ARGENTINA: TRAVEL ADVICE

How to get to Argentina

Travellers from the UK mostly use the direct flight on British Airways from London Heathrow (BA245) which departs daily at about 22:00. It is an overnight flight arriving the following morning and takes about 13 hours. There are also indirect options from regional airports in the UK. There are several ways to reach Argentina overland from either Bolivia, Chile or Brazil. Some people may enter Argentina by boat after docking at Ushuaia or Buenos Aires.

Voltage

In Argentina the standard voltage is 220V and the standard frequency is 50 Hz. The voltage in the UK is 230V which is not exactly the same, but the difference is usually tolerable by electrical devices. It is mostly safe to use your electrical items in Argentina without a voltage adapter, but always check the label.

Plugs & Sockets

Argentina uses plugs type C and type I. Until a couple of years ago all plugs in Argentina were type C but now it has been standardised for type I sockets and plugs. Type C plugs and power points are still commonly found in older buildings (older hotels may have the old system in the bathroom and the newer grounded system in the bedroom). Most universal adaptors will cover both types.

argentina plug and socket types

Capital City

Buenos Aires

Time difference

GMT -3

Visas

No visas required for entering Argentina as a UK passport holder. On arrival you will be granted entry for up to 90 days. You may be asked to provide proof of onward or return travel, details of your accommodation and proof that you have sufficient funds to cover your stay. Your passport needs to be valid for the duration of your stay.

Money

Argentine Pesos

Argentina’s currency is called the peso which is identified by using the $ sign. One peso is divided into 100 centavos or ‘cents’ for short. Coins in circulation include, 5, 10, 25, and 50 centavos and 1, 2 and 5 pesos. Notes come in denominations of 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500 pesos.

The Blue Dollar

For many years Argentina had a parallel market for US dollars called the “dollar blue” which was a result of the government restricting Argentines from purchasing dollars. This meant that travellers exchanging US dollars in cash could get up to a 60% better rate than if drawing directly from the bank. In 2015 the current president Mauricio Macri normalised the currency situation in Argentina meaning there is no longer a dual exchange rate and travellers can now use ATM’s and international credit cards at the normal rate.

Obtaining Pesos

Withdrawing cash from a foreign card in Argentina is very expensive and there is normally a charge of AR$80 – AR$85 per transaction (about £4 or USD $5) but this can be as high as £7 or USD $8. Banks also only allow you to withdraw a relatively small amount in any one transaction (usually about £100 or USD $120). Therefore it can be costly to keep having to withdraw pesos from an ATM. Furthermore, ATM’s in Argentina often run out of money, so you could find yourself walking all over town trying to find one that has cash! Obtaining Argentine pesos in Britain or the United States prior to your trip may be difficult, therefore we recommend you take a good amount of US dollars in cash with you. US dollars can be used to pay for things in many places (most hotels and high end restaurants and shops will accept US dollars) but they can also be easily changed into Argentine Pesos. You can change them at most hotels or a “casa de cambio” (foreign exchange bureaux). Just ask your hotel reception. US dollars are also easy to exchange back to British pounds and if you are coming from the states you can use them back home. You will want to minimise the amount of Argentine pesos you are left with in cash at the end of your trip because these may be hard to exchange back to your home currency.

Cards or cash

Not all places will accept all types of cards. Some places only take visa, for example, whereas others only take MasterCard. Having said this, due to the difficulties involved with withdrawing cash from ATM’s discussed above, we recommend you pay by card wherever possible. However, many shops and restaurants are still cash only. Therefore we recommend you bring a good amount of US dollars in cash as described above.

Vaccinations

You should confirm with your doctor that all courses and boosters are up to date as recommended for life. The only recommended course or booster usually advised for Argentina is tetanus. Other vaccines to be considered are Diphtheria, Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Rabies and Yellow Fever.

A yellow fever certificate is not required for entry to Argentina. The yellow fever vaccination is recommended for some travellers depending on your itinerary. Please consult with your doctor according to your own personal medical history.

Malaria is not present in Argentina.

In Misiones province (Iguazu Falls) you will encounter some mosquitoes. It is recommended to bring insect repellent containing a high percentage of DEET in order to protect against mosquito bites.

Disclaimer: The information provided here is purely for guidance purposes and we are not medical experts. We always recommend that you make an appointment with your doctor 6-8 weeks before departure who will be able to properly assess your personal medical history, give accurate advice and advise on exactly which immunisations or medical precautions you personally need to take.

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