CREDIT & DEBIT CARDS ACCEPTABILITY:
can use some of the major credit cards to withdraw money from
various bank counters in Gambia. Some hotels, restaurants, airline
flights from Banjul Airport to Europe, car rentals companies and
ground tour operators will accept either American Express,
MasterCard, Visa, Diners Club or Discover if agreed before your
departure or at the beginning your stay.
Some local businesses, such as supermarkets, accept electronic
payments using Visa debit cards or Mastercard using a POS terminal.
It is strongly advised that you first contact your credit card
company in your country before travelling to inform them of your
travel plans. Furthermore you should contact your designated hotel
and ask them whether they will accept your payment card before
travelling. The last thing you want is for your credit or debit
card to be automatically blocked while on holiday due to unusual
Credit card fees can be as much as 5% in some hotels. You are
really better off using your card for emergencies only and use
travellers' cheques and your own foreign currency instead. You
can then change your money as you need it when you get to The
Visa Electron Debit Cards and the Visa Classic Debit Cards
are accepted by some banks, such as the Standard Chartered Bank
and Access Bank respectively to make ATM cash withdrawals. As
long as you have the funds available, you may have to make multiple
withdrawals as the maximum single amount dispensed at one time
is often limited to D3,000. Transaction charges will often apply
per withdrawal making it a costly way to obtain Dalasis.
Visa TravelMoney is a compromise between travellers' cheques and
plastic cards. It is a prepaid card which means you can withdraw
cash at an ATM. Each time a withdrawal is made the amount is automatically
deducted from the card.
MasterCard prepaid, credit and debit cards can be used
at GTBank Gambia ATMs and Point of Sale (POS) terminals including
hotels, retailers and restaurants located in the Greater Banjul
area. This allows you to make electronic payments and cash withdrawals
in the local currency, the Dalasi. For travellers there is an
ATM that is conveniently located on the Bertil Harding Highway,
near the Senegambia Strip junction in Kololi.
American Express (Amex) is accepted by some of the major
hotels and some of the more up-market restaurants.
Diners Club has a limited number of establishments that
Maestro cards cannot be used so far in The Gambia.
Discover card has only a few establishments that accept
and Switch cards are not accepted. Do talk to your card company
or designated accommodation about acceptability before making
any travel plans. Also Look at the back of your card to see if
there is a Cirrus or PLUS logo as they have the widest payment