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Azores General Information

Getting to the Azores

Arriving in Azores by plane

The main international hub is the Ponta Delgada (PDL) airport on the island of S. Miguel. Lajes field (TER) in Terceira island is also an international airport and home of an United States airforce base. Faial (HOR) and Pico (PIC) also feature airport with regional and national reach.

Major Azores Serving Carriers

Azores Express – It connects New England with the Azores via Boston-Ponta Delgada and Oakland-Terceira routes. The carrier is part of the SATA Group, which connects the Azores with mainland Europe. SATA International connects Azores with Canada and major European hubs like London, Amsterdam, Frankfurt and Paris, it also has connections to Grand Canaria and Madeira islands. TAP Air Portugal, Portugal’s flag carrier, flies between Lisbon Angra do Heroismo and Horta. It has a code share alliance with SATA thus allowing passengers to book SATA flights via its booking systems.

Getting Around the Azores Islands

In most islands you can rent a car, Corvo being the exception. In addition, most islands have bus service which serves the main villages. In the smaller islands bus schedules may only have a couple of runs per day, generally one in the early morning and one in the late afternoon, and none at all in certain days such as Sundays and holidays. There is a ferry service between the islands of Faial, Pico and S. Jorge all year-around as well as weekly service between all islands in the summer months. The Azores being volcanic islands feature a terrain at times steep and rugged where roads wind around very steep hillsides. Cycling around the islands is a pleasant activity with a range and degree of difficulty that spans from beginner to expert.

Azores Other Information

Azores Currency

Portuguese currency monetary is the Euro”€”. Existing coins are; €2, €1 and 50, 20, 10, 5, 2 and 1 cent, Bank notes are; €500, €200, €100, €50, €20, €10 and €5. Commas are used to separate the Euros from cents for example 1.000,00 (one thousand Euros).

Visitors from countries were the Euro is not used must resort to exchanging the currency at the prevailing exchange rate. The best places to exchange your currency are the local banks which are usually open from 09:00 to 15:30 Monday through Friday. Most banks do not close for lunch.

Credit cards are accepted most anywhere as well as debit cards. All banks feature ATM machines or “Multibancos” where your debit card can be used to extract Euros as well as your credit card (make sure you bring your pin). Please note that Portuguese banks will not cash credit cards at the counter.

Azores Commercial time tables

Shops are open at 09:00 am to 12:30 pm and 2:00 pm to 6:30 pm, except Saturdays and Sundays. On Saturdays shops close at 1:00 pm, except shopping centers and supermarkets. Gift shops are open during the weekend.

Azores islands Safety advice

There is very little violent crime in the Azores. What little crime exists is mostly drug related. There are no reports of crimes against tourists. However, theft exists in most population centers. Like anywhere else use common sense such as making sure you lock your hotel door, your car, and keep your valuable belongings close to you. Do not leave expensive objects such as phones, iPods and cameras in full view inside your car for this attracts theft.