Things to know before you go to San Francisco
San Francisco is a city jam-packed full of culture, beauty and fun. From scenic walks to cooler than cool coffee shops, it’s also a city worth doing a little research on before you go, just to make sure you walk the most scenic of the walks and visit the coolest of the coffee shops. Here are some other things to know before you go:
Quick facts about San Francisco
Currency: American Dollar
Opening hours: Most shops are open 10am to 8pm Monday to Saturday and 12pm to 7pm on Sundays.
Emergency numbers: Police, ambulance and fire brigade: 911
Plug type: Flat blade two-prong plug
Voltage: 120 volts
Visa requirements: All British citizens are required to have an ESTA before arrival. If you have not already applied for one, please contact your Travel Butler or see our advice on Visas.
Arriving in San Francisco
San Francisco International Airport is a 20 minute drive from the city centre. To help you arrive at your accommodation seamlessly, we can pre-arrange your transfers for you. Alternatively, to catch a taxi will cost you around US$25, while the subway system, known locally as ‘BART’ is cheaper and a lot faster.
Getting around: Most people in San Francisco like to walk around their city. Be warned though, the city’s hills can grow tiresome. When they do, there are plenty of other transport options including train via the BART system, light rail, buses and of course cable and trolley cars. You can also hire a car in San Francisco, but beware that like most big cities, finding parking can be troublesome and expensive.
What to pack: In spite of its Californian location, San Francisco’s weather can err on the side of chilly. Even in summer, bring a few warm layers and a jacket. San Francisco is also a great pedestrian city so be sure to pack comfortable walking shoes.
Tipping: A 15% to 20% tip is required in restaurants across the USA, even if the service isn’t great - and in San Francisco it may very well not be. Think of it as paying for the food, which is bound to satisfy.
Wi-Fi: Thanks to its tech-savvy reputation, there are many places in San Francisco that offer free Wi-Fi including the San Francisco Public Library and selected public parks. You’ll also find Wi-Fi in most of the city’s hotels, restaurants and cafes as well.
We’re here if you need us
Book your San Francisco holiday with Flight Centre and you’ll benefit by having access to a dedicated Travel Butler and our 24/7 Emergency service. To contact our 24/7 Emergency service from outside of the UK please call +44 203 056 7993.