Understanding Austrian Cuisine and Computers
A trip to Vienna can be a vacation of a lifetime. But before leaving home, understand the basic differences in restaurants, computers and other aspects of Austria.
Anyone who has an appreciation for not only history, but also classical music should take advantage of a tour of the eastern European country of Austria. However, knowing a few details about what to expect in Austria’s hotels and restaurants will make your trip more enjoyable.
Austria uses the Euro for currency. Because rates change constantly you need to check on them daily to get the best deal. Although you can exchange your dollars for Euros at your local bank, it’s best to do it when you arrive. Usually, there are nearby banks in walking distance of most hotels.
Communicating in Austria
Before leaving check out a website such as “Austrian Phrases where you can learn a few local words and sayings in German, the language of the country. For example, “Danka” means “thank you. German is the official language and English is spoken especially in the tourist areas. Some speaks Slavic and Hungarian.
Austrian Food and Restaurants
Since its early beginnings traditional Austrian cuisine has been influenced by different neighboring cultures including German, Hungarian, Italian and German foods. Popular foods – The foods that Austria is most known for are wiener schnitzels and apple streusels. Baskets of restaurant rolls – Austrian food is excellent, however there are a few differences in restaurant policy. Whereas in America, rolls are usually included in a entre, in Austria bread and rolls are extra. However, they don’t tell you the price, but just bring out a basketful. When it’s time to pay, they count how many you ate and include it on your bill. Plate sizes – In some restaurants, such as the Rosenberger in Albertina Square in Vienna, food in a salad bar is measured by plate size, rather than by the pound. In other words, choose a small plate over a large one to pile on the food. Coffee – Usually, refills of tea and coffee are not free, as in most American restaurants. Also, coffee is served in tiny cups and is strong compared to American brews. Tipping — A service charge of 10% to 15% is added on to your hotel and restaurant bills, but it’s a good to leave something for waiters and your maid per day. Smoking — Many Austrians are smokers, and unlike in the United States, smoking is not prohibited in restaurants. If you’re sensitive, ask the waiter to sit you in a nonsmoking section, if possible.
Austrian Internet Access and Computers
Internet access – Many hotels offer internet in rooms for guests who bring their laptops. However, most hotels charge a fee for internet excess in their lobbies. At Vienna’s Hotel Savoyen internet is free. However, before leaving home make sure your internet provider lets you go online because assess can be denied if certain controls aren’t adjusted back home in the states. You can check with the www.cybercaptive.com or www.cybercafe.com to locate the closest Internet cafes. Computer differences – Don’t expect an Austrian computer to be like the one you use at home. For example, several keys are located in different spots, such as the “y” key. Also, you have to use the control key to make the “@” mark, when typing in your email address. However, most hotel personnel are very helpful and willing to show you the differences.
Restroom Charges in Austria
Restroom facilities usually aren’t free in Austria, as in many other European countries. Therefore, find out from your tour director which ones are free of charge, as well as always have plenty of local Euros in case of an emergency. Restroom facilities are free at the Rosenberger.
Doing Laundry on a Eastern European Tour
Who has time to find a laundry mat or pay for laundering services when on a tour? Therefore, it’s a good idea to bring along a container of laundry detergent. On those days when you have two to three nights at the same hotel, you can wash out your dirty clothes in the bathroom sink and then let them dry on closet hangers. Most of all don’t be afraid to use sign language when it’s obvious someone doesn’t understand English. This is especially helpful when ordering from a menu that’s entirely written in German.