Bamako - Post Report Question and Answers

Are credit cards widely accepted and safe to use locally? Are ATMs common and do you recommend using them? Are they safe to use?

Cash is normally used instead of credit cards. - Apr 2021

Not many places accept credit cards, it's a cash economy mostly. I've used the ATMs at the Embassy and have heard others say they used one or two in town, but in general I think it's accepted advice to be careful and limit use of credit/ATM cards. - Apr 2017

It's a cash economy. No credit cards. Only use ATMs with well reputable banks. - Aug 2014

Mostly, you can't use credit cards here. You can use ATMs, but the best exchange rate is through the Embassy cashier. - Jul 2011

You can use your credit card at Azar and La Fourmi supermarkets. Otherwise, you use the local currency: Francs (CFA). - Jul 2011

Some hotels and travel agencies accept credit cards. ATMs are widespread and safe to use. Just be sure to notify your US bank that you plan on using your debit/credit card in West Africa. - Oct 2010

ATMs are safe to use. I havne't met anybody that has run into any problems when using the atm. However, Mali only accepts VISA cards. - May 2010

Leave them home b/c you'll only use them for online transactions. This is a 100% cash society and you'll go through wads of the stuff. - Sep 2009

It's mostly a cash society. Most places, except major hotels, don't accept them. There are ATMs available but not generally used by post employees. - Apr 2009

No no no. - Feb 2009

I never used them, and we were wary about them, but I had a friend who used them occasionally. - Feb 2009

Only a few places around town with ATMs. I've never used my credit card except for travel. This is a cash society. - Jan 2009

Subscribe to our newsletter

New book from Talesmag! Honest and courageous stories of life abroad with special needs.

Read More