Acclimate to Vienna and try not to stand out as a 'typical tourist' - here are some helpful cultural tips to remember:


Stand to the right on an escalator in the U-­bahn or elsewhere. Let those in a hurry go past on the left.

Let those getting off public transport depart before trying to get on.

Observe seating in public transport designated for the blind, old, sick, pregnant etc. A decal next to these
seats, which are usually next to the door, will identify them.

Let old Viennese ladies move in front of you everywhere ­­ if not, they will probably push their way in front anyway ­­ - a tradition.

Expect to pay cash for services in small restaurants, pubs and clubs.

Expect to pay a small sum (50 Euro cents) to use some restroom facilities.

Observe "Keep off the Grass" where signs request it. Keep the place green for the next visitor.

Alway remember to have your "Monatskarte" with you when you use any public transportation. If you are asked to show your ticket, do so. If you don't have it with you, it will cost you about $100 fine, and then you'll have to buy another ticket for th rest of your month in Vienna.

Be careful of pickpockets active in the first district and on crowded streetcars (Tram) and subways (U­-bahn) Some work in pairs or sometimes in threes. Some organized bands are known to use children, too, in their work, so keep your bags zipped and close to your person. Consider wearing your backpack in front while on public transportation or in a crowd - it may look weird, but it's much safer!

Get smartly dressed for concerts and operas or clubs and finer dining restaurants. Europeans like to dress up more often than people in the States.

Watch where you walk. Vienna has many dogs; they leave their greetings in many places.

Tip the waiters/waitress after your meals - not necessarily 10% of the total,  but you should definitely round up to the nearest Euro or two.

Expect to be chased out of the shops 5 minutes before closing time.


Don't expect Austrians to respect the custom of waiting your turn in line. People will sometimes try to push past you, but a stern look right in the eyes is enough for them to retreat, and needs no translation.

Don't expect everyone to speak English.

Don't expect every place to have air­conditioning.

Don't expect ice water, or even tap water to be served to you at any establishment. It is expected that you buy water, either carbonated ("prickelnd") or non ("still").

Don't expect English ­language menus in all places. Your waiter can usually explain everything.

Don't expect to find diet drinks and non­smoking areas everywhere.

Don't expect waiters to bring your bill after eating. They will present it only when you ask. Many here will sit for some minutes talking after finishing a meal.

Don't expect stores to be open late evenings or Sundays; on weekdays, most stores close at 6:00 pm (except in
the 1st District, some on Mariahilferstrasse, and at the train stations) and on Sundays, most stores are closed.

Don't make a lot of noise or commotion on the street after 10 pm - you could be arrested.

Don't forget that you are in a very large city, and that there are (unfortunately) bad people everywhere. Watch this video as a reminder of identity theft and ways to avoid becoming a victim:


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