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Basic Info

Population: 22,000,000

Regions: Romania has three major regions: Transylvania in the North West, Moldova in the North East and Walachia or Tara Romaneasca in the South.

Language: Romanian, which is, please remember, a Latin language. Never make the mistake to ask a Romanian if they understand Russian – they won’t, unless they’re over 40 and are probably trying to forget it as fast as they can.

Ethnicities: Romanians, Hungarians, Germans, Roma

Government: Corrupt police state though hopefully that will change now that Romania is part of the EU. Romania is still largely an agricultural country and quite poor but the people are educated and things work.

Religion: Christian Orthodox, Catholic

Currency:the Romanian currency is called LEU, as of October 2006 the exchange rate is 1$=2.77 LEI, 1€=3.52 LEI

Visas

Citizens of US, UK, and many other European countries are not required to obtain Romanian visas for stays up to 90 days

U.S. driver’s licenses are only valid in Romania for up to 90 days. trains and buses, which are relatively safe, inexpensive, and reliable.

Cell phones

GSM cell phones are used in Romania. If you have a GSM phone (tri-band, or 4-band) that uses a SIM card, you can purchase a Romanian SIM card for $8 with Connex of Orange (the biggest mobile phone providers) and get a Romanian number. The SIM cards can be purchased at any Orange or Connex stand in the airports or local stores. You can buy a prepaid card which sells for various amounts from $3 to $20. Any newspaper vendor should have these prepaid cards for sale.

Getting there

Romania borders Hungary, Bulgaria, Serbia, Moldova and the Ukraine and buses and trains run fairly cheaply between them. The low cost airlines of Ryan Air and easy Jet make flying into Romania easy and cheap these days.

Cuna Luminita