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Practical A to Z

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Practical A to Z


Eating out

Opening hours

Most restaurants are open as early as 7am. They stay open all day long, serving 3 different menus: breakfast (until 11-11.30am), lunch (12noon-4pm) and dinner (until 11pm). Early bird and smarter pre-theater establishments serve dinner between 5pm and 7.30pm.

Taxes and tipping

Prices are always indicated before tax. Taxes and tips can add 25-30% onto a bill. Hotel tax is 13.25% depending on the State. In restaurants and other products or services, tax is 8.65%.

Tipping is unavoidable as the employees rely on tips to bump up their very low wages. In restaurants, it is customary to leave a 15% tip. In hotels, tip porters €1/suitcase and leave chambermaids an envelope with the amount of your choice. In bars, it is usual to leave €1/drink. Taxicab drivers generally receive a 15% tip.


Money

Credit cards and traveller’s cheques

In the case of credit cards, the exchange rate charged is that of the day of the transaction, to which a commission is added on each transaction. ATMs, which are available all over the place including in small shops, charge a fixed commission. It is advisable to withdraw one large amount rather than several smaller amounts.

In the case of traveller’s cheques, it is preferable to take €20 minimum cheques; same rates and exchange rate as for cards.


Post

Post offices are open Monday-Friday from 9am to 5-6pm and on Saturday mornings. The Central Post Office (441 8th Av.) is open 24/7. Postage stamps are only sold from post offices. Postage rates: post card $0.94, letter (up to 28gr) $1.10.


Shopping

Opening hours

Shops are open Monday-Saturday from 10am to 6pm, sometimes until 9pm on Thursday. Department stores open on Sundays. Grocery stores are often open 7/7 from 10am to 10pm or later, as are drugstores.

Sales tax

All prices are indicated before tax. In hotels, sales tax is 13.25% depending on the State. In restaurants and for other products and services, the sales tax is 8.65%. There is no sales tax on clothing priced under €110 in NYC.

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