Slovakia - Practical Information
The official language in Slovakia is Slovak. It’s a Slavic language. In this region, there are a couple of closely related languages such as Slovak, Czech, Polish, etc. Furthermore, English is not that common in the countryside, but nowadays in the cities and tourist areas, English is spoken. Other languages which could be used in Slovakia are mainly German and Russian.
Most important Slovak words & sentences
In general, ‘ dobré ’ is a good word to know, it means ‘good’, but also used in good morning etc.
Hello Dobrý deň, Ahoj
Good day Dobrý deň
Excuse me/I am sorry Prepáčte
Thank you Ďakujem
I don’t understand Nerozumiem
Goodbye Do videnia
Slovakia has the CET (Central European Time) and it follows the European summer Daylight Saving Time (DST). This means the clock goes forward one hour around the end of March and back one Hour at the end of October.
part of the Schengen area (an EU territory), Slovakia allows free movement across internal borders without checks. Non-EU passports should have an expiry date of no less than three months after their intended departure date.
- No visa is required for EU citizens.
- Visitors from Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Japan and the US do not need a visa for up to 90 days.
- Citizens of other countries should check with your local embassy or travel agent for entry requirements.
If you do need a visa please ensure that you ask for a tourist visa. For more information check these websites:
Please note that in Slovakia all persons are required by law to carry a passport or valid ID card at all times.
How to get to Slovakia
Slovakia is easily reached by Bratislava Airport or Vienna Airport. If you are planning to go to the Tatra Mountains area, Krakow (Poland) might be a better option.
There are a lot of cheap options by Train & Bus. RegioJet/Student Agency is one of the companies offering low budget travel opportunities. Flixbus is another one to check out
Check out my blog about How to get to Slovakia
In Slovakia, you can pay with Euro since 2009. Usually, credit cards are accepted and ATMs are available in most tourist areas. Tipping is not too common in Slovakia, but kind of expected of foreign tourists. Tipping can be done be either rounding off the bill or leaving about 10% tip.
Electronic devices (Electricity, internet, mobile coverage)
Slovakia uses the normal European plug system (230V/50hz). WIFI is widely available (train, cafés, hostels, hotels, …). Some hostels and hotels even have a computer available for their guests. The mobile phone coverage in Slovakia is pretty good, only in the mountains it can be a problem. You need to take your passport if you want to buy a local SIM card. The country code for Slovakia is +421.
Safety & Security
As mentioned before: Please note that in Slovakia all persons are required by law to carry a passport or valid ID card at all times. In general, Slovakia is safe with a decent police presence. Although caution is needed in both very busy places as remote areas, as everywhere.
For hikers, it’s advisable to hike cautiously and keep hold of mountain-rescue numbers.
In general, 112 is the best emergency number, and they should speak English!
Mountain rescue is 18 300.
150 Fire and Rescue
155 Emergency medical service
Health & Emergencies
Mountain Rescue 18 300
All participants must be in possession of adequate travel and medical insurance.
THINGS TO CHECK:
- Coverage of theft, loss and medical problems
- What dangerous activities are excluded (skiing, trekking)?
- Coverage of ambulance and/or emergency flight home
- Flight tickets paid with credit card often provides limited travel accident insurance (check)