Romania is a medium-sized European country, with a population of 18 mil. inhabitants, now part of the European Union. The national currency is Romanian Leu (RON): 1 EUR » 4.5 RON.
Being at the cross-roads between Europe and Asia, it shows a unique blend of western and eastern architecture, traditions and food. Ancient and modern aspects, simplicity next to finesse art, and a legendary hospitality, this is what you will experience in Romania.
Bucharest is the capital of Romania. With an official population of approximately 2 million inhabitants, Bucharest is the sixth largest city in Europe, after London, Paris, Berlin, Madrid and Rome.
Big city life does not automatically translate into expensive life, according to Forbes, Bucharest is the second cheapest tourist city in Europe after Kiev.
Bucharest has been known for over two centuries as “Little Paris” or “Paris of the East”. Its impressive architecture, its bohemian atmosphere and the busy lifestyle of its inhabitants bare much resemblance to that of the French capital. But Bucharest has a life of its own – a life that is strongly rooted in its turbulent past and still reflects the daunting years of communism. Still, it is a life that boasts energy, optimism and vitality. House clubs, jazz clubs, rock clubs welcome hundreds of party seekers each night. The historical city centre is crowded with pubs and bars and there are plenty of cafés, bistros, restaurants and pastry shops to choose from. Bucharest currently attracts almost 1 million foreign visitors per year and the numbers are still growing.
Note that tips are allowed but not mandatory in restaurants, taxis, etc., and are usually limited to 10% of the cost of the service.
In order to enter Romania, you will need a Romanian VISA if you are not an EU citizen. The ILRC organizers advise anyone who may need a visa to apply early. General information on Romanian visa requirements, policy and procedures can be found at the web site of the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (https://www.mae.ro/en/node/2035).
The Organizing Committee can provide a letter of invitation as a supporting document for your VISA application. This invitation does not imply that the Conference organizers will provide financial travel support. Please also note that this letter of invitation will not guarantee that a visa for Romania will be granted.
To request a letter of invitation for ILRC 28, please tick “letter of invitation” in the registration form, and fill in all mandatory fields. The signed letter will be sent to you via email in due time. You should use this document when applying for VISA at the closest Romanian Embassy or Consulate. Please note that the organizers cannot obtain the VISA for you, and you are the solely responsible to make all necessary arrangements, including for your travel to Bucharest.
Currency & electrical plugs
Travelling to Bucharest, make sure to know some useful information:
- In Bucharest you will find typical European 220V AC power sockets (CEE 7/1, CEE 7/3 “Schuko” and CEE7/16) so make sure to bring the correct adapters for your electrical devices if needed. Some example pictures of the sockets mentioned are shown below (click to enlarge):
- The local currency is the Romanian Leu (RON) and usually you can’t pay using other currencies; exceptions may be found in the airport area. Therefore it is recommended to exchange a small amount of money once you arrive in Romania in order to arrange transport to the city/hotel. It is advisable to exchange the equivalent of 150-200 RON (~40-50 EUR, ~50 USD) at first since the exchange rates near the border or at the airport are less favourable than the ones you can find inside Bucharest. Once you’ve reached the city, you can exchange any common currency at exchange offices or, preferably, at the local banks.During the weekends, you can find open office banks in any mall, such as AFI Palace or Plaza Romania.
- You can find tourist information about Bucharest on the In Your Pocket website: https://www.inyourpocket.com/bucharest/Bucharest-In-Your-Pocket-100_74215f
Because of its position on the southeastern part of the European continent, Romania has a climate that is transitional between temperate and continental.
Bucharest experiences a humid continental climate, characterised by cold winters (December to February) and hot summers (June to August). What this means is that, at the end of June when Conference will be held, the weather is overall warm. Daily highs range from 25°C to 30°C, as for lows, expect an average of 10°C to 15°C.
Expect partly cloudy skies, with chances of clear or overcast weather. In the days leading up to the Conference, watch out for light or moderate rain – be sure to check the weather widget below.
Travel to Bucharest
You can arrive to Bucharest by several means:
Romania can be reached by several major international airlines from European gateway cities. Bucharest has an international airport, situated in its north region, on DN1 road at 16.5km from Bucharest centre, Henri Coanda (Otopeni) airport. (http://www.otp-airport.ro)
The airport connection with the city centre is made by bus (lines 783 and 780) or taxi.
The 783 Express line connects Bucharest Henri Coanda International Airport with the city center in about 60 minutes. The 780 Express line connects Bucharest Henri Coanda International Airport with Gara de Nord (the North Railway Station) in about 45 minutes.
- Monday-Friday: 05:30-20:00 (every 15 minutes)
- Monday-Friday: 20:30-23:00 (every 30 minutes)
- Saturday, Sunday and legal holidays : 05:30-23:00 (every 30 minutes).
The magnetic card valid for two travels costs 7 RON. Card desk is open daily: 06:00-21:00, in front of the Domestic Flights Terminal.
Licensed taxis, with or without prior request, with fares of around 1.40 lei/km (some companies may have higher rates), are available for passengers arriving at Bucharest Henri Coandă International Airport.
You can order a taxi from a certain company by using the touch screen terminals for taxi requests, in the Arrivals terminal. You can also just pick a taxi from the stations clearly signposted and located at the exit of the Arrivals terminal. These cars are operated by companies approved by the airport, and are completely safe. The fare rate should be displayed in the cab, and the total cost will be calculated automatically depending on the number of Km to the destination. The average cost of a trip to the city centre is around 60 RON (approx. 13 EUR). You can pay in RON or EUR. You can also choose to give a small tip to the driver (not more than 10% of the total cost!).
Please, do not use unlicensed or private cabs, and do not let yourself be approached by fake taxi drivers!
Bucharest’s main station Gara de Nord (North Railway Station) is a major rail center with daily connections from/to cities throughout Europe and main cities in Romania. It is located three km from the conference place (“Politehnica” University of Bucharest), direct connection by trolleybus 62.
If you plan to come by car, use your GPS and check the main information below.
Documents required by Border Police are the vehicle’s registration, proof of insurance and a valid driver’s license. U.S. / Canadian/ Australian/ New Zealand driver licenses are valid for driving in Romania for 90 days from the date of entry into Romania.
When renting a car in Europe, please check with the car rental company its policy regarding taking the car across national borders.
Independent travellers entering Romania by car (own or rental) need to obtain a road toll badge, called Rovinieta. Rovinieta is available on-line http://www.roviniete.com as well as at any border-crossing point, postal office and most gas stations. Cost of Rovinieta for passenger cars is the equivalent in Romanian Lei (RON) of: 4 EUR (valid for 7 days) or 9 EUR (valid for 30 days).
There is no any other tax to be paid by visitors/ tourists when entering or leaving Romania.
Bucharest City has an extensive public transport system that operates during the day making local travel throughout the whole city easy for all. The City is served by a network of subways and ground base transport network: busses, trolleys and tram rails, as well as plenty of taxicabs. There are many transportation options in Bucharest, but due to traffic, often subway train travel is the fastest and most convenient way of getting around the City.
Bucharest public transport system RATB operates ground based public transport in Bucharest, an extensive network of buses, trolleys and tram rails: http://www.ratb.ro/eng/index.php
If you plan to take public transportation in Bucharest (highly recommended), we advise that you purchase an Electronic Wallet and put an adequate sum of money on it. Any ride throughout the system is at the flat rate of 1.3 Lei (except for certain express buses). You can use one card individually or for more than one person (just swipe the card two or more times). There are also options for an unlimited 1 or 7 days pass subscription (that can be used by one individual only), that may make sense depending on how long is your stay in Bucharest.
Each change of busses, trolleys or trams represent a new ride and is charged. Remember to validate your Electronic Wallet every time you get in a bus, trolley or tram.
Bucharest subway system Metrorex operates Bucharest’s subway system, everyday between 5AM and 11PM local time: http://www.metrorex.ro/first_page_p1352-2
Tickets price for subway is not on a flat rate and depends on how many trips a ticket have. Are available tickets with 2 or 10 trips, as well as daily and weekly pass with unlimited trips, with a 15m for 1 or 7 days. Transfer between connecting subways trains at various stations is free, ride being considered from the moment you enter at the subway till you exit, doesn’t matter how many trains you use.
Taxicabs in Bucharest can be hailed on the street on a nearly 24/7 basis, ordered from the hotel reception, or by phone. There are multiple taxi companies from low cost to high class, see a short list here:
|Cristaxi||+4 021 9466 / +4 021 9455||1.39 RON / km|
|Speed Taxi||+4 021 9477 / +4 021 9488||1.39 RON / km|
|Meridian Taxi||+4 021 9888||1.39 RON / km|
|Taxi Pelicanul||+4 021 9665 / +4 021 9565||1.39 RON / km|
Also available in Bucharest is Uber or other car services:
Please keep in mind that mid-town traffic is rather heavy during rush hours and business hours.
The conference location is well connected to the city centre, where you can find a large variety of hotels, ranging from 2-stars to 5-stars.
You can book the hotel by yourself, or you can use the conference registration system to make the reservation. In order to do so, please tick “hotel reservation” and introduce your preferences. Your request will be handled by the conference travel agency in due time.
If you choose to make your own reservation, please make the arrangements at least 1 month before the conference, because the city centre is always the preferred place for the tourists. A selection of hotels is provided below.
|Hotel||Website||Distance to the conference location|
|AMBIANCE HOTEL 3*||http://ambiance-hotel.ro/en/welcome/||Walking distance - 10 minutes|
|INTERCONTINENTAL HOTEL 5*||http://http://intercontinental.bucharest-hotel.com/en/||Walking distance to the metro station “Universitate” – 20 m
4 stations, about 20 min
|HOTEL VENEZIA 4*||http://www.hotelvenezia.ro||Walking distance to the metro station “Universitate” – 1 km
4 stations, about 20 min
Walking distance to the metro station “EROILOR” – 1.2 km
1 stations, about 5 min
|HOTEL CENTRAL 3*||http://www.centralhotel.ro||Walking distance to the metro station “Universitate” – 500 m
4 stations, about 20 min
|HOTEL OPERA 3*||http://www.hotelopera.ro||Walking distance to the metro station “Universitate” – 700 m
4 stations, about 20 min