Argentina travel tips: Important information for travelers
Every country has its own culture and the way things work (or don’t) can completely change our travel experience. Here’s a quick list of Argentina travel tips you need when traveling to our country.
South America is a truly fascinating place, famous for its natural diversity and vibrant mixture of cultures and religions, that make this corner of the world an authentic ‘cultural feast’. The unique opportunity to blend in with locals, try new flavors, going to wild parties and witness the wonder of nature, can sometimes be overshadowed by the particular way in which everyday life works. Still, traveling to Argentina is a must for every traveler and on the list below you will find some advice to make your stay as comfortable as it can be.
1. ‘God is Argentinian but he serves in Buenos Aires’ – this city will be your main hub
The capital is the most important city when it comes to economy, population, and transportation, pretty much in every single aspect. This is why locals have this quite particular saying about God’s office.
In Buenos Aires you’ll have the main bus station, the Retiro terminal, the biggest port to travel to Uruguay by boat, and two of the main international airports: Ezeiza and Jorge Newbery. This beautiful city will be your base ground to reach other cities, since most flights have their connections there.
2. Power up your travel: plugs and adapters can be different than yours
Though we’re not experts on physics, we have to mention that traveling to Argentina means that most of your devices won’t work, unless you buy adaptors for type I (i) and C sockets.
Also keep in mind that the standard current is 220 V at 50hz.
3. Show me the money!: You’ll have to carry cash
Money withdraw could be very expensive and most ATMs only allow to take low amounts. You can pay by credit card at convenient exchange rates in many shops and places, but probably won’t be as good as paying cash in Argentinean pesos. On the other hand, in small towns, some services might not work with online banking options. International debit cards are not accepted in most of the cases.
About money exchange, avoid if possible changing your dollars or euros at the airport, the fees are high, except if you do it at the branch of Banco de la Nacion Argentina. Avoid the men on the street offering to do currency exchange at low price, these is illegal and are usually scammers. Nevertheless, it’s true that in Argentina exists a huge black market, and it is common to see tourists choosing this way since (usually) the rates are better. If you decide to do this, make sure you do it with someone you trust.
4. The wheels on the bus go round and round: Transportation
It is a fact that traveling to Argentina means staying in one of the largest countries in the planet. That being said, we have to mention a few things regarding means of transport in Buenos Aires which, yet again, is one of the biggest cities out there.
Taxis are affordable but perhaps not always available and few drivers speak English. But if you pay enough attention you will be just fine! Uber is definitely not legal, but it’s fully operational only in the city (taxi drivers are aware of this and might give you and the driver some hard time). Cabify, on the other hand, is legal and works both in the city and the province of Buenos Aires.
If you want to travel like a local, you need the special public transportation card: Sube. The Sube card works in almost every important city. In Buenos Aires it applies for buses, trains and subways. In the rest of the provinces it only applies for some buses, not all of them.
This can be purchased in kiosks where you also charged them with money on small ATM-like devices, or directly on subway and train stations.
5. Hello? Is it me you’re looking for?: Communications and WiFi
Even though in Argentina there are many places with WiFi available, to purchase a prepaid sim card from local companies such as Claro, Movistar or Personal it’s always a good idea. The prepaid cards can be bought/charged in many kiosks or in the companies offices.
Claro is the biggest in the country and offers a very interesting flat tariff in the entire continent, this is very useful if you’re also visiting Chile.
Regarding WiFi, at least in big cities like Buenos Aires, Córdoba and Mendoza, airports, train and bus stations, parks and malls, offer free and open WiFi. Restaurants, hotels and bakery stores do so, after asking for the passwords and its also free.
6. At your service: the truth about tipping.
It’s not mandatory but is expected. When traveling to Argentina you must know that tipping the wait staff is quite an important deal.
Gastronomy is one of the main attractions in the country and particularly in Buenos Aires. In the city, most waiters and waitresses are professionals, which means that (depending on which restaurant, of course) you’ll be taking care by a bilingual hospitality expert.
Unless their service is not good, which also happens, you’ll be expected to leave about 10% of what you’ve spent.
Now that you have these Argentina travel tips, plus some other ones that you have probably already learned, we expect that you can travel to Argentina with no bumps on the road. If you have any other questions, reach us to ask for personalized tours and we’ll be more than happy to clarify any doubts you might have.
Contact us, and let’s plan your next beautiful journey together!