FAQ 11 Ceske Budejovicex

1. Ceske Budejovice

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 Czech Republic 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 Czech Republic 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 Lucie Medova (lmedova@ff.jcu.cz) indicating the first and last name, date of birth, passport number, validity term.

1.2. How do I get to Ceske Budejovice?
The closest airport is Praha Ruzyne. All the major companies and some low-cost companies (EasyJet, SmartWings, Air Berlin and a couple more) operate flights to this airport. Alternatively you can fly to Vienna, but be prepare that it might be less straightforward to get to Ceske Budejovice (though not impossible!). Check for yourself here. From and to Praha Ruzyne airport to Praha city center (where you need to go to take either a bus or a train to Ceske Budejovice (CB)), there are direct busses to the railway station (marked AE), buy a ticket at the bus driver (50CZK). Alternatively, take bus 119 to Dejvicka subway station and then the subway to the railway station (stop Hlavni nadrazi). Get a ticket from a vending machine at the bus stop. The ticket costs 26CZK, make sure you have it and punch it at the bus; there are ticket controllers specialized in getting a fine to tourists fresh from the airport. Of course, you might take a cab, but beware of the general stereotype warning against rudeness and swindles of Prague cab drivers (though if you take the yellow cab AAA, nothing bad can happen, other than you will pay about 15x more than taking the bus). If you choose to travel by TRAIN or by BUS from Praha to CB, you can check the schedule here here. This is a combine portal and it gives you both the busses and trains and their combinations. Convenient and reliable. The trains to CB leave from the Main Station (Hlavni nadrazi) very much in the city center. The buses, in general, leave from Florenc bus station, except for buses of Student Agency to CB: they leave from subway station Andel, exit Na knizeci (the opposite side of Andel exit). In CB, the train and bus station are facing each other, the bus station is on top of the shopping mall Mercury, the train station is facing it. In front of the Mercury shopping mall there is a stop of bus 3 which you should take to the stop University of South Bohemia (Jihoceska universita) (see the section 'How to get from the train station to the dorm?'). If you travel to the Czech Republic by train you can check train connections on the Czech Republic system page, or try your own country's page.

1.3. Where can I find some information about Ceske Budejovice?
Youx can check out wikipedia, wikitravel or local pages

2. Dorm

2.1. Where will the school participants be accommodated?
The dorms are very close to the University. Once you arrived at the bus stop Jihoceska universita (it should take about 10 minutes from the railway station / bus station), you will see two twin buildings across the street (the bus will continue to the right, you will have a lot of blocks of flats behind your back). Cross the street and go in between the two glass-and-metal buildings (the building on the right is the Philosophical Faculty where the classes will take place). Continue towards the four blocks of flats, these are the dorms. The two in the middle are K2 and K3, there will be somebody to welcome you and give you more info.

2.2. When should I arrive/depart?
The school starts on Monday July 25 and finishes on Friday August 5. Most people will arrive on the Sunday before (July 24) and leave on the Saturday after (August 6). These 13 nights are included in the 100 euro fee. If you want to arrive a day earlier (Saturday July 23) or leave a day later, that's also possible, but you'll have to pay for the extra dorm night(s). The cost per bed per night is 150 CZK (6,15 euros). It would be helpful to know ahead of time whether you want accomodation for the day before / after the school, hence, once you know (the earlier the better!), send an e-mail to Lucie Medova (lmedova@ff.jcu.cz) so we can get an estimate of extra beds needed.

2.3. What kind of rooms will be available?
The hostels have 10 floors, if anybody has a problem with height, it might be unpleasant for her to stay in the top floors. No need to let the organizers know until you have arrived. Rooms are shared by 2 people, hence it makes 44 people on the floor. The bathrooms are shared (3F, 3M), 4 showers (2M, 2F), a washing machine on the floor with a possibility to get hangers and an iron from the reception. The rooms are equipped with a fridge, 2 twin beds, 2 desks + the expected furniture (cabinets, shelves, mirror), but also a sink with both hot and cold water. The kitchen is shared for the floor and it is a bare-bone kitchen: a stove, an oven, a sink, some cupboards. There are no kitchen utensils, no pots, no pans, etc. In all the rooms, there is internet, both a cable and wi-fi, but eggers will only be able to use the cable internet, since the wi-fi is keyed to the university's own system that allows only the university-based people to connect to it. Hence, EVERYBODY SHOULD BRING A CABLE, plus since there is just one plug in a room, it would be useful if there was a switch for each room so that 2 people can use the net at once. And, I was told that the electric plugs are in awkward positions in the room so it it advisable to have an adapter and/or an extension cord. The electric plugs are the same type as in Germany and everywhere around. Linen will be provided but you will have to bring your own towels.

2.4. Can I choose my roommates?
The local organizer will do her best. Let her know at lmedova at ff.jcu.cz

3. How do I travel around Ceske Budejovice?

3.1. How to get from the dorm to the city centre?
Two ways. First is to take bus 3 or 41 (bus stop Jihoceska universita) to the center (bus stop Poliklinika Sever), it should take about 7 minutes, the fourth stop after you have boarded. Make sure you have bought a ticket (for 12CZK) before boarding the bus and that you have punched it on board in one of the yellow machines. You can then change the bus, but the punched ticket is valid only 20 minutes. Alternatively, you can buy the ticket at the driver for 20CZK. Be aware that there is an incredibly high frequency of ticket controllers and they are rather strict. The second is to walk via park Stromovka (and by a supermarket Kaufland) and the Sokolsky island, it should take about 25 minutes. It is a rather nice walk.

3.2. How to get from the Train Station to the dorm?
In CB, the train and bus station are facing each other, the bus station is on top of the shopping mall Mercury, the train station is facing it. In front of the Mercury shopping mall there is a stop of bus 3 which you should take to the stop University of South Bohemia (Jihoceska universita). The bus ride should be about 10 minutes, the next bus stop should be indicated on the screen in the bus. Once you arrive at the relevant bus stop (Jihoceska universita; you will recognize it rather easily; there are block of flats on the right side and two new twin buildings on the left: the library and the philosophical faculty), walk in between the twin buildings to the four blocks of flats (about 100m) and follow the signs for EGG 2011. You are home. In the summer, the buses do not run as frequently as during the academic year, but there should still be 4-5 buses per hour. If you arrive after 23:40 (when the last bus leaves), you should call a cab (either TAXI Budejovice (+420) 800 14 15 16 or Eurotaxi (+420) 800 211 211). Tell the driver to take you to the university student hostels on Branisovska, they will certainly know. The price should be lower than 200 CZK. WARNING: always make sure you have bought and 'punched' the ticket on the board of the bus in a little yellow machine. The ticket is 12 CZK (0,5 EUR) and you can buy it at every tabacconist ('Trafika' or 'Tabak' in Czech) or in vending machines at some of the stops. Alternatively, you can buy a ticket from the bus driver, but sometimes they don't have the tickets and sometimes they just don't want to be bothered (the on-board ticket is 20 CZK). There are, however, ticket controllers (cunningly not visibly marked) who are rather strict and you can get a fine up to 40 EUR if you are caught without a validated ticket. It is also possible to buy a ticket using your cell, but I am not sure how/whether it works with foreign SIM cards. Here is the map of the bus route

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 dorms, on your way to the bus stop. It is the building on the left (walking from the dorms): Filosoficka fakulta Jihoceske university. There will be flyers. The classes will take place on the first floor, lecture halls P1 and P2 at the end of the corridor.

4. Registration

4.1. When can I register?
Now! Registration will open until Sunday, May 1st.

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 CZK 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 Philosophical Faculty building (address: Branišovská 31a). It is just in front of the dorms, on your way to the bus stop Jihočeská universita. It is the building on the left (walking from the dorms), the twin building on the right is a library. There will be flyers. And it is just 100m or so from the dorms.

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. Please, bring your own cable and it would be useful to have an adapter/switch, so that two people can connect to the same slot at once. There is wireless connection in the Faculty building. However, you must have an eduroam account (and I suppose it is relatively standard, at least in Europe?) and, as I was told, the signal is not terribly stable. If you want to get online outside the dorm/university building, there are some bars and cafes with free wireless access in the city center. As for photo-copying/printing, it might be a problem. There are some shops in the city center. More info will appear once we get closer to the beginning of the school.

8. Money issues

8.1. Can I pay in euro?
No. Although the Czech Republic is part of the EU, it did not adopt the euro currency. The local currency is koruna (CZK), (plural 'koruny' and in GEN.pl, cf. the form you will most likely hear is 'korun'). At the moment the exchange rate is 1 EUR = 24.11 CZK. In supermarkets you might pay in EUR, but only if the banknote is 10 - 20 - 50 EUR, higher denominations are generally not accepted.

8.2. Should I bring all my money in cash?
In large shops, restaurants and cafes you can pay by credit/debet card. Small shops, small restaurants and bar might prefer cash payment. Use your judgment: if you like to travel around with a lot of cash, you can certainly do it in CB. However, nobody is going to take responsibility if you get robbed or you lose you cash. There are plenty ATM (bankomat), so you can withdraw money as you need.

9. Misc

9.1. The weather in Ceske Budejovice
The weather is generally quite nice and not humid in July and August, but there may be rain spells. The temperature should be above 20C, more likely above 30C (65-90F). You may have a look at wunderground

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

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 lmedova at ff.jcu.cz