Due to the state’s unique French and Spanish heritage, Louisiana has one of America’s most unusual linguistic cultures. While English is the main language spoken here, nearly 10 percent of households speak French just as frequently. Spanish is also used by a fair number of residents, and then there are the Creole French and Cajun French dialects that are only found in Louisiana. These can cause comprehension problems for visitors trying to communicate in the parishes of Cajun country so be prepared to look for the context of the conversation.
The sole currency used in Louisiana is the US dollar (US$). Banknotes come in denominations of US $1, 5, 10, 20, 50, and 100. There are 100 cents to a dollar, with coins of 1, 5, 10, and 25 cent pieces. Banks in the state’s larger cities are the best places to exchange foreign currency and traveler’s checks. Small towns may not be able to exchange cash, but credit cards are accepted virtually everywhere. ATMs are also fairly easy to find in most towns, often in bank lobbies and larger stores like supermarkets.
Louisiana is in the Central Time Zone (GMT -6; GMT -5 between March 12 and November 4 during daylight savings).
Louisiana uses electricity at 110-120 V/60 Hz. Flat two-prong plugs are typical, so it is recommended that you travel with a universal adapter if you are from Europe or Asia.
The dialing code for the United States is +1. Louisiana uses five area codes depending on the part of the state you're in. New Orleans is 504, while Baton Rouge is 225. In Lafayette the area code is 337, with 985 along the southern coast and 318 covering the entire northern portion. Louisiana has plenty of remote areas where mobile phones can be spotty. Internet access is only reliable in the larger cities like New Orleans and Baton Rouge.
When arriving in the United States every passenger over the age of 18 is allowed to carry one liter of alcohol, 200 cigarettes (or 50 non-Cuban cigars or two kilograms of tobacco), and gifts up to a value of US $400 without incurring customs.
Development of Culture, Recreation, and Tourism, 1051 N. Third Street, Baton Rouge, LA 70802: +1-800-99-GUMBO, http://www.louisianatravel.com/
Consulates in Louisiana
Canadian Consulate, Dallas: +1-214-922-9806
German Consulate, New Orleans: +1-504-585-7500
Netherlands Consulate, New Orleans: +1-504-592-8380
French Consulate, New Orleans: +1-504-569-2870
Australian Consulate, Washington, DC: +1-202-797-3008
British Consulate, Houston: +1-713-659-6270
Emergency services: 911