International visitors make up more and more of Florida's tourists every year. Thanks -- we're glad to have you! And word has it that the United Kingdom is tops for number of international visitors.
There are some special concerns you will have, like renting an automobile, using any electrical equipment and the like. Here is some information that you might find useful.
You may have a hairdryer or electric razor with you. We use 110 volts, so you will need a transformer (sometimes called an adapter) in order to use your appliances.
Renting an Automobile
To rent an automobile, you will need:
Remember, we drive on the right side of the road (I know, that's the "wrong" side for some of you). I recommend that you practice on some of the smaller roads before driving on one of the Interstate Highways or the Florida Turnpike. Especially around the larger cities, there may be a lot of road construction. This means that drivers tend to behave a little more recklessly if they have to suddenly merge into a different lane.
Remember also that we do have posted speed limits on our roads, and the speeds are listed in miles per hour, not kilometers per hour.
Most traffic lights will be what you are used to - red, yellow and green. There are two others you may come upon:
Paying for Things
Your best bet is a credit card issued in the United States, such as American Express, Interbank or Barclay Card.
The next safest is using travelers checks in dollar amounts.
Of course cash in the form of US dollars is welcome everywhere. Please note, though, that foreign currency is not accepted. US paper dollars come in the following denominations:
I do not recommend that you get the $50 and $100 dollar bills -- many places do not accept them. This is because of counterfeiting or they don't have enough other cash in stock to make change, if several people came in with $50 or $100 bills.
How many US dollars will your currency buy? Here's a currency converter website that is easy to use.
Keep a close eye on your cash; beware of pickpockets.
Bring any prescription medications in their original container. It's a good idea to get an extra prescription from your doctor, to show customs if you are asked.
You will also need a written prescription if you take any medications by injection.
Videos, Computers and Cell Phones
We have a different format to our videos here in the US, so videos you purchase may not work when you get home. Some of the larger parks and attractions do have videos in PAL format; if you don't see any, ask.
If you have wireless capability built into your computer, you are probably OK for high-speed internet access. Our modems are different though, so you may not be able to use dial-up service.
Cells phones? They probably won't work here in the US.
Alcohol and Smoking
You must be at least 21 to purchase an alcoholic beverage. You must be at least 18 to purchase cigars or cigarettes.
Be aware that most restaurants in Florida are non-smoking.
Most travelers will not need any special shots/vaccinations when traveling to the US. There may be exceptions if you are traveling from an area where cholera or typhoid fever is prevalent. Please check with your consulate if you are uncertain if this applies to you.
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