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Edinburgh

Old town, Edinburgh

Practical Info about Edinburgh

Time

GMT (GMT +1 from last Sunday in March to Saturday before last Sunday in October).

Electricity

The electrical current in the UK is 230 volts, 50Hz. Flat three-pin plugs are standard.

Currency

The currency is the British Pound (GBP), which is divided into 100 pence. ATMs are available in all towns and Visa, MasterCard and American Express are widely accepted; visitors with other cards should check with their credit card companies in advance. Foreign currency can be exchanged at bureaux de change and large hotels, however better exchange rates are likely to be found at banks.

Communication

The international country dialling code for the UK is +44. Mobile phone coverage is extensive using GSM 1800 networks, which may not be compatible with some dual-band US cell phones. Internet cafes are available in all major towns and cities, train stations and airports.

Emergency number

Emergencies: 999/112

Visa and health information

Everything about visa and health information

Public holidays

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2014 2015
New Years Day 1 Jan 1 Jan
Good Friday 18 Apr 3 Apr
Easter Monday 21 Apr 6 Apr
May Day 5 May 4 May
Spring Bank Holiday 26 May 25 May
Summer Bank Holiday 25 Aug 31 Aug
Christmas 25 Dec 25 Dec
Boxing Day 26 Dec 26 Dec

Climate

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Edinburgh has a temperate, maritime climate which is relatively mild considering the city's northern latitude, but may still frustrate tourists with plenty of cold, rain, wind and fog year round. Edinburgh, like the rest of the UK, has very unpredictable weather, with sunny summer days sometimes rapidly changing into damp, showery bleakness or vice versa. Summers are generally fine though, with mild temperatures and bright sunshine, although days might start out misty. Winters are long and damp with many frosty days. The winter months of December, January and February are the rainiest (although rain is likely in any season) but snow is infrequent. The average temperatures in summer, between June and August, range between 49°F (9°C) and 66.4°F (19°C). The average temperatures in winter, between December and February, range between 34°F (1°C) and 45°F (7°C). The best time to travel to Edinburgh is during spring and summer, between April and August.

Getting around the city

A good network of bus routes covers the city and this is the main form of public transport. Buses are given exclusive use of certain lanes within the city, and as a result the services are fairly free-flowing. Exact change is required as one enters the bus, so buying a One-Ticket pass is a convenient option: this allows unlimited travel in and around the city. Night buses come into operation after midnight, offering an economical way to get home after a night out. Black taxis are easily hailed in the street and there are numerous taxi ranks, but rates are a bit expensive. Rental cars can be useful for touring the country, but driving around Edinburgh's one-way, narrow streets can be confusing, and parking is difficult to find. The city is definitely best explored on foot for those who can handle the steep roads; in fact, any other mode of transport will deprive visitors of some glorious sights.

Edinburgh International Airport

www.edinburghairport.com

Getting to the city

Airlink 100 buses connect between the airport and the city centre every 10 minutes, from early morning until after midnight, and cost £3.50; the journey takes approximately 25 minutes. There are many alternative buses, including Night Bus N22, Service 35 and Airdirect 747, that run to the city centre via a couple of stops en route. Stops for public buses are situated at stand 18 on the terminal forecourt road outside the UK Arrivals Hall.

Car rental

There is a car rental centre located next to the parking area, connected to the terminal by a covered walkway. Car rental companies include Alamo, Avis, Europcar, Budget, Thrifty, Hertz and National.

Airport taxi's

The taxi ranks for airport taxis and city black cabs are outside the east end of the airport terminal. The drive to the city centre takes approximately 25 minutes and costs about £18.50.

Facilities

Facilities at the airport include ATMs, a bureau de change, shops, pharmacy, wifi, children's play area, baby change rooms, restaurants and bars. The Servicair Executive Lounge is available to departing passengers on the first floor past security. OHM Therapies is located near Gate 7 and offers massages. The airport also has an art gallery displaying Scottish works near Gate 12.

Parking

A multilevel car park is located just across from the terminal building; pricing is £1 for 10 minutes, £5 for 20 minutes, £7 for an hour, and £9 per hour thereafter. The long-term car park is a few minutes away; a courtesy bus ferries passengers to the terminal.

Internet

Boingo provides pay-as-you-go wifi at Edinburgh International Airport.