The BRUNEI resources Website
++ Brunei Leaders ++
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Customs: Passengers will not be charged duty for carrying up to 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars or 227 grams of tobacco; two bottles of liquor plus 12 cans of beer (only for non-Muslims); and a reasonable quantity of perfumes.
Visas: German, Malaysians, Singaporeans and British nationals with right of abode in the United Kingdom and New Zealand are exempted from the requirement to obtain a visa for visits not exceeding 30 days. American passport holders can enter Brunei Darussalam for three months without visas. For nationals of Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Republic of Maldives, The Netherlands, Norway, Oman, The Philippines, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand and The Principality of Liechtenstein, visas are waived for 14-day visits. Nationals of Australia are issued visas on arrival at the Brunei International Airport for visits not exceeding 14 days.
All other visitors entering Brunei Darussalam must have visas obtainable from any Brunei Darussalam diplomatic mission abroad. This Visas are normally issued for a two-week stay but can be renewed in Brunei. Visitors must hold onward tickets or sufficient funds to support themselves while in the country.
N.B. For more details please contact your nearest Brunei Embassy or diplomatic representative.
Transportation: The airport is about 11 kilometres from the capital. Taxis, car rentals and buses are available.
Currency: The Brunei dollar is on a par with the Singapore dollar, which is also accepted in Brunei. Banks, hotels and many department stores will cash travellerís cheques. Some banks provide automated tellers linked to global access systems.
Clothing: Light clothing is advisable as the climate is generally warm and humid. Women are asked to dress modestly in keeping with local custom.
Language: Malay is the official language but English is widely used. Other languages include Chinese and its dialect variants and other indigenous dialects. Although the official religion is Islam, other faiths including Christianity and Buddhism are practised.
Health: Doctors provide private medical services for a nominal charge. There are a number of state health clinics and hospitals.
Credit cards: Hotels, department stores and other major establishments generally accept all internationally known credit cards.
Tipping: Optional. Some hotels add a 10 percent service charge to their room rates.
Telephones: Overseas calls can be made from hotel rooms through the operator, or via international direct dialling (IDD). There are also coin and phonecard operated public telephones. Mobile phone sim cards and calling cards can also be bought at the mobile phone operator and outlets.
Utilities: Power supply is 220 - 240 volts, 50 cycles. The PAL and NTSC system are used by local television. Tap water is generally safe to drink although some take the precaution of boiling it.
Media: Media: Radio Television Brunei has nightly news bulletins and a range of popular entertainment in both English and Malay. Cable network and Malaysian television programmes can also be received. There are two local daily newspapers namely: The Borneo Bulletin (English) and Media Permata (malay). Other regional and international publications are also available at newsstands.
Food: For the adventurous, the food stalls offer Malay favourites, such as satay (barbecued meat on a skewer) and local dishes prepared with curry or coconut milk. Chinese, European and Indian cuisines are also available.
Hotels: Accommodation in the capital ranges from international standard to middle range hotels. Service apartments are also available at reasonable rates.
Shopping: Department stores and shops offer goods ranging from cosmetics and stereos to local handicrafts such as the kris (an ornamental dagger); miniature brass cannon; and kain songket, a cloth with gold or silver thread.
Festivals and Celebrations: National Day, 23 February; Hari Raya, the end of the Muslim fasting month; and His Majesty The Sultanís birthday, July 15. Other public holidays include Chinese New Year and Christmas.
Customs and courtesy: Thoughtful visitors learn to appreciate the nationís devotion to Islam. In mosques, visitors should remove their shoes and not to pass in front of people at prayer. Never touch the Al-Quran. A woman should ensure that her head, knees and arms are covered before entering mosques.
A Bruneian shakes hands lightly and brings his hands to his chest. Members of the opposite sex do not shake hands. It is impolite to point with the index finger (use the right thumb instead) or to beckon someone with fingers upmost. Instead the whole hand should be waved with palm facing downwards. The right fist should never be smacked into the left palm. Gifts, particularly food, are passed with the right hand. When sitting, the sole of your feet should not be pointed towards your companions.
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