Travel Advice for Bulgaria
Bulgaria
Capital: Sofia

Time Zone GMT + 2
Telephone
Services
Country Code: 359
IDD: Direct dialling to main cities
Outgoing Code: 00, some calls go through the international operator
Emergency
Telephone
Numbers
Ambulance - 150, Fire - 160, Police - 166.
Tourist
Information
Ministry of Trade and Tourism, 1 Sweta Nedelja, Sofia 1000, Bulgaria. Tel: (2) 84131 Fax: (2) 981 2515. Balkantourist, Boulevard Vitosha 1, 1000 Sofia, Bulgaria. Tel: (2) 43331 Fax: 890 1014.
Passport
Information
A valid passport with at least 6 months remaining validity at time of departure is required. Requirements may change at short notice. Contact the relevant authority before finalising travel arrangements.
Visa
Information
Visa required by all.
Health
Information
No information available at present.
Food
& Drink
Water is untreated and not safe to drink.
Currency Lev (Lv) = 100 stotinki.
Exchange: A bordereau receipt will be given and must be kept until departure.
NOTE: Import and export of local currency is prohibited. Amounts of currency over US$ 1000 have to be declared. Diners Club American Express and Visa have limited acceptance. Traveller's cheques can be exchanged in major banks. US dollars and Pound sterling are the preferred currency.
ATM availability: Over 100 locations (MasterCard/Cirrus only).
Cost of
Living
Inexpensive when compared with Western Europe.
Languages Bulgarian. English is spoken in resorts. Turkish, Russian, French and German may also be spoken.
Weather Summers are the warmest with some rainfall. Winters are cold with snow. Rain falls frequently in the Spring and Autumn.
Electricity 220 volts AC, 50 Hz. Plugs are 2 pin.
Post 4 days to 2 weeks to Western Europe.
Transport FLIGHTS: Air travel is only slightly more expensive than rail and more convenient.
RAIL: Reservations are essential, 1st Class is advisable.
ROAD: Speed limits are strictly enforced as are drinking and driving penalties.
CAR HIRE: Can be arranged through hotels.
DOCUMENTATION: AN IDP should be obtained although foreign driving licences are acceptable for short journeys. A 'Green' card is compulsory.
Special
Information
A nod of the head means "No" and shaking the head means "Yes". Dress should be conservative but casual. It is advisable to register with the police, a hotel or guest house within 48 hours of arrival. Do not accept food or drink from strangers. Exercise caution in Sofia particularly at night.