The official language in Armenia is Armenian but as a result of its Soviet legacy, most Armenians have a working knowledge of Russian, as well. English is spoken widely in urban centers like the capital Yerevan and is used prolifically in the tourism industry and business.
The official currency used is the dram (AMD), split into 100 luma, which is accepted all over the country. Dollars are occasionally accepted by bigger concerns but this is not official so it is best to keep good supply of dram, as well. Exchanges can be made in all banks country-wide and in exchange offices. ATMs are available mainly in the larger centers, with rural areas having few or no ATMs at all. All major credit cards are accepted in urban hubs but be sure to double check before traveling to more remote areas, which tend to accept cards from specific companies only.
Armenia is four hours ahead of GMT and observes daylight saving in summer.
Armenia uses electricity at 220V, 50Hz. European plugs with two round pins are used throughout the country but adaptors are also readily available.
Armenia’s country code is +374, while the dialing code in Yerevan, the capital, is +10. The main mobile operators in the country are VivaCell and Orange which provide free SIM cards to visitors arriving at major airports. VivaCell and Orange operate in Armenian and English while the third provider, Beeline, operates in Armenian and Russian. Internet cafés are aplenty in a larger cities but it is advisable to obtain a SIM card when travelling to remote regions.
Duty-free shopping is mostly available at the Zvartnots Armenia International Airport. Here travelers can purchase a range of local and international goods including perfumes, alcoholic beverages and textiles. Customs allowances are entirely dependent on the country of entry but the general rules are no more than two liters of alcoholic beverages, five kilograms of perfume, 400 cigarettes and other goods amounting to a value of no more than US$500.
Armenia Visitor Information Centre, Yerevan: +374-10-542-303 or +374-10-542-306 or www.armeniainfo.am
Consulates in RA
Canadian Consulate, Yerevan: +374-10-567-990 Chinese Embassy, Yerevan: +374-10-560-067 French Embassy, Yerevan: +374-10-591-950 Finnish Consulate, Yerevan: +374-10-565-587 German Embassy, Yerevan: +374-10-523-279 Italian Embassy, Yerevan: +374-10-542-335 American Embassy, Yerevan: +374-10-464-700 British Embassy, Yerevan: +374-10-264-301
Police: 102 Fire Department: 101 Ambulance: 103