American and Canadian citizens must have a passport that is valid for at least 90 days beyond the intended return date in order to enter and depart the country. Tourists must also provide proof of return or onward travel. Each traveler is responsible for ensuring that his/her passport is up to date. Citizens of other nationalities should check with respective authorities before departure.
Please ensure that the name on your passport matches all travel documents we have issued. If this is not the case, please contact us immediately.
Please make a photocopy of your passport’s identification page and keep it separate from your original. It’s also a good idea to leave a digital copy with someone at home. This may speed up the replacement process should you lose your passport.
U.S. and Canadian citizens may enter for up to 90 days for tourist or business purposes without a visa. Citizens from other countries may require a valid visa. These requirements change often and therefore it is best that you check with the Embassy of Latvia for the most up-to-date visa information.
Cancellation and Medical Insurance is highly recommended as it can safeguard against the expenses associated with in-country medical emergencies, lost or delayed baggage and emergency cancelation or interruption of your trip. Medical facilities in Latvia are of fairly good quality, but can be limited due to lack of equipment and supplies. Please ensure your policy will provide you with upfront medical coverage so that you are not responsible for a hefty medical bill. Insurance can be purchased through us.
We recommend consulting the World Health Organization and your physician to help you make decisions about the right vaccinations for your travels. They will best determine your vaccination and medication needs based on your health and immunization history, areas of the country you will be visiting, planned activities and up-to-the-minute requirement changes. Here is the link to the WHO’s vaccination recommendation info: http://apps.who.int/tools/geoserver/www/ith/index.html
If there are any medical items that are essential to your health, such as prescription drugs or corrective eye wear, bring duplicates and divide them between your checked bags and hand luggage. While non-prescription drugs such as aspirin are generally available, it is difficult to replace prescription items, so it is highly recommended to bring any necessary medication with you.
Latvia has a fairly varied climate throughout the year with warm, dry summers and cold, somewhat severe winters. In the summer temperatures will often reach 20-15° Celsius but can get as high as 30°C. Winters can be extreme with daytime temperatures generally around -5°C, and the potential for heavy snowfall and snowstorms. The best weather is usually from May-September when daytime temperatures are warm and nights are cooler, although spring sees more rain than the summer.
For up-to-date forecasts, check weather.com.
Electricity in Latvia is supplied at 230 volts. Sockets are designed to accept two round prongs. Some sockets will take the plugs with large prongs only; others will take the ones with small prongs. A multi-adaptor with different plug configurations can be very useful. We advise not to bring a hair dryer as it could blow a fuse.
Phone: Roaming charges vary between carriers, but tend to be quite costly. Consult your phone provider prior to departure to discuss overseas rates and international package options. It is also possible to purchase a SIM card locally to avoid international charges when calling numbers within Latvia. (You should check to see that your cell phone is SIM card compatible).
Internet: Wifi is quickly spreading across Latvia with most of the country covered with WiFi access which is mostly free to users.
As of January 1st, 2014, the currency in Latvia is the Euro. Generally speaking, we advise bringing €70-100 per day, per person, for spending money. Be sure to bring lots of small bills for porters, wait staff and housekeeping (not obligatory and based on your satisfaction). Euro paper money comes in different colors and denominations (5, 10, 20, 50 and 100 notes). There are also Eurocent coins: 1 cent, 2 cents, 10 cents, 20 cents, 50 cents, 1 and 2 Euro. Your largest bills should be 50 Euros, with a combination of 5’s, 10’s and 20’s. We recommend that you bring approximately 100 Euros of spare cash in small denominations to have ready for tips and expenses when you first arrive.
We recommend that you get local currency from your bank before you leave home or from a bank machine in-country which is much cheaper than an exchange service at the airport or in tourist areas. Your bank card may work, but Visa or MasterCard are more widely accepted. You will need a 4-digit PIN to be able to use your cards in Europe.
Language: Latvian, Russian, English
Religion: Lutheran, Catholic, Muslim, and others
Time Zone: UTC +2
Electricity: 230 Volts
Telephone: Country code for calling you from outside Latvia is +371
Calling North America: Dial 001 and your 10 digit number
Emergency numbers in Latvia: For general emergencies, dial 112. For medical emergencies dial 03, police dial 02, and fire department dial 01.