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flag United States United States: Practical information

In this page: Eating Out | Getting Around | Time and Time Difference | Climate | Electrical Standards and Measurement Systems | Paying | Speaking | Emergency Numbers | Communications

 

Eating Out

Rules For Eating Out
Lunch is usually served between 11 am and 1 pm and dinner 5 pm to 10 pm. Do not forget to tip your waiter or waitress (20 % at a "sit-down" restaurant). Service is almost never included in the price of the meal. Sometimes, if you eat with a group of people over a certain number, the restaurant will add a service charge to your bill, which means you do not have to leave a tip.
 
Food Specialties
American culinary specialities vary considerably by region. Some popular examples include:

Appetisers: crab cakes, oysters Rockefeller, crab soup and Waldorf salad.
Main courses: chili con carne, burgers, chicken or shrimp gumbo, jambalaya and country ham.
Alcohol and cocktails: bourbon, eggnog and mint julep.
Baked goods: corn bread and peanut brittle.
Desserts: president's cake, red velvet cake and King cake.

Drinks
Soft drinks like Coca Cola, Fanta, etc. are the most commonly consumed beverages.

The legal drinking age is 21 years old. American beers, such as Budweiser and Coors, are popular with younger adults. High quality wines, beer and spirits (especially bourbon) can be found in the United States. Imported international alcoholic beverages can be easily found.

Dietary Restrictions
None

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Getting Around

Means of Transport Recommended in Town

Urban transport services
Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority

Find an Itinerary
San Francisco Bay Area Transit Information
Ferrocarta
Taxi services
Call Taxi USA
 

Transportation From Airport to City Centre:


Airport

Distance

Taxi

Bus

Train

Car Rental
Los Angeles Intl (LAX) 24 km / 15 miles USD 30 / 30-35 min USD 3 / 30-45 min Available Available
Chicago O'Hare (ORD) 9 km / 5 miles 10 min Available Available Available
New York - Kennedy Intl (JFK) 21 km / 13 miles USD 45 / 40-60 min Available USD 5 /1 0-15 min Available
 

Means of Transport Recommended in the Rest of the Country

Train reservation services
Amtrak
 

Major airlines

Name Type Domestic Flights International Flights
American Airlines Major Yes Yes
United Airlines Major Yes Yes
Continental Major Yes Yes
Delta Major Yes No
Jet Blue Low Cost Yes No
Southwest Airlines Low Cost Yes No

You Can Consult The EU Air Safety List. Look Also at the rating of the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

 
 
 

Travelling By Yourself

Car rental agencies
Advantage
Budget
Dollar
National
Real-time traffic conditions
National Traffic and Road Closure Information
 

Rules of the Road

National Roads Organizations
Federal Highways Administration
Department of Motor Vehicles

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Time and Time Difference

Current Local Time
It is %T:%M %A In New York, Washington DC, Philadelphia
It is %T:%M %A In Chicago, Houston, San Antonio, Dallas
It is %T:%M %A In Los Angeles, San Diego
Summer Time
From April to October.
 

Map of the Time Zone

Time zone

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Climate

 
Type of Climate
Temperatures and climate vary considerably across the United States. Below are some average temperatures in several U.S. Cities:

Chicago: -7°C in January, 20°C in June

San Francisco:12°C in January, 18°C in June

New York from 0°C in January, 22°C in June

Hotel reservation websites
U.S. Department of Commerce: Climate Analysis Branch National Weather Service Federal Emergency Management Agency - Disaster Information
 

Average Annual Temperatures and Rainfall

 

Climate

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Electrical Standards and Measurement Systems

System of Measurement Used
The U.S. still uses the English Imperial units. It still has no definitive plan for the adoption of the International Metric System.
Unit of Measurement of Temperature
Degrees Fahrenheit (F).
 

Use our service Measurement Converter.

 
Electricity
 
  • Voltage
110-120 volts
  • Frequency
60 Hertz
Type of Electric Socket
For the USA, these are the electric sockets that can be used: Type A & B (National Electrical Manufacturing Association) (North American 15 A/125 V ungrounded).
Type of Telephone Socket
RJ11, found in most homes and offices in North America for single line telephones. RJ14 and RJ25 also fairly common, using the same size connector as RJ11, but with two and three phone lines, respectively, connected.
DVD Zoning
Zone 1

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Paying

Domestic Currency
American Dollar
ISO Code
USD
To Obtain Domestic Currency
It is helpful to have some dollars with you upon arrival into the United States. If that is not possible, you can change foreign currency into USD at a bureau de change or withdraw USD directly from ATMs.
Possible Means of Payment
Credit cards can be utilised nearly everywhere. Traveller's cheques may be used; however, they are becoming less commonly accepted in retail locations and less popular.
 

To Find a Cash Machine Where You Need, Use the ATM locator

 

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Speaking

Official Language
There is not an official language at the national level; however, English is the official language of the majority of American states and the most commonly spoken language.
Other Languages Spoken
Spanish is the most commonly spoken language after English. While regionally concentrated in states such as Arizona, Texas, California, Florida and New Mexico, there are Spanish-speaking enclaves across the country. In communities with large immigrant populations, other languages are spoken, including Chinese, Japanese, Italian, German, Polish or Greek. Moreover, there are many languages spoken by Native American populations (Navajo, Cree, Cherokee, etc.).
Business Language
English

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Emergency Numbers

Police, Medical and Fire 911
Non-emergency municipal service number 311

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Communications

Telephone Codes
To Make a Call From the United States, Dial 011
To Make a Call to in the United States, Dial +1
Mobile Telephone Standards
The U.S. mainly uses Analog, TDMA, CDMA and GSM 1900. It is important to note that each standard may have multiple frequencies. Phones that can support multiple GSM frequencies may be able to work in the US, but another option is to purchase a pre-paid card. 
National Mobile Phone Operators
AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon, SBC, BellSouth, Sprint, Qwest
 

Availability of Internet

Internet Suffix
.us
National Internet Access Providers
Comcast, Earthline, Aol.

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Latest Update: April 2024