There are several options for you to stay before you are able to occupy the house you are going to live in. Pápa offers accommodation of all qualities and prices.
For temporary lodging check out any accommodation website (like Booking) or contact your primary point of contact (NSE, SNR, CLO) in Pápa.
Living on Pápa Air Base is not an option.
In case of an emergency, you can call the International Emergency Line (112). Emergency calls can be initiated from all kinds of phones free of charge. You have to dial 112, the common European Union Emergency Line.
For HAW and NAM PO employees and their families a CLO Medical Liaison service is provided within the Community Liaison Office.
The Medical Liaison can help in case of a medical emergency and any other medical related issue.
Working hours of the CLO Medical Liaison are as follows:
+36 30 480 0408
Whether you are starting at HAW or NAM PO, you will receive an inprocessing checklist which you will need to complete in your first days.
Once a month a Newcomers’ Orientation Briefing is held where family members are also welcome.
For NAM PO employees there is a Newcomer Info Package posted on SAC Portal.
If you are Dutch, Norwegian, Swedish or US Military, your primary point of contact will be your National Support Element (NSE), otherwise it should be your Senior National Representative (SNR).
In case of specific Hungary-related business, such as Housing, Military personnel registration, Family member registration, Vehicle registration, your point of contact will be the Community Liaison Office.
If you are a NAM PO employee, please contact NAM HR for further details about moving and taking up duties in Pápa.
The Hungarian currency is Forint. You may come across notes and coins. International abbreviation for the Forint is HUF, in Hungary Ft is used. Coins used in Hungary are: 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 Notes used are: 500, 1000, 2000, 5000, 10000, 20000.
The exchange rate of HUF is around 350 HUF / 1 EUR, 290 HUF / 1 USD.
For up to date exchange rate information, please check online or with your bank.
Pay attention to use the exact same name that is in your passport in agreements and official forms. This is the only way authorities can actually identify you.
Hungary’s official system is metric.
Stores have prices marked in kg, but you would normally ask for portioned quantities in dkg.
Distances and speed limits on roads are in kilometres (km) and gas is measured in litres (l).
Hungarians measure temperature in degrees Celsius (C).
Privately owned shops open around 07:00 and close around 17-18.00 in Pápa on working days, and close around 12:00 Saturdays and Sundays.
Multinational corporate supermarkets and hypermarkets have longer opening hours from Monday to Sunday.
People do not bargain for a lower price in stores that sell new products.
Every Tuesday and Friday there is a fresh food and goods market in downtown Pápa, at the marketplace. It is acceptable to bargain at the market.
You will pay Value Added Tax (ÁFA) on all goods. Generally the amount of ÁFA is 27%, for some food products 18% and for human medicine 5%. HAW members are not entitled for ÁFA reimbursement (except US Military), international NAM PO employees are, up to a certain annual amount.
For US personnel, please refer to OMNIBUS Bilateral Agreement and contact the US NSE for procedural details.
If you buy something and within a few days you decide you do not want it, you may be able to return or exchange the item.
Stores do not have to take things back, but some stores will return your money or exchange items.
Always keep your receipt and find out the rules about exchanges and refunds.
Not all stores have the same rules, however consumer laws apply to all stores.
Second-hand and consignment stores sell used clothing, furniture, and other household items, usually very cheap. Sometimes you can bargain to bring the price down.
When you leave your homeland and come to live in a new country, everything seems different. People here may seem strange to you because they speak and behave differently. They have different social customs.
Sometimes misunderstandings happen because of these differences. Then, you may feel confused or embarrassed. Watch how people behave with each other—for example, how close they stand when they speak to each other, and so on.
Hungary’s society may have different values from your culture.
Hungary’s society is quite homogeneous, the vast majority of people are Hungarians. In Hungary many couples live together without marriage, which can be registered to be a legal form of a family.
Same-sex couples cannot get married in Hungary.
Many Hungarians live in single-parent families, because of separation or divorce of the parents. Many others live in blended families, where children may be from previous relationships.
In Hungary men and women have to be treated equally by law, and no discrimination is allowed for gender, age, race, religion, sexual orientation, etc.
In Hungary it is against the law to smoke in public buildings, restaurants and bars, you have to look for the nearest smoking area outdoors.
It is expected to say hello when you enter a shop or when you pass someone you know in the street, and to say good bye when you are leaving a place.
In Hungary people usually respect privacy. You should not ask personal questions about how much money someone makes, who they live with, what their religion is, what their sexual orientation is, or what property they own, unless you are getting to know them well. For Hungarians it usually takes time to become friends with someone. A great first step towards befriending the locals might be that you try to say something in Hungarian to them. They will most probably appreciate your effort.
Do not be surprised if your neighbor does not chat with you. Neighbors socializing together is not very common. Needless to say, each individual is different and your experience might differ.
There are two kinds of telephones in Hungary. You can have a landline phone or a mobile phone.
How much you have to pay for each call depends on your telephone plan with your service provider.
Calling rates are usually minute-based. Normally, local phone calls or phone calls to the parent network cost less and calls abroad are the most expensive.
The country code of Hungary is
+36 or 0036,
the code of Pápa is 89.
The code of Budapest is 1.
Mobile phone codes can be 20, 30, 70.
When you initiate a call you have to start with +36 or 06, then dial the local code, then the number which is a 6 digit number for landline phones, a 7 digit number for Budapest and mobile phones.
E.g. +36 30 123 4567
When using phones in hotels, you are paying on a minute-based rating.
Until you have an internet subscription in your home, you can use free wifi hotspots downtown or password protected wifi spots in hotels, restaurants if you are a guest.
In Hungary you can send mails and parcels through the Hungarian Post (Magyar Posta) or any available delivery company (like UPS or TNT).
You can send your letters by going to a post office, and buying a stamp or an envelope with a pre-printed stamp on it.
The amount and value of the stamps you will need on one envelope/parcel will depend on what the letter’s/parcel’s destination is and how much the letter/parcel weighs.
When sending to Hungary, you will need to identify the name, street, house, (floor, door where applicable), town and the postal code of both the sender and the recipient.
Postal codes in Hungary are 4-digit numbers. You can find a postal code at any post office. Pápa’s postal code is 8500.
You can use the bus to travel in and around Pápa.
Schedules of buses with maps in Pápa can be found here.
You can buy tickets for the bus in advance at the main bus station and some shops, or on the bus.
Buying a monthly ticket is also an option.
You can reach other towns, cities by bus, too.
There are direct buses to Győr and to Veszprém from Pápa.
Travelling around Hungary and in Europe is quite simple by train. The Hungarian Railway Company (MÁV) is in charge of railway transportation services.
For planning your travel by train and buying or booking your ticket online, visit here.
You can also use Android or iPhone apps to buy train tickets.
When taking the train you have to buy your ticket in advance. You can do that at any train station, online, or through the app.
Ticket prices vary depending on the distance, the type of the train and the category of the traveler (adult/student/ retired).
On most of the trains the names of the stations are not announced, so pay attention to the signs at the station.
For taxis in Pápa visit this site.
Fares are normal as there are no really big distances within the city. However, if you want to take a taxi to another town, make sure you agree about the price in advance, because the trip might be expensive. At the end of the journey you will have to pay the amount the taximeter shows.
Taxi drivers are usually tipped with 10% of the price. When you call a taxi you have to give your address and name and a car will pick you up in a few minutes in front of your house.
You can get a taxi near the main bus station or the train station, too.
Keep in mind however, that it can be hard to catch taxis on weekdays or during rush hour in Pápa.
In Hungary people drive on the right side of the road. You need a driving license and liability insurance to drive a car in Hungary.
In Hungary full traffic lights mean someone’s possible priority against you, arrow shaped lights mean no priorities against you.
You are not allowed to cross a red light, even when turning right.
For information on licenses, buying a car, and getting car insurance, see chapter on “Driving”.
You do not need a license to ride a bicycle.
People on bicycles must ride on the road, not on the sidewalk. They must obey the same rules as car drivers.
Only one person at a time may ride a bicycle.
Where there is a bicycle road, you have to use it to ride a bicycle.
A small child may ride in a special seat behind the adult rider.
You must have a light in front and a red reflector on the back of your bicycle to ride at night, along with cat eyes.
You have to wear a reflective vest at night and on the open road.
When walking, you have to use sidewalks where possible. If there are no sidewalks, you should walk opposing the car traffic.
You are allowed to cross the road at designated pedestrian crossovers, so called ‘zebras’. Where there are traffic lights for pedestrians, you should act accordingly.
Pedestrians on zebra crossings have priority towards turning vehicles, but be careful, always double-check whether it is safe to cross the road.
Make sure you have the below documents with you when arriving in Pápa. You will need all these to be able to register in the country.
Please note that when your passport voids, your residency document will void, too! You might consider renewing your passport before coming to Hungary.
Please note, when your travel order voids, your residency document will void, too!
For details ask your vet.
Make sure all vehicles you would like to register in Hungary are legally in the ownership of the HAW employee, in order to grant special conditions of registration.