20121009 PPSC Rose Medical Elective Program Useful Info v2 by zhouwenjuan


									PPSC/Rose Medical Elective Program

Useful Information
1. Understanding the projects

Please do some research before you go to Cambodia to understand the project sites and project
objectives as well as the Rose Charities network. The following websites and links will help you to do
      http://www.rosecambodia.org
      http://www.roserehab.org
      http://rosecharities.org
      http://www.rosecharities.org.au
      http://www.rosecanada.info
      http://rosecharities.us/home
      http://www.rose-charities.org
      http://www.facebook.com/RoseCharitiesInternational
      http://www.rosestudent.blogspot.com.au

Please note that there are no formal programs run for the purpose of teaching medical students
directly, instead students just join in the daily activities. The projects cover rehabilitation surgery, eye
surgery/ophthalmology and rehabilitative physiotherapy.

2. What you need to do and take to Cambodia

       Email the Medical Elective Student Administrator, Sophak Chim to ask permission to be a
        part of the PPSC/Rose Medical Elective program in Cambodia and coordinate dates;
       Waiver and Child Protection Code of Conduct, read carefully and fill in the student waiver
        and sign it as well as the Code of Conduct and send a scanned copy to Sophak Chim at
       Travel Insurance, make sure you have good travel and health insurance which covers all
       Travel Medicine, make sure you consult and comply with your local travel medicine clinic
        instructions with regards to inoculations/medications etc for Cambodia and ensure you know
        where to access medical assistance while in Cambodia (suggestion:
        http://www.internationalsos.com/en/about-our-clinics_cambodia_35.htm )
       Travel Advisories, make sure you are updated on all travel advisories for the region before
        you go;
       Embassy, make sure you know where your countries’ embassy is located;
       Medical Student Reference, take a letter from your University confirming you are a bonafide
        medical student with you and send a copy to Sophak Chim (ppsc.medpro@gmail.com)
        before you arrive;
       Payment, in order for the Rose projects to continue their important work, we require a small
        fee from Medical Elective students. The costs are imposed on a sliding scale, one week - $90,
        two weeks - $170, three weeks - $220, 4 weeks - $250, 5 weeks - $280 and 6 weeks - $300.
        Each student can stay with the program for a maximum of 6 weeks. Payments can be made
        to the Programs’ Liaison Officer upon arrival in Cambodia in cash.
       Write a small entry during or after your trip for the Rose Charities student blogsite. It can be
        as short as two lines or as long as you like but it is really important for we at Rose (and other
        students who are planning visits) to keep up to date and get feedback (good or bad). The

PPSC/Rose Medical Elective Program

        writing can be just in the form of an email or a full attachment. Please send to Sophak Chim
        at ppsc.medpro@gmail.com.

3. Managing Expectations

Rose has only recently partnered with PPSC to provide a medical elective program. There will be
teething problems and it is important that you provide feedback on your experience so we can
improve the program. We only take two students at a time with the possibility of taking 3 students
with extenuating circumstances – this is both to protect your own experience and to ensure that
there are not too many volunteers there at any one time – the doctors are busy and have a lot of
responsibility and can’t manage a huge volunteer load.

Please note that Cambodian culture is very different to western culture and the ideas around
scheduling and timetables are on the more casual side to what westerners are often used to.
Cambodians are quite shy and polite and won’t push you to do things. It is up to you to take
opportunities where they present. You will enjoy things more if you are outgoing and show initiative.
Don’t be pushy though, in Cambodian culture it is very rude. Remember that this is not a formal
medical elective program and that your experience will be largely as an observer to everyday

Please dress respectfully, especially if you attend a families’ home or visit small villages. Knees and
shoulders should be covered despite the heat. Doctors and medical staff are looked up to in
Cambodia, please do not let them down.

If you are not having a good time, or feel in any way insecure, please leave the project – you could
take the opportunity to see Cambodia as a country. Please be considerate to the staff, they are
inevitably trying their best but Cambodia is a place where even the best laid plans can go awry (which
is also part of the charm of the country!). Be prepared for this and make the best of things that do

If you have strong religious beliefs it is your entitlement to do so, but keep in mind that so do others.
Rose projects are not affiliated to any one religion and you must respect this or you will be asked to
leave the project.

Cambodia is a relatively safe country but nowhere is ever entirely safe. We would prefer female
students, if possible to come with a fellow male or female student. This is not an absolute
requirement but often students like to go on elective anyway with a friend or partner. Women in
Cambodia have considerably more status than many other developing countries, but nevertheless,
some men may still have a tendency to look down on women and try to exploit them (can happen
anywhere not just Cambodia of course). The more liberal cultures of the western countries can clash
a little in anywhere with more conservative/traditional values.

4. Traffic Accidents

There is a continual increase in road traffic accidents, particularly out of town where the driving can
be frenetic and in dangerously maintained or simply unsafe vehicles. Overland taxis are particularly
bad, being overloaded and extremely dangerous. We strongly advise you to be very careful in how
you choose to travel.


PPSC/Rose Medical Elective Program

We are not trying to scare you but it is important to know the reality of travel in Cambodia – this can
be avoided by being aware of some of the dangers and using trusted drivers that your hotel or the
Student Administrator or Project Liaison Officer can help you with.

The following warning may help:

Car/motorbike crashes are common and are usually bad, especially outside of Phnom Penh, where
traffic makes speeds slower. People drive too fast and are nearly always driving in rickety, badly
maintained vehicles which would be banned from the roads in many other countries. Don’t get
trapped into being in a dangerous driving situation. Tell the driver to slow down, even pay him to do
so, and if he does not, then get him to stop the vehicle and find another one. Ask around before you
go with any particular driver. Shared overland taxis overcrowd their vehicles (putting up to 8 or 9
people in small cars), don’t use them. It is much safer and not very expensive to pay for the whole
vehicle and insist absolutely that they drive slowly. Crashes at speed will kill you!!

Sarah writes..."About 30 mins in we had a bit of a reality check, there was a crowd gathered as we
came to an intersection, which almost always means one thing…an accident. We drove past slowly to
avoid the crowd and I was just waiting to see something I didn’t want to see...the people involved in
the crash. Luckily there was no people there, just the aftermath from the bikes…one was ripped in
half, the front wheel completely missing, there was debris everywhere and a fitting reminder of what
can happen, especially if not dressed appropriately…a pair of thongs were the only sign of the driver.
We all fell silent as we passed and I was glad to be driven by girls that were very careful with their
speed, a bit different to the young boys around town."

Please read the following:

       3 persons die every day from road traffic accidents in Cambodia;
       Road traffic fatalities have doubled over the last three years;
       Traffic increases by more than 10% every year;
       Cambodia has the second highest road traffic fatality rate (number of fatalities/10,000
        vehicles) in the region. This rate is ten times higher than in developed countries and twice as
        high than the ASEAN average;
       18% of road traffic casualties reported in Cambodia occur in Phnom Penh;
       People aged between 15 and 24 years old account for 48% of casualties although they
        represent only 24% of the population;
       Males account for 71% of casualties, although they account for only 48% of the population;
       Motorcyclists (76%) account for the large majority of casualties, followed by pedestrians
        (9%) and car users (7%);
       Students represent the largest group of casualties (22.5% of casualties), followed by workers
        (22%) and vendors/small businesses (18%);
       In total, more than 4% of casualties die either at the scene of the accident or of their
       later (an average of 17 fatalities per month);
       In total, 65% of casualties suffer from head injuries, 9% of them are considered as severe,
        80% of casualties suffering from head injuries are motorbike users. Among them, only 4.39%
        are wearing a helmet at the time of the accident;
       A higher number of casualties occur on Saturdays and Sundays, especially during night time;
       Night time accidents are responsible for 39% of casualties;
       Two peaks of casualties are observed: at noon and at 9 pm;

PPSC/Rose Medical Elective Program

           Alcohol/drug abuse is responsible for 15% of casualties;
           In total, human error is responsible for more than 90% of casualties;
           Motorbike-motorbike collisions are responsible for 36% of the casualties, followed by
            motorbike-car collisions (25%) and motorbike-pedestrian collisions (6%);
           6% of motorbike casualties fell alone;
           An average of 3.6 persons are involved and 2.1 are injured in each accident.

Finally, please remember that all Rose Charities organizations are independent and separate.
Although communication may be facilitated between you and the project organization, this does not
mean that you have been given permission to be there by anyone, other than the (independent) field
organization itself.

Cambodia Tips & Hints

Please note that these tips and hints have been compiled by foreigners that have spent some time
in Cambodia and from the Lonely Planet Guidebooks – information changes extremely rapidly and
we would appreciate you emailing the Student Administrator any updates for this document so we
can keep it as up to date as possible.

1. Cambodia

Popular “Travel Bible”, Lonely Planet describes Cambodia as such, “Welcome to the conundrum that
is Cambodia: a country with a history both inspiring and depressing, an intoxicating place where the
future is waiting to be shaped”.1 They go on to say, “The years of fear and loathing are finally over
and Angkor is once more the symbol of the nation, drawing pilgrims from across the globe. Peace has
come to this beautiful yet blighted land after three decades of war, and the Cambodian people have
opened their arms to the world. Tourism has well and truly taken off, yet a journey here remains an
adventure as much as a holiday”.2

Some “Fast Facts” about Cambodia include:3

             Infant mortality
              95 per 1000 births
             GDP
              US$8.3 billion (2007)
             Adult literacy rate
             Number of tourists per year
              2 million and rising
             Population
              About 15 million
             Life expectancy
              58 years


PPSC/Rose Medical Elective Program

          Annual freshwater fish catch
           290, 000–430, 000 tonnes per year
          Number of psychiatrists in Cambodia
          Number of monks in Cambodia
           60, 000

1.1 Recent Cambodian History

Following Japanese occupation in World War II, Cambodia (formerly Kampuchea) became
independent within the French Union in 1949 and fully independent in 1953. During the Vietnam
War, Cambodia was heavily bombed by American planes, as North Vietnamese soldiers were
suspected of operating within Cambodia’s borders. The bombing weakened Cambodia's defence
system and government. After a five-year struggle, Communist Khmer Rouge forces captured Phnom
Penh in April 1975 and ordered the evacuation of all cities and towns. At least 1.5 million
Cambodians died from execution, enforced hardships, or starvation during the Khmer Rouge regime
under Pol Pot. A December 1978 Vietnamese invasion drove the Khmer Rouge into the countryside,
which led to a 10-year Vietnamese occupation, almost 13 years of civil war and an ensuing famine.

The 1991 Paris Peace Accords mandated democratic elections and a ceasefire, which was not fully
respected by the Khmer Rouge. UN-sponsored elections in 1993 assisted in restoring some
semblance of normalcy and the final elements of the Khmer Rouge surrendered in early 1999.
Factional fighting in 1997 ended the first coalition government, but a second round of national
elections in 1998 led to the formation of another coalition government and renewed political
stability. The July 2003 elections were relatively peaceful, but one year of negotiations were required
between contending political parties before a coalition government was formed. National elections
were held in 2008 and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) was re-elected.

1.2 Social and Economic Conditions in Cambodia Today

The following information lends a context to the establishment of Rose Charities’ medical programs
in Cambodia. While the political landscape appears to be entering a period of stability, the country is
still suffering, and is characterised by the following:

          one of the highest poverty rates in the South-East Asia region;
          significantly weakened infrastructure (almost totally lacking in the countryside, with 75%
           of the population remaining engaged in subsistence farming);
          40% of the population living below the poverty line;
          an estimated 600,000 unexploded landmines – with more than 40,000 Cambodians having
           suffered amputations as a result of mine injuries since 1979, representing an average of
           nearly 40 victims a week for a period of 20 years. This problem is preventing many
           Cambodian farmers sowing crops;
          an infant mortality rate of 95/1,000, four times higher than in neighbouring Vietnam or
           Thailand (more than 50,000 children under the age of five die in Cambodia each year);
          significant child starvation, with 53% of Cambodian children malnourished, 17% of those
          life expectancy of only 58 years;
          a female basic literacy rate of only 55%; and
          one of the most serious HIV/AIDS infection rates in South-East Asia.


PPSC/Rose Medical Elective Program

Rose Charities operates three medical-based programs in Cambodia, the Rose Rehabilitative Surgical
Program, the Rose Cambodia Rehabilitation Centre and the Rose Cambodia Eye Clinic.

The Rose Rehabilitative Surgery Program now located at the Preah Kettomelea Surgery Centre (PPSC)
undertakes free surgical procedures to improve quality of life and relieve suffering in Cambodia. The
clinic performs approximately 350 simple surgeries a year that include:

       cleft lip and palate repairs;
       land-mine amputation remodelling for fitting artificial limbs;
       burn relief including acid burn victims;
       correcting limb and other deformities;
       conducting training for Cambodian physicians in new surgical techniques & procedures; and
       training pre & post operative surgical staff.

This clinic has only recently moved to PPSC in Phnom Penh. All treatments are free of charge and are
provided by a skilled Cambodian team led by Cambodia’s leading plastic surgeon, Dr Nous Sarom.

If a child was born with a cleft palate in the developed world, they would receive surgery within days
of birth. In Cambodia many parents cannot afford this surgery and their baby faces a childhood of
suffering. A baby with cleft palate can have difficulty nursing, malnutrition and recurring ear and
throat infections. The facial deformity exposes the child to persecution and neglect. Many assume
that he or she is mentally retarded. A cleft palate operation costs just $USD150 (2009).

Rose Cambodia Rehabilitation Centre (RCRC) provides rehabilitation for marginalised Cambodian
children and community members with disability, illness or injury. RCRC provides a high quality
rehabilitation centre and physiotherapy service at Chey Chumneas Referral Hospital in Takhmau on
the outskirts of Phnom Penh. RCRC also provides outreach services to those in the surrounding
villages. During your stay with PPSC you are able to request a one day visit to RCRC.

RCRC provides physical rehabilitation services at the hospital and in the community that compliment
surgical and non-surgical rehabilitation. Complex surgical consultations are referred to Dr Nous
Sarom and other surgical staff at the National Pediatric Hospital. RCRC works:

       closely with government health services and provide training for local medical staff, nurses
        and therapists in the benefits of physiotherapy to increase the positive outcomes for their
        patients and increase their access to physiotherapy services.
       To provide therapy services for free
       To hold education and disability awareness sessions in the community to prevent
        unnecessary disability and to promote inclusion for all people.

The Rose Charities Cambodia Eye Clinic provides free eye treatment for the poor of Cambodia
including sight restoration surgery and prevention of blindness procedures, eye tests and glasses. The
clinic achieves the following remarkable services:

       treats approximately 1500 patients/month for eye diseases, eye infections and injuries;
       performs over 100 cataract and other sight restoring surgeries/month;
       provides approximately 1500 people/month with screenings for eye diseases such as
       provides approximately 4000 people/month with information regarding eye care; and

PPSC/Rose Medical Elective Program

       provides approximately 1000 people/month with eye tests and glasses.

This clinic is the largest free eye clinic in Cambodia and is open to everyone. It is run by a skilled
Cambodian team led by Dr. Hang Vra and is supported by visiting experts from new Zealand, Canada
and Nepal. This enables the clinic to maintain high levels of expertise and service on a very small
budget. The total cost of the clinic is approximately $USD3000/month. During your stay with PPSC,
you are able to request a one week visit to this Eye Clinic.

For many Cambodians, healthcare is largely unavailable. When a person is blind in Cambodia, the
whole family suffers. A blind man cannot work, his wife has to limit her work to stay home and look
after him. A child is taken from school to act as his guide. The loss of income puts the extended
family into poverty. With a simple cataract surgery, the family is restored. With more funding, Rose
Eye Clinic could easily double the number of surgeries a year as there is a long waiting list of blind
people who could have their sight restored with simple surgery. A cataract operation costs only
$USD25 to perform.

2. Quick Cultural Hints

The word used to describe people from Cambodian heritage is “Khmer”. The word used to describe
the Cambodian Language is “Khmer” or “Kmai”.

Khmer names are usually written in the opposite order to Western names, ie. Sok Rady (Family
Name/First Name) and it is usual to call people by Mr/Ms/Miss (First Name), for example Mr Rady.
This can get very confusing for Western visitors, especially when names are unfamiliar and when it is
difficult to guess the gender of someone from their name. People are also often referred to by an
honorific title such as the Khmer translation for words such as Aunty (Ming), Uncle (Bong), Elder
Brother (Pu), etc.

3. Arriving in Cambodia

There are two airports in Cambodia which receive International flights, one in Phnom Penh
(Pochentong) and one in Siem Reap. A number of well-known international airlines fly to these
airports and a number of low-cost airlines, such as Air Asia and Jetstar have begun to fly to these two
airports from regional centres like Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok and Singapore.

There are three overland entry points to Cambodia, from Laos, from Vietnam and from Bangkok. The
Cambodian towns closest to the main border crossings are Stung Treng in the North East for Laos,
Poipet in the North West for Bangkok and Svay Rieng in the South East for Vietnam.

Please see http://www.lonelyplanet.com/cambodia/transport/getting-there-away for more
information on transport to Cambodia.

3.1 Visa On Arrival

Visas on arrival can be obtained at the Visa Counter upon arrival at Cambodia International Airports
in Phnom Penh and Siem Reap. Please note that not all foreign passport holders can apply for a visa

PPSC/Rose Medical Elective Program

on arrival, therefore, they should check with the nearest Royal Embassy of Cambodia in your home
country for the specific visa requirements for your country.

A visa application form can be filled out upon arrival but you must have a passport that is valid for at
least 4 months from the expiry date. If you have a recent (4x6) passport photograph, it can be
attached to the visa form but if you don’t have a photo, just pay an extra $2 on top of the fee
payment. Visa payments need to b e made in USD and is $USD20 for a tourist visa.

Visas can also be obtained at some of the overland border crossings but check for up to date
information as the requirements do sometimes change.

3.2 Transportation from Airport to Town

Some hotels will organize a transfer from the airport when you book with them but it is very easy to
find transportation when you walk out of the airport, a taxi costs a fixed $USD9 from the airport into
Phnom Penh city. A Tuk Tuk costs a fixed $USD7 from the airport to Phnom Penh and can sometimes
be negotiated a little bit cheaper if you walk outside to the street to wave one down instead of
grabbing an airport approved vehicle. You are able to request airport pickup from the program’s
Student Administrator, Sophak Chim if you would like it.

4. Leaving Cambodia
There is no longer a Passenger Service Charge to leave Cambodia – this has just changed in the last
couple of months.

5. Phnom Penh Accommodation

There are an abundance of hotel options in Phnom Penh, ranging from Backpacker
Hostels to 5 star hotels. Some popular areas are Boueng Keng Kang (BKK) or Riverside.

BKK is near the Independence Monument and is where most of the NGO’s and the expatriates are
based. Street 278, otherwise known as “Golden Street” is a safe bet. The hotels are basic but clean
and are all around $USD15-18 for a single room and $USD22-$25 for a twin/double room. The Goldie
Guesthouse is around the corner on Street 57 and has good rooms for $USD18-35 with wireless
internet access in the rooms. See http://www.goldieguesthouse.com for more information.

The Frangipani Villa Hotel Group have 3 options in Phnom Penh, The Frangipani Villa 60s seems to be
a good compromise between basic and expensive ($35-50) and is centrally located near the
Independence Monument. Located on Mao Tse Tung Boulevard which is central but not all that close
to restaurants and tourist areas, the Frangipani Villa 90s has rooms between $40-60. The Frangipani
Fine Arts Hotel is located closer to the Riverside area and is more expensive ($70-80). See
http://www.frangipanihotel.com for more information. The 252 Hotel is centrally located near
Independence Monument and has rooms for between $45-55 and has a nice swimming pool area.
See http://www.the-252.com for more information.

Riverside, which as the name suggests, is an area which looks over the Tonle Bassac River and is the
main tourist area. This area is quite expensive and unfortunately does not often have the quality to
match. A better option for more up-market accommodation is around Street 240 where there are a
number of French run hotels. The Pavilion is a popular hotel which has a swimming pool ($40-90).
See http://www.thepavilion.asia for more information. Otherwise there is the Kabiki which is more

PPSC/Rose Medical Elective Program

family orientated hotel, owned by the same French couple as The Pavilion and located just around
the corner, prices are similar to The Pavilion. See http://www.thekabiki.com for more information.
Street 240 boasts some beautiful restaurants and good shops. Blue Lime is their 3rd hotel and also has
a pool, it is a more modern hotel, with prices around $USD40-75 and is located between BKK and
Riverside and is very close to good restaurants and bars. See http://www.bluelime.asia for more
information. Villa Langka is also a good option and has a pool, it is located closer to Golden Street in
the BKK area, prices vary between $USD45-120. See http://www.villalangka.com for more

6. Money

An extract taken from Lonely Planet:

6.1 ATMs

There are ATMs (Visa and MasterCard only) in most major cities. Most of them, particularly the ANZ
Royal machines will work with Australian and other International ATM cards but they will charge you
quite a hefty sum so it’s best to take out quite a bit of money at a time. Travelcards which are
available through Australian banks (and perhaps other International banks) are actually more
economical and you can load your complete budget on to the card and take small amounts out so
you are not carrying too much cash on you – the fees are a lot less than for just a normal ATM card.
Machines dispense US dollars. Large withdrawals of up to US$2000 are possible, providing your
account can handle it. Stay alert when using them late at night. ANZ Royal Bank has the most
extensive network, including ATMs at petrol stations and popular hotels, restaurants and shops,
closely followed by Canadia Bank. Acleda Bank has the widest network of branches in the country,
including all provincial capitals, and many have ATMs which will take international cards.

6.2 Cash

The US dollar remains king in Cambodia. Armed with enough cash, you won’t need to visit a bank at
all because it is possible to buy most things with USD. It is not really worth changing money to riel
however you will often get change in riel and this is handy to pay tuk tuk and motodop drivers. If you
are in a rural town, riel will probably be used more widely but it is always possible to change USD for
riel at small shops or in the market. It is handy to have small USD denominations as the locals are
quite suspicious of bigger amounts than $20. Bigger amounts will be able to be broken at your hotel
or perhaps if you shop at Lucky Supermarket or a large chain store or restaurant.

7. Phnom Penh

7.1. Personal Safety in Phnom Penh

As a rule it is best not to go out at night on your own if you can avoid it. Bag snatching is frequent
from motorbikes and tuk tuks although it is unusual and you shouldn’t have any problems if you keep
your wits about you and don’t flaunt the fact that you have cash of expensive equipment with you.
Hold bags tightly, and whenever possible make them less obvious by holding them in front of you on
motorbikes or covering them in your lap on a tuk tuk.

7.2. Internet in Phnom Penh


PPSC/Rose Medical Elective Program

Internet is readily available in Phnom Penh, prices can vary but Internet cafes tend to range between
3000r – $USD1/hour, depending on connection speed and the ISP. Many cafes all over Phnom Penh
now offer “free” high speed wireless connections using your own laptop usually with the purchase of
a drink or meal.

7.3. Telephones in Phnom Penh

Mobile phones are widely used in Cambodia, even in very isolated, rural areas. The use of a
Cambodian mobile phone will cost the following:

       Phone - buy a mobile for around $USD50 - 80 (depending on functionality)
       Sim Card - $USD8 (most ex-pats use Mobitel with 012 or 092 numerical prefix)
       Phone cards - $USD5, $10, $20 and $50 cards can be purchased from kiosks around town

Calling Internationally can be extremely expensive from a landline or mobile alike. On average it is
about $USD3/minute. The best option is to use a Net2Phone calling booth at one of the internet
cafes or to use Skype technology online wherever there is internet access. Cafés charge between
$USD0.25 and $USD1/minute to use their Net2Phone accounts. If you use Skype to Skype it is free, or
you can use Skype to call landlines or mobiles overseas at a discounted rate which is charged to your
credit card. The conversations on online technology can be delayed due to the internet speed,
however people become accustomed to this quite quickly.

7.4. Postal Services in Phnom Penh

There is never certainty of the mail system in Cambodia. The only advice here is “good luck”. You
may receive and send items from the General Post Office near Wat Phnom, however there is no
receipt for any item being sent or being received. It is recommended that mail be directed via
somewhere in Phnom Penh such as an office rather than a hotel or home, as usually this is a more
reliable means of receiving mail.

7.5 Public transport in Phnom Penh

Buses: In Phnom Penh there is no public transport like a public bus system, buses only travel
between the capital and the provinces.

Taxis: These are a more expensive form of transport in Phnom Penh and a short trip will cost
between $USD5 - 10. Marked taxi vehicles are just becoming more prominent in the capital, however
most taxis are unmarked sedans and therefore have certain security issues attached.

Cyclos: As in other countries in the region there are cyclos for hire in Phnom Penh and other parts of
Cambodia. This is a relaxing and nice way to get around, particularly for sightseeing; however, the
cost can be higher than other forms of transport, about 3000r for a short trip.

Moto: This is the most common & the cheapest form of transport in Cambodia. You can expect to
pay 2000r-$USD1 for a short trip around Phnom Penh. Moto drivers are called Motodops and are
usually friendly people who like to chat with their passengers. It is best to have a moto driver who
drives you regularly as they then know the routes you travel and are trustworthy. You can then ask
for their phone number so you can call them when you want them to pick you up. Drivers will pick
you up at arranged times for work or social gatherings upon negotiation and if their schedule allows.
                                                   - 10 -

PPSC/Rose Medical Elective Program

It is always advisable to wear a motorcycle helmet when riding on motos as they are the largest
cause of accidents in Cambodia. Helmets can be bought in Cambodia for around $USD7 – 40, but you
get what you pay for. It is advisable if you are in Cambodia for an extended time that you bring a
good motorbike helmet from home.

Tuk Tuk: These are also very common now and can seat 4 people comfortably and up to 10 people
uncomfortably! You can usually flag a tuk tuk down anywhere in Phnom Penh and the cost is around
$USD2 for most trips, or around $USD1 per person for groups of 3-5. It is best not to negotiate
before you get in the tuk tuk as they will know immediately that you are a tourist. If you just get in
and then give them $USD2 when you get out it is best. They will ask you for more money if it is a
particularly long trip, however usually they will just accept whatever you give them. If you ask them
how much, they will ask for an inflated price.

Air: For domestic travel in Cambodia there are two airlines. Phnom Penh Airways and Siem Reap
Airways. An average trip from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap will cost you about $USD100.

7.6 Private Transport in Phnom Penh

Bicycle: Bicycles are cheaply available in Phnom Penh. A strong and well-cared for pushbike can cost
between $USD35 - 50. The only problem is making sure yours does not go missing. A strong chain
and padlock is recommended for use in Phnom Penh and if possible it should be locked up behind
gates at night. Some areas will have parking stations, this can cost between 200-500r per time.
Bicycle helmets are not widely available in Cambodia and are essential in Phnom Penh traffic, it is a
good idea to bring one from home or some people wear their motorbike helmet.

Walking: This is safe during daylight hours although locals will look at you with interest. Khmer
people rarely walk anywhere due to the hot and wet weather conditions, and Cambodia does not
have a particularly outdoor walking culture like other countries. You will also be asked constantly if
you require a moto or tuk tuk.

7.7. Places to Eat in Phnom Penh

The following options are local style cheap options:

Central Market at 5pm for BBQ, seafood or the food hall for lunch
Russian market for breakfast/lunch/coffee
Khmer BBQ just about anywhere
Boat noodle - $USD1 lunch

Here is a list of recommended affordable dining options, there is a mixture of Khmer and Western
cuisines listed, all can be found in the “Drinking Dining” Guides that you see around Phnom Penh,
which is a great source for up to date information on restaurants, with maps:

Friends Café (teach hospitality to street children) – Street 215
Romdeng (teach hospitality to street children) – Street 174
The Shop (Western Café, good for Breakfast, Lunch) – Street 240
Khmer Kitchen (Khmer food) – Street 310
Garden Centre Café (Western food, very big breakfasts) – Street 57
Anise Terrace (Khmer and Western Food) – Street 278
                                                    - 11 -

PPSC/Rose Medical Elective Program

Flavours of India (Indian Food) – Street 63
Saffron (Middle Eastern Food) – Street 278
Setsara (Thai Food) – Street 278
Khmer Surin (Khmer Food) – Street 57
Knyay (Khmer Food – can order vegan/vegetarian) – Sumarith Blvd

You will find a number of very expensive restaurants, some located at hotels such as the Sunway
Hotel near Wat Phnom, which offers what is considered to be one of the best Buffet-meals in the
country. Raffles Hotel offers an amazing seafood buffet on a Friday night for $USD25, all you can eat.
There are also a number of small restaurants such as Tamarind – Moroccan food - on St 240 where a
meal can cost between $USD7 – 15 as well as a number of Japanese and Korean restaurants where
you can pay $USD10 -20 per meal. One of the best Japanese restaurants is Origami (Sothearos
Boulevard) where proceeds from the place go to support local community programs. Metro Café,
down at riverside has a very good menu for dinner, which is an Asian fusion tapas style for around
$USD5 a plate. Their western style cooked breakfast offered on a Sunday morning is also delicious
but a little on the pricey side.

For those interested in enjoying value meals one of the best places to eat in Phnom Penh for a very
reasonable amount (about USD$1 per plate) is the “Boat Noodle Restaurant” (Cnr Sts 63 & 288) and
St. 294.

If you feel adventurous then take a walk along the riverside in the early evening and take a seat in
one of the many street vendors who offer local foods…or sit down at one of the “blue plastic chair”
beer gardens that you see around the city.

7.8 Places to Shop in Phnom Penh

Supermarkets: There are a number of medium sized supermarkets in Phnom Penh. The largest
chains are Lucky Supermarkets and Pencil Supermarkets. Pencil is slightly cheaper but there will be
some products you can only get at Lucky and some you can only get at Pencil. The biggest Lucky is on
Sihanouk Blvd and another one is inside the Sorya Mall, there is a Pencil on Street 214. There are no
major supermarkets in the provinces.

Markets: In Phnom Penh there are at least six large markets at which you can buy fresh fruit and
vegetables, meat, noodles, etc as well as house-hold items, kitchen appliances and tools. Clothes are
very cheap and readily available although keep in mind that there are no places for trying on outfits.
Sizes of clothes are irregular and although most of the items for sale are for export the sizes are
smaller than usual western sizes so if you plan to go shopping for clothes, be ready for it to take
some time to know what you can get that fits, where. The best place to shop for souvenirs, jewellery
and clothes is at the Russian Market (Psaa Toul Tompong) on the corner of Streets 163 and 444. The
“Russian” market is a ‘foreigner’ market and sells clothes including fashion labels, jewellery,
CDs/DVDs, silks, household items, and just about anything you can think of. Central Market is a more
local market and sells new clothes, second-hand clothes, electronics, sunglasses, jewellery, watches,
flowers, fruit and vegetables. Olympic Market has a wide array of good-quality cheap materials and
silks. Boueng Keng Kang Market has second-hand clothes, good handbags, fruit and vegetables.
Oreussey Market has a wide array of good-quality cheap materials and silks. All of the markets are
worth a look and you will be surprised at the new things you will discover each time you visit them.

Convenience Stores: There are Star-Marts, alias 7-11’s at Caltex Service Stations.

                                                   - 12 -

PPSC/Rose Medical Elective Program

7.9 Medical Options in Phnom Penh

Doctors: For medical services offered by foreign doctors in English you can visit the International
SOS Clinic (#161, Street 51) Tel: 023 216 911 or the NAGA Medical Clinic (#11, Street 242) Tel: 012
767 505.

Pharmacies: Pharmacie de la Gare (Train Station Pharmacy) located near the Central Train Station on
Monivong Boulevard, has the widest range of medicines at reasonable prices. The staff speak English
and French. Another alternative is the NAGA Pharmacy which is at the Hong Kong Centre but it is
very expensive. UCare pharmacies provide slightly more expensive, yet genuine medications. Be
careful taking medical advice from ‘pharmacists’, prescriptions such as antifungal cream for
headaches are not uncommon. Also be wary of local pharmacies, the quality is in line with the price,
so although you are getting very cheap medication, it is not always the medication it is being
advertised as.

7.10 Things to Do in Phnom Penh

 Ten Pin Bowling – Parkway Bowling Alley (Mao Tse Tung Blvd).
 Cinema – French Cultural Centre offers free movie showings in French several times a week.
    Popzone, run by ‘Friends Restaurant’ has started regular movie screenings on Thursday evenings.
    Recently a new cinema has opened that shows some western movies at the Pencil Supermarket
    complex near the riverside.

 FCC (Sisowath Blvd)
 Equinox (Street 278)
 Rubies Wine Bar (Street 240)
 Elsewhere (Street 278)

 Heart of Darkness (Street 51)
 Spark (Mao Tse Tung Blvd)
 Mao’s (Sisowath Blvd)

 Intercontinental - 15m outdoor swimming pool, gym (Mao Tse Toung Blvd).
 Himawari - 25m outdoor swimming pool, gym, 2 tennis courts (Sisowath Blvd).
 Imperial Gardens, 18m outdoor swimming pool, baby pool, gym, 2 tennis courts, (Sisowath Blvd)
    - $USD72/month.
 Parkway - 20m indoor swimming pool, gym, 2 tennis courts, (Mao Tse Tung Blvd) -
 VIP – 20m outdoor swimming pool, baby pool, gym, sauna, steam room, 4 tennis courts,
    (Norodom Blvd) - $USD40/month.

Many of the gyms located in the hotels offer aerobic classes. If you are a keen yoga fan, Himawari
offers classes three times a week. If you join most of the fitness clubs for more than a month, it
usually works out to save you money. Soccer, touch football and netball teams hold regular training
sessions during the week and games on the weekends.
                                                   - 13 -


To top