USEFUL INFO
 

ARGENTINA

 

Situation, extension and limits
Located in the southern hemisphere of the planet, Argentina has an extension of almost 3,8 million square kilometres, of which 2,8 belong to the continent with aproximately 54% of extensive plain (prairies and savannas).

Geography
The main characteristic of the Argentine relief is the enormous contrast offered by the immense eastern plains and the amazing Andes mountain range to the West, which posses the highest summit of the western hemisphere: the Aconcagua, of 6.959 meters.

Climate
Argentina
has a great variety of climates: mild and humid in the extensive plain, cold and humid in the western extreme of Patagonia, subtropical in the northern part of Mesopotamia and warm in the Northwest. From November to March the average temperature is 23° C, and from June to September, 12° C.

Population
At present, Argentina has more than 36 millions inhabitants; of them, almost half reside in Capital Federal and in Buenos Aires province. This figures show a density of 13 inhabitants per square meter. 95% of Argentinians are descendants of mainly Italian and Spanish people.

Language
The official language is Castellano (Castilian) or Spanish.

Religion
Roman Catholicism is the official religion, although there is a total religious freedom. Protestantism, Judaism, Islamism, the Greek and Russian Orthodox religions and others are also practiced.

Currency exchange
The official currency is the "peso". There are 2, 5, 10, 20, 50 and 100 pesos notes, and 1 peso and 1, 5, 10, 25 and 50 cents coins. The exchange rate is variable in relation with the dollar and other currencies.

Constitution and Government
23 provinces form the National territory and the Capital Federal, Buenos Aires. The government, according to the national Constitution, adopts the representative, republican and federal form, as well as the division in three powers: executive, legislative and judicial.
The President and Vicepresident, as well as the Mayor of the City of Buenos Aires, the governors of the provinces and the members of the legislative bodies are chosen by universal suffrage, secret and obligatory by both sexes citizens older than 18 years.

Two historic dates
25 of May 1810. Constitution of the First Junta of a native government.
9 of July 1816. The independence of the United Provinces of the Río de la Plata is proclaimed.

Symbols
The flag has three horizontal stripes: the central one white and with a rising sun, and two external, sky blue.

The National flower is the Ceibo and the national stone, the rhodochrosite or "rosa del inca" (rose of the Inca).


GENERAL FACTS

 

 

Tips
Tips generally well accepted are about 10% of the bill in restaurants and cafes, being less for other services. In general, tips are not included in the bills and normally can't be included as a form of payment done with a credit card. This means that tips are payed in cash.

Documents:
Consult with your travel agent about the need of having a visa to enter Argentina. Most of European and American citizens don't need a visa upon arrival, only passports are needed.
To circulate inside the country, you don't need personal documents. Leave them at the hotel on the safety box and take with you an identification card, such as a driving licence.

Forms of payment
Bills are paid in pesos. In most establishments dollars are accepted at a free exchange rate, which is not the case for other currencies. Traveler's checks are of limited use and, almost exclusively, in the city of Buenos Aires. In the provinces, traveler's checks are not normally accepted; payments should be done in cash or with credit card, which are widely used; the main ones are accepted almost everywhere (VISA, AMEX, MASTERCARD, DINERS).

Vaccines
No vaccines are needed to enter the country. Even more, Argentina does not suffer from any epidemic contagious illness among its population.

Electricity:
Electric energy is 220V / 50Hz in the whole country. To adapt to 220V / 50 Hz from 110V / 60 Hz you will need a simple transformer.

Useful telephone numbers

Discover Argentina
Tel/fax: +(54 11) 4312 6985 or 4315 8752
From European Comunity: (0034) 902 056 215


Toll-free numbers
From any telephone, public or private:
   101: Police
   107: Medical Emergencies
   100: Firemen
   113: Official Hour
   0800 999 2838: Tourist assistance (09.00 to 20.00)

 

Paying Numbers
From any telephone, public or private. Public telephones work with coins or cards that can be bought in kiosks:
   Weather information: 4514-4253
   Jorge Newbery airport (domestic flights): 4576-5300
   Ezeiza airport (international): 5480-6111

   Retiro Bus Station: 4310 0700


Lost or stolen credit cards:
   VISA: 4379-3333

   AMEX:
0810 555 2639
   MASTERCARD: 4348-7000
   DINERS: 4708-2484

Airlines

   Aerolineas Argentinas: 4340-7800
   
Alitalia
: 4310-9999
   
Air France
:  4317 4711
   
American Airlines
: 4318-1111
   
British Airways
: 4320-6600
   
Iberia
: 4131-1000
   
LAN 
0810 9999 526
   
Lufthansa
: 4319-0600
   
United Airlines
: 4316-4744
   
Varig: 4329-9200

 


Business Hours
Business hours go from 8:30 am to 6:30 pm. Shops have extended hours, sometimes till 10 pm, such as shopping centres.

 

Banks are open from 10 am to 3 pm while exchange houses ("casas de cambio") open till 5 pm.

 

Specially in the city of Buenos Aires there is an intense nightlife till early in the morning. Restaurants start preparing dinner after 8 pm, exceptionally from 7:30 pm, and clients are welcomed up to 2 am. Most cafes are open almost 24 hours.