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About the event

Venue: Palace of Parliament
City: Bucharest
Country: Romania
Address: Izvor Street, no. 2-4, district 5, Bucharest

About the Palace of Parliament:
The Palace of the Parliament is the seat of the Parliament of Romania. Located in central Bucharest, it is the largest administrative building in the world, excluding the Pentagon, with a height of 84 meters and an area of 365,000 square meters. This colossal building houses the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies, three museums and an international conference center. It also houses three museums: the National Museum of Contemporary Art, the Museum of Communist Totalitarianism and the Museum of the Palace.

If you wish to visit the place in detail, reservations for 1 to 9 people can be made only via phone, 24 hours prior to the visit, between 9.00- 16.00. For reservations, call +40 733 558 102 or +40 733 558 103. More information about the Palace of Parliament is available here

Main online platform (includes agenda)
UR Europe website – https://understandrisk.org/event/ur-europe

Registration
Registration starts at 13:00 on Wednesday, November 27 and at 8:00 on Thursday, November 28 and Friday, November 29.

Important notice: You will be required to go through a metal detector calibrated to detect weapons.

In order to register you need to show your identity card. After passing through the security check, the event organizers will look you up in the list of participants and hand you your badge. Don’t lose the badge as you won’t be able to further access the event in the following days.

Photos & Videos taken at this event
By entering and by your presence at UR Europe, you consent to be photographed, filmed and/or otherwise recorded. Your entry constitutes your consent to such photography, filming and/or recording and to any use, in any and all media throughout the universe in perpetuity, of your appearance, voice and name for the purposes of both marketing this event and making a live stream of this event for further attendees. You understand that all photography, filming and/or recording will be done in reliance on this consent given by you by entering this area. If you do not agree to the foregoing, you will find a no photo please sticker at the onsite registration desk for your personal use. This will help us guaranteeing your privacy.

Entering and exiting the building
You can enter the building only through the designated entrance for the event – C1 – located at the intersection of the United Nations Boulevard (Bulevardul Natiunilor Unite) and Freedom Boulevard (Bulevardul Libertatii).


Once you exit the building, you need to go through the security check once again, if you wish to re-enter. We don’t recommend you exit the building during the event.

Access to the venue
Traffic in Bucharest is heavy during 07-10:30, 12:30 – 14:30 and 17:00 – 19:00. Please be mindful of this when planning to arrive in the morning at the event. To access the venue, you can use the:

• Metro (Unirii Square Station) and then walk for about one kilometer from Unirii Square to the Palace of Parliament. Tickets can be bought in each metro station from machines or kiosks with dedicated staff. The price of a ticket is 5 Lei for two trips and 20 Lei for 10 trips available for a month. More information is available here. The metro runs between 06:00 – 23:30.

• Bus or trolleybus (kindly check routes depending on your departure point on Google Maps). Tickets – in the form of a card that you can top up with different amounts depending on your needs – can be bought from kiosks near the bus and trolleybus stations and NOT from the driver of the bus. Buses and trams run at infrequent intervals from very early in the morning (around 04:30) to around 22:50 (earlier at weekends), after which the night buses takeover. These serve all areas of the capital throughout the night, with all routes departing from Unirii Square (Piata Uniririi). Most night bus services run at hourly intervals. More information is available here.

• Taxi (from the street or through apps such as Clever) or ride-sharing apps such as Uber, Bolt, Yango. The fares are among the lowest in Europe so you can easily use these services to navigate the city. The lowest and most common taxi and ride-sharing fares are between 1.69 Lei/km and 2.4 Lei/km.

Wardrobe
The venue has a dedicated room for wardrobe and luggage for anyone in need. The service is free of charge. If you cannot find the wardrobe, kindly ask help from one of the organizers of the event.

Accommodation
Bucharest has the highest seismic risk among European capitals and is one of the 10 most vulnerable cities in the world. Please take this into consideration when choosing you accommodation. Kindly ask about the condition of the building at the hotel reception or directly the host of the accommodation.

Point of contact
For any other information or issue you may have, kindly contact the organizers at ureurope@understandrisk.org.
For more information, also check the FAQ available here.

About Bucharest

Language
Romanian is the official language spoken in Bucharest, the capital of Romania. However, most hotels, restaurants and tourist services have English-speaking staff.

Electricity
The standard voltage in Romania is 230 V and the standard frequency is 50 Hz. The power plugs and sockets are of type F, also known as “Schuko”. This socket also works with plug C and plug E. We recommend you bring your own adapter (if necessary), as they are not always available at hotels.

Extra info
You can use your electric appliances in Romania, if the standard voltage in your country is in between 220 – 240 V (as is in the UK, Europe, Australia and most of Asia and Africa). Manufacturers take these small deviations into account. If the standard voltage in your country is in the range of 100 V – 127 V (as is in the US, Canada and most South American countries), you need a voltage converter in Romania. You can also consider a combined power plug adapter/voltage converter.

Measurement Units
Bucharest utilizes the metric system for distances (km), and Centigrade degrees (ºC) for temperature.

Climate
The average minimum temperature (usually the minimum temperature is noted during the night) in Bucharest in November is 1.0°C (33.8°F). The average maximum temperature lies around 10.0°C (50°F). During the night it can cool down as well. Expect rainfall and heavy wind throughout your stay. Kindly wear warm clothes and proper shoes.

Climate
The average minimum temperature (usually the minimum temperature is noted during the night) in Bucharest in November is 1.0°C (33.8°F). The average maximum temperature lies around 10.0°C (50°F). During the night it can cool down as well. Expect rainfall and heavy wind throughout your stay. Kindly wear warm clothes and proper shoes.

Currency
Bucharest uses LEI as main currency. The exchange rate from Euro to Lei fluctuates, but as of the 30th of October 2019, 1 EUR is approximately equal to 4,76 LEI; 1 USD is approximately equal to 4,28 LEI.

Where to Exchange
There are plenty of places to exchange your money. Most banks have their own exchange rates and will probably charge you a commission, which is generally lower than those at the airport. A good option would be Banca Națională a României, as most exchange rates are calculated according to their course. 

There are also plenty of private exchange shops, where rates can be more friendly. There are many such options in the center of the city such as on Corneliu Coposu Boulevard, no tax. Of course, you can always use Google Maps to search for “exchange” in the area where your hotel is. 

Debit Cards and Credit Cards: What You Need to Know
Generally, both Visa and Mastercard are widely accepted in Romania. However, Discover cards aren’t commonly used. In a big city such as Bucharest, you should be able to withdraw cash at any ATM. Amex cards can also be used in ATMs run by a number of local banks. Look for a branch of Unicredit or an ATM which shows the Euronet logo. If you visit a local restaurant, an artisan market or a street food booth, you might consider having cash in order to avoid any issues. In most popular restaurants, hotels and shopping malls, you can easily use your debit or credit card.

ATMs
Romania has a well developed banking system, served by local, regional and global banks. ATMs are easily found in Bucharest. You can find the most convenient ATM using one of the following ATM locators from large global and national banks: BCR ATM locator, Alpha Bank ATM locator, Raiffeisen ATM locator, Unicredit ATM locator or BRD ATM locator.

There are a number of international or regional banks represented in Romania, such as Raiffeisen or BRD, for example, which is part of the French Société Générale. If you already bank with these institutions, you might get free or cheap cash withdrawals if you stick to their ATMs during your travels.

Tipping
We could say that that golden rule of thumb is to tip at least 10% of the bill in restaurants or bars. However, the higher the bill, the lower the amount you can tip. For example, if your bill is 50 Lei, 5 Lei is completely fine. If your bill is 100 Lei (or in between 90-140 Lei), 10 lei is also fine. With bills amounting 500 Lei, you can keep the 10% rule, but a 20-30 Lei tip will also do. 

Getting LEI Before You Arrive
Before getting to Bucharest, you should consider having some Lei upon landing, especially for the taxi trip from the airport. Some taxis might accept Euros / USD, but they might charge you more than in the national currency. To be safe, exchange around 100 Euro or USD in Lei for the taxi ride, water or any snacks you might need upon arrival.

Authorized Taxis from the Airport
The first option is to look for the yellow self-order machines on both sides of the international arrivals gate – you will find them after the baggage claim. Use one of them to order a taxi from the pre-authorized companies and you will get a printed ticket with taxi details. You must not lose the ticket and hand it to the taxi driver when entering the car. Walk outside the terminal building (still on 1st floor) and wait for the taxi to come from the left pathway. Remember that you can pay for the taxi trip only with Romanian Lei in cash. A taxi ride from the airport to the city center (Universitate Square) shouldn’t cost more than 60 RON. There is also a taxi app called Clever Taxi, which allows you to order both taxi and personal cars used in Uber-style.

Another option would be to order a personal pick up through mobile apps such as Uber, Bolt, Yango or BlackCab, which requires the user to have the app installed on the phone. The lowest and most common taxi and ride-sharing fares are between 1.69 Lei/km and 2.4 Lei/km.

Phone Calls
Emergency services throughout Romania can be accessed by dialing 112, which is a 24/7 service available all year round. You might want to check roaming charges with your service provider for calls from your cell phone. However, we recommend you purchase a local sim card, available at any convenience store, supermarket, magazine stands, hotels, travel agencies and the airport. The cost for a sim with around 1000 minutes and messages available at national level and 5 GB of internet costs around 6 Euros and can be bought in Orange, Vodafone, Telekom and Digi stores all around the city.

Romania has a modern telephone network of landlines and mobile (cell) phones. It’s possible to receive and make direct international calls from anywhere in the country. Romania’s country code is 40.

Safety recommendations
If you follow these recommendations, you shouldn’t run into any kind of problems during your stay in Bucharest. 
• Keep an eye on your wallet at all times, especially in very crowded, touristy places or public transport, especially buss, trolleybus or trams. 
• ATMs are very frequent in the city. Only use ATMs from banks you are familiar with.
• Carry an official ID with you, either the original or a copy. 
• When using taxis, only choose yellow and registered cars, and ask the driver to use the meter.
• Public demonstrations are quite common in Bucharest in central areas such as Victoriei Square (Piata Victoriei). Most demonstrations are peaceful, but it is recommended to avoid them to ensure one’s full safety.

Where to eat and drink
The city has a large variety of restaurants, bars and coffee places that can be easily discovered when exploring the city, especially the central areas (Unirii, Universitate, Romana and Victoriei Square and the Old Center) or by searching them online. Please find below a few recommendations.

Food

Caju by Joseph Hadad
Address: 16 Nicolae Golescu Street, 1st District
About: the concept of CAJU by Joseph Hadad brasserie is casual dining, which caters to different levels of customers. It’s the place where the chef proposed to bring to the table the tastes of his childhood, with strong North African influences. The restaurant is located downtown, on a picturesque street, behind the Romanian Athenaeum.
Reservation phone number: +40 751 144 545

Caru’ Cu Bere
Address: 5 Stavropoleos Street, Old Town Area
About: With a history of more than 130 years, Caru’ cu bere has been and still is a symbol of Bucharest’s old town, being the favorite meeting spot for both local and foreign tourists, including some famous names such as The Rolling Stones, Naruhito, the Prince of Japan or Edward Kennedy.
Reservation phone number: +40 726 282 373

Lacrimi si Sfinti
Address: 16 Șepcari Street, Old Town Area
About: Lacrimi și Sfinți is an unusual Romanian restaurant with a modern/contemporary kitchen. Recipes as old as 100 years are reinterpreted and rearranged, lost flavors and invented ones, all in one place. Every product in the menu is prepared with local, organic ingredients only.
Reservation phone number: +40 725 558 286 / +40 372 773 999

Mahala
Address: 147-153 Calea Rahovei, 5th District
About: The restaurant is located a stone’s throw away from downtown Bucharest. As you enter this contemporary Romanian restaurant, the kaleidoscopic elements compose a perfect mix by joining with details of historical Romanian folklore.
Reservation phone number: +40 729 003 002

The Artist Restaurant
Address: 147 Calea Victoriei, 1st District
About: Fine dining restaurant with the option for a pre-set menu presented by the chef.
Reservation phone number: +40 728 318 871

Coffee

Origo
Address: 9 Lipscani, Old Town Area
About: High quality coffee, great place (inside and outside), friendly, smiling and… very important, they know how to make a good coffee that will satisfy anyone’s exquisite taste.
Reservation phone number: +40 757 086 689

Frudisiac
Address: Bitolia Entrace (Intrarea Bitolia) 4
About: Small place with great brunch options, pancakes and specialty coffee.
Reservation phone number: +40 21 231 0411

Drinks

Energiea
Address: Ion Brezoianu 4
About: Great food, cocktails, hipster atmosphere and vegetarian friendly with gluten free options.
Reservation phone number: +40 736 374 432

Expirat
Address: Strada Doctor Constantin Istrati 1
About: Indoor and outdoor space with heated terrace, great music and events from Thursday to Saturday. There are a few options for Romanian food as well.
Reservation phone number: +40 733 974 728

Linea (Closer to the Moon) Sky Bar
Address: 17 Lipscani, Old Town Area
About: Stunning rooftop with beautiful panorama over Bucharest! During the colder seasons, they have transparent igloos for the outside area, so you can still enjoy a cozy night, closer to the moon.
Reservation phone number: +40 757 824 298

What to See

Victoriei Avenue
Address: Calea Victoriei, 1st district, Bucharest
About: Stretching on 2.7 kilometers from United Nations Square to Victoriei Square, a walk on Victoriei Avenue is not only the best way to see the main historical and cultural attractions of the capital, but also an excellent starting point to explore Bucharest off the beaten track as the avenue intersects with smaller streets with their own old houses and monuments.
The major attractions of the avenue include the National Museum of History, CEC Palace, the Military Palace, the Revolution Square, the National Museum of Art, the Atheneum, the Museum of Art Collections and Cantacuzino Palace that hosts the Museum George Enescu.

Mihai I Park (generally known as Herastrau Park)
Address:Charles du Gaulle Square, 1st District, Bucharest
About:King Michael I Park is a large park on the northern side of Bucharest, around Lake Herăstrău and an excellent place for jogging and other outdoor sports. The park has an area of about 187 hectares, of which 74 hectares is the lake.

Romanian Athenaeum
Address: 1-3 Benjamin Franklin Street, 1st District, Bucharest
About: The Romanian Athenaeum is a concert hall in the center of Bucharest, Romania and a landmark of the Romanian capital city. Opened in 1888, the ornate, domed, circular building is the city’s main concert hall and home of the “George Enescu” Philharmonic and of the George Enescu annual international music festival. The Athenaeum can be visited outside repetitions and concerts.
For visiting hours: call +40 21 315 0024 or +40 21 315 2567.

Old City Centre
Address: Lipscani Street, Old Town Area, Bucharest
About: Packed with a variety of bars and restaurants, the narrow streets of Bucharest’s Old Town were once the main commercial area of the city. Their name is, in fact, the legacy of the past days when merchants brought goods from all the corners of the world and sold their products to the elites of the capital.

Dimitrie Gusti Old Village Museum
Address: 28-30 Pavel Dimitrievici Kiseleff Avenue, 1st District, Bucharest
About: The Village Museum is an open-air ethnographic museum located in the Mihai I Park, showcasing traditional Romanian village life. The museum extends to over 100,000 square meters and contains 272 authentic peasant farms and houses from all over Romania.
Visiting hours (Entrance through Șos. Kiseleff 28):
Monday: 9.00-17.00
Tuesday-Sunday: 9.00-19.00

Where to Shop

Băneasa Shopping Center
Address: 42D Bucuresti – Ploiesti Avenue, 1st District, Bucharest 
About: Băneasa Shopping City offers the ultimate premium shopping experience through their unique tenant mix of over 280 stores. The list includes high profile international brands and a wide variety of refined restaurants and coffee shops.

Unirea Shopping Center
Address: 1 Bd. Unirii, 1st District, Bucharest
About: Located on the edge of old town, this mall is hard to miss, with quite an impressive facade, the interior layout is quite cramped, compared to modern malls (airy and spacious). However, it hits all the high points of the usual suspects: clothing, cosmetics, jewelry shops etc.