Travel Tips

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When planning a trip to Romania, especially for first time visitors, a list of  Travel tips  can be very useful.

Here are some of the things we think you should know about Romania before getting here.

 

Facts & Figures

  • Geographical position: Located in the south eastern part of Central Europe, the country is shaped in the middle by the Carpathian Mountains, is crossed by the Danube and has exit to the Black Sea. It is a land with perfect balance having 30% mountains, 30% hills and 40 % meadows and plains.Romania lies halfway between the Equator and the North Pole.
  • Form of state: Romania is an independent country, based on constitutional democracy.
  • Romania is member of NATO since  29 March 2004 and member EU since 1 January 2007.
  • President: Klaus Johannis
  • Area:  238.397 square km, being divided into 41 counties, called -judeţe- in romanian, each with its own administration.
  • Borders: Bulgaria, Hungary, Moldova, Serbia and Ukraine, it also shares a maritime border with Turkey.
  • Capital:  Bucharest
  • Main cities: Brașov, Cluj-Napoca, Constanța, Iați, Sibiu, Timișoara
  • Population: 19,41 million inhabitants( 2019, Eurostat)
  • Nationality: around 90 % are Romanians.Other nationalities include Hungarians, Germans, Serbians, Roma, Turks, etc
  • Official language: Romanian
  • Religion: around 87 % of the population is Orthodox,  5 % Catholic, the rest are of different denominations.
  • Currency: the national currency is Leu. Subdivision of Leu is Banul (  1 leu = 100 bani )
  • Dialing code:+ 40
  • Power plug: In Romania the power plugs and sockets are of type F. The standard voltage is 230 V and the standard frequency is 50 Hz.

Local time in Romania

  • Standard time zone: UTC/GMT +2:00 hours ;  Daylight saving time ( DST): +1:00 hour
  • DST starts on Sunday 29 March 2020, 03:00
    DST ends on Sunday 25 October 2020, 04:00
  • In Romania the clocks go forward 1:00 hour at 03:00 on Sunday, March 29 and back 1:00 hour at 04:00 on Sunday, October 25.
  • The period when the clocks are 1:00 hour ahead is called daylight  saving time – Eastern European Summer Time. There’s more daylight in the evenings and less in the mornings .
  • When the clocks go back, Romania is on standard time – Eastern European Time.

Is Romania  suitable for me?

  • if you are looking for authentic experiences, you are in the right country
  • if you are looking for adventure and activities, you are in the right country
  • if you are looking for an affordable holiday, you are in the right country
  • if you are a nature lover and you find beauty in a simple way of live, you are in the right country
  • if you want to try really tasty, home made meals you are in the right country
  • if you want cheaper drinks than most of the western european or northern countries, you are in the right country
  • if you love water, well, in Romania you have it all: The Danube, the Black Sea and the Danube Delta
  • if you find joy in hiking, trekking, you can climb up to 2544 m, Moldoveanu Peak, Făgăraș mountains

 

When to visit Romania

Due to its position in the south-central part of Europe, Romania has a temperate-continental climate. The Carpathian Mountains creates some climatic differences, in the high mountains , there is a cooler mountain climate with high level of humidity.

  • In any season is possible to visit Romania. But each of the seasons, of course, has its own unique features.
  • Summer (June to August) is an obvious time to visit for beach fun on the coast and for hiking and mountain biking in the Carpathians.
  • Best times for bird-watching in the Danube Delta are mid-April to mid-May, and in October.
  • The best months for skiing are December to March, though the season extends either way some winters
  • The Transfăgărăşan road doesn’t open until June! and the hiking season doesn’t begin in earnest until mid-June.
  • October’s Wine Festival is an especially tempting time to visit, though spring and summer are best for city visiting.

 

Traveling by plane

  • Romania has a total of 17 airports, 11 being international ones. The most important are in  Bucharest, Cluj-Napoca, Timisoara, Constanta, Iasi, Sibiu, Bacau, Suceava, Oradea, Tg Mures, Arad, Baia Mare.
  • Some airports can be further from the city center but there is public transportation in the bigger cities. In smaller cities the only way to get to/from the airport is by taxi.

Traveling by train

Romania is well connected with European railways but due to poor infrastructure, can take a long time.

Traveling by car

  •  Romania is okay to drive. But you have to be aware that the infrastructure is quit modest compared to western european countries.  Most roads are relatively well maintained. We consider that the best way to discover Romania is by car because the scenery is fantastic, there are many picturesque roads well worth the try such as Transalpina or Transfăgărăşan.
  • There is a road toll ‘Ro vignette’  for using the national roads. You can buy the vignette (sticker) at border points and at most petrol stations. Failure to display the sticker may lead to a heavy fine, so do not forget about it.
  •  Make sure you have with you all documentation, including evidence of insurance.
Road type Built-up areas Speed limit 50 km/h
Road type Outside built-up areas Speed limit 90 km/h
Road type Dual carriageways Speed limit 100 km/h
Road type Motorways Speed limit 130 km/h
  • It is illegal to drive under the influence of alcohol. So don’t drink and drive.
  • In winter, equip your car for extreme conditions. Winter gears are compulsory in winter time. You should  also have the following equipment with you: first aid kit, fire extinguisher, red warning triangles and a fluorescent jacket.

  Visa requirements, passports, vaccine

  • Citizens of European Union member countries do not require a visa when entering Romania. Citizens from most countries of the world can get a visa on arrival at the airport (US, Canada, Australia, etc).
  • Only some of countries need a pre approved visa letter , mostly from Africa, Middle East or Asia.
  • For EU citizens a valid national identity card is enough to enter the country.
  • No mandatory vaccines are necessary when entering Romania.

 

For more info on conditions of travel and entry you should check the Ministry of Foreign Affairs visa website section here .

You can find the Romanian embassy in your country here.

 

 Money exchange

  • Money can be exchanged at the airports, banks, ATM’s and  exchange offices.  At the airport, at the bank or ATM, the exchange rate will always be higher. ATM’s on the other hand can be used 24/7. It is important to know though that there are very few ATMs in remote areas or villages.
  • The best way to exchange money in Romania is in an exchange office, where there is no commission charged, the exchange rate is the best and there are plenty of offices in all the big cities. You will need to present an ID or passport for the transaction. Nevertheless, it must be shown clearly that commission is zero, if not, you better look for another exchange office nearby.

Banks/Stores

  • Most of the banks and stores are open from 9 to 17. In the shopping malls the usual opening hours are  from 10 to 22 daily.

 

Taxi/Public transportation in the cities

  • Taxis are an easy way to get around the city but far from the cheapest way used for sightseeing. Standard charge is around 0.60 Euro/km. Make sure there is  the name of the taxi company stated on the car.
  • If you need a transfer from/to the airport, we recommend to get a cab or we can help you out with a private transfer.
  • If you wish to use public transportation, you can buy a ticket on the vehicle by card, by phone or by sms.

 

Payment by card or cash/ Tipping

  • You can pay almost everywhere by card: at restaurants, hotels, pubs, shops, museums, city tours or public transport. It is no need to worry  about carrying  much cash upon you.
  • Most of them accept Visa and Mastercard, based on a pin code. Only a few accept American Express or Dinner’s club.
  • If you prefer paying by cash, it is advisable to pay in local currency, Lei. Although  payment in Euro is accepted in touristic places but  the exchange rate will definitively be much worse.
  • Tipping is accepted and welcomed but not compulsory of course, only if you liked  the service they have performed. The usual gratuity is around 10 % of the bill.

 

Healthcare

Romania offers benefits of a universal healthcare system. You have to pay to use parts of the state healthcare system in Romania, although some parts are free.For extensive medical services, it is better to have a health insurance upon arrival in the country.

 

Phone and Internet in Romania

  • Romania has a great internet connection and good mobile networks.
  • If you already have a GSM mobile phone, you can bring it with you and use it in Romania. In some cases you may need to get your phone ‘unlocked’ from the network in your home country (this can be done cheaply at most mobile phone shops).
  • Internet domain: .ro

Basic Language

  • Hello= Bună
  • Please = Vă rog
  • Good bye = La revedere
  • Pardon me= Mă scuzați
  • How much is it? = Cât costă?
  • One=Unu/ Two= Doi / Three=Trei / Four=Patru / Five = Cinci / Six =Sase / Seven=Sapte / Eight=Opt / Nine=Noua / Ten=Zece

Legal Holidays

During legal holidays, the traffic is much heavier and your  trip to the desired destination will take longer, so plan an early departure, have snacks, water and good music upon you before you set off.

On these occasions, most suppliers have prearranged packages for a minimum number of nights, meals, services and possible entry days. Our advice is to gather information on these packages well in advance, for a better planning of your trip.

 

Public Holidays in 2020

January 1 – 2 (Wednesday, Thursday) – New Year
January 24 (Friday) – Anniversary of the formation of the United Principalities
April 17 (Friday) – Good Friday
April 19 – 20 (Sunday, Monday) – Orthodox Easter
May 1 (Friday) – Labour Day
June 1 (Monday) – Children’s Day
June 7 – 8 (Sunday, Monday) – Pentecost,Whit Monday
August 15 (Saturday) – Dormition of the Mother of God
November 30 (Monday) – St Andrew’s Day
December 1 (Tuesday) – Romania’s National Day
December 25 – 26 (Friday, Saturday) – Christmas

Public Holidays in 2021

January 1-2 – (Friday, Saturday) – New Year
January 24 (Sunday) – Anniversary of the formation of the United Principalities
April 30 (Friday) – Good Friday
May 2-3 (Sunday, Monday) – Orthodox Easter
May 1 (Saturday) – Labour Day
June 1 (Tuesday) – Children’s Day
June 20-21 (Sunday, Monday) – Pentecost, Whit Monday
August 15 (Sunday) – Dormition of the Mother of God
November 30 (Tuesday) – St Andrew’s Day
December 1 (Wednesday) – Romania’s National Day
December 25 – 26 (Saturday, Sunday) – Christmas

World Time

  • Australia/Sydney:
  • Europe/Bucharest:
  • Europe/London:
  • America/New York:

Exchange Rates