888-811-2812
M-F 9am-5:30pm EST

Travel Tips

 

TRAVEL TIPS FOR HUNGARY | Everything You Need to Know Before You GO!

 

 

VISA AND PASSPORTS

  • Please check the expiry date on your passport: Travel outside of the United States requires a passport valid for at least the next six months.
  • US citizens do not need a visa to enter Europe. If you are not a US citizen, please check with your diplomatic or consulate office about whether you require a visa for your trip destinations.

 

CONSULAR INFORMATION 
The US State Department provides Country Specific Information sheets for every country in the world as well as Travel Alerts and Warnings. For this information, call 888 407 4747 or 202 501 4444 or see www.travel.state.gov

 

HEALTH

  • Plan to visit your doctor or local travel clinic at least 4-6 weeks before departure to allow time for any vaccinations to take effect or to fill any prescriptions.
  • We strongly suggest purchasing appropriate trip insurance covering medical, baggage and trip cancellation as needed. 
  • Before traveling to Europe or any other destination, we recommend consulting the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for up-to-date information on required and recommended vaccines and medications. Visit cdc.gov/travel or call 800 232 4636 for more information.
  • For information about outbreaks of infectious diseases abroad, consult the World Health Organization (WHO), which contains additional health information for travelers, including detailed country-specific health information.
  • If you received any vaccinations in preparation for your journey, pack your vaccination certificates in your personal carry-on baggage in case you are asked to show them on arrival.
  • Make sure that any medications you require, as well as copies of your prescriptions, are packed in your carry-on luggage and not in your checked baggage.
  • Special meals and allergies: If you require special meals for health or dietary reasons, please let your Da'at tour operator know at least 60 days prior to your departure.

 

TRAVEL INSURANCE
We strongly recommend that you purchase your own travel insurance. Please discuss land, air and health insurance options with your insurance provider or contact Travel Insured at 1-800-344-6226, ext. 257. Some insurance programs provide more comprehensive coverage when the policy is purchased in close proximity to the initial trip deposit. We therefore recommend that you secure insurance within 14 days of your initial deposit payment date.

 

CURRENCY AND BANK INFORMATION

  • The Hungarian currency is the Forint (Ft, HUF), which has the following denominations: notes - 500Ft, 1,000Ft, 2,000Ft, 5,000Ft, 10,000Ft and 20,000Ft; coins - 5Ft, 10Ft, 20Ft, 50Ft and 100Ft. Prices, such as hotel rates, sightseeing tours, etc. are often quoted in Euros. Many businesses, even including some select supermarkets accept Euros, but the exchange rate merchants tend to use is significantly lower than what one can get at a normal exchange office or a bank so you are probably better off exchanging your currency first and paying in Forints.
  • Click here to obtain the most current exchange rates.
  • ATMs are easy to find in Budapest, and there are many options for exchanging cash. Most often, currency exchange kiosks located in tourist areas or shopping malls offer the best exchange rates. Currency exchange is also available at banks at a surcharge. ATMs dispense Hungarian currency at your bank's daily exchange rate; however, you may be charged a foreign fee on top of the service fees. Many international banks have branches in Hungary. Currency exchange is available at the airport at a significant surcharge (10%-15%). 
  • The exchange rates must be visibly displayed at the place of exchange. Changing money at Budapest hotels is not advisable, as their rates are at least 10% lower than what is generally available.
  • Under no circumstances should you change money illegally in the street: besides the possible legal consequences, it is highly probable that you will be cheated in one of the hundred possible ways the street criminals can devise.
  • We recommend that you contact your bank in advance of departing on your journey to determine whether you will be able to use your ATM and credit cards while traveling. When contacting your bank, notify them of your travel dates so that they will anticipate charges being made outside of your hometown and do not suspend your cards for what may appear to them to be “suspicious” charges. We also recommend that you make a photocopy of the front and back sides of your ATM and credit cards to leave behind with someone at home who will assist you in the event your cards are misplaced, lost or stolen.
  • For more information about money in Hungary click here.

 

ELECTRICITY

  • In Hungary, the power plugs and sockets are of type C and F. The standard voltage is 230 V and the standard frequency is 50 Hz.
  • For more information about this, visit worldstandards.eu.
  • Electric shavers, traveling irons, phone rechargers and other small appliances may require adaptors and/or converters, which you can purchase prior to your departure or at the airport.

 

TIME ZONE
Central European Time is six hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time, U.S.A. To determine current time in major cities around the world, visit timeanddate.com.

 

CELL PHONES
Tips to avoid international roaming charges:

  • Use your existing
  • Get a local SIM card – Make sure your phone is "unlocked" before purchasing a local SIM card in your destination and using your phone on the local network.
  • Wi-Fi only – Turn off your cellular data, switch your phone to airplane mode, and enable a Wi-Fi connection to access Internet hotspots in your destination.
  • plan – contact your local carrier to find out plans and prices for data roaming.
  • Rent a device – Rent a phone, download your information, and use the borrowed device as if it were your own.

 

INTERNATIONAL CALLS
A call to the United States or Canada would begin 00-1, followed by the US or Canadian area code and number.

 

CUISINE
Here’s a recommended restaurant list to help you decide which of Budapest's many restaurants might suit you best. These are all popular places so we suggest that you plan ahead and make reservations in advance.

 

FACILITIES FOR THE DISABLED

  • Travel through Europe for people with special needs is doable/manageable but with few limitations.
  • Airports and many tourist sites are wheelchair-friendly and most hotels have special rooms designed for disabled travelers.
  • When making independent dinner plans, check with your hotel as to which recommended restaurants can best accommodate your needs.
  • Many of the streets in the old cities and towns of Eastern Europe are still paved with cobblestones making free exploration very limited and possibly, almost impassable for wheelchairs. Many places and sites have stairs only and don't offer wheelchair access.
  • The decision to participate in one of these tours is at the sole discretion of each participant.
  • Should you require handicapped facilities please contact our office.

 

LANGUAGE
Hungarian
is the only official language of Hungary. It is the first language of some 98.9% of the total population. English is widely spoken in Budapest but not in the countryside. Hungarians are helpful to foreign visitors even if there is some language gap. Still, it is always worthwhile to speak a little of the local lingo so we recommend you to click here for some useful Hungarian words and phrases.

 

WEATHER

  • Budapest’s climate is continental, with cold winters and warm summers. Rainfall can occur throughout the year, though it is at its height in late spring and early summer. and snowfall occurs mainly from December through February.
  • Use a website such as weather.com to find average temperatures and rainfall during your travel times.

 

  •  

Average daily high/low temperature in Budapest

 

 

MONTHLY AVERAGES

 AVERAGE TEMPERATURES 
 FAHRENHEIT

 AVERAGE TEMPERATURES  

 CELSIUS

 AVERAGE
 PRECIPITATIONS

 LOW

HIGH

LOW

HIGH

IN CENTIMETERS

JANUARY

27°

36°

-4°

0.83

FEBRUARY

29°

40°

-4°

0.64

MARCH

36°

50°

-1°

0.85

APRIL

44°

61°

13°

1.43

MAY

52°

71°

19°

1.69

JUNE

58°

77°

12°

22°

1.55

JULY

61°

81°

13°

24°

2

AUGUST

61°

81°

13°

24°

1.48

SEPTEMBER

53°

72°

18°

1.34

OCTOBER

45°

60°

12°

1.09

NOVEMBER

36°

46°

1.46

DECEMBER

29°

37°

-3°

0.98

 

  • May, June & November have the most rain.
  • August & September are the driest months.
  • June, July & August are the hottest months.
  • January, February & December are the coldest months.

 

WHAT TO PACK
Click here for our suggested packing checklist.

 

BAGGAGE
Confirm baggage limitations with your international carrier before packing. Remember that airlines can change their baggage restrictions at any time.

 

FLIGHTS & AIRPORTS

  • Be sure to reconfirm your international flights with your airline 24 hours prior to your departure.
  • Passengers must check in for international flights from the US/Canada at least three hours prior to departure time.

Airport Security
Security checks are carried out routinely for your protection and safety. Expect to be asked about the contents of your luggage, who packed it, whether anyone asked you to transport items for them, and whether your luggage remained with you before you arrived at the airport. Do not take any mail, packages, or unknown items from anyone either before or after arriving at the airport.

 

ARRIVAL & DEPARTURE TRANSFERS

  • If your package includes arrival and departure transfers, this will be detailed in your travel documents which will be e-mailed to you up to one week prior to your trip.
  • If you deviate from the arrival and/or departure dates and time as specified in your travel documents, you will need to arrange your own transfers. Alternatively, you may request a transfer service up to three working days prior to your arrival and the cost of the transfer service will be added to your invoice.
  • When requesting a transfer service, please provide us with your flight information. Your arrival transfer is guaranteed for up to one hour from your scheduled arrival time in order to compensate for minor delays. 
  • Da'at or the transfer company will not be responsible for delays, for any reason, beyond one hour from your originally scheduled arrival time. In case of a delay, it will be your responsibility to contact Da'at directly and/or to make other transfer arrangements, such as by taxi.
  • Transfer costs are not refundable and any additional expenses will be your responsibility.

 

PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION

  • Budapest has an efficient public transport system, the BKV ZRT which is composed of buses, trams, and a subway.
  • For more information, visit https://www.bkv.hu/en/?/en/ or call: +36-1-258-4636.
  • Taxi: You can hail taxis in the street, but it is preferable and less expensive to order a city taxi by telephone. 

CHECKING IN AT YOUR HOTEL
If you arrive at your hotel before the customary 3:00 p.m. check-in time, your room may not be available. Store your luggage with the concierge and take the time to walk around and get a feel for your new city.

 

PROTECTED VALUABLE ITEMS

  • Hotel safes are usually provided and can be used to protect valuables such as passports, medications, jewelry, money, and electronics. If you must carry valuables, keep them on your person at all times, be mindful of your surroundings, and take extra caution in crowds.
  • We recommend photocopying the personal information pages of your passport and leaving one copy with a family member or friend and packing another in a place separate from the passport itself. You can also scan your passport and email a copy to yourself for easy online access. This will help you to secure a replacement quickly should the need arise.

 

SHOPPING
Where and whether to shop while traveling with Da'at is a personal choice and shopping is never compulsory. If at any point during your journey you feel pressured to shop or make purchases, please immediately discuss the matter with your tour educator.

 

TIPPING GUIDELINES
We recommend the following for tipping (amounts in US dollars):

  • Groups of 20 participants or more:
    Da'at Tour educator/escort $8, local guide $5, and driver $3 per participant per day.
  • Recommended restaurant tipping when lunch or dinner is “not included in package”:
    10%-15% depending on your satisfaction. However, many restaurants in Budapest charge a 12.5% service charge on the total bill. If a service charge is added to your bill, you don't need leave anything extra. Tips should be given directly to your server or put in a tip jar and should not be left on the table when you leave.
  • Porter:
    Included in your package.

 

 

IMPORTANT CONTACT DETAILS

 

EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE IN EUROPE

112 is the European emergency number people in distress can call 24/7 in all 27-member states of the European Union to get immediate assistance from the fire brigade, a medical team, or the police. You can call the number 112 with a fixed or mobile phone. The European emergency number is free everywhere.

 

EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE IN BUDAPEST

Police | 107
Ambulance | 104
Fire Brigade | 105

Central help number | 112
General inquiries | 197
Domestic inquiries | 198
International inquiries | 199
General emergency services | 911
Tourist police | (0-24): 06-1-438-8080

(This 24-hour hotline was set up specifically to help English-language speakers report a crime.)

24-hour medical assistance in English (Falck SOS Hungary) | 06-1-2000-100

 

DA'AT EMERGENCY INFORMATION

Da'at – Israel
19 Washington Street, P.O. Box 71047, Jerusalem, 91710 Israel 
972-2-621-3333

Da'at – USA
500 7th Ave., 8th Floor, New York, NY 10018
Toll-free number: 888-811-2812

 

 

USEFUL WEBSITES
Center for Disease Control
Electricity & Plugs
Foreign Exchange Rates
Weather
U.S. Customs & Border Protection
Transportation Security Administration

Consular Affairs: Passport Information

Dates of Holidays in Hungary

 

RESOURCES
Useful Hungarian words and phrases
Hungary Timeline
Famous Hungarian Jewish Figures
Books About Hungary
Hungary Through Films
Playlist
Synagogues in Budapest
Recommended restaurants in Budapest
Packing Checklist