Practical Information

Central and Eastern Europe in Comparative Perspective: Assessing Social and Political Change

Dates in Warsaw: June and July.  Students will engage in (a) four weeks of classroom instruction/research in Warsaw Poland, and (b) individual consultations with the Resident Director upon their return to OSU (in August).

Need to get somewhere in Warsaw, but don’t know how to get there or which bus (or tram or metro) to take?  Here is a useful website showing public transportation options in Warsaw.

Map of Europe.  Here is a Google map of Warsaw:

Here is a free map of Warsaw for student travellers.


For United States Citizens, passports are required to enter Poland.  Information from the U.S. Department of State.  Passport information in Franklin County, Ohio.


Poland uses the zloty (sometimes referred to as PLN).  Current exchange rates can be found here.  As of June 2017, the exchange rate:

1.00 USD = 3.71 PLN

Cost of Day-to-Day Living

The following are approximate costs for basic items in Poland (in Polish zlotych):

Milk: 2.50

Bread: 2.50

Apples: 2.00/kg

Bottle of water (1.5 l):  2.50

Orange juice: 3.50

Cheese (1/3 kilo): 5 – 7


Students will be staying at:

HERA University of Warsaw Guest House
Belwederska 26/30
00-594 Warsaw

Tel.: +48 22 55 310 04
Fax: +48 22 55 310 03

The Guest House is located next to the Royal Road, near Łazienki Park and the Belweder Palace.


Breakfast will be at Restauracja Glodomory: Address is Jurija Gagarina 26, 00-001 Warszawa, Poland

It is 500 meters (or a third of a mile) and less than 10 minute walk from Hotel Hera.


The U.S. Department of State on travel abroad and on Poland, in particular.  Some safety tips from the U.S. Department of State.

U.S. citizen services at the U.S. Embassy in Warsaw, Poland

U.S. Embassy in Warsaw, Poland
ul. Piekna 12
00-540 Warsaw
Tel. +48/22 625-1401, 504-2784
Fax: +48/22 504-2122

The American Citizen Services (ACS) Unit in Warsaw is available by appointment only.

According to the US Embassy in Warsaw website:

“In case of an emergency, you may contact the ACS Unit directly during normal working hours (8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.) at (48) 22 504 2784. If you are calling from the U.S. dial 011 48 22 504 2784.

Outside of normal working hours, please call (48) 22 504 2000. If you are calling from the U.S. dial 011 48 22 504 2000. These numbers are for emergencies concerning U.S. citizens only. They are not for visa inquiries and non-emergency situations.”

For information on what the Department of State can and cannot do in a crisis please go to Emergencies and Crises.


Basic travel information can be found here.  It is worthwhile to purchase a map in bookstores (EmPik or Traffic; English language books can be found there).  Most hotels have free Warsaw maps in their lobbies.

Airport:  Frederic Chopin Airport (formerly Okecie Airport).  The website includes an interactive arrival/departure timetable.  Information on train and bus transport to and from the airport can be found here.

On taxis in Warsaw: If you are inside the terminal, people may approach you and ask, “Taxi?”  These are unlicensed, non-corporate “pirate” taxis that do not display a phone number or company logo: do NOT use them.  Do NOT get into cars that say just “taxi” (i.e. no company name on the car), and which do not have registration numbers. Use only official companies (see below).  Outside of Terminal 2 airport, there is a taxi rank.  There, you will find official taxis waiting to take customers.

City Taxi       194-59
Wawa Taxi     19644
Ele Taxi         8111111
Korpo Taxi    19624
MPT Taxi      19191
Merc Taxi     6777777
Sawa Taxi     6444444

Currently, taxi prices for off-peak hours range from 1.80 zl/km to 2.40 zl/km.  Receipts are available (rachunek prosze).  Tips are not included in the price.

Bus, Tram, and Subway:  Warsaw has three types of public transportation: bus, tram, and subway.  Prices and travelcard information can be found here.  Bus and tram timetables and stopping points are usually posted at the stations where the buses and trams stop.

Always have a ticket! There are “controllers” who will ask to see your ticket (controllers must have an official ID).  Inside buses and trams, there are ticket-taking machines (you don’t have to interact with the driver, except to buy tickets if you were unable to get one elsewhere).  The metro has turnstiles where you insert the ticket.  In all cases, the ticket is stamped with a date and time.  You must retain this ticket for the duration of your public transportation trip.  You can buy tickets (bilety) in all metro stations and in most kiosks.


The weather in Warsaw, Poland.


There are various places on the internet where you can learn basic Polish.  Here is a link the to University of Pittsburgh’s “Polish Language Website,” which has an introductory course free on-line.  The “Sounds and Spelling” section provides a good introduction to how to pronounce Polish letters (very useful for reading street signs and maps).  Their “English-Polish Phrase Guide” is comprehensive.

The following are Polish language guides available on YouTube (length of video in parentheses):

Learning how to pronounce letters in the Polish alphabet (3:02)

Another lesson in how to pronounce Polish letters (3:27)

Basic words and phrases in Polish  (7:08)

Basic words and phrases in Polish [greetings]  (7:43)

Basic words and phrases [safety] (4:05)

Basic words and phrases [dining, including how to ask for a reciept] (11:38)

Basic words and phrases [shopping] (5:00)

Basic phrases in Polish I (1:06)

Basic phrases in Polish II (3:06)

Basic words and phrases [days and numbers]  (3:51)

Learning how to count from 1 to 10 in Polish (1:13)

Learning how to count from 11 to 20 in Polish (1:09)

Below are some common words and phrases in “hooked on phonics-like” format.

English/ Polish

How are you?       Jak się masz? (yak seh mahsh)
Good morning     Dzień dobry (chyen doh-breh)
Good evening      Dobry wieczór (doh-breh vee-etch-or)
Good night          Dobranoc (doh-bra-nohts)
Hello, hi              Cześć (chesch)
Hello                   ‘allo!
Bye, see you        Do widzenia, do zobaczenia (doh-vidz-ehnia)
Thank you           Dziękuję (jenk-oo-yeh)
You’re welcome  Proszę (proh-sheh)
Please                 Proszę (proh-sheh)
I’m sorry             Przepraszam (psheh-preh-shahm)
Bless you (when sneezing)  Na zdrowie (nah-stroh-vee-yeh)
Here’s to your health! (when drinking to sb)  Na zdrowie! (nah-stroh-vee-yeh)
Who is it? (when speaking on the phone)  Kto mówi? (kto-movee)
Why?  Dlaczego? (dlah-cheggo)
When?  Kiedy? (kiehd-yeh)
Who?  Kto? (ktoh)
What  Co? (tsoh)
Ticket bilety (bee-let-yeh)
Meat mieso (mien-so)
Cheese ser (ser)
Without bez (behz)
Enjoy your meal! (smahch neggo)

Polish numbers (100, 200, 300 and so on) can be found here.

Miscellaneous Practical Information

The Warsaw Voice on-line news and cultural event information in English

Metric system and the U.S. equivalent.