David Farley
AFAR Contributing Writer

I've heard that when entering Burma/Myanmar, officials confiscate travelers' cell phones and then give them back when the travelers leave. Has anyone heard this before? And if so, do they take anything else, such as laptops?

Posted on Oct 24, 2011

6 Answers

Allison Murray
AFAR Editor

Hi David, 

I haven't heard any reports of things like this but it's a very good question. I would suggest you checkout the Travel.State.Gov site or the Foreign & Commonwealth Office when planning trips to potentially 'unstable' areas. You could check their pages or send them an email to confirm this report. Also make sure you register your travel plans with the US embassy before you travel there just in case, safety first! 

Best wishes and happy travels,
Community Manager for AFAR 

Posted Oct 25, 2011

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Aaron King
AFAR Staff

I was told customs officials will hang on to your passport for you as well, and return it when you leave the country from the same point of entry.

Posted Oct 25, 2011

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We have been twice and nothing like this happened.  Thanks for the idea.  I'll ask the agent who is booking our independent getaway in February.

Posted Oct 27, 2011

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Hi David,

We were just in Myanmar earlier this year and were traveling with an iphone and laptop with no problems for the entire month we were there.  I have not heard of anyone else having these problems either.  The people are incredibly friendly and helpful, we didn't have any problems at all.

You will have an amazing time in the beautiful country of Myanmar, if you are looking for more tips or what to expect, check out our Myanmar logistics post on our blog: you may find the info. helpful. 

Regarding Aaron's comment, if you visit Myanmar on an overland tour such as the golden triangle tour or visit from Thailand on a visa run they will hold onto your passport for the day as you are only permitted to be in the country for a day.  

Posted Oct 27, 2011

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I was also in Myanmar earlier this year and had no problems.  I brought in a cellphone and camera.  Not once did officials ask to examine them or confiscate them.

Posted Oct 30, 2011

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The officials at immigration don't even go through your belongings if you are a visiting foreigner...although I did see them pilfering through the bags of many nationals. You feel nothing but welcome when entering Myanmar.   I brought in a laptop, a camera, and a flipcam without any problems.

Posted Nov 05, 2011

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