FAQ 10 Constanta

1. Constanta, Romania

1.1. Do I need a visa?
Generally, it is up to you to find out about your travel arrangements, we cannot predict the situation for every person visiting the school. You can usually find good information about the visa requirements on the web. The general trend is: "EU citizens do not need a visa to enter Romania and are allowed to stay for a period of three months from the date of entry.If you are not an EU national, check visa and work permit regulations with the Romanian embassy in the country where you are". Although obtaining a visa is primarily your responsibility, the local organizers will do their best to assist you as much as possible, e.g., we can send you a letter confirming your participation in the School. If such a necessity arises, write an e-mail to Nicoleta Sava (nicoleta.sava@gmail.com) indicating the first and last name, date of birth, passport number, validity term.

1.2. How do I get to Constanta?
The closest airport is M. Kogalniceanu, aprox. 37 Km.. The Romanian companies Tarom and Carpatair and some low-cost companies (Ryanair, Blue Air, Air Berlin and a couple more) operate flights to this airport. Alternatively you can fly to one of the airports in Bucharest: Otopeni , the main international airport or Baneasa, usually used by low-cost flights. From and to Bucharest Otopeni and Baneasa Airports you can take bus 780 or the train. The bus/train reaches Bucuresti Nord Train Station. Make sure you buy a ticket before getting on the bus. If you choose to travel by TRAIN from Bucharest to Constanta, you can check the train schedule here Please mind that some of the trains listed are annulled. In this case the last column on the page indicates that the train is not running (“Nu circula”). The duration of the train ride is indicated on the web page but you may expect delays. You may also travel to Constanta by bus. The terminus in Bucharest is close to the Bucuresti Nord Train Station, (2 Baldovin Parcalabul Str., behind the Ministry of Transportation). In Constanta the bus stop is in front of the train station building, from where you can take a bus or a taxi (see the section 'How to get from the train station to the dorm?'). Buses leave to and from Constanta every 45 minutes and take about 3 ˝ hours to arrive. The last bus from Bucharest is at 9:15 pm and the first one at 5:30 a.m. From Constanta buses run from 5:45 a.m. to 7 p.m. The bus fare is 55 RON and the express train fare is about 50 RON. If you travel to Romania by train you can check train connections on the German Railway system page

1.3. Where can I find some information about Constanta?
You can check out http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constanta or local pages http://www.litoraltravel.ro/en/ http://www.romaniatourism.com/constanta.html http://www.turism-constanta.ro/

2. Dorm

2.1. Where will the school participants be accommodated?
The name of the dorm is Caminul 1 Mamaia, and the address is Bd. Mamaia, nr. 124. It is the first dorm behind the university building.

2.2. When should I arrive/depart?
The school starts on Monday July 26 and finishes on Friday August 6. Most people will arrive on the Sunday before (July 25) and leave on the Saturday after (August 7). These 13 nights are included in the 100 euro fee. If you want to arrive a day earlier (July 24) or leave a day later, that's also possible, but you'll have to pay for the extra dorm night(s). The cost per room is 120 RON (28 euros) to be divided by the number of people occupying the room (for 4 people that is 7 euros per person). Unfortunately the price is set (by the decision of the University Board) per room and there is no way of paying per bed. So in order to make the cost the cheapest possible, please write an e-mail in advance to nicoleta.sava@gmail.com in case you arrive before July 25 or leave after August 7. In case you arrive before July 24 we can offer assistance with finding cheap accommodation.

2.3. What kind of rooms will be available?
The rooms are all four-bed rooms with a toilet and shower in the room. They are not equipped with fridges though there might be some left over by students. There is a small kitchen on every floor but it is not certain whether it will be available (no pots or dishes are provided). Linen will be provided but you will have to bring your own towels. Unfortunately, there is no laundry.

2.4. Can I choose my roommates?
Yes. Please write an e-mail to nicoleta.sava@gmail.com before your arrival indicating your preferences.

3. How do I travel around Constanta?

3.1. How to get from the dorm to the city centre or to Mamaia resort?
For the city center take bus 40 in the direction of the Railway Station (in Romania "GARA"). The bus station is across the street, opposite to the university building. Get off at the 4th stop. For Mamaia resort take the same bus in the opposite direction (the bus stop on the same side of the road as the dorm) and get off at the final stop ("Pescarie" stop).

3.2. How to get from the Train Station to the dorm?
You need to get to the bus stop in front of the Train Station. Bus tickets can be bought from the kiosk at the bus station or the newspaper kiosks behind it. They can't be acquired on the bus. A 2-way ticket costs 3 RON (0.7 euros). You must take bus 40 and get off at the “Turda” stop (10th stop). Sometimes the stop is announced loudly or indicated on an electronic display in the bus. There is a white building next to the bus stop and we will put an EGG sign on the advertisement display in the bus stop. About 20 meters in front of you on the same side you will see the university building. The dorm is the building in front of you at the end of the alley. Here's a map of the entire bus route http://img338.imageshack.us/img338/626/map02.jpg / The last bus leaves from the train station at 11 p.m. so if you arrive later than that hour you will have to take a taxi. Tell the driver to take you to the dorm of Ovidius University on 124 Mamaia Boulevard (caminul universitatii Ovidius pe bulevardul Mamaia, numarul 124). The ride should cost around 14 ron by night and 10 ron by day. Take a company taxi, not a private one, since the latter are sometimes several times more expensive. Taxi companies have the same fares and they are indicated in green on the front door. Examples of taxi companies are Romaris, General, Scorpion, Mimo.

3.3. How to get from the dorm to the place where the classes will be held?
Very easy. It's the building in front of the dorm.

4. Registration

4.1. When can I register?
Now! Registration will open for a period of two weeks, starting on May 1.

4.2. What happens if I submit my registration form several times?
Only the last one will be counted. (If you submit them with different names, then they will all be counted and you will receive the shame-of-the-egg punishment for giving additional work to organisers.)

4.3. If I register, can I later decide to withdraw my registration?
Yes, of course!! Just send a msg to egg-withdraw@auf.net and you will be automatically removed from the list of participants. We do request though that you tell us before the reconfirmation ends.

4.4. What is this stuff about a mailing list?
When you register, you are automatically subscribed to a mailing list for annoucements about the school and for general discussion. (Notice that you must remain on that mailing list as long as you are registered with the school, we need a way to reach you!!)

5. Grants

5.1. Are grants really only for Central/Eastern Europe?
Yes. We only give grants to students in Central Eastern European countries (i.e. former communist countries including those countries that used to be part of former Yugoslavia). See the blurb on the purpose of the school for a brief explanation of why this is. It would be great if we could give out more money, but we're on a shoestring budget and it's already difficult like this...

5.2. What about people from Central/Eastern Europe living abroad?
That's to be seen on a case by case basis. But in general preference is given to those living out of reach of all these nice euros/dollars ;-)

5.3. Is it true that grants are given only to people who stay for the whole school?
Yes!! And we are pretty strict on this (see the following question).

5.4. I have a travel grant, how does reimbursement proceed?
You are expected to pay your travel, and then be reimbursed during the school. The reimbursement will be at the end of the school. We will be pretty strict on this, as there has been some abuse in the past.

5.5. Is it true that rejected grant applicants cannot attend the school?
Yes. Grants are for people who want to attend the school but cannot afford to do so. Since we cannot and would not want to check how much money you have in your bank account, we have decided that those people who apply for a grant (because they need one) but do not qualify for one are excluded from the school (because then they couldn't have come anyway). Also, choosing among the many grant requests is long and difficult for organisers, so we want to cut down on the number of grants applications in a fair way.

6. Costs

6.1. How much does it cost?
All participants are asked to pay 100 euros towards the cost of covering the school. Most of this money is used to pay for your accommodation. A small fraction of this money is incorporated into the general budget of the school, you can think of this fraction as a small compulsory donation. Some students do not stay in the dorms: they do not have to pay for the accomodation of course. In that case we ask only 35 euros.

6.2. When do I pay?
We'll collect the money on the second day of the school (on Tuesday). We ask you to pay in euros, so please bring 100 euros in cash. If that doesn't work for you, we'll also accept the equivalent amount in RON at the rate applicable at that moment.

7. About the classes

7.1. Where will the classes take place?
The classes will be held in the old building of Ovidius University (address: Bd. Mamaia 124) which is just across the dorm.

7.2. Are all classes in English?
Yes.

7.3. Am I supposed to attend all the classes?
No way!! This school is supposed to be benefit you, not stuff too much down your throat!! So attend as much as you can digest, and only the parts you are really interested in.

7.4. When will the schedule be known?
Scheduling is a long and difficult process, wish us luck!

7.5. What about the technicalities (Internet access, photocopying, printing)?
There will be cable Internet in the dorm and wireless in the university rooms. We will try to get access to a computer room but it is not certain since these do not belong to the Faculty of Letters which is located in another building. No password is necessary in the dorm and for the wireless connection the password will be given to you on the first day of classes. If you want to get online outside the dorm/university building, there are many bars and cafes with free wireless access and some internet cafes in the city center). As for photo-copying/printing, there are 2 copy-shops across the street - they are open on weekdays from 8 am till 6/7 pm (short program on Saturdays and closed on Sundays) and one behind dorm no. 2.

8. Money issues

8.1. Can I pay in euro?
No. Although Romania is part of the EU it hasn't adopted the euro currency. The local currency is leu/plural 'lei' (officially RON). At the moment the exchange rate is 1 EUR = 4.35488 RON. Pay attention that sometimes people might express prices in the old currency (also called 'leu') 1 RON =10,000 ROL though this shouldn't happen in shops.

8.2. Where can I exchange money?
There are no exchange places near the dorm/classes but there are 3 banks within 5 minutes walking along Mamaia boulevard in the direction of Mamaia resort. There are several exchange places in the city center. Usually they don't charge a commission but you should make sure. A map will be included in the welcome package marking the banks, canteens/restaurants and other useful places in the dorm area.

8.3. Should I bring all my money in cash?
In large shops you can pay by credit card but in small shops and restaurants/cafes you have to pay in cash

9. MISC

9.1. The weather in Constanta
The weather is generally quite hot and humid at this time of the year, but there may be rain spells. You may have a look at Constanta, Romania AccuWeather

9.2. Parking space
If you travel by car, there is parking space in front of or behind the dorm and in front of the university building.

9.3. Who should I contact if I have more questions?
First make sure that the answer to your question is not on this website!! If it's not, then you have two options: - if you feel it is a private issue that would not interest all the participants to the school, in which case you should contact the organisers directly, at: summerschool at auf.net; - if you feel your question is of general interest, in which case you should send an email to the entire mailing list where every registered person will receive it (this option will be open after registration); - if it's a local organization issue contact the local organizers at nicoleta.sava@gmail.com