Due to Austria’s location in the Alps, the country is very mountainous and the climate is very temperate. Summers, which last from June to mid-September, will see temperatures of mid-70’s (° F) but can get as high as the mid-90’s, particularly in lower-lying areas such as Vienna. Winter can get very cold, with temperature dropping below freezing. The northern Alps see some rain throughout the year. The ski season starts in December and runs until April.
The official language of Austria is Austrian German, with is a little different from the German spoken in Germany in that they use some different vocabulary. However, the first language learned by most Austrians is a local dialect called Austro-Bavarian. English is widely spoken throughout the country and Italian is widely spoken in the regions bordering Italy.
National Holidays and Festivals
January 1 – New Year’s Day
January 6 – Epiphany
May 1 – Labor Day
40th day after Easter Sunday – Ascension Day
October 26 – National Day
November 1 – All Saints Day
December 8 – Feast of the Immaculate Conception
December 25 – Christmas
As a member of the European Union, the official currency is the Euro. The exchange rate as of Jul 2010 is 0.76 Euro to US$1. The best rates for exchanging money are offered by banks.
Credit cards are accepted at the larger shops and there are ATMs (called Bankomat) throughout the country, even in the smaller villages.
Bargaining is not normal unless it’s at flea markets.
Tipping is customary at restaurants but usually rounding up will be enough tip.
230V 50Hz; 2-pin rounded plugs or the CEE-7/7 or Schuko plug