24th session of the UNWTO General Assembly | About Madrid
30 November - 3 December 2021, Madrid - Spain
Climate: In November and December, the average temperature in Madrid can range between 10ºC during the day and 3ºC at night. Winters in Madrid are cold and dry. However, completely clear days are very typical, so it is possible to enjoy sunny weather at midday.
Official language: Spanish
Madrid local time (winter): GMT +1
Local currency and exchange rates: The official currency of Spain is the euro (EUR). The applicable exchange rate in November 2021 is approximately USD 1.16 to EUR 1. Banks are open from Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Throughout Madrid there are foreign exchange offices that are clearly indicated. There is also a currency exchange service at hotels. The city has numerous ATMs, and shops accept major credit cards.
Electricity: The electric current in Madrid is 220 volts, 50 Hz AC. Outlets take round pins. In any case, most hotels have adapters for special plugs. Participants should ensure that their electrical devices (computers, mobile phone chargers, razors, etc.) work with this voltage or, if not, use transformers and batteries that allow different voltages.
Credit cards, shopping and tipping
There are ATMs throughout the city, and in the vast majority of establishments it will be possible to pay for goods and services with a credit card (in the metro you can pay with a card, but not in the urban bus network).
Visa and Mastercard are the most widely accepted types of card, while American Express and Diners are less commonly accepted. Information regarding possible commissions for using credit cards in Spain should be consulted with the issuing bank, because transaction fees will depend on the entity managing the corresponding bank account.
Almost all establishments accept card payments, although some require a minimum charge (between 5 and 10 euros). Also, before getting into a taxi when not carrying cash, the driver should be asked if the taxi is equipped with a card payment terminal. There are different applications such as Free Now through which it is possible to request a taxi and pay with a card using it.
The concept of tipping in Madrid is directly related to customer satisfaction regarding the treatment received. Tipping continues to be considered in its original meaning as being “voluntary” and at the discretion of the consumer, at least among the national clientele, and the personnel of the service sector are well aware that nothing is taken for granted.
In some restaurants it is customary to charge an additional 2 to 3 euros for serving bread or a small appetizer - which the establishment is obliged to disclose, and can be rejected if not desired - but, in general, what the customer decides is respected when it comes to expressing appreciation for the friendliness and quality of the service in the final bill.
This custom extends to other tourism services in which there is some type of personal treatment, such as hotels, taxis, beauty salons or hairdressers.
It should be noted that all establishments include the price of the service, but in hotels and restaurants it is common to see “VAT not included” on the menu. This means that a 10% surcharge will be added to the price of what was consumed.
Health regulations and precautions: It is not necessary to be vaccinated against any disease in order to travel to Spain.
See updated information at: https://cnecovid.isciii.es/covid19/
If you need a PCR test for your return flight, ask at the reception of the Convention Center of the Madrid Marriott Auditorium hotel. They will inform you about the location of the mobile laboratory and its opening hours during the days of the Assembly.
Medical services: Madrid has a good network of health centres (primary care services) and hospitals.
Hospital Universitario La Paz
P.º de la Castellana, 261, 28046 Madrid
Emergency services: 24 hours
Tel.: +34 917 27 70 00
Reference hospital near the Hotel Madrid Marriott Auditorium (Event venue):
Hospital del Henares
Av. De Marie Curie, 0, 28822 Coslada, Madrid
Emergency services: 24 hours
Tel.: +34 911 91 20 00
Useful telephone numbers:
Callers can request to speak in English, German, French or Spanish.
In the event of any emergency during the days of the General Assembly, you can also contact the UNWTO Security Officer: Mr. Antonio García. Tel.: +34 699976040.
Local transport rates:
The fare for the taxi ride between the airport and the city ranges between 20 and 30 euros. The price of a single local bus ticket ranges from €1.50 to €2 and tickets for 10 trips can be purchased for €12.20.
Tourism information for Spain