In case you’re confused, Austria is a small European country with mountains. If you want to go where there are lots of kangaroos, that would be Australia--not here!
Now that we've taken care of that, let's move on to 13 things when traveling to Austria.
Dessert can be the main dish here, in Austria
Like most people, Austrians love their sweets. So when you're in Austria, the rule of no sweets before dinner doesn't apply. Here are a few desserts you can eat as main dishes: Mohnnudeln, Palatschinken, Germknödel, Apfelstrudel and Kaiserschmarren.
Are Austrians Germans?
It's like comparing cats to dogs or Canadians to Americans. They might have some similarities, but they're not the same. Austrians are proud people who place a high premium on their own culture. So please don't refer to them as Germans; you won't want to hear the end of it. We’ve warned you!
There are so many good dishes in Austria, not just Schnitzel
Austria is home to more than just Schnitzel! In fact, there are over 100 different dishes that you must try when visiting Austria. Some of our favorites include Käsespatzle, Tafelspitz, Gulasch, Speckknödel, and Schweinsbraten.
No water left? Try water from the toilet
The water in Austria is rated as some of the cleanest and best tasting in the world, so much so that you can drink from almost any sink. Of course, if there's a sign reading "Kein Trinkwasser," it means don't drink from there.
Extra fees - No!
In America, taxes are not included in the displayed price as they are here. That goes for restaurant menus, stores, supermarkets and anywhere else. The price you see is the price you pay.
Tip is unnecessary
Tipping is not required in the service industry (take note, USA), as waiters here are actually paid relatively well. Most Austrians simply round up to the nearest Euro when paying their bill.
In Austria, beer and wine are legal at 16 years old, and it is also legal to drink in public. So, if you're looking for a Sweet Sixteen birthday party destination, look no further! And for those who prefer hard liquor, don't worry - that's legal at 18.
You can’t speak German? Not a problem
Many Austrians have a firm grasp of English due to the language being taught in school. However, it is still beneficial to make an effort and learn some essential German words and phrases such as Thank You (Danke), Please (Bitte) or Hello (Hallo! / Grüss Gott).
No working on Sundays
Austrians value their day off, and working on Sundays is uncommon. So, try to put the consumer lifestyle out of your mind for one day and enjoy a shopping-free day.
Austrians love to smoke!
If you're not a smoker, beware in Austria. Many Austrians love to smoke, and though restaurants and bars have designated smoking areas called “Raucherbereiche,” it's tough to find an area that is truly free of smoke in Austria.
Don't be fooled by the word "free" when it comes to public transport
Contrary to popular belief, Austria's public transportation system is not free for all. In fact, it works on an honor system where people are expected to pay for their fair share. Those who don't purchase a ticket may be subject to a fine of around 80 Euros - not something anyone wants to deal with!
To save some money, buy your transportation pass in advance at a “Trafik” or from a ticket machine. Tickets typically cost less this way than if you wait and purchase them on the bus or train.
Ask before you eat!
When you eat out, bread is sometimes placed on the table while you wait for your order. And if you're a foreigner, you'll believe it's a complimentary appetizer before the meal, but it isn't. You are charged for each item you consume. Of course, this does not apply to every restaurant; however, Before eating, you should ask.
Follow the traffic laws
If you're caught jaywalking in Austria, be prepared to dish out a hefty fine -- even if there aren't any cars around. To avoid this, just follow the traffic regulations and you'll be good to go.
So, what appealing aspects of Austria have you discovered during your visits there?