Getting around in Austria
The Austrians are known to be a car-loving nation. As a result,
Austria boasts an excellent road network. However, almost
all of the bigger cities suffer from severe parking availability
problems. Spaces are scarce and prohibitively expensive. If
you do find a space, the time you are allowed to park for
is usually around 90 minutes in central districts. One way
streets and traffic jams also take enjoyment out of the journey.
If you do decide to drive your own car here to Austria you
will need to purchase a Vignette which is a form of toll that
allows you to drive on Austria's motorways. These vignettes
can be purchased at gas stations, border crossings etc.
Drivers in Austria are also required to carry safety warning
equipment, namely a reflective warning triangle to place on
the road in the event of an accident, a first aid kit and
a reflective vest. Failure to carry these items in your car
will leave you liable to a fine.
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The public transport system in Austria is excellent. Austria's
rail network is comfortable, reliable and fast. The main rail
website offers excellent information on timetables, services
and discounts. The quality of service offered by the rail
network makes it far more appealing than bus links.
Cities such as Bratislava, Budapest, Prague, Munich, Venice
are all are regularly served from main stations. For the more
adventurous there is also the possibility to travel further
a field to destinations such as Warsaw, Berlin, Kiev etc.
All of Austria's major cities including Linz, Salzburg, Innsbruck,
Graz and Klagenfurt and Vienna have their own international
airports. Austrian Airlines, Austria's national carrier, serves
all of the above cities and connects Austria with many international
destinations. There are now a range of low cost carriers which
connect Vienna, Linz and Bratislava to a number of European
destinations e.g. AirBerlin, FlyNiki, Ryanair, Sky Europe
and German Wings.
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Most large cities and towns feature some form of public transport,
including underground systems, buses, tramlines and suburban
railways which means getting around without a car is generally
not a problem.
Many Austrian cities and towns encourage cyclists through
designated cycle lanes. There are many beautifully tended
cycling routes throughout the country esp. in areas of natural
beauty such as along the Danube river.