Water - Drinking fountains are located all over Yerevan and across the country. While these may look tempting, especially on a hot summer day, we suggest avoiding them as the water is not filtered and may contain bacteria such as Giardia. If you are the unfortunate recipient of a Giardia bug go to the nearest chemist for a box of tinidazole (aka Tindamax).
Donations - do not give money to beggars on the streets of Yerevan. There is an organisation called Orran which supports the homeless and it has done an effective job of taking care of the destitute. Beggars only seem to come out on the street in the tourist season. If you want to give something, it’s best to donate directly to Orran (www.orran.am).
Money - There are moneychangers everywhere in Yerevan and cash machines dispensing drams are becoming quite common. Euros, dollars and roubles can be changed nearly everywhere; the pound and Georgian lari are less commonly traded. HSBC ([email protected]; 9 Vazgen Sargsyan Poghots) is the leading international bank and has several branches with cash machines around the city. If you had to organise a money transfer, this would be an easy place to do it. Travellers cheques are mostly spurned or met with bewildered looks – avoid relying on them if possible or try a bank like HSBC. Handy ATMs that accept Visa and MasterCard include Anelik Bank (41 Pushkin Poghots) and Arexim Bank (20 Tumanyan Poghots).
Post - The public mail service in Yerevan is slow but fairly reliable. The Haypost Main Office (Hanrapetutyan Hraparak; working hours 9am-7pm Mon-Sat) is centrally located. A letter or postcard sent abroad might take one or two weeks, but it gets there. Several local and international companies compete for the parcel business: FedEx/Transimpex ([email protected]; 40 Mesrop Mashtots Poghots) UPS Express-Hayk ([email protected]; 1 Kievyan Poghots).
Telephone - Telephone services in Yerevan are reasonable and you usually get through on the first or second attempt. ArmenTel has lost its monopoly so prices will continue to drop on international calls. Internet cafes offer cheap VoIP international calls. Many internet cafes also have Skype software on their machines.
Internet Access - There are internet clubs on virtually every city block, varying from cramped basements to places with 20 terminals or more. Many are open very late and cost around AMD300 per hour. Some can be unbearably smoky. You also need to pay for the megabytes used, so costs rack up every time you click a new page or upload/download something.
Free wi-fi is available at the departure lounge in Zvartnots airport. You can use wi-fi in the lobby of the Golden Tulip hotel, but you will have to buy something. Some of the upscale hotels have a pay wi-fi service for their guests. The Envoy Hostel charges a reasonable AMD500 per hour.
Medical Services - Yerevan has the best medical facilities in the country, but they’re still inadequate by international standards.
4th Yerevan City Polyclinic (13 Moskovyan Poghots)
European Medical Centre (3/1 Vazgen Sargsyan Poghots)
Nork-Marash Hospital (13 Armenakyan Poghots, Nork-Marash)
Pharmacies, marked by the Russian word apteka, are common and there’s one open late in every neighbourhood. For things like dental emergencies, embassies usually have a list of recommended specialists.
Media - The main English-language weekly newspaper, Noyan Tapan, is available from Noyan Tapan and Artbridge Bookstore Cafe and sometimes from hotels and souvenir shops. Artbridge also has international magazines and newspapers, and these are sometimes available in the lobbies of upscale hotels such as Hotel Avia Trans. The NPAK gallery puts out the handy Yerevan Guide booklet with good listings, tips and reviews; it’s also available at hotels and tourist-oriented shops around town.
If you have any questions about travel to Armenia (visa, hotels, guide services, transportation), please feel free to contact us at any time and we will gladly answer your questions.