Sri Lankan Rupee is divided into 100 cents (you rarely come across cents today). Currency notes are Rs. 5,000.00, Rs. 2,000.00, Rs. 1,000.00, Rs. 500.00, Rs. 100.00, Rs. 50.00, Rs. 20.00 and Rs. 10.00. Make sure you have plenty of lower denomination notes (Rs. 50.00, Rs. 100.00, Rs. 500.00), especially when travelling and when you need to buy small items.


Banks are open from 0900 hrs to 1400 hours Monday to Friday. It’s easy to withdraw money from ATMs using international credit cards or debit cards.

Credit Cards

Most hotels, restaurants and shopping centers accept credit cards.


230 – 240 volts, 50 cycles AC.


It is recommended to use taxis when travelling. In Colombo, most taxis are metered, if not it is advisable to agree a rate before setting off. Trishaws (Tuktuks) are ideal for short journeys within towns and cities, and for short excursions. Most trishaws are metered.


The inter-monsoonal period occurs in October and November when evening showers can occur in many parts of the island. The average daily temperature for this month in Colombo is 27°C (81°F) which can reach highs of 30°C (86°F) or drop to 23°C (73°F).

What to wear

When entering centres of worship especially Buddhist temples, both men and women are required to wear clothing that covers top body and shoulders. Skirts, sarongs and trousers should fall below knee length. Always keep a sarong or wrap around handy. It’s best to remove shoes at the entrance of temples.


Avoid unsolicited help from strangers.