Author Archives: Stefan H

Czech currency (CZK) – Bank notes & coins, Currency converter

The “Czech crown” is the official currency of Czech Republic, and was since 1993 (dissolution of Czechoslovakia). There is a plan to adopt the euro but no change is expected soon to due political matters. 1 Czech crown consists of 100 “hellers”.
When changing currencies, always check the commission AND the spread (price difference between “buy” and “sell”). Some may advert “no commission” but will charge you a huge spread… it’s the same result at the end of the day !

Reliable currency exchange office in Prague

Some of the best rates in town can be found at these “bureau de change” :

Alfa Prague
Na Příkopě 23, Ovocný trh 12
Praha 1
+ 420 724 215 559
Check here their rates (the website page is only in Czech)

Eurochange
Opletalova 30
Praha 1
+ 420 224 243 614
Check here their rates (the website page is only in Czech)

 

Czech bank notes and coins

CZK notes : 50 / 100 / 200 / 500 / 1000 / 2000 /5000
–> Note that the 20 CZK note is not used any more
Click to view the Czech bank notes (Czech National Bank official website)

CZK coins : 1 / 2 /5 / 10 / 20 /50
–> Note that the 10, 20 and 50 hellers coins (or 0,1 / 0,2 and 0,5 CZK) are not used any more
Click to view the Czech coins (Czech National Bank official website)

To convert any currency against the Czech crown, you can easily use Yahoo currency converter

If you’re afraid of making mistakes or if you prefer to avoid changing currencies, you can still pay in euros (EUR) in many shops and restaurants all around the city center. They just might charge you a little bit more so try to check that before.

“Low cost” does not necessarily mean cheapest plane tickets…

Using low cost carriers to go to Prague can indeed be cheaper but doesn’t systematically mean cheaper. Just recently, Czech Airlines and Air France terminated their codeshare agreement*. Together, they would operate 6 flights per day – now they have 8 all together… and that had an impact on prices.

These days, if you look for the cheapest flights, you might find a return ticket as low as 99€ on Air France or Czech Airlines ! At that kind of prices, 90% of the price of your ticket represent airport taxes and fuel charges… i.e., you cant get much lower.
Flying with low cost companies might only save a couple of euros, if not more expensive.

…The question is, with prices not being that much cheaper with low costs, what do you prefer : classic airlines (where you generally get good service, newspapers and a drink) or low cost ? 🙂

 

* Note: A few months after the article was written, Air France and Czech Airlines decided to resume their code share cooperation.

Up for an old style French bistro ? Chez Marcel is where you may want to go…

Get in “Chez Marcel”, you’ll feel like you’re in a bistro in Paris, back in the old days. On the walls, you’ll find some old style adverts (Pernod Ricard, “la vache qui rit”…).

The French bistros’ classics

In Chez Marcel, you’ll find all the French classics : quiche lorraine or goat cheese salad to start, from the simple omlette to the duck confit with salardaises potatoes or the rabbit with mustard sauce for the main course. And if you still have some room for dessert, don’t miss the famous “crème brulée”! In the restaurant, they serve wines from Bordeaux, Beaujolais and even Languedoc… the offer is not that extensive but still fair for a bistro type of restaurant. If you’re on a small budget, you can still enjoy a daily menu (soup with main course) for approximately 6 EUR. Still these menus are only valid from Monday to Friday.

Chez Marcel also serves brekafast. Still it will cost you 7 to 8 EUR which may be a bit pricey if you compare that to the local standards. You’ll probably be better off going to some small independant café such as Mamacoffee, where you can enjoy great coffee, muffins and brownies.

The service is of good quality and the menu is in French, English and Czech.