- 17 February 2016
Upon arrival and departure from Turkmenistan you are requested to fill out a Customs Declaration in duplicate. You should declare the exact amount of foreign currency you are taking in/out of the country as well as all electronic items carried (cameras, telephones, computers, etc) and valuable souvenirs bought before or during your trip (especially rugs and handicrafts). You should keep one copy of the stamped declaration for exit or onwards travel within the CIS in order to facilitate smooth customs procedures throughout your trip.
Click here to download an A5 Turkmen Customs declaration front and back side. Note that the declaration will only be accepted in A5 Format printed on front and back. X-rays at the Ashgabat International airport are film-safe; for other airports and borders you should keep your film and camera in a special bag or present them for visual check.
Turkmenistan is a very safe place for travellers. Nevertheless, all foreigners should carry their passport with the valid visa at all the times. Like anywhere else in Central Asia, while travelling overland and at airports & railway stations you may become subject to routine police registration checks. Please respect that you should not take any pictures at police controls, customs facilities, airports, railway stations and bridges.
The manat is the currency of Turkmenistan. It was introduced on 1 November 1993. The ISO 4217 code was TMM, and the manat was subdivided into 100 tenge. The abbreviation m is sometimes used, e.g., 25 000 m is twenty-five thousand manat.
On January 1, 2009, the new manat was introduced with ISO 4217 code TMT at the rate of 5000 old manat to 1 new manat.
Like elsewhere in Central Asia it is not recommendable and illegal to exchange money on the street. Currency regulations in Turkmenistan allow to the tourists or bring unlimited amount of foreign currency or traveler cheques, but have to be declared upon entry into Turkmenistan.
Turkmenistan is a cash-only economy. However, several new hotels in Ashgabat and a few restaurants accept credit cards. Foreign affairs bank cashes traveler’s checks and accepts Visa, AMEX for USD cash advances charging 5% of the amount for this service. Travelers are advised to take only new, clean U.S. dollar bills (2006 and newer) with them.