The Slovak language is similar to that of Czech, spoken in the neighboring Czech Republic, to the point where speakers of both languages can easily understand each other. Hungarian is the first language of nearly 10 percent of the population.
The euro has been the Slovak Republic’s official currency since the country joined the European Union in 2004. Most Slovak Republic ATMs are reliable and most places accept major credit cards. Visa Electron and Maestro are the most commonly accepted debit cards, while Visa, American Express, and Thomas Cook are the most frequently accepted travelers’ checks. Slovak Republic banks are closed on weekends. Foreign currency is easily exchanged at major travel agencies, banks, road border crossings, and hotels.
The Slovak Republic shares the same Central European Time Zone, an hour ahead of GMT (GMT +1) as the rest of central Europe. Daylight Savings Time is observed here.
Plugs with two round pins and 230 volt electricity at 50 cycles per second are the Slovak Republic’s electricity settings, so visitors from places with different settings should bring voltage converters and plug adaptors should they wish to use electrical devices from home here.
The Slovak Republic’s telephone country code is 421. T-Mobile Slovakia, Orange Slovakia, and O2 Telefonica are the country’s three cell phone providers, and reception is generally good across the nation. T-Mobile and Orange Slovakia are also among the country’s leading internet providers. Virtually all communities have high-speed internet access, and free wireless internet access is available at the Bratislava Milan Rastislav Štefánik Airport restaurant.
Tourists from other European Union nations can purchase alcohol, beauty products, fragrances, and souvenirs at tax-free equivalent prices in the Slovak Republic. European Union visitors can import up to 200 cigars, a kilogram of smoking tobacco, 400 cigarillos, and 800 cigarettes duty-free. Alcohol import limits for European Union visitors are up to 110 liters of beer, 90 liters of wine, 10 liters of spirits with more than 22 percent alcohol content, and 20 liters of beverages with less than 22 percent alcohol content. Visitors over 17 from non-European Union countries can import up to four liters of wine, a liter of spirits, or two liters of beverages whose alcohol content is less than 22 percent. Visitors over 18 from non-European Union countries may also import up to 200 cigarettes, 50 grams of perfume, 250 milliliters of eau de toilette, and gifts worth up to €175. Visitors may also import unlimited supplies of food, flowers, and medicine for personal use.
Slovak Tourist Board, Bratislava: +421 48 413 61 46 or http://www.sacr.sk/en/slovak-tourist-board.
Embassies in Slovak Republic
United States Embassy, Bratislava: +421 2 5998 2000 United Kingdom Embassy, Bratislava: +421 2 5443 0861 Canadian Embassy, Bratislava: +421 2 5920 4031 Czech Republic Embassy, Bratislava: +421 2 5920 3301 German Embassy, Bratislava: +421 2 5920 4400 French Embassy, Bratislava: +421 2 5934 7111 Italian Embassy, Bratislava: +421 2 5980 0011
Emergency services: 112