BRUNEI

ABODE OF PEACE

A posting to Brunei is a unique and exciting one with opportunity to work with the Gurkhas and experience their traditions, customs and celebrations while living in the small Islamic Sultanate of Brunei. This posting also offers fantastic opportunity to enjoy a wide variety of leisure pursuits and travel extensively around South East Asia. 

Negara Brunei Darussalam means Abode of Peace. The country is ruled according to Islamic values and traditions. Brunei is one of the world's smallest countries with only around 400,000 in population. The official language of Brunei is Bahasa Melayu but English is widely spoken throughout the country.

Visit Brunei Tourism website to find out more about this peaceful country.

 

Good to Know

Language

Bahasa Melayu (Malay) is the official language, but English and Chinese are widely spoken.

Currency

Brunei Dollar ( 1GPB = approx 1.6 Brunei Dollar). Singapore dollar is also accepted in Brunei. 

Time Zone

Brunei Darussalam Standard Time is 8 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time GMT+8 ).

Friday Closure

Business are closed between 1200 - 1400hrs on Friday for prayer break.

Country code

+673 

Electricity

220 – 240V 50Hz. 3-pin plugs are used.

Public transportation

Getting around can be relatively difficult if you don't drive, however here are a few options available.

Buses to the Bandar Seri Begawan (the capital) run every hour from Seria bus station. Traveling around Seria (main camp) and Kuala Belait is relatively easy. The local buses (purple buses) leave every 10 – 15 minutes from the bus station to the terminal station in Seria town centre. The buses travel via Jalan Maulana and Panaga roads and pass the Officers’ Mess, X1 and X2 estates, Panaga Sports Club and NAFFI. There are many bus stops en-route and you can also ring the bell or inform the driver to get off at your preferred location.

ClICK HERE to find out more about local transportation. 

Displays of Affection

Public displays of affection (hugging and kissing) are considered to be in bad taste and will cause offence. Never pat anyone on the top of the head as it is considered a sacred personal spot.

Dress

Dress respectably and modestly. Clothing comfortable for hot weather is acceptable, except when visiting places of worship or for social and business functions.

 

Footwear

It is considered polite to remove your footwear when entering a local person's home. This custom is widely practised amongst both the expatriate and Military communities.

 

Gestures

Beckoning a person, in the European manner, wagging one crooked finger, is considered very rude, as is pointing with one finger. The correct gesture to beckon is by using all fingers together, but pointing downwards, almost as if waving goodbye. The correct gesture for pointing is to use the right thumb.

 

Hand Shaking

The majority of Muslims feel uncomfortable shaking hands with the opposite sex so unless the Muslim hand is offered first, then refrain from this practice, and when shaking hands with members of the same sex, the handshake is brief and light - unlike the firm handshake adopted by most Europeans!

Dining

When inviting a muslim over for dinner, they should only be. served meat from animals slaughtered in accordance with religious customs (Halal food). Make sure that all the food products are certified ''halal''.

Ramadan

During the Islamic fasting month of Ramadan, Muslims do not take food from sunrise to sundown. It is illegal to eat or drink in public during this period. 

 

 

 

Local Weather

 

Places of Interest

 

Places to visit in Brunei range from cultural centres to historical sites, royal buildings to national parks and mosques. There are a large number of interesting places to visit in Brunei, from Bandar Seri Begawan to Kampong Ayer. Distributed all over the country, some of the major tourist attractions in Brunei include the royal palace of the Sultan, the Omar Ali Saifuddien mosque, Kampong Ayer, Royal Regalia Museum, Brunei History Centre, Tamu Kianggeh or the open market, Wasai Kandal, Kota Batu area, Gadong area, Berakas area, Jerudong area, Muara beach and many more.

The tourist attractions of Brunei reveal the history, tradition and the culture of the country and together they constitute a major aspect of travelling in Brunei.

CLICK HERE to see a list of local attractions or visit https://bruneitourism.com

 

Useful Malay Phrases

 

fan palm tree

''Popiah'' or spring roll

home-grown pineapple

home-grown pineapple

traditional textile

banana plant

Bougainvillea

Dancing lady orchid

waterfall

fern

long-tailed macaque monkey

areca palm tree

morning dew

rainforest

view from the top

house sparrows

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