GENERAL INFORMATION

Visa and Passport Information for Bulgaria

            Please, before arranging your trip check the need for Bulgarian visa.

For your information, EU passport holders, as well as those of USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Israel, the countries from Formal Yugoslavia and some others with reciprocal agreements, are visa-free for a stay up to 30 days in Bulgaria.

Visa application processing can usually take up to 10 working days, since each application needs to receive clearance by the Bulgarian Foreign Ministry in Sofia.

You can click on the link listed below to get hold of information about Bulgarian Visas.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bulgaria.

http://www.mfa.bg/en/contacts

PERSONAL AND OTHER INSURANCE

Participants are reminded to take out personal insurance for themselves and accompanying persons, including insurance of personal effects.

Health

Delegates should ensure that they are covered by adequate medical insurance. Since Bulgaria joined the EU in 2007, EU-citizens with health insurance in their home countries are entitled to reduced cost or free medical treatments covered by the Bulgarian social insurance (i.e. state-provided medical treatment only) on production of a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) – provided, their stay in the country is temporary (usually this refers to a period of up to 90 days)

Food/Catering

Bulgarian food is excellent and varied.

Some national dishes are: beans, gyuvetch, sarma (tinsel), “shkembe chorba” (tripe soup). In our national cousine we use different kind of meat: pork, lamb, beef, also fish – carp, sheat-fish, mackerel, sturgeon, turbot and others. Bulgarian fruits and vegetables are much tasty than the others produced in the most of the Europen countries. Famous are the Bulgarian white cheese, named in many countries “Bulgarian cheese”, also the Bulgarian yoghourt that include the Bacterium Bulgaricum.

Coffee Breaks and meals will be available on conference days. They will be covered by the registration fee.

Dietary Requirements Please specify on the registration form if you have any special dietary requirements.

Postal Services

Post offices in Varna work from Monday to Friday from 8.00 am to 6 pm, some of them in Saturday, half day working time.

You can buy stamps and post cards at the post office desks as well as from newspaper kiosks. Single stamp for delivery inside Bulgaria costs 0,45 leva. International postage vary according to destination, and to the weight of the package.

Climate and Clothing

                September.

                 September is one of the

                 months with the most enjoyable weather on the Bulgarian Black Sea coast. The average daily temperature in Sunny Beach is 20°C (68°F), reaching highs of 24°C (75°F) and lows of 15°C (59°F). The water of Black Sea is still warm for swimming. The average temperature of the sea in this month is 22°C (75°F). Nights are cool and sometimes overcoat is needed. Some days in the late September are still suitable for the beach, but the perfect weather is not guaranteed. Night temperature in September gradually falls, reaching no more than 10 - 12°C (50 -53.6°F) at the end of the month. Overall, September is considered to be the driest month of the year.

Тhe temperatures drop ever so slightly in September but, for the most part, the weather remains warm and sunny.

Currency

The Bulgarian Lev is

the currency of Bulgaria.

One lev is made up of 100 'stotinki'. The currency code for Leva is BGN, and the currency symbol is лв.

The following coins are available: 1, 2, 5,10,20,50 stotinki and 1 lev.

The following notes are available: 2, 5,10, 20, 50, 100 leva (BGN).

Hotels, restaurants, taxi drivers and shops accept payments in Bulgarian Leva only.

Bulgarian Lev is pegged to the Euro and the exchange rate is fixed at 1 EUR = 1, 9583 BGN. For orientation purposes you can assume the following: 1 US Dollar = 1,42 BGN, Pound Sterling = 2,36 BGN, but please note exchange rates fluctuate on a daily basis.(January,2014).

Money Exchange

Cash machines are easily accessible in the big cities and larger towns. You can get up to 400 BGN at a time from one cash machine (bankomat).

All major European, North American and Japanese debit and credit cards are accepted. Money can also be exchanged safely at banks, or at most exchange bureaus. We would advise you to use banks first, or reputable exchange bureau, which must display clearly exchange rates on large tables, with the sign “No Commission”. Exchange bureaus are no longer allowed to charge a commission for money exchange, so it is always better to check first. Airports and hotels also offer money exchange, but they usually tend to give less favorable rates.

We would advise you to exchange money only in reputable places. It is always better to familiarize yourself with the local currency prior to arrival to Bulgaria. Please use the link to the Bulgarian National Bank official site. (www.bnb.bg)

Shopping

Shops in Varna are usually open from 0900hrs to 1900hrs. However, many are closed on Sunday. Bulgaria is renowned for its qualified clothes, arts, national dresses, pottery, wrought iron, precious stones, silver and gold jewelry, etc. The prices in Bulgaria are much lower than in other European countries.

 

 

Telecommunications

Electricity

There are three mobile operators in Bulgaria – Globul, MobilTel & Vivacom. All of them have sufficient coverage throughout the country. Every operator has prepaid service cards which does not involve contract signing. Upon request your operator will gladly give you information about phone calling from a mobile phone in Bulgaria.

Currently, Bulgarian Internet speed is one of the fastest in the world. However, the access to the highest speed possible depends on several factors - location, coverage, etc. There are three types of broadband connection available: an asymmetric digital subscriber line (ADSL), an integrated services digital network (ISDN) line, mobile broadband connection. In most big cities there are many Wi-Fi hotspots.

Telecommunications standards in Bulgaria are the same as those in the EU, so if your modem works in Europe or has a ‘CE’ mark it should work in Bulgaria. If you have an ISDN line and want your computer to connect to the Internet at the maximum possible speed, you will need an ISDN terminal adapter.

There are two different phone-cards operators: BULFON – the orange phones and MOBIKA. – the blue phones. The companies offer phone cards of different units from 25 to 200 (price 2.90 to 13 leva ). You can buy phone cards from post offices and street kiosks.

Bulgaria's standard electricity

supply is 220/230 volts AC

with a frequency of 50 Hertz.

For other equipment, a

transformer or adapter is

required unless the appliance

has a multi-voltage option. Sockets in Bulgaria take standard European-style two pin plugs.

Language

Bulgarian is a Southern Slavic language with about 12 million speakers mainly in Bulgaria, but also in Ukraine, Serbia, Macedonia, Turkey, Greece, Moldova, Israel, Canada, USA, etc.

Bulgarian was the first Slavic language to be written: it start to appear in writing during the 9th century in the Glagolitic alphabet, which was gradually replaced by an early version of the Cyrillic alphabet over the following centuries.

Now Bulgarian is the first Slavic language, officially recognized in the European Union.

Many Turkish words were adopted into Bulgarian during the long period of Ottoman rule. Words have also been borrowed from Latin, Greek, Russian, French, Italian, and German and increasingly from English.

English is widely spoken in Bulgaria and will be the language of the workshop.

 

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