The money games played should definitely be a consideration to suppress tourism until the country is ready. Although I came to educate people in English, I did venture out of my hotel during the two months there.
Dual pricing extended far and wide and could amount to a lot of money. At locally owned tea houses, we were charged 50% more. Parks and swimming pools that were free for locals were $2-$5 respectively for foreigners. Although many people feel that because we are foreigners and other countries are poor that this is acceptable. While I will concede wear national parks are concerned, as they do that in Thailand and Costa Rica, in other cases I don't agree with the practice. But I did take it in stride.
On the other hand, when Yangon Airways charged 40% more for flights, it more than stung. If locals can afford to fly, why shouldn't we both be charged the same? The already pay less for trains, buses and accommodations.
A government ferry that cost 10 cents for locals had a large sign that said $1 for foreigners. However, the ticket counter insisted we pay $1.20 or we would get a ticket. They took the money and wrote $1 or $2 for a round trip on the ticket. This indicates the money was going directly into the employee's pocket.
Hence both the government and locals are extracting additional money from foreigners for everything.
In order to exchange money, you need crisp $100 bills. Even the lightest curve from have been in a billfold justified giving a lower rate and more damage made it completely un-exchangeable. Moreover, you didn't go into a bank to exchange money. Two places, one the sidewalk around Sule Paya and the other in Bagoke Market, had men walking around with large bags containing money. Pre-bundled stacks exchangeable for $100 were offered. You are expected to count the money, before giving the $100 bill. Carrying a stack of 100 kyats rubber banded was the norm for tourists. There really isn't a fixed exchange rate. I looked it up on the internet and it was list at about 6:1. Yet, you are offered 950 to 1000 depending on the changer and if it is close to a holiday. You have little choice but to trust them.
The very few taxis that had meters didn't use them so you had to negotiate. A good rule of thumb was that within Yangon it should cost from 1500 to 2500 kyats and tipping isn't customary. Trishaws are used for short distance of several blocks or less. These are bicycles with passenger seats next to the driver, not behind. To me this would appear more work and harder to maneuver around corners.
I will also mention that doctor visits are $10 for $100 for foreigners and that I have read the quality of the medicines received is not good. I was asked to stay on beyond my 2-month contract, but for reasons mentioned here, I felt the good I might be doing was overwhelming negated.