The currency in Austria is the Euro.
If you need to exchange money, we recommend you to visit a bank, not an exchange office (where fees are typically higher). The bank closest to the conference venue is
Erste Bank AG
Wiedner Hauptstrasse 20
If you walk out of the conference building, turn left (towards west) and follow the street (including a slight bend to the right) until you come to a small square with a church. Continue straight, crossing the tram rails, and you bump into the bank which is on the opposite side of the street with the rails.
Opening hours are Mon - Fri 9:00 - 18:00. On Saturdays and Sundays, money exchange offices are open at the airport, at railway stations, and in Kärntnerstrasse.
Cash dispenser machines (ATMs) are located next to most banks (watch for a green-blue "B" sign as shown in the picture above), either directly in the street, or inside the lobby (accessible with your card). Maestro, MasterCard and Visa are generally accepted.
Shops are generally open Mon - Fri 9:00 - 19:00+ and Sat 9:00 - 18:00 (supermarkets typically open earlier). Shops remain closed on Sundays (with a few exceptions, notably at the airport, the main train station and at big petrol stations).
Main shopping areas are (all are relatively close to the conference venue):
- Upmarket clothes, jewelry and more: Kärntnerstrasse - Graben - Kohlmarkt
- Clothes, jewelry, furniture, café, electronics and much more: Mariahilferstrasse
- International food and clothing: Naschmarkt
The weather forecast for the ISOTDAQ 2018 (as for any other period of the year) is: Partly sunny, partly cloudy, precipitation is possible :-)
Now seriously. Mid of February means winter, and the average temperature is around 0 degree C, but of course excursions in both directions can occur. Snow is not unlikely, and Vienna also has lots of wind which makes the felt temperature lower than it actually is.
The graph above (click to enlarge) shows long-term average climatic data for Vienna. Click here to go to the source, where you can find a numeric table and the same information in imperial units.
Austria uses the standard European power grid of 230V AC at 50 Hz, but nowadays portable devices typically use switching power supplies and thus don't care.
However, you still have to consider the physical layer in order to achieve connection. The F type wall socket used in Austria is shown to the right, which is quite common in central Europe - with Switzerland being an exception. It fits with the so called Euro plug (shown on the leftmost photo), which is the typical plug for portable devices on the continent, and a bigger version with grounding as shown in the center photo.
Guests from UK, Ireland, the US and Japan definitely need an adapter (this is a non-exhaustive list). It may not be so easy to find one in Vienna, so better bring one yourself.
You can safely drink tap water everywhere in Vienna. When this is not allowed, it is explicitly posted (Kein Trinkwasser), typically at fountains where water is mostly circulating. However, there are some public drinking springs in the city where it is perfectly fine to quench your thirst.
Vienna's tap water is delivered from mountainous regions about 100km to the southwest and has superior quality. Two pipelines to the city were already commissioned in 1873 and 1910, respectively.
If you buy bottled water, there are usually two choices: (highly) carbonated (prickelnd, mit Kohlensäure) or plain (still, ohne Kohlensäure). Sometimes, there is a third option which lies in between (mild, mit wenig Kohlensäure) and probably comes closer to the international standard of carbonated water.
Safety, Insurance & Liability
In general, Vienna is a pretty safe city and you can go anywhere at any time without restrictions. However, general precautions and a practice of common sense are always advisable, as pickpockets are attracted by (tourist) crowds and thus typically appear in the city center and in the proximity of sightseeing spots.
Medical infrastructure is excellent in Vienna, but it may become costly if you are unlucky and need serious treatment. Inside the European Union, medical expenses may be covered by mutual agreements between countries. If you are in doubt, we highly recommend you to take out adequate travel and health insurance.
Please note that neither CERN nor the Local Organizing Committee can take any liability for accidents, illnesses or injuries that may occur at or during the conference, no matter if those happen at the venue or outside. Moreover, the bodies mentioned above accept no liability for any losses incurred by participants and/or accompanying persons, nor loss of, or damage to, any luggage and/or personal belongings.