When planning a trip abroad it is good to be aware of any requirements that the country you are visiting has in place, such as driving regulations and what type of passport or visas you might need in order to enter. On these pages you will find useful information about travelling to Belgium to help you prepare for your trip.

CULTURE

Belgium is a small country made up of different influences, so you will find lots to enjoy and the people there are more than happy to share their unique culture with you.

When you go to Belgium, you can expect to be amazed by its very ornate Flemish Renaissance and Art Nouveau architecture and charming medieval towns.

The country is divided in to two main regions, French speaking Wallonia to the South and Dutch speaking Flanders to the north. This and the presence of both EU and NATO headquarters within bilingual capital Brussels, gives Belgium a very welcoming multicultural feel.

Belgium is known to many people as the home of delicious chocolate (locally referred to as pralines) and heart-warming beer - just a couple of the gastronomical delights that you can expect to encounter on a visit, making Belgium a great destination choice for food lovers.

The official languages of Belgium are Dutch, French and German. Some of the most common Dutch greetings you may find useful to know when visiting are:

• Dag/Hallo - Hello
• Dag – Goodbye
• Ja - Yes
• Nee - No
• Alstublieft - Please
• Dank u – Thank you
• Spreekt u/Spreek je Engels? - Do you speak English?
• Heren/ Mannen – Gents
• Dames / Vrouwen– Ladies
• Open/ Gesloten– Open/ Closed

You can also refer to our France and Germany pages for common phrases if visiting French or German speaking areas of Belgium.

Most Belgians you are likely to meet can cope very well with English, however this shouldn’t be taken for granted and attempting to greet them in their own language will go a long way. We therefore recommend investing in a phrase book to help you during your stay.

CURRENCY

The currency of Belgium is the Euro.

Banking Hours
Monday to Friday: 0900 – 1200 and 1400 – 1600
Saturday: 0900 – 1200 (some banks only)

Opening times may vary from one bank to another

Bank are closed on national holidays.

Credit Cards & ATM
The major credit cards (Mastercard, American Express, Diners Club and Visa) are widely accepted by shops, hotels, restaurants and petrol stations.

There are cash dispenser machines (ATMs) throughout the country which accept some debit and credit cards.

Travellers' cheques are no longer generally accepted, although a small number of banks may still exchange them.