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United States - Traveling

Contents extracted from the comprehensive atlas of international trade by Export Entreprises

Entry requirements

Organizing your trip

Means of transport recommended in town

In the USA, you can use Public or Private Transports: Public transport includes Rail and Bus services (present most of the time in all the cities). Private transport includes taxi cab or limousine services.
Maps of urban networks: New York City Metropolitan

Means of transport recommended in the rest of the country

The railroad network is good but trains for passengers are slower and less frequent than in Europe. The network of intercity buses is denser and tends to be cheaper. The network of the domestic airlines is very extensive. The plane is the mean of transport more used.
Rail companies: Amtrak
Airlines
Name Type Domestic flights International flights
American Airlines Major Yes Yes
United Airlines Major Yes Yes
US Airways Major Yes Yes
Continental Major Yes Yes
Delta Major Yes No
Jet Blue Low Cost Yes No
Northwest Airlines Major Yes No
Southwest Airlines Low Cost Yes No
Virgin America Low Cost Yes No
Spirit Airlines Low Cost Yes No

Traveling by yourself

Recommendation: If you drive in the USA, remember that each of the 50 states has its own set of traffic laws and regulations. Fortunately, most of the laws are the same.
The gasoline price in the USA is cheaper than in Europe for example. However, you still have to remember that the unit measure is the gallon (3.785 liters) and the price changes from one state to another.
Find an itinerary: Google Maps

Visiting

Different forms of tourism

Historical: - Fort Sumter: Third System masonry coastal fortification located in Charleston harbor, South Carolina
- Liberty Bell: in Philadelphia, is an American bell asociated with the American Revolutionary War.
- Independence Hall is a US national landmark located in Philadelphia. It is a red brick building, built between 1732 and 1753, and designed in the Georgian style.
- Washington Monument is a large, tall white-colored obelisk in Washington DC.
- Pearl Harbor is a harbor and deep naval base on the island of Oahu, Hawaii.
- Statue of Liberty in New York city.
- Ellis Island in New York was at one time the main entry facility for immigrants entering the United States.
Cultural: The United States has its cultural heritage from: American Cowboys; Cowboy Cattle Drives; Native American Indians; Native American Culture; American Sports; American Holidays (Thanksgiving); Country & Western Music; American Cooking.
Nature: The National Park System Includes 378 areas. Among them are 55 National Parks and 72 National Monuments. In 1998 the NPS units were visited by 287 million people. The Blue Ridge parkway in Virginia attracted the most visitors: over 19 million. With 10 million visitors the most frequently visited National Park was the Great Smoky Mountains NP. Other parks that attract many visitors are The Grand Canyon (4.5 million), Yosemite NP (3.5 million) and Olympic NP (3.3 Million).
Visit USA Tourist to see all the National Parks.
Religious: For more information go to the Religious Travel Association website.
Thermal: Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming has the largest collection of geysers, hot springs and thermal phenomena in the world.
Beach: Some of the Most Popular beaches in USA are located in North Carolina, Florida, New York, Hawaii, Massachusetts and California.
Winter sports: The United States has around 750 cross country ski areas spread out all over the country. Cross-country and downhill skiing as well as snowshoeing, snowboarding, and dog sledding are the activities you can enjoy on public lands.
Outdoor activities: Outdoor activities are very popular. These include running, boating, camping, hunting, hiking, fishing, skiing, and rafting.
Shopping: American whiskey, fashion jeans are popular items for shoppers from other countries. The big shopping malls and discount stores are the favorite places for the Americans during the week end.
Tourism organizations: USA Tourist

Living conditions

Health and safety

Health precautions: No specific vaccinations are needed in the USA.
For further information on sanitary conditions: Center for Disease Control and Prevention

Time difference and climate

Map of the time zone: New York, Washington DC, Philadelphia (GMT-5 in winter, GMT-4 in summer), Chicago, Houston, San Antonio, Dallas (GMT-6 in winter, GMT-5 in summer), Los Angeles, San Diego (GMT-8 in winter, GMT-7 in summer)
Summer time period: From April to October.
Climate: Average Temperatures in Chicago: from -7°C in January to 20°C in June, in San Francisco from 12°C in January to 18°C in June and in New York from 0°C in January to 22°C in June.

Eating

Food specialties: Appetizers: Crab Cakes ; Rockefeller Oysters; Crab Soup.
Main Courses: Chili con carne, Burgers, Chicken Gumbo, Shrimp Gumbo, Jambalaya, Country Ham.
Cocktails: Eggnog, Southern Mint Julep.
Bakeries: Corn bread; Peanut brittle.
Desserts: President's cake; The King cake from New Orleans.
Drinks: Soft drinks like Coca Cola, Fanta, etc are the most drunk. Young people, above 21 years old, drink American beers like Budweiser and Coors. Wines and Bourbons are very much appreciated in the USA; you can find some interesting American wines from California, Oregon and other states. Imported international alcoholic beverages are also available.
Dietary taboos: None

Speaking

Getting some knowledge: English as a Second Language (ESL) program offered by Universities or private schools. Foreigners can take English classes at different levels and improve their writing and speaking skills in English.
Free translation tools:
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