Mongolia Travel Tips
Mongolia gives visa-free access to citizens of 23 countries and territories including: 90 days stay for Belarus, Macao, Brazil, Serbia, Kazakhstan, Ukraine, Kyrgyzstan, United States; 30 days stay for Canada, Malaysia, Cuba, Russia, Germany, Singapore, Israel, Turkey, Japan, Thailand, Laos; 21 days stay for Philippines; 14 days stay for Hong Kong, China (holders of passport for public affairs) and South Korea (frequent visitors).
Tourists eligible for a visa on arrival should meet the following requirements:
Possessing a confirmation of pre-arranged visa; coming from a country with no embassy, consulate or any other diplomatic missions of Mongolia; having a sponsor in Mongolia who submits request to the immigration authority.
Tourists who possess a passport with a validity of over 6 months are allowed to apply for a tourist visa. Visa should be applied at the embassy or consulate at least 7 days before the trip. The maximum duration of stay varies in accordance with the visa.
Tugrik (MNT) is the local currency. Tourists can exchange money in banks or foreign exchange market in Ulaanbaatar. The exchange rate of US dollars against MNT is about 1:2,400.
Thanks to low tariff, the price of imported snacks and food is relatively low. For example, a box of cereal costs about 2.5$. A bottle of orange juice costs 0.6$. However, the price of fruits is high.
Visa, Master Card and JCB are accepted. Tourists can also withdraw Mongolian cash through ATMs.
Tourists can choose to stay in starred hotels, small hotels, holiday villages or Mongolian yurts of locals which meet the demands different classes. Starred hotels cost about 70$ to 180$ per night; small hotels, no more than 20$ per night; holiday villages, 15$; local yurts, 15$.
To protect themselves from extreme weather, Mongolians eat much animal fat and dairy products like roast mutton, fermented milk and beef.
Mongolia has many souvenir shops selling paintings, antiques, handicrafts, carpets, traditional costumes, snuff bottles, postcards and wood carvings. Mongolian carvings have a long history which gives rise to a rich variety of carvings made of different materials including wood, bones and stones.
Horse Racing in Mongolian Festival
Tsagaan Sar (White Moon Festival)
Mongolians believe white is their lucky color and the first month of the lunar year is called the white month. The White Moon Festival is their Lunar New Year. People make nice dresses and prepare mutton, dairy products and wine. On the New Year's Eve, after a fancy meal, people make toasts to the seniors. On the New Year's Day, men and women ride horses to other yurts to exchange their best wishes.
Nadam Fair is a major entertainment activity held in July to celebrate a harvest year. People gather during the fair to compete in various games such as horse racing, wrestling, dancing and singing. The Nadam fair is also a trading market where people sell and purchase all kinds of agricultural and husbandry products.
Dos and Don'ts
1. Smoking is prohibited across the country. Tourists should not smoke in public or they will face a fine.
2. Please be quiet and lower your voice when having meals.
3. Respect local customs and avoid talking about politics.
4. The difference of temperature is huge in steppes. Coats and long pants are necessary.
5. Sunshine is abundant during the day so please bring sun-proof cream or other protection.
6. Please ride horses or travel in the designated area in case that you lose your way or damage the grassland.
7. Please take drinking water with you because drinking water on the steppe is rich in salt and alkali.
8. Please prepare some medicine in case of emergency.
Access to the Internet
WIFI is available in many places across the country. Many hotels provide WIFI and Internet interfaces.
Buy IP Card in Mongolia
Tourists can buy an IP card to make international calls. Phone services are cheap. They do not charge for roaming and receiving calls.
Sockets: Type C, Type E
Health Emergency: 103