European City Guides Europe Country Profiles Travel Information For Visitors + Travel Alerts

 

Welcome to euromost.info – the only totally independent free thinking European wide travel site. This site is committed to providing useful travel information information guides for business and tourists visiting cities in Central Eastern Northern Southern Western Europe, the Baltic States Scandinavia and Russia. 

We respect your right to privacy by not using cookies and do not have a political agenda or want to change your political views or your government. As thousands of our visitors opt to travel independently our editorial is not corrupted to serve advertisers.or sponsors.

Our aim is to provide you with real content – information and advice (where appropriate) on every page rather than pages low on content and mostly populated with images.   This we hope should give you some understanding of the city’s history which are the foundations of life there today and the range of things it offers and you might like to  do whilst there.  It will also help you avoid situations you may not be comfortable with such as visiting badly run zoos where animal welfare is non existent and the animals ‘survive’ n appalling  conditions and  are abused. 

Travelling to other countries is not just fun – it shows you how other people actually live.  Being there often dispels the myths mysteries and prejudices about the society that at the outset of your trip you may have.  Euromost hopes that it can help you discover these things so you appreciate, respect others peoples cultures and their way of life. When you return home  you might adopt some of these things to enhance your life. At the same time if you have when witnessed things like poverty you might appreciate a little more what you have.   

The site also gives information on air rail road & sea travel in Europe.

Countries Where Visitors To England Will Be Exempt From Quarantine Restrictions 

(Please Note Visitors From England To The Countries Below Should Check Before Departure To See Whether Entry To These Countries Is Restricted ) 

Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Aruba, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Barbados, Belgium, Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba, Croatia, Curaçao, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominica, Faroe Islands, Fiji, Finland, France, French Polynesia, Germany, Greece, Greenland, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macau, Malta, Mauritius, Monaco, Netherlands, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Réunion, San Marino, Serbia, Seychelles, South Korea, Spain, St Barthélemy, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Pierre and Miquelon, Switzerland, Taiwan, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, Vatican City, Vietnam.

All 14 British Overseas Territories are also exempt from quarantine .

European City Guides – Europe City Guides:

Currently these guides cover 40 cities in Europe. These guides provide detailed airport and public transport guides for the city and a national country profile page. A sample of general site information is given further down the page. There are city guides for AmsterdamAuschwitz Birkenau Memorial Guide, Barcelona,  (Beijing City Guide) Belgrade ,  Berlin,   Bratislava,  Bucharest,  Budapest,    Chisinau,  Copenhagen,  Dubrovnik, Erfurt, Gdansk, Helsinki Kiev, Krakow, Leipzig, Ljubljana, Minsk, MoscowOsloParisPrague, Reykjavik, RigaRome, St Petersburg, Salzburg , Sarajevo, SkopjeSofia, Srebenica Memorial Guide,  Stockholm, Tallinn, TiranaVatican CityVienna Guide, Vilnius, Warsaw, Zagreb. . 

There Are European Country Profiles For:

Albania, Austria, Belarus, Bosnia, Bulgaria, China, Czech Rep. Denmark,  Estonia,  Finland,  France,  Germany,  Holland, Hungary,  Iceland,  Italy,  Kosovo,  Latvia,  LithuaniaNetherlands,  North Macedonia,   Poland   Romania,   Russia,    Serbia   Slovakia,   Slovenia,,  Sweden,   Ukraine    

Important Note: Some city guides and country profiles include links or the urls of other good travel information sites . However visitors should note that issues such as terrorism crime,  personal safety and tourists traps  and not addressed by promotional sites such as accommodation or tourist board sites.  As most cities have these issues we post this information uncensored! We welcome contributions from visitors  on ant of these issues.  Please see contact us  above. A sample of general site information is given below.

Wizz Air Reinstates Some Flights … BUT …

Wizz Air is reinstating flights from the UK to seven countries from Spain, but prospective travellers to these countries should check whether they will be allowed to enter the country on arrival.

President Trump Bans Europeans From The United States

March 12th:  The American President has announced that for 30 days from Friday 13th European nationals from mainland Europe (except the UK) will no be admitted by plane to the United States.  In a statement he said that European countries were responsible for the present outbreak in America.

More Details On Our Coronavirus European Travel Information Page

UK Government Advises Travel To Italy Only If Essential

The United Kingdom’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office on March 9th has issued the following advice to visitors intending to visit Italy:

‘The FCO now advises against all but essential travel to Italy, due to an ongoing outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19) and in line with various controls and restrictions imposed by the Italian authorities’.

More Details On Our Coronavirus European Travel Information Page

Mysterious Coronavirus  Reaches Europe And The US

Coronaviruses are a collection viruses that can illnesses  in peoples ranging from a common cold to more serious and sometimes fatal diseases such as  Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). Historically scientists have been able to identify the bacteria, it’s structure and development patterns of each virus strain and  how it is transmitted from one person to another  This has enabled medication to be developed and tested to suppress and the viruses.  When a new coronavirus is identified may take over a year before  medication to manage it is available.   

The existence of the present (latest) strain of these coronaviruses (now known as 2019-nCoV or  abbreviated to COVID-19 ) was first reported  publicly  by a doctor/scientist  in early December last year. He was as working in the city of Wuhan in Hubei Province in central China which has a population of approximately 11 million people.  He was reprimanded by the Chinese authorities for publicising  and exaggerating the extent of the problem which they said would cause panic and forced to retract his statement.   The doctor, Li Wenliang (who was one of eight people who warned of the presence of the  virus) contracted the virus himself and died in early February.

On New Years Eve the Chinese Government advised  the World Health Organisation ( WHO) that it had identified an  unknown pneumonia virus in Wuhan. It added that several of those with the virus had been working at the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market in the city’s port. The market was closed down two days later.  On January 4th the Chinese authorities said their were 44 people suffering from the virus and over 120 people that they had been in contact with were isolated and in individual  in quarantine. 

On the January 5th Chinese health  officials based in Wuhan said that virus differed from known  respiratory diseases including , influenza, bird flu and the  severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) virus which also originated in China in 2002.  That virus subsequently killed 770 people. 

On January 7th Chinese officials advised the World Health Organisation that they had identified a new virus that belonged to known coronavirus strains, the Sars virus and the common everyday cold. 

On the 29th February a data base belonging to the John Hopkins University in Baltimore Maryland USA reported that of  the 86,583 coronavirus cases recorded across the world 79,822 occurred in in China.  The number of deaths from people who have contracted this virus worldwide is 2,977 with 2,761 of those dying living in mainland China. The fatality rate which overall is circa 3.5% is higher amongst people over 60 years of age. 

Map Of Countries With Incidents Of Coronavirus

 (with thanks to source of the map to the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention)

World map showing countries with COVID-19 cases

Usually Coronaviruses are spread by a someone who is not infected inhaling the virus when they are close to someone who when they cough or sneeze expels  minute invisible  droplets into the air when they cough or sneeze. The virus can also be contracted by a person touching a surface on which the droplets have previously fallen and  then touching their own face particularly their lips or nose.  Once absorbed the viruses can take  10 – 12 days before the infection is evident. 

However though the present virus can be spread as above there are several unknowns about whether it is spread by other unconfirmed or unknown factors. For example the original outbreak in China occurred in mid-winter and the recent outbreaks in Northern Italy ** have in part been attributed to people who have visited ski resorts. Another unknown is that there is evidence that some people have been infected by the virus even after they were tested negative for it after 14 days isolation.  This raises questions as to whether this virus may not be so easily identifiable and more persistent than its ancestors. Another concern is that there have been a few instances of people who after being infected by the virus tested negative for the infection and then later found to be still or reinfected by it. 

If this virus continues to spread it will be necessary for governments across the world to introduce restrictions or bans on public gathering and meetings. It is very likely to result in travel restrictions nationally and internationally. 

** There are also concerns in Paris that an outbreak there is imminent following the closure of the Lourve Museum on Sunday. The museum is the worlds biggest art musem and is  located on the Right Bank of the Seine in the centre of the city.

PLEASE ALSO SEE CORONAVIRUS TRAVEL INFORMATION

Britain Bids Farewell This Year To The European Union As The Last Verses Of The Long Goodbye Are Written

On June 23rd 2016 72% of the British electorate (33.5 million voters) voted in a referendum on whether the UK should remain a full time member of the European Union. 51.89% voted to leave and 48.1% voted to remain. 

For three and a half years a divided Britain debated inside and outside the  British Parliament whether the the referendum which was  ‘advisory’ and not obligatory should be honoured and if so what the terms of the UK’s departure and subsequent relationship should be. The divisions inside the country were replicated inside two largest parliamentary players the Conservative and Labour parties. These divisions increased  in both camps as proposals by the the European Union designed to protect the Northern Ireland Peace Process were sought. As the ruling Conservative Party power was dependent on it’s coalition a with a party that rejected the EU’s proposals on Northern Ireland the divisions in the party meant that it could not muster enough votes to pass the legislation needed to formally leave the EU.  It also meant that negotiations in a ‘transition’ period about the future relationship could not begin. 

The deadlock resulted in a new leader of the Conservative Party being elected by it’s members of parliament.  The new leader Boris Jonson opted to hold a general election on December 12th 2019 which his party won with a majority of 80 seats. After accepting the European Union’s stipulations re the Northern Ireland Peace process for the duration of the transition period his government was then able to pass the legislation which resulted in the United Kingdom formally leaving the European Union on Jan 31st year. 

Brexit & The Coronavirus Will Affect Tourism In 2020

Further uncertainty in coming months about Britain’s future relationship with the European Union when the transition period ends at the end of the year is likely and this could lead to negative and positive outcomes. If the the British pound falls significantly against the euro United Kingdom  destinations may see an increase  in tourism.  Conversely  tourists from the UK find visiting eurozone countries far more costly.    This could result in traditional low cost carriers such as EasyJet and Ryanair who don’t fly around half empty redeploying their aircraft  Such deployments could see some currently scheduled flights to euro-zone countries cancelled and withdrawn  and increased service levels to non euro-zone countries such as Bulgatia, Czech Republic, Romania and Poland increase. 

Add to these possibilities the fact that some European countries will be viewed by prospective tourists as coronavirus hubs traditional city breaks and holidays will not be as popular. For example end  of season skiing holidays in the Alpine regions particularly in northern Italy will be on few peoples shortlists.   These regions which are also popular with hill walkers in the summers are likely to be significantly quieter as will some areas on the Spanish mainland and the country’s islands if the cases of infection already found in these places increases. 

As is customary when tourism falls off in an area normally popular with tourists hotels and travel companies will offer substantial discounts to cover their liabilities to anyone not worried by the risks of being taken ill.  Such discounts happened in parts of Egypt and Tunisia in recent years following terrorism in tourist resorts.  However there also financial risks in booking these holidays as insurance premiums will increase for these trips and even then claims may only be settled if the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London recommends that people do not travel to the area when the visitor is due to depart. In the United Kingdom such recommendations are only made if there is a serious risk of citizens being taken ill, kidnapped attacked or killed.  This policy is not uncommon in other European countries.   So make sure your read the small print on any booking you make and any insurance attached to your trip!  

Euromost strongly recommends that prior to even booking your trip that you check the current thinking of the Foreign & Commonwealth Office the country you are going to.  The information for 225 countries  and territories is updated day and night when necessary and will inform you areas you should be careful in or not go to.

PLEASE SEE:  THE FOREIGN & COMMONWEALTH WEBSITE.

How Long Will A UK Passport Have To Be Valid For To Enter A EU Country After Brexit?

At the moment the free movement regulations of European Union member states theoretically allow a UK citizen with a valid passport to enter any EU Country plus Iceland, Liechtenstein Norway and Switzerland provided his or her passport is valid for the intended duration of the visit.  These regulations also allow entry to these destinations without a visa. When the UK leaves the European Union these regulations – depending on the terms of the departure – are likely  to cease or change.  

Current expectations of the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office are that UK citizens (adults and children) will have to a passport that is valid for six months or more *** after  the date they enter any European Country and Iceland, Liechtenstein Norway and Switzerland whether the UK leaves with or without a deal.  It is unclear whether any of these countries will additionally require UK citizens to have a visa.   

***Important Note: If your present passport was renewed prior to the expiry of a previous one you may have had extra months added to your current one. For example your passport might be valid for 10 years and 3 months. It is possible that some countries will not count the extra time (3 months) and that they will only accept the passport as being valid for the ten years from the issue date. Thus the extra 3 months will not count towards the 6 months requirement. 

If there is no agreement /  deal at the European Leaders Summit on October 17th & 18th and no extension to the negotiating period beyond 31st October is agreed that some UK Citizen  might have difficulties entering these countries.  This could happen even if they arrive in the country before 31st October  but are not leaving until after that date and their passport is valid for less than six months..

Obviously as the enduring saga of Brexit is so fluid and unpredictable the outcome of the current situation cannot be written and stone making it impossible to predict what Brexit will ultimately mean to UK citizens travelling to Europe. However for accurate factual information and reliable assessments which are very promptly published from Euromost’s experience over the last 15 years the FOC office is second to none.  Thus we recommend if you are considering going to any EU country  in the future or have already made plans to go you check the latest passport information for that country on the FOC Website.

A No Deal Brexit May Stop Free Emergency European Health Cover For UK Citizens In The EU & Vice-Versa

This scheme which members have to register for before they travel is  in the UK known as the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) generally covers members who have accidents abroad or are suddenly taken ill, provided the illness is not the consequence of a medical condition identified prior to travelling.

If the UK leaves the UK without a deal it is likely the current free emergency health scheme European between EU member states will not will – possibly with immediate effect even if the expiry has not been exceeded –  not cover UK citizens in a EU country or an EU citizen in the UK.  It is also likely to result in the cancellation of similar agreements between the UK and  Iceland, Liechtenstein Norway and Switzerland.

If the United Kingdom ceases to participate in the European Health Insurance Scheme  it will be able to discuss setting up a similar exchange or reciprocal arrangement with individual European countries.  As negotiations for such an arrangement will have to take place between the UK  and each country these outcomes could take some considerable time.  Current UK Government advice is that anyone from the UK travelling to Europe should take out personal health insurance before travelling.  

A good information source on this subject and related issues can be found on this link: UK’s NHS website

The UK Supreme Court Rules That Premier Johnson’s Extended Shutdown Of British Parliament Is Unlawful

Following two legal actions in English and Scottish Courts that questioned whether it was constitutionally appropriate for  Boris Johnson to shutdown (prorogue) the British Parliament for five weeks the UK Supreme Court has ruled that the shutdown was unlawful.   The closure was instigated by the government on the grounds that it was going to close a two year session of the present parliament and introduce a new session which would begin with a Queens Speech in October. The opening of the new session would as is customary begin  with  a speech by the Queen  outlining the governments planned legislation for the new session, These speeches normally take five to six days to structure and write.  Critics of this decision argued that the shutdown denied MPs the right to question,debate and vote on the governments plans and policy  for five weeks of the the remaining 7.5 weeks  before the present 31st October deadline set to determine the UK future relationship with the EU.  The government denied that the extended shutdown was orchestrated to prevent parliamentary scrutiny. when it advised the Queen and her commissioners to close the present session. 

The issue before the court was whether the advice given to the Queen was lawful?   In its judgement the Supreme Court stated:

” Let us remind ourselves of the foundations of our constitution. We live in a representative democracy. The House of Commons exists because the people have elected its members. The Government is not directly elected by the people (unlike the position in some other democracies). The Government exists because it has the confidence of the House of Commons. It has no democratic legitimacy other than that. This means that it is accountable to the House of Commons – and indeed to the House of Lords – for its actions, remembering always that the actual task of governing is for the executive and not for Parliament or the courts. The first question, therefore, is whether the Prime Minister’s action had the effect of frustrating or preventing the constitutional role of Parliament in holding the government to account. The answer is that of course it did. This was not a normal prorogation in the run-up to a Queen’s Speech. It prevented Parliament from carrying out its constitutional role. for five out of a possible eight weeks between the end of the summer recess and exit day on the 31st October. Parliament might have decided to go into recess for the party conferences during some of that period but, given the extraordinary situation in which the United Kingdom finds itself, its members might have thought that parliamentary scrutiny of government activity in the run-up to exit y was more important and declined to do so, or at least they might have curtailed the normal conference season recess because of that. Even if they had agreed to go into recess for the usual three-week period, they would still have been able to perform their function of holding the government to account. Prorogation means that they cannot do that.

Such an interruption in the process of responsible government might not matter in some circumstances. But the circumstances here were, as already explained, quite exceptional. A  fundamental change was due to take place in the Constitution of the United Kingdom on 31st October 2019. Whether or not this is a
good thing is not for this or any other court to judge. The people have decided that. But that Parliament, and in particular the House of Commons as the democratically elected representatives of the people, has a right to have a voice in how that change comes about is indisputable as the House of Commons has already demonstrated, by its motions against leaving without an agreement and by the European Union Withdrawal) (No 2) Act 2019, that it does not support the Prime Minister on the critical issue for his Government at this time and that it is especially important that he be ready to face the House of Commons.

The next question is whether there is a reasonable justification for taking action which had such an extreme effect upon the fundamentals of our democracy. Of course, the Government must be accorded a great deal of latitude in making decisions of this nature. We are not concerned with the Prime Minister’s motive in
doing what he did. We are concerned with whether there was a reason for him to do it. It will be apparent from the documents quoted earlier that no reason was given. or closing down Parliament for five weeks. Everything was focused on the need for a new Queen’s Speech and the reasons for holding that in the week beginning the 14th October rather than the previous week. But why did that need a prorogation of five weeks?

It is impossible for us to conclude, on the evidence which has been put before us, that there was any reason – let alone a good reason – to advise Her Majesty to prorogue Parliament for five weeks, from 9th or 12th September until 14th October.  We cannot speculate, in the absence of further evidence, upon what such reasons might have been. It follows that the decision was unlawful.” On 25/09/19 Parliament reopened.

Denmark Rejects Trump’s ‘Absurd’ Bid For Greenland

Mr Trump who recently confirmed that he was interested in buying Greenland from Denmark or trading it for a US territory for the country has had his idea thwarted by the Danish Premier Ms Frederiksen who said rejected the proposal and described it as absurd. In a media statement Ms Frederiksen added that Greenland’s leader Kim Kielsen “had clearly rejected the idea. ”

The Danish rejection of the proposal which President Trump described  as “Essentially it’s a large real estate deal. ” prompted Donald Trump to cancel a visit to Denmark in September.  He had been invited by the Danish Queen Margrethe 11.  However Ms Frederiksen said plans for the visit were very advanced and that the invitation remains open. 

The attraction to Greenland to the US which has a population of under 60,000 people is it mineral resources which include coal copper iron ore and zinc. It also is fast becoming due to the melting of the polar ice cap an area close to key Artic shipping routes from northern Europe and the US.

That said it currently depends on subsidies from Denmark for over 60% of its annual budget.  It reportedly has one of the highest suicide rates in the world (estimated to be 83 deaths in every 100,000) with levels of alcoholism and unemployment also very high. 

Ryanair & BA Pilots Suspend Strike Action

Following recent strike action in separate disputes by Balpa pilots employed by British Airways and Ryanair local divisions of the pilots union has announced they will suspend for plans for further strikes in-order to allow discussions to resolve the dispute to continue. 

 

Europe Weather This Week

Iceland and the most northerly regions of Scandinavia will have temperatures close to freezing even during the day  with some wintry showers and night frosts.   Most of northern, northwestern and western Europe will be unsettled with variable cloud and occasional showers followed by sunny  intervals.  Daytime  temperatures will be close to the mid teens.   

Central Europe and be dryer with more sunshine and temperatures generally in the upper teens and higher in places. Eastern and South Eastern Europe will be warm with prolonged sunny periods and temperatures in the low to mid 20’s.  Southern Europe will have similar temperatures but more cloud which may thicken at times to give rain or thunderstorms in places close to the Med. 

BA May Be Fined £183m For Data Protection Breach

British Airways has been advised that it is liable for a penalty fine of £183m imposed on them by the UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) following their investigation into BA’s failure to protect the personal data of customers in the summer  last year.   The data protection breach according to BA occurred  to transactions between  August 21st and September 5th 2018 and resulted in the banking and credit card details including the 3 digit security code being accessed by hackers. Customers names and addresses were also revealed. In October last tear BA said the data breach involved 186,000 people.

The full  details of the hacking have not been made made public but the investigation by of the ICO found that the breach began in June 2018 and said the it affected around 500,000 people who’s details  were harvested by the attackers. when BA customers were diverted to a fraudulent website. The ICO have said that British Airways BA had co-operated with their investigation and as a result have made improvements to its security procedures. British Airways have until August 5th to respond to the penalty being sought.

The previous highest penalty imposed on a company for breaching data protection of customers personal details was imposed on Facebook who were fined the maximum possible penalty of £500,00 under the 1998 Data Protection Act.  This proposed BA fine is made under the 2018 GDPR Act which allows for penalties equivalent of  up to 4% of annual turnover provided they do not exceed £20m. If the fine is applied to British Airways it would be equivalent to 1.7% of their most recent annual turnover. 

Ghost Trial For Those Who Shot Down Ukraine Plane 

International prosecutors based in the Netherlands have began st criminal proceedings against four suspects thought to have shot down the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 on the Russia-Ukraine border five years ago..  Three of the suspects are Russian nationals and one a pro Russian Ukrainian in the east of thew Ukraine that is under Russian control. 

None of the suspects  are expected to  attend the trial when it begins as Russia which denies involvement in the shooting down of the plane does not extradite citizens charged with offences outside Russia. 

After 2 Crashes Confidence In Boeing Aircraft Falls Again As Wing Problems Are Found In Some 737’s

In March aviation authorities world wide grounded the Boeing 737 Max 8 and and Max 9 jet aircraft due to safety concerns about an ant-stalling computer program  in the aircraft .  The program is though to have contributed to two fatal crashes in five months shortly after takeoff in five months.  The first crash last October occurred shortly after take-off on a a Lion Air flight Jakarta, Indonesia, killed all 189 people on board. The second on March 10th shortly after take-off an Ethiopian Airlines flight from Addis Ababa,  crashed killing all 157 people on board.  All planes of  the same models are expected to remain grounded until at least August .

At the beginning of June Boeing revealed that some of these models and some other 737  models were fitted with non-compliant wing slats.  Wing slats are metal pieces that help lift a plane by moving along a metal track.    In a statement Boring said “Boeing is working with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and has contacted 737 operators advising them to inspect the slat track assemblies on certain airplanes,”  The statement continued  ‘“One batch of slat tracks with specific lot numbers produced by a supplier was found to have a potential non-onformance. If operators find the parts in question, they are to replace them with new ones before returning the airplane to service.”  Some commentators estimate the wing slat issue  affects just over three hundred planes.

Heathrow To Speed Up Luggage Security Checks

Heathrow Airport is to invest g £50m in computer tomography (CT) security scanners,  over the next few years to check the cabin hand luggage of passengers.  This technology which is similar to hospital CT scanners will provide security staff with a very clear image of  a bag’s contents.    As the images will  visible in 3D staff will be able to rotate them and dissect them.  This technology which is available at some airports in America and Europe will enable passengers to keep liquids and laptops inside their carry-on bags which will speed up security checks. 

Heathrow chief operations officer, Chris Garton, said: “This cutting-edge kit will not only keep the airport safe with the latest technology, but will mean that our future passengers can keep their focus on getting on with their journeys and less time preparing for security screening.”  Luton Airport is also to trial the technology.

Cruise Ship Captain Charged And Bailed After 28 Tourists Die in May Danube River Tour Boat Tragedy

A Budapest court has released on bail the Ukrainian cruise ship captain who Hungarian authorities believe was responsible its collision on May 30th  collision with a sightseeing boat on the Danube River in Budapest. The Capital City Court said the captain who was formally arrested on June 7th bail has been fixed at 15 million Hungarian Forints (circa 46,00 euros) cannot leave Budapest and must wear an electronic-tracking device.  He was arrested in Budapest on June 7, suspected of endangering water transport leading to a deadly mass accident. If he is convicted he could be imprisoned for between 2-8 years

Twenty eight Korean tourists and two Hungarian boat crew drowned in the incident when their river tour boat sunk  in the Danube in central Budapest.  The 40 ton boat had been hit by a 1000 ton cruise ship steamer that was overtaking it as the vessels passed under the bridge. The tour boat keeled over and sunk in less than ten  seconds.  Seven  tourists were rescued.  

European Union Election Results Challenge The Monopoly Of The Status Quo

The long-standing monopoly on the economic and political agendas of the European Union by the centralist socialist and conservative parties in the 751 seat European Parliament has ended until 2024 at least. Reduced support for both of these parties in the elections fell markedly.  The centre -right conservative group (EPP) seats fell from 222 to 180 socialists and democrats group (S&D) seats down from 184 to 140.   This means that together they can no longer manipulate the agendas of the parliament without the cooperation of smaller parties such as the liberals and the greens. The liberals (ALDE) increased their representation from 57 seats to 109 and the greens (EFA) rose from 50 – 69. 

Editorial Comment

Latest Brexit Travel Information Travel arrangements by air, rail and sea between the UK AND Europe will inevitably change after Brexit which is currently expected to be on March 29th. The changes will be more significant and immediate if there is no transitional agreement (ie a hard brexit) about future relations between the UK and the European Union. Please see the Brexit Travel Information and news page. >>>

A Radical Brexit Solution With No Irish Backstop!  The deadlock in the UK Parliament on agreeing how the UK should leave the European Union is not necessary if the politicians and power brokers on both sides think outside the box, come to a democratic Brexit deal which honours the 2016 referendum result and the wishes of the UK electorate without the need for an Irish backstop or another referendum – full details  Ukraine Presidential Election Rejects The Old School ! TheThe aviation authorities in the United States and Canada have fallen in line with counterparts in European and across the world and grounded the Boeing 737 Max 8 and and Max 9 jet aircraft.  Concerns about the safety of these has arisen following two of them crashing in five months. The first crash last October occured shortly after take-off on a a Lion Air flight Jakarta, Indonesia, killed all 189 people on board.  On March 10th shortly after take-off an Ethiopian Airlines flight from Addis Ababa,  crashed killing all 157 people on board.  The model of planes on both flights was  the Boeing 737 Max 8.  Ukrainian Presidential Election has been won by a political novice who has never held public office.  Volodymyr Zelensky defeated the former president Petro Poroshenko a former lawyer turned actor and comedian with the support of  3 out of every vote cast.  Mr Zelensky who has over 4 million followers on instagram is thought to have become a millionaire from the proceeds of his role in a satirical television series ‘Servant of the People’ .  In the series he plays the part of a man who inadvertently becomes the president of the Ukraine.  

During the presidential campaign his critics portrayed him as a man who had little or no political substance which coupled with his never holding ‘public office’ any made him unfit for the presidency.   These criticisms were overwhelmingly rejected by nearly 75% of the  Ukrainian electorate who have seen their country run by politicians who over the last two decades have changed their political allegiances and policies for their own personal gains.  When his victory was confirmed Mr Zelensky told supporters “I will never let you down,”  whether this true or not only time will tell.  The defeated former President Mr Poroshenko,  has said he will not stand down from politics.. 

Resurrection Of Notre Dame Cathedral Ascends €1bn

The fund to repair the fire damaged 850 year old Notre Dame Cathedral has exceeded over 1 billion euros. Though the structure of the building is mainly stone and stable the fire on 15th April caused the 180 year old spire to collapse and most of the cathedrals wooden roof on which it rested was consumed by flames.  The Cathedral which is  the no.1 tourist attraction in France with an estimated 30 million visitors annually. The aim  according to  French leader President Macron should be to complete all the repairs within five years to ensure that Cathedral would reopen just before the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris. 

In the meanwhile as the Cathedral  will remain closed it’s rector Bishop Patrick Chauvet has been given permission to erect a temporary building in front of the landmark so the parishioners that until the fire worshiped there  can continue to attend services.      

Tourist Buses/Coaches To Be Banned In Central Paris

Emmanuel Gregoire, the deputy mayor of Paris, has announced that the city’s civic authority aims to ban tourist buses from the centre of  Paris.  Currently the main attractions and monuments in Central Paris are linked by numerous shuttle services aboard hop on and hop off double decker buses. along with tourist coaches from all over Europe.  The ban will come into effect under new powers being given by the French Government to local authorities to regulate traffic locally.  France is reportedly one of the most popular countries for tourists worldwide with visitors to Paris alone last year up over 4% to 50 million.  

Emmanuel Gregoire acknowledges that the congestion and pollution caused by these buses and coaches is not as severe as in other European cities such as Barcelona and Venice,  However he says highlighting the increasing concerns of many indigenous Parisians.  He and other civic leaders in the city expect the ban to encourage visitors to use cheaper public transport,  rented cycles, electric scooters or walk.  Gregorio  saidc that these options were environmentally friendly mobility and it was time to make that change as it was needed.

Ongoing Travel Alerts  & Warnings For Europe:

The Ukraine: Politically unstable state  where violent demonstrations can occur anywhere.  In the east and south of the country pro-Russian separatists are fighting a civil war with Ukrainian Government Forces particularly in the Donetsk and Lugansk Regions.  Also best avoided are the  Kharkiv Region and the cities of Dnipropetrovsk Mykolayviv & Odessa.  More 

The Crimea:  Formerly  Ukrainian province under Russian control since March 2014 . Many western governments advise their citizens.to avoid this country/ More

Other Advice: There also is important advice for visitors to other European Countries and cities plus advice for that visitors intending to visit Moldova Chisinau and Transnistraq should consider. More.

Macedonia Renamed As ‘North Macedonia’

A 28 year dispute between Greece and Macedonia came to an end on January 25th when the Greek Parliament voted by 153 votes to 146 votes (with 1 abstention) for it’s northern neighbour Macedonia to be renamed North Macedonia’. The dispute began in 1991 with the break up of the former Yugoslavia when the area now known as Macedonia declared it’s independence from Belgrade.  The declaration offended many Greeks who felt that the new state was staking a claim on Greek territory with same name.

In June 2018 the Greek and Macedonian prime ministers  agreed the new name for the province. The Macedonian Parliament has ratified the agreement and the Greek Parliament is expected to do so this week.  The end of the dispute between the two countries  paves the way for progressing Macedonian aspirations to become an EU member state and joining of NATO.   

Hungary Steps Up It’s Hostile Immigration Policy

The Hungarian Government is opt out of a proposed United Nations migration pact as it believes the accord will pose a threat to the world.  Hungary’s foreign minister Péter Szijjártó said in an interview to Euronews that the text of the pact  text was “biased and unbalanced” and “tries to portray migration as something good by definition and as a fundamental human right, which it is not.”

In an interview with Euronews, Hungary’s foreign minister Péter Szijjártó said his country was leaving talks to make a pact because the text was “biased and unbalanced” and “tries to portray migration as something good by definition and as a fundamental human right, which it is not.”  Hungary’s right wing government is  openly hostile to refugees and the willingness of the majority of EU  countries to provide support for those who arrive in Europe.   In 2015 the Hungarian Government erected metal fence along its southern and eastern borders to stop refugees and migrants entering Hungary.

The Hungarian exit from the UN accord mirrors President Trumps decision in 2017  not to take part in it.

WHEN THINGS GO WRONG AT AIRPORTS !

It always advisable before leaving for any airport to check with the airport website that flights are taking off and landing normally. This obviously would apply if your airport has had problems such as drone attacks or if your airport or airline is experiencing operational problems such as adverse weather or industrial action.

The problems at Gatwick Airport  have been determined by the Civil Aviation Authority (CIA) as an extraordinary situation which is beyond the control or responsibility of airlines. This means you cannot claim compensation from the airline. You may where delays are over three hours submit claims with receipts for  for ‘reasonable’ expenses such as food, drink and hotel expenses to your airline but because of the CIA ruling some airlines may contest their obligation to pay.

If your flight is cancelled you are entitled to a full refund.  Alternatively you can accept the offer of an alternative flight with the same airline.  Your airline may also offer to book you a seat on another airline. Either way if the alternative flight is more expensive than the one your booked your airline will cover the difference in the cost.

Site Information:

Overview of Main Euromost European Features:

Features Index A list of all the useful supplementary features not on this page! more

For a list / index of euromost European City Guides  and European  Country Profiles please see links above.
 
112-999  Index – Advice Before You Travel – Advice For Women – al Qaeda Terrorist Threat In EuropeCrime & Personal Safety In Europe, – Assistance & Advice In An Emergency   – Free Emergency EU Medical Treatment  Travel Alerts Europe– Other Relevant Travel Alerts

Auschwitz Birkenau Travel Guide This guide contain  special travel advice and information for those going to visit  the Auschwitz & Birkenau Concentration Camps more

Advice For Women Travellers As an increasing number of women go solo this article focuses on culturally inappropriate clothing, unwanted male attention, personal issues, date rape and how these pitfalls can be avoided. more

Air Travel Guide This extensive links to every euromost air travel feature including the airport guides in the UK and the rest of Europe which include links to the flight arrivals and flight departures boards, new airline routes, air security pages for Europe and the US, , the black listed airlines guide, flying  phobia and individual airline information pages, air travel news in which we may very occasionally publish special offers and cheap flights if they are genuinely cheap more

Cabin Luggage Information Feature That  clarifies what you can and can’t take into the aircraft cabin and the maximum dimension of the bag or case more

Clubbing Guides For Europe The European clubbing guide features a clubbing guide for clubs in most European capitals with club reviews and information on the music another the admission and drink prices including the rip off ones!  more

Coach Services In Europe The coach travel section of euromost includes details on European Coach Networks & Services across Europe  There also is information on European coach tours in central and Eastern Europe more

Consulate Information For Europe Contact information for European embassies and consulates in London. These consulates can answer specific questions visitors from Britain may have about a proposed trip to their country or provide  assistance and advice to their own nationals in the UK more

Cruises in Europex Our European Cruise guide includes information on cruises in the Arctic in and around the North Pole, the Norwegian Fjords, The Baltic States, the East Med & West Med and on the River Danube and The Rhine. – many of which once only the playground for the rich – cruises are now within the reach of us all. more

Emergency Medical Help Assistance For Eu Citizens The European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) is FREELY available free to all citizen over the age of 16 who are nationals national citizens of all  European Union Member States It is also accepted in Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. Holders of this card are entitled to the same  freeemergency treatment that they would receive at home more

European Airport Guides These are posted individually and linked with a relevant city guide. They include essential airport information and live links to the home page, flight arrivals & flight departure boards of the airport. There are also over 100 links to smaller airports across Europe. more

European City Guides In the euromost collection there are 40 Europe city guides all with have information on the city’s history public transport sightseeing attractions restaurants clubs nightlife and accommodation.  Most popular cities guides are shown in red        

Europe Country Profiles: These contain information on the respective country’s economy currency population and recent history. Where relevant there is additional info on local travel including by air and road, important health issues such as risks of drinking local tap water and the country’s susceptibility to earthquakes or tremors. These country profiles are attached to the relevant city guides.

The 31 european country profiles are Albania Austria Belarus Bosnia Bulgaria China Croatia Czech Republic Denmark Estonia Finland France Germany Holland Hungary Iceland Italy  Kosovo Latvia Lithuania Macedonia Netherlands Norway Poland Romania Russia Serbia Slovakia Slovenia Sweden & the Ukraine. full index

Rail Services In Europe The European rail guide includes travel pages offering  general information on European rail Networks & Services across Europe iand features on the Orient Express & the Trans Siberian Express  more

TRAVEL ADVICE FOR UK VISITORS & ENGLISH SPEAKING VISITORS TO RUSSIA DESTINATIONS

The attempted murder using a nerve agent in and English town of a former Russian  Spy (who was also a double agent)  left him, his daughter and a police officer seriously ill and endangered hundreds of innocent citizens.  The subsequent allegations of who was responsible for this has  heightened the already strained political tensions between Russia and the UK with both countries expelling diplomats of the other from their own. The extensive media coverage in both countries has portrayed the other country in a very bad light. Consequently visitors from the UK and Europe to Russia, and vice versa, may not feel entirely comfortable or safe when travelling around.

Currently there is no indication that tourists from  either country would be attacked on their visit because of recent events or because they were Russian or English speaking.  The citizens of both countries are peaceful, civil, law abiding, appreciate the importance of tourism and do not want a Cold War. Thus the political views and rhetoric of Theresa May or Vladimir Putin what ever their strengths and weaknesses maybe are extremely unlikely to translate into violence.

The British Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London have issued the following statement for British nationals currently in Russia or due to travel in the coming weeks;   ”’ due to heightened political tensions between the UK and Russia, you should be aware of the possibility of anti-British sentiment or harassment at this time; you’re advised to remain vigilant, avoid any protests or demonstrations and avoid commenting publically on political developments; while the British Embassy in Moscow is not aware of any increased difficulties for British people travelling in Russia at this time, you should follow the security and political situation closely and keep up to date with this travel advice”.

If you’re in Russia and you need urgent help (call 007 495 956 7200 or 007 812 320 3200 if you’re in North-West Russia. If you cannot connect to this number, please call +44 1908 516666. If you’re in the UK and worried about a British national in Russia, call 020 7008 1500.

If you are a Russian Federation national in the UK and you need urgent help contact the Russian Embassy at 6/7 Kensington Palace Gardens, London, W8 4QP. Tel: +44 (0) 20 7229 6412.  Or go to their website www.rusemb.org.uk/   You can also contact their Consular Office on +44 (0) 203 668 7474

TERRORISM & ACCIDENTS  IN EUROPE  –  FREE EMERGENCY MEDICAL CARE FOR EU CITIZENS

If you a national or naturalised citizen of any country in the the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland you can apply to your government for a free European  Health Insurance Card. If you are taken ill or injured in any country who is a member of the above organisations and can produce this card when admitted to hospital  for emergency medical help and not charged for the treatment.

The European Health Insurance Card is only valid for people with medical emergencies who have been taken ill – have had an accident – or who have been a victim of crime or terrorism.The scheme does not cover people with problems from an existing conditions – dentistry or cosmetic surgeries. Neither does it cover the cost  of repatriating the card holder back to their home country.

In some countries it may not cover the cost of treatment after an accident in a dangerous sport such as bungee jumping or  skiing.   You should consider taking out travel insurance to cover you for these and other issues – but read the small print and make sure you understand what your liability is and the excess levels are before signing up ! more.

European Country Profiles

Travel guides with business and tourist Information For Central Eastern Northern Southern and Western Europe, the Baltic States Scandinavia and Russia.   

FREE EMERGENCY MEDICAL TREATMENT FOR EU CITIZENS

if you a national or naturalised citizen of any country in the the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland you can apply to your government for a free European  Health Insurance Card. If you are taken ill or injured in any country who is a member of the above organisations and can produce this card when admitted to hospital  for emergency medical help and not charged for the treatment+.

The European Health Insurance Card is only valid for people with medical emergencies who have been taken ill – have had an accident – or who have been a victim of crime or terrorism.
 
+The scheme does not cover people with problems from an existing conditions – dentistry or cosmetic surgeries. Neither does it cover the cost  of repatriating the card holder back to their home country. In some countries it may not cover the cost of treatment after an accident in a dangerous sport such as bungee jumping or  skiing.   You should consider taking out travel insurance to cover you for these and other issues – but read the small print and make sure you understand what your liability is and the excess levels are before signing up ! more

 

 

 

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