Frequently Asked Questions about Krakow

Krakow questions

How to get from Krakow airport to the city centre?

Visitors often ask "How far is the airport from the centre of Krakow?" or how to get there. Krakow-Balice airport is only located 11 kilometres from the Old Town.

It is possible to travel there by bus (lines 208, 292, night bus 902, the cost being PLN 4 – zone I and II), train (PLN 8), taxi or private/shuttle transfer.

Read full guide for information about getting from airport to Krakow.

Where to exchange my money in Krakow? Can I pay in euros/dollars?

Interested in currency in Krakow, Poland?

You can exchange your cash for Polish zlotys (PLN's) at money exchange offices operating all around Krakow. These bureaux de change are called "kantors" in Polish.

Obviously, the currency exchange rates for dollar or euro offered at kantors of the airport are considered a bit higher than the ones near the Old Town of Krakow. You can also exchange you money for zlotys at Krakow ATM's. Any additional cost of such a transaction depends on the policy of your bank. 

Euros may be accepted at certain shops or restaurants of Krakow (dollars – rarer so). Such a possibility is usually indicated by a separate notice put on display. E-payments with credit / debit cards are widely accepted in Poland. Visa and Mastercard are the most typical international standards they encompass.

How is the nightlife in Krakow?

Krakow is often called the party capital of Poland so be sure that Krakow nightlife has a lot to offer. The Old Town of Krakow and Kazimierz district have hundreds of pubs, vodka bars and nightclubs all around, most of them open until the last customer leaves.

With a variety of styles of music, a lot of inexpensive venues and the often unique air of each place, everyone – be it in their 20's, 30's, 40's or more – will find their favourite nightlife spot in Krakow. Solo travellers may also enjoy Krakow Crawl.

Want to read more about the Krakow after dark? Check nightlife in Krakow full post!

Is Krakow a safe city?

Krakow (and Poland in general) is a safe city.

In terms of European nations taken into account, only such west European countries as Spain, the Netherlands, Iceland, Finland, Switzerland, Denmark of Austria are slightly ahead of Poland when it comes to safety. According to statistics, Nowa Huta is the safest district of Krakow.

While murders, the cases of rape or mugging are practically non-existent in Krakow Old Town, you still need to remember that crowded areas may attract occasional pickpockets or "attractive ladies" trying to lure you into expensive nightclubs straight from the street, which is typical for tourist-popular locations of the world.

Other than that, Krakow has highly competent police forces and the figures of crime are so low that the city may be considered a really safe one for international visitors!

How to get around Krakow?

Krakow has a very efficient public transportation system.

Its area is sufficiently covered by 27 tram lines and 157 bus lines (including 15 night lines and 7 fast-connection lines), being divided into zones I and II. The bus fleet of Krakow is composed of modern buses whose age does not exceed 10 years old at the moment. The network of connections may be conveniently used for the purpose of sightseeing the best attractions of Krakow.

But to use it the best and most efficient way we encourage you to read our full guide on Krakow Public Transportation.

How do I get to Wieliczka Salt Mines from Krakow?

If you wish to get from Krakow to Salt Mines which are situated 16 kilometres from Krakow.

You can use bus, train or arranged trip. To get more information feel free to read about how to get from Krakow to Wieliczka Salt Mine.

Generally speaking, you can get a bus, train or private shuttle/transfer to reach Wieliczka from Krakow. If you decide to take an organised tour to Salt Mine, you need to secure 4,5 hours of time for it to take place.

Where is Auschwitz?

Would you like to know how to visit Auschwitz?

The former Auschwitz concentration camp is located 67 kilometres from Krakow, in the town of Oswiecim. In order to get there, you can take a bus, train or shuttle/private transport. For details about how to get to Auschwitz Birkenau read a complete article of ways to travel to Auschwitz from Krakow.

With the time of transport counted in, the tour to Auschwitz as a whole will need about 7 hours from you to devote to.

Should I pay service fee / tips in Krakow?

You are free to decide if you want to pay a tip to the waiter or waitress of a Krakow restaurant; tipping is accepted in Poland.

If you notice that there is a separate service charge added to the price of meal you have ordered (typically: 10-15%), you may assume the waiters are given their share with regard to your visit to the restaurant or pub. 

Still, tipping them additionally is something you can do if you feel served well. If there is no service charge present on your bill, tipping the waiter or waitress for their job is something that will definitely make them happy.

The rate between 10 and 20% of the price of your meal is widely accepted for the services of this kind.

What type of electrical plugs should I prepare for Krakow?

Krakow, like Poland in general, has its electricity supply characterised by 230V and 50Hz AC features. The plug sockets you will find in Krakow are of a round shape and have 2 round-pin sockets. A plug converter / adapter you will need  (in case you come from the UK, Ireland or US) may be bought at your place at a low price.

At the same time, you may also find them at some Polish shops or have them available for borrowing at most hostels / hotels of Krakow.

Do people speak English in Krakow?

According to the EF English Proficiency Index, Poland ranks 10th on the list of 72 countries of the world by the level describing the fluency of this language within their populations.

 Krakow is a city whose student population is considerable and many young people of it speak really good English. At the same time, the older generation of Polish people (there are some exceptions, though) would not be taught English at schools at all. With some of them working in the service sector, there may be occasional cases of you not being understood.

Try asking someone younger to help you then – there would be no problems finding a competent person around you.

Are there any discounts for students in Krakow?

When it comes to statutory discounts on the railway services related to Krakow, students <26 years of age are entitled to 51% discount on tickets for railway connections in Poland. When it comes to the municipal transport in Krakow, students holding no Polish student ID need to have an ISIC or EURO <26 / 26 card issued to enjoy reduced half-rate prices on bus or tram tickets.

The same documents are needed to use discounted admission fees to museums or galleries of Krakow. When it comes to private businesses, a lot of pubs and restaurants located in this city will give you a student discount on beer or meals regardless of what uni issued the document proving you are entitled to it.

Does Krakow have a tourist pass?

Fortunately: yes!

The tourist pass of Krakow is called KrakowCard and it allows you to visit best 40 museums of the city with no necessity to cover any additional cost! Additionally, it lets you use the public transport of Krakow in an unlimited way.

Depending on what type of KrakowCard you use, you will also be able to be transported to Wieliczka Salt Mine! This KrakowCard site will expose you to the remaining benefits of holding a KrakowCard – a tiny piece of plastic that gives you the total freedom of visiting Krakow!

Is Krakow worth visiting?

13 million tourists visited Krakow in 2017 - this should give you an idea if Krakow is worth visiting :)  Enthusiastic reviews on top travel sites fully confirm that Krakow has joined the list of most popular tourist destinations of Europe. The change is extremely visible after the decades of Krakow being forgotten of as hidden behind the Iron Curtain.

The post-communist restoration work of Krakow's most precious historical monuments has made it even more beautiful to the eyes of visitors. New modern museums, sport facilities and conference centers opened each year in Krakow enable you to see something previously not come across each time you visit this stunning city!