Nice to know
It is not allowed to import fresh fruit and vegetables, plant material and food derived from animal products into the United States. Currency of up to $10,000 can be imported, anything more than that has to be declared upon arrival in the United States.
The United States uses an alternating current of 110 volts. Transformers and adapter plugs are available in electronic specialty shops – but it`s best to bring them with you.
Credit cards are a safe payment method and are indispensable for your visit to the United States. Visa and Mastercard are the most common cards and are accepted almost everywhere. Always have small bills ready. Some places will not accept currency in denominations greater than $20. Make sure you exchange foreign currency in major banks. Traveler`s checks are practical and easy to handle. They can be used almost anywhere, including most restaurants, shops and, of course, at virtually all bank.
January 1 (New York`s Days), the third Monday in January (Martin Luther King Day), the third Monday in February (Washington`s Birthday), the last Monday in May (Memorial Day), Fourth of July (Independence Day), the first Monday in September (Labor Day), November 11 (Veterans Day), the fourth Thursday in November (Thanksgiving Day), December 25 (Christmas)
NO smoking, please
Smokers are outsiders in the United States. “No Smoking” signs are everywhere. Smoking in restaurants has been prohibited in Florida since July 2003.
You usually can`t go wrong with “casual”. Only in a few upscale restaurants are you expected to wear more formal attire. But remember, the motto at most beach bar`s is: “no shoes, no shirts, no service.”
Long distance calls within the United States: Dial 1 + area code + phone number. For long distance calls outside the USA you will need the country code: to Germany, for instance, you dial 01149 + area code of the city (without the 0) + phone number.
United States service staff, unlike their German counterparts, depend on the tips to make their living. Waiters and Waitresses receive only a nominal salary. If you were satisfied with the service, you should calculate a 15 percent to 20 percent tip. Some restaurants include the tip right in the bill. In this case no extra tip is needed – though it is customary to increase the gratuity for very good service.
Use sun protection with a high SPF even if it`s overcast. It is recommended to use sun block and a cap or a hat in entertainment parks.