Government offices are typically open from 8am to 11.30am or noon and from 1pm to 5pm Monday to Friday.
Some offices may open for a half day on Saturday but this custom was generally abandoned in 1998 when the official two-hour lunch break introduced by the French was reduced to one hour. Does this mean you can expect to find Lao officials back in their offices promptly at 1pm? Probably not.
Shops and private businesses open and close a bit later and usually stay open during lunch. On Saturday some businesses are open all day, others only half a day. Most businesses, except restaurants, are closed on Sunday. For a list of standard business hours see the inside front cover. If hours vary from these, they are stated in the review.
Business hours for restaurants vary according to their client and the Food they serve. Shops selling noodles and/or rice soup are typically open from 7am to 1pm. Lao restaurants with a larger menu of dishes served with rice are often open from 10am to 10pm.
Tourist restaurants offering both Lao Western food, and open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, usually open their doors around 7.30am and serve till 10pm
Tourist restaurants that don’t open for breakfast generally serve from 11am to 11pm.