If you are like us, you take out a certain amount of money from the ATM each time. This makes it easier to spot unusual transactions. The amount could be $100, $300 or whatever amount you choose. Try to stick with it for the duration of your trip.
Sometimes though, we find that we take out our usual amount out then have money left over when we head to a new country. We're not big fans of trying to spend money before leaving town. Unless of course we are in Bangkok and I get to buy Jimmy Choo shoes!
Back to the money issue at hand. We left Laos with a hefty wad of Laotian Kip. Money that we won't be needing again for a long time. We had exchanged some Lao Kip for Thai Baht at the train station in Nong Khai before heading to Bangkok but our wad of Kip was still too large to not do something with. We didn't want to be holding on to unusable cash.
We went to many currency exchange stalls and banks in Bangkok. Each said they could not accept Lao Kip. We thought that was very strange. One man in a currency exchange stall actually said that no bank or stall in Bangkok will exchange Lao Kip.
Great. What were we to do with all our Lao Kip? We had a great wad of Kip that we needed to get rid of.
I was not giving up. I went back to our hotel and did some good old fashioned Internet research. I read on Bangkok Bank's website that they do indeed exchange Lao Kip for Thai Baht. What a relief.
We headed to the nearest Bangkok Bank. As it was Sunday, the branch at Siam Square was open. We took our number and waited to be called.
The lady who served us explained that yes, Bangkok Bank does in fact exchange Lao Kip for Thai Baht. However, the notes needed to be 10,000 Kip or more in denomination and pristine. Fair enough. She also mentioned that the exchange rate really wasn't very good. From her tone I believe she wasn't particularly keen to exchange our Kip.
We ended up exchanging 820,000 LAK (Lao Kip) for exactly 2,878.20 THB (Thai Baht). Not bad. Not great. But we now had Thai Baht instead of Lao Kip. Any amount of money you can use is better than money you can't.
Bangkok Bank branches can be found all over Thailand. Click here to be taken to their website.