purchase
Let’s be honest. Let’s really be real. Most of us update in real-time as we travel their Snapchats and Instagram posts. And we all are so used to Whatsapp’s call home that life without that mobile app seems incomplete. Keep linked to Colombo Airport and get a SIM card right at your destination. It’s not costly at all. It’s fantastic both Mobitel and Dialog. For 200 minutes I have charged LKR 1,300 and 8 GB of information for India (only 4 GB during the daytime and 4 GB after 12 AM). It helped me to be linked to my Instagram and to win 200 supporters during the 9-day ride! 😀 Have you ever visited the place without uploading a good picture?
4. Switch paper toilet and use a water bottle
Most public toilets (even the toilet at Airport Colombo!) are not incredibly well maintained, and they are very definitely out of toilet paper. Hygiene comes first, so don’t hesitate to take with you your toilet seat toilet sanitizer, toilet paper, and hand sanitization.
Bottled water is also inexpensive and convenient to use. There is no excuse not to purchase them! It’s humid land, too, Sri Lanka. I went to December and even then I sweated most of the time of day. May I therefore also take this chance to ask everyone to keep water hydrated? Well the good news, King coconut everywhere is if you think a bottle would weigh you down! – time you’re thirsty, have one. It’s safe and oh so cool!
5. Live like natives! Eat like locals!
When I visited India, I thought the food was nothing special here. Otherwise, I was pleasantly shocked. Yeah, as we Indians did, they use spices, but yet every dish of their own had more to offer than that. In most of their dishes, I would say that Malaysia has a very distinctive effect. They can make some kind of dish with cocoons, which is interesting! Coco sambal, a hot, grilled chocolate dish, a traditional coconut bread from Sri Lanka, there’s not a dish I didn’t like! Many people have to try – cocoa roti, prawn currant and rice, Kothu, Sri Lankan rolls, and Kabul roti.
6. Prepare for yourself!
The train service in Sri Lanka is very nice and very cheap. To give you an example, we have cost LKR 210, which is under $2! We travel from Kandy to Ella (7 hours). Tickets for the first class are marginally cheaper, but still very cheap! However be ready, particularly on the super-popular trains to Ella, Nuwara Eliya, and between Kandy and Colombo to fight for a seat of 2nd class.
Ok, on many routes they have also buses. I didn’t take the bus while I was there but they didn’t seem to have bags on buses. They’re also super cheap, but I would recommend avoiding them while traveling with a lot of luggage. Instead, go to the chauffeur-driven cabs and vehicles! It’s a luxury, particularly if you come from the west because we all know how costly it is to book a chauffeur! It will cost an estimated $50 monthly, with a daily limit of about 150 kilometers. You would have to pay a little more for every extra kilometer. Per kilometer, I charged USD 0.3. You might get a slightly higher rate if you pre-book via travel agencies, but should never argue for anything more than $65 a day. When you land from one of the city tour operators to save a few bucks, you can easily rent a taxi.
7. Tropical fruit concentration!
Well, if you’re one of those healthy eaters whose only regret is the fast food you have on your trip in Sri Lanka, guess what you’re lucky. The nation well knows the fruits and does not miss an opportunity to flaunt them. If you want to have breakfast or cocoon rot, or after dinner as a dessert. You’re always around you to find beautiful, sweet, and juicy fruits. If not on your plate, in the local shops on displays! Yeah, with their bananas, they don’t know what’s special about them, but they’re tiny and taste so different and much better than the big ones we typically get in India! I decided to practically get home a few dozen. They are all too badly destroyed L
8. Touch the Tuktuks forever!
Well outside Colombo, there is no Uber in Sri Lanka, because I’ve penned this post. So if you want to fly short distances, Tuktuks are your best friend. The great news is really easy to get. The bad news is that they will initially quote you for an unfair amount. For short distances, like a 10 minute and three kilometers, I would suggest that as a guideline, try to get him down to LKR 200 and LKR 500 to much longer distances, like a 25 minute and 7-8 km journey. Even if it might seem to many of us that too, I personally couldn’t have a better deal. But hey, if you’re a better dealer than me, worth a shot!
9. Try snacks at home
I don’t know about you but besides local food, I have now become a tradition and hobby for scanning the supermarkets in any new place I visit. I feel you’re finding some exciting new local snacks. And what’s your holiday unless you take a bit of pleasure?
In the Sri Lankan supermarkets, one of the most fascinating items I find is the Ginger cookies. Fell so deeply in love with them that I have some of them home. Sweet and spicy. Sweet. And while in India I have ginger cookies, they certainly haven’t been that cheap or that cute! Any other stuff you can try is your tasty snacks and names, most of which are great spicy. They also have several products focused on jaggery. Oh and don’t even suggest buying western snacks, including Lays Chips because in the country they are super pricey. Sri Lanka knows how its local products can be marketed. I don’t complain about J
10. Online Visa Don’t Pay
You may already have found that you only need an online visa for traveling to Sri Lanka. When I tried to find a website for Visa, this other website came up first which cost me an extra fee instead of the official website. I was a little disgusted, investigated, and found that he is a travel agent. Possibly well promoted, and thus their website is accessible on Google’s official website. It’s not a fake website and cannot be downgraded. However, they charge extra for your visa, which isn’t really necessary. Because you’re filling in the same shape!