Climate & weather in Hungary
Budapest enjoys some simply glorious weather. Summer seasons average out in the high-20s with extended periods between 32 – 35” Celsius. With depressions from the Mediterranean, cold air from Russia and Atlantic depressions, the winters in Hungary are wet and windy and unpredictable. From 30cm of snow in a day to temperatures moving from -20 up to 15”
Crime in Budapest
The most frequently reported crimes are pickpocketing, with street crimes, petty thefts and snatches of unattended items from vehicles. Busy touristy areas are hotspots for opportunists crimes so be weary when walking round popular venues like major train, tube and bus stations.
Currency & prices in Budapest
While Hungary has not converted to the Euro currency and still uses its own local denomination called the Hungarian Forint (HUF). There are however many places that will accept Euros. If you are planning on exchanging money, local Hungarian banks offer better exchange rates than the foreign ones, so it may very well work out better to wait until you are in Budpest.
It has to be said that Budapest is cheap and Hungary as a country is very cheap. You can get a wonderful 3 course lunch for as little as 6 EUR and a beer could set you back 1,5 EUR.
Languages & foreign languages in Budapest
The official language in Hungary is of course Hungarian with a little over 99% of people able to speak it. 16% of people speak English, 11 German with a few people able to understand Russian, French and Italian.
Smoking in Hungary
Hungary has had a smoking ban in public places for a number of years and every couple years the rules get tougher. In 2010 the “smoke free” included playgrounds, underpasses and public bus stops.
In 2013 the sale of tobacco was limited to only specify shops called “Nemzeti Dohánybolt” (National Tobacco Shop). This reduced the number of places that actually sold tobacco to drop from around 42’000 to just 5300 nationwide.
Tipping Etiquette in Budapest
It is true to say that tipping is widespread in Budapest, so make sure you carry a few extra notes in your pocket. As an unwritten rule a 10% tip would be added to hotel, restaurant and bar bills for good service.
WI-FI internet connections in Budapest
Budapest like all major European cities has a many free wireless hot-spot throughout the city. There is also the possibility to connect to the free Budapest Wi-Fi offered in most hotels, cafes and some bars. Sometimes you will indeed need a password, although staff are usually happy to help.