Travel Tips

Timor-Leste Travel Tips

Time Difference – GMT+9 hours

Population – 1.1 million

Language – Tetun, Portuguese, Bahasa and English – the Tetun Translator can provide simple translation from English to Tetun

Climate – Tropical humid, 25-35C lowlands and cooler inland

Rainfall – Dry season May-November; wet season December- April

Best Diving – May-November

Best Trekking – May-November

Best Fishing – November-March

Best Dolphin/Whale Viewing – October-December

Best Birding – All year

Passport Validity – Minimum 6 months from arrival

Visa – Obtained on arrival at airport (USD30 -Tourist and Business Class); Note: no money changing facilities at airport

Currency – USD; banks will change foreign currencies if needed

Money – Mastercard will not work anywhere. In Dili ATMs available but only accept VISA, limited EFPOS facilities and only larger hotels, tour and dive companies accept credit cards.  In districts limited ATMs, banks or credit cards/EFPOS facilities. When travelling in districts bring small notes as larger denominations hard to change

Tele-communications – Good mobile phone coverage (main centres).  To get set up bring an unlocked handset and buy a SIM card and credit on arrival.  Internet is readily available but speed is relatively slow

Electricity – Limited duration in some outlying areas and outages can occur (so torch is useful).  Electricity plugs vary so it’s wise to being an adapter

Driving – Valid driving licence required when hiring vehicles/motorcycles; Note: must be carried while driving

Health – Comprehensive travel insurance highly recommended

Travel Info – Dili maps available on arrival; Lonely Planet Timor-Leste guidebook useful; no tourism information centre but locals very helpful

Travel Agencies – Available in Dili for international flight arrangements

Tipping – Not expected, but appreciated

Cultural – Do ask before taking photos of people, seek permission before visiting sacred sites or communities and wearing modest dress is appreciated especially in the districts

Environmental – Please do not litter, light fires, purchase souvenirs made from endangered species e.g. turtles and touch or take other marine species e.g. coral and shells

Freshwater – In some locations, fresh water is limited so please use sparingly in this case

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