It is not easy and not cheap travelling by car through Myanmar. You still need a travel agency when you want to cross Myanmar by your own car. Luckily, we found a group we could join.
First: you will need a travel agency to travel by our own car in Myanmar. This makes the journey more expensive compared to other countries in South East Asia. In addition your route and your days travelling in Myanmar will be fixed in advanced.
Travel Agencies Myanmar
The most famous travel agency for crossing Myanmar is Burma Sense. It offers you a variety of different routes and the days you will spend in Myanmar. However the costs are quite high. For three cars – normally you travel in a group – Burma Sense charges around 1.200 USD per person. The price includes e.g. the permissions, guide/official in a pilot car and the hotels on your way. Even if you are an over lander and you have all your things in your car, you have to pay the hotels. (Burmasense applied to our article: It is possible to sleep in your car and it is not required to book hotels in advanced. If you have place in your cars for the tour guide and for the official, a pilot car is not necessary.)
We were really lucky to join a trip by another company – Gulliver. 5 cars joined the group. For our trip we had not to book any hotels in advance. Some of the cars got place for the official guy and the guide, so we could save the money for the pilot car. Finally we paid just 672 USD per car. The cheapest offer we have ever seen to cross Myanmar. However we expected rising costs on our way, because we mistrusted this cheap offer.
Our experience travel in Myanmar by car
We were really surprised by our guide. He could really manage to find places to stay in the night (mostly) without paying any money. He has to deal with many officials from different departments to get permissions for our camp sites, day by day.
Normally there is no problem in Myanmar to get fuel. But when you come closer to the Indian border the prices were rising and the numbers of fuel station were limited.
Our average price for Diesel was close to 700 Kyat per litre (0,70USD).
It is easy to find restaurants along the road. For a curry with rice (incl. side dishes) you pay between 1.000 and 2.000 Kyat (1 – 2 USD). If you just order plain rice, you normally can enjoy the side dishes for free (appr. 500 Kyat)
Day 1 Myawaddy – Hpaan
Place to sleep: First we supposed to park our vehicle in a monastery. However, due to the officials in Hpaan, we were woken by the police around midnight and had to move. After a short drive we stopped at a hotel and could spent the night at the parking space. (all for free incl. breakfast)
Cost: 0 Kyat Parking space, 0 Kyat toll fee
Day 2 Hpaan – Golden Rock
Place to sleep: Parking space of a hotel. We got toilet and shower for 2.000 Kyat per person. Costs for parking 5.000
Tool Fee: 2.340 Kyat
Day 3 Golden Rock – Taungoo
Parking Hotel: 5.000 Kyat
Toll Fee: 11.200 Kyat
Day 4 Taungoo – Kalaw
place to sleep: Football field
Toll Fee: 7.930 Kyat
Day 5 Kalaw – Inle
place to sleep:Parking on a free place in the centre
Entrance fee city (10USD p.P.)
Day 6 Lake Inle excursion
Cost Boat: 6 USD p.P.
Day 7 Inle – Bagan
place to sleep:Night in Front of an Pagoda
Toll Fee: 6.803 Kyat
Day 8 Excursion Bagan
We did not have to pay 20USD entrance fee p.P. (water festival?)
Day 9 Bagan – Mandalay
place to sleep:Parking space 5km outside the city centre for 5.000 Kyat per car
Toll Fee: 2.100 Kyat
Day 10 Excursion Mandalay
Some points of interests were closed because of the water festival. However we saved 20 USD entrance fee for the opened sights
cost: 5.000 Kyat Parking
Day 11 Mandalay – Monywa
place to sleep:Restaurant Yard
Toll Fee: 5.900 Kyat
Day 12 Monywa – Kalay
small roads – took 13h incl. stops
place to sleep:football field
Day 13 Kalay – Tamu
place to sleep: Beside a football field
Day 14 Border crossing to India
Our Costs for 13 days travelling Myanmar by car
Travel Agency: 672USD in total
Toll Fee: 29.000 Kyat (29USD), small cars are cheaper, they charge per car size
Parking Fee: 22.000Kyat (22USD)
Cost total: 803USD
Myanmar is opening further. We were the second group of over lander, who could travel without booking hotels in advance. It seems to be the next step. Hopefully we can cross this beautiful country without special permissions and travel agency within the next years again.
the other over lander