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Hungary

General

Hungary is a member of the EU.

Time

The time in Hungary is the same as Amsterdam, Paris and Rome and one hour ahead of London.

Language

Hungarian, but many Hungarians also speak English or German.

Border formalities

Many formalities and agreements about matters such as necessary travel documents, car papers, requirements relating to your means of transport and accommodation, medical expenses and taking pets with you do not only depend on the country you are travelling to but also on your departure point and nationality. The length of your stay can also play a role here.

We advise you to consult the relevant authorities before your departure about:

  • which travel documents you will need for yourself and your fellow passengers
  • which documents you need for your car
  • which documents you need for your car
  • which goods you may import and export
  • how medical treatment will be arranged and paid for in your holiday destination in cases of accident or illness
  • whether you can take pets. Contact your vets well in advance. They can give you information about the necessary vaccinations, proof thereof and obligations on return. It would also make sense to enquire whether any special regulations apply to your pet in public places at your holiday destination. In some countries for example dogs must always be muzzled or transported in a cage.

You will find plenty of general information on www.europa.eu but make certain you select information that is relevant to your specific situation.

For the most recent customs regulations you should get in contact with the authorities of your holiday destination in your country of residence.

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Currency

The currency in Hungary is the forint (HUF). The approximate rate September 2016 is: £ 1 = 427.44 HUF. You can pay with euros in many places. You cannot pay by debit card in most shops. Money can be exchanged at border offices and banks.

Credit cards

You can pay by credit card in most restaurants, filling stations, car rental companies and large supermarkets.

Opening times and Public holidays

Banks

Banks are open Monday to Thursday until 16:00.

Shops

Shops are open on weekdays until 18:00 and on Saturdays until 13:00.

Chemists

Chemists in Hungary are open between 08:00 and 18:00.

Public holidays
  • New Year’s Day
  • 15 March (Commemoration of the 1848 Revolution)
  • Easter
  • 1 May (Labour Day)
  • 20 August (Constitution Day)
  • 23 October (Republic Day)
  • All Saints’ Day
  • Christmas

Communication

(Mobile)phones

The mobile network works well throughout Hungary. There is a 3G network for mobile internet.

Wifi, internet

You will find internet cafes throughout the country.

Post

Generally open on weekdays until 18:00 and on Saturday until 14:00.

Roads and traffic

Road network

If you need urgent assistance call the Hungarian breakdown service (MAK), tel. 188.

Traffic regulations

Remember, all traffic in Hungary drives on the right and overtakes on the left! Headlight deflectors are advisable to prevent annoying oncoming drivers. Hungary uses the metric system, so distances are measured in kilometres (km) and speeds in kilometres per hour (km/h). Traffic coming from the right has priority, except on main roads. Buses and trams always have priority.

There is a total ban on alcohol when driving. Take note: if a green traffic light starts to flash, you must prepare to stop. Dipped headlights are compulsory dur-ing the day outside built-up areas. You must use phones hands-free. You must inform the police of any traffic accident. Attention: the centre of Budapest has limited access for motorised vehicles because of air quality issues. The use of winter tyres is not mandatory. Snow chains in the car are compulsory in wintry conditions.

Navigation

Notification of fixed speed cameras by navigation systems or mobile phones is permitted.

Caravans, motorhomes

If travelling with a caravan or motorhome you will need to pay tolls by means of an e-vignette. See ‘Tolls’ for prices and how it works.

Maximum allowed measurements of combined length

Height 4 metres, width 2.55 metres and length 18.75 metres (of which the trailer maximum 12 metres).

Tolls

In Hungary tolls are levied by means of a so-called e-vignette. When you buy an e-vignette the vehicle’s licence number is registered, and checks are made using the licence number. It is therefore essential to purchase a toll vignette before joining a toll road! All motorways in Hungary are toll roads. For more information about the e-vignette and prices, see www.motorway.hu.

Fuel

Petrol and diesel are freely available. Lead free petrol is shown as ‘Bleifrei’ or ‘Ólommentes’. LPG is easily available.

Filling stations

Filling stations are generally open between 06:00 and 20:00. You can usually pay by credit card.

Emergency number

112: national emergency number for fire, police and ambulance.

Camping

The biggest concentration of campsites is around Lake Balaton. Toilet facilities in Hungary are of a reasonable standard. The advantage is that Hungarian campsites are among the cheapest in Europe.

Practical
  • Gas is available but you should make sure you have the right connectors.
  • Make sure you have a world adaptor for electrical appliances.
  • Tap water is safe, but if you don't trust it drink (bottled) mineral water.