Fact file: Slovakia

Did you know?
Slovakia has more than 180 castles and chateaux.
Languages
Slovak, Czech, Hungarian and German.
Visas
None required.
Getting there
There are a number of indirect services to Slovakia but SkyEurope Airlines offers direct flights from London to Bratislava and Kosice.
Flying time from London
About two hours to Bratislava.
Getting around
Buses are more expensive than trains, although weekend bus fares are sharply reduced. Plan on doing most of your travel on the efficient and cheap trains with side trips by bus. Slovakia's size and relatively quiet roads make it pretty easy to get around under your own steam, either by car, motorbike or bicycle.
Time difference
One hour ahead of the UK.
Currency
The Slovak crown.
Costs
As a rough guide, a cup of coffee is 80p, a short taxi ride £5, a moderately priced restaurant meal is about £3 and a beer is about 75p.
Weather
The coldest month is January, with average daily temperatures of -2C, while the hottest months are July/August with averages of around 21C. But temperatures can soar to 32C.
Voltage
220V, two-pin plug.
Opening hours
Most shops are open between Monday-Friday, between 9am-5pm. The larger stores stay open until 7pm or 9pm. Museums are usually closed on Mondays and may operate different summer (April - September) and winter hours. Offices and banks are open Monday-Friday between 8am-5pm, but some may close at 3.30 pm.
Health — before you go
There are no compulsory jabs for travellers but seek advice from your GP before you go.
Health — when you are there
Tick-borne encephalitis is a hazard in forests. Avoid contact with wild or stray animals in rural areas: although cases are rare, rabies does occur. Seek medical advice about immunisation against both diseases before you travel.
Warnings
If you do take your own car to Slovakia, be aware that a car with foreign number plates is an automatic target - never leave anything valuable in your car. Beware petty theft and pickpockets, particularly in Bratislava, Kogice and other tourist areas.
Emergency
Police 158; Fire 150; medical help 155.
Customs
Try learning a few Slovak phrases for your trip, as English is not widely spoken outside the main tourist centres. It will also be appreciated by the locals.
Pets
Quarantine rules apply.
Tipping
A tip of 5-10% is appreciated in any tourist restaurant with table service. The usual protocol is for them to tell you the total food bill and for you, as you hand over the money, to say how much you are paying with the tip included.
Tourist office
Embassy of the Slovak Republic, 25 Kensington Palace Gardens, London W8 4QY. Tel 020 7313 6470/7243 0803.


Telephone

+44 (0) 203 696 2870

Mon – Fri 8:30am – 5:30pm

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