Essential Information about Austria

General Information about Austria
Area 83,855 km² / 32,377 sq mi
Population 8,400,000
State Treaty Second Republic since 1945
Official language German
Capital Vienna
   
Economic Indicators  
GDP per capita $ 44,000
Unemployment rate 4.5%
Gini coefficient 26 (rather equal distribution of wealth)
Average inflation rate 2 %

Currency: Austria uses the Euro (EUR), which is divided into 100 cents. Even the smallest towns have banks or bureaux de change where money can be exchanged. ATMs are also widely available and most major international debit and credit cards are accepted, however smaller restaurants or shops may only accept cash.

Time: The time zone for Austria is GMT +1 in winter and GMT +2 in summer (from the final Sunday in March to the final Sunday in October).

Electricity: Austria uses European round 2-prong plugs as well as the Schuko plug with side grounding contacts. The electrical current in Austria is 230 volts, 50Hz.

Language: German is the official language in Austria, however English is widely understood.

Health: Expats do not require any vaccinations when moving to Austria. Expats that intend to visit, or live in more remote or rural areas are advised to take precautions against tick-borne encephalitis. Both water and food are safe to consume. EU citizens are eligible for free emergency medical care at public hospitals in Austria on presentation of a European Health Insurance Cared (EHIC). Expats moving to Austria should have adequate private health insurance coverage.

Tipping: Tipping is a common and expected practice in Austria. A 10% tip is generally expected in restaurants and bars if a customer is satisfied with the service they have received. Taxi drivers also generally expect to be tipped 10% of the taxi fare.

Safety Information: As one of the safest countries in Europe, expats moving to Austria will find it a hassle-free and comfortable country in which to live. Precautions should be taken in the larger cities, but this is true throughout the world and not just a safety precaution particular to Austria.

Local Customs: Like an increasing number of EU countries, Austria has a ban on smoking in many public places. It is also important that expats remember to always drive with their lights on, regardless of time of day or time of year.

Communications: The international dialing code for Austria is +43, and 00 followed by the country code to dial out of Austria (i.e. 0044 for the United Kingdom). Individual cities have different area codes, such as (0)1 for Vienna. Austria uses the 900 and 1800 GSM bands for mobile telephones and public telephone booths are available throughout the country and can be used to call overseas. Internet cafes are found in all larger towns, cities and most tourist areas.

Emergency Numbers: Fire Department: 122. Police: 133. Ambulance: 144.