Good to know
Internet & wifi
Sri Lanka’s wifi and internet coverage is good, and usually all restaurants, bars and hotels offer free wifi, including rural areas.
It is easy to get internet on your cell phone, as many companies issue special ‘tourist’ sim cards, with prices starting from $20US. Sim cards can be purchased at any mobile phone provider in cities and towns, as well at Bandaranaike International Airport in Colombo. You need your passport to register. Good companies to use are AIS with their SIM2FLY offer, True Move H and Three U.K.
PickMe and Uber Taxi are widely used in Sri Lanka and are highly recommended to use for tuktuk and taxi trips within cities, as all prices are set and no negotiating is necessary (even if you are a good negotiator, fares, especially via PickMe, are always going to be cheaper). Both apps can easily be downloaded onto your phone. To get the links, please go to the Transport & immigration links on the Sri Lanka country page.
Long distance bus and railway transportation in Sri Lanka is well developed. All major cities are well connected with each other via frequent connections. If leaving a smaller place along one of the highways, it is normal to wave down a passing bus to get on. If not already (very) full, drivers will stop and get you on board.
For visitors it is common to hire local private drivers to get around the island. This option costs a bit more, but allows for faster transportation and for the freedom to stop anywhere you want along the way.
Using cash is the most common way to pay in Sri Lanka, especially in rural areas. However, all hotels, restaurants, tour operators and supermarkets accept credit card payments.
Sri Lanka’s currency is the Sri Lankan Rupee, and it is easy to change any major currency to Rupees almost anywhere. Try to avoid changing money at Bandaranaike Airport, as the rates are lower than anywhere else in the country. If you need to change money at the airport, get the amount you need to get into the city and change more once there.
ATM’s are common in Sri Lanka, with most of them allowing international money transfers.
Sri Lanka is a safe place for tourists and crime towards visitors in general is low. However, there have been several issues and common sense is recommended.
As everywhere, single woman should be cautious at night, and avoid dark streets and isolated places.
Transport scams, especially around bus stations, are common, and it is a good idea to check out prices at more than one place. To be on the safe side, it is recommended to buy tickets at an official counter.
If you do not know anything about gemstones, do not consider to purchase any, as you will likely be tricked into getting some useless colourful pebbles.
Medical & Health care
Sri Lanka’s public health care system is among the most developed in the region, and good healthcare can be found almost anywhere in the country, including dental care. For very serious medical conditions, try to get to Colombo (Kandy is another alternative, but features less hospitals). It is highly recommended to obtain travel health insurance before going to Sri Lanka.
Vias & immigration
All travellers visiting Sri Lanka must obtain an ETA prior to their arrival, which are valid for 30 days (though there are options to extend it once in the country). Rates are $20 US for citizens of SAARC countries, and $35 US for all other countries. The ETA can be obtained online. Please refer to the Sri Lanka immigration link featured on the Sri Lanka Country page.
In order to enter Sri Lanka, visitors also need to show proof of a double Covid-19 vaccination, as well as a negative PCR Test not older than 72 hours when entering
Travolution360 tries its best to cover as much as possible, but it is always worth to stop and visit a tourist information, as they have spezialized knowledge of the area and can often point out places and events that are not well known to a broader audience. And, of course, engage yourself in conversations with fellow travellers, as the best information is by word of mouth.