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Travel Information for International Event Attendees
Welcome to our dedicated travel information page designed to assist our international event attendees in planning their trip.
We want to ensure that your journey to our event is as smooth and enjoyable as possible.
Below, you will find essential travel information, including:
Visa and Passport Requirements
Valid Passport or ID Card: European Union (EU) citizens can enter Bulgaria with a valid passport or national ID card. The document should be valid for the duration of their stay and at least 90 days after their intended departure from Bulgaria.
Outsite European Union
Travelers from countries outside Bulgaria can enter the country either with a valid passport or with a passport along with a visa, as required. For specific entry requirements, it is advisable to check the downloadable paper provided by the Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Valid Passport: Amerikan citizens need a valid passport to enter Bulgaria. The passport should be valid for at least three months beyond the intended period of stay in Bulgaria and contains at least 2 blank pages for visa purposes.
- Visa-free regime for holders of multiple Schengen visas and residence permits can travel to Bulgaria without the need of an additional Bulgarian visa for a stay of up to 90 days
- US citizens generally require a visa to enter Bulgaria – Bulgaria Short-Stay Visa (Visa C). It is quite easy to obtain and only requires the applicant to file a request with the Bulgarian Embassy in the US in order to obtain it. Processing time for visa application should not last more than 15 calendar days. You will need to provide the following documents as part of your application: Proof of your travel arrangements, including hotel reservation, flight reservation, and event ticket.
Serbia, Montenegro, Bosnia and
Herzegovina, North Macedonia
Valid Passport: Citizens from these countries can enter Bulgaria with a valid passport. The document should be valid for at least three months beyond the intended period of stay in Bulgaria.
Valid Passport: Citizens from the UK can enter Bulgaria with a valid passport. The document should be valid for at least three months beyond the intended stay in Bulgaria.
Visa-free Regime for short stays: Travelling to Bulgaria for up to 90 days in any 180 days without a visa is possible. This applies if you travel as a tourist or to attend events such as SERP Conf.
Valid Passport: Turkish citizens need a valid passport to enter Bulgaria. The passport should be valid for at least three months beyond the intended period of stay in Bulgaria.
Visa Requirement: Turkish citizens generally require a visa to enter Bulgaria – Bulgaria Short-Stay Visa (Visa C). They should apply for a visa at the Bulgarian embassy or consulate in Turkey before their trip. You will need to provide the following documents as part of your application: Proof of your travel arrangements, including hotel reservation, flight reservation, and event ticket.
For more detailed information on visa requirements and the application process, we recommend visiting the visa centers located in Turkey, specifically in Ankara, Istanbul, Edirne, Bursa, Gaziantep, Adana, and Izmir.
Airport Information, Local Transportation and Parking
Sofia Airport is the airport serving Bulgaria’s capital city, Sofia. It has two terminals – Terminal 1 & Terminal 2.
A free shuttle service takes travelers between the two terminals, which are about 2km (1 mile) apart. The shuttle runs every 15 minutes from 05:00-23:00 hours. To get a free inter-terminal shuttle service, follow the signs to the front of the terminal.
Metro line 1 connects Terminal 2 with NDK, where SERP Conf. 2024 will be held.
Sofia’s public transport includes Ground Transport (buses, trams, and trolleybuses) and the Underground (Metro).
- Paper tickets are sold by drivers (BGN 2 for ground transport, BGN 1.60 for metro) without transfer option. Opt for 24-hour (BGN 6) or 72-hour (BGN 15) passes for unlimited travel.
- Card payments are accepted on the metro and all buses, ensuring a convenient and cashless experience.
Sofia Taxi Services
Taxi cabs in Sofia are an excellent choice for quick and convenient transportation within the city. However, it’s important to be aware of unauthorized operators (especially at Sofia Airport). To ensure a safe and reliable ride, consider these two reputable and legitimate taxi companies:
Keep these two companies’ contact information handy for your convenience and peace of mind throughout your stay.
Parking in Sofia
There are two types of short-term paid parking zones in the centre – a Green one and a Blue zone. They are active only during the day.
Payment: You can either pay by sending a text message with your license plate number via SMS to the number listed. It’ll be either a Blue Zone number (1302) which costs BGN 2 per hour with a max time of two hours or a Green Zone number (1303) which costs BGN 1 per hour with a max time of four hours.
Sofia Municipality has provided a map, marking the zones.
Parking near NDK (National Palace of Culture)
Visitors to the NDK (National Palace of Culture) can use the palace’s underground 24-hour parking lot upon payment. The parking lot has a direct connection to the NDK and multiple entrances and exits in convenient sections around the palace itself.
Payment: The price might vary depending on which section is used.
Local Currency and Payments
The official currency of Bulgaria is the Bulgarian Lev (BGN). The currency is abbreviated as “лв” in Cyrillic or “lev” in Latin. One Lev is subdivided into 100 stotinki. Banknotes are available in denominations of 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, and 100 BGN, while coins come in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, and 50 stotinki, as well as 2 Lev.
Currency rates for Bulgarian Lev (BGN):
- Bulgarian levs to Euros Exchange Rate: 1 BGN = 0.5113 EUR
- Bulgarian levs to US Dollars Exchange Rate: 1 BGN = 0.5599 (can vary)
Credit Card Acceptance
Credit cards are generally accepted in larger hotels, restaurants, and retail establishments. Visa and MasterCard are the most widely accepted credit cards in Bulgaria. However, it’s a good idea to carry some cash with you, especially when visiting smaller shops, local markets, as not all businesses may accept cards.
Sightseeing in Sofia
Discover the rich history and cultural heritage of Sofia by exploring its magnificent cathedrals, churches, and museums. Sofia’s iconic landmarks offer a captivating glimpse into Bulgaria’s past and showcase the city’s architectural beauty and artistic treasures, making your visit to Sofia truly unforgettable.