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Pre-Depature Information

We have compiled a list of the most important topics that need to be addressed before your departure to Salzburg.

Contact former students

Another great way to get accurate information about the Salzburg College programs is to speak with one of our former students. Salzburg College will gladly provide you with e-mail addresses of former students who would be happy to discuss their experiences with you. Please contact us, if you like to get in touch with one of our former students!

Pre-Departure Information

Academic Information

  • Course changes
    Within the requirements of the undergraduate programs, course changes are possible only within the first week upon arrival in Salzburg. Due to the nature of the programs course changes are permitted within the graduate programs.
  • Transcripts
    At the end of the term, Salzburg College will send your final grades either directly to you and/or to your home university. If you have specific needs in terms of the academic information (course content, contact hours, required work) that your home university needs to accredit your courses, please inform the staff before the end of the program.
  • Class attendance
    Participants must attend all class sessions unless illness or other unavoidable circumstances make this not possible. In case of illness, alternate arrangements for assignments and tests will be made.
  • Field trips
    Field trips constitute an important part of your course work in Salzburg. Attendance is required. We recommend that you take notes as you would in classroom lectures.
  • Libraries
    You will use Salzburg College's library. Also, you will find information and research materials in German, and depending on the subject matter, also in English, at the University of Salzburg. Music history students will want to consult the extensive holding of the Mozarteum Foundation's Film and Sound Archives.
  • Independent Study Period (Semester only)
    In mid-semester you will have a ten-day travel period. In the concept of "contextual learning" which Salzburg College emphasizes, this is an important period for independent study. Please expect to work on a project for some of your classes during this period and to design your travels according to your academic objectives.
  • Textbooks
    Textbooks are available in Salzburg. If you have already studied German, take along your German dictionary.


Take only what you will absolutely need for your time in Salzburg.

Suitcases should not be larger than what you can manage yourself. It will be helpful to have one smaller suitcase and/or backpack for travel within Europe.

Please check with airlines for weight and piece limitations.

Budget information

The program cost covers:

  • Tuition and related administrative costs.
  • Housing and most meals for undergraduate students in Salzburg (except during field trips and independent study period).
  • Field and study trips (usually will include transportation, hotel accommodations and breakfast, lectures, guided tours and entrance fees)
  • Social and cultural activities program.
  • Day trips and course-related excursions.
  • Internship placement.

The program cost does not cover:

  • Transatlantic transportation. (see "Flights")
  • Meals during field trips except breakfast (budget € 100-120).
  • Meals not covered in the program cost. (budget € 150-200)
  • Housing and meals for graduate students (budget app. € 500 per month)
  • Medical insurance. This must be arranged through your home university or privately. Proof of proper insurance, including evacuation and repatriation, will be required for participation in the program.
  • Personal expenses including individual travel. (budget at least € 750)
  • Textbooks and other study material. (budget € 20-30)
  • Salzburg College security deposit of € 50, which is refunded at the end of the semester/session.
  • Fees for certain courses or extracurricular activities. (budget € 100-200)
  • Daily commuting expenses (when living in an Austrian home) app. € 150 for a semester/ app. € 50 for a session. Since most housing placements are not within walking distance, you must expect to commute to classes daily by bus or bicycle (students rent bikes for app. € 70 or buy one).
  • International Student I.D. card. ($ 28)
  • Deposit (refundable) for linen, key, dishes etc. at dorm facility (app. € 100) as well as laundry expenses (budget € 50 for a semester/ € 25 for a session).


Salzburg has moderate weather. In addition to your winter clothes it is recommended to bring rain protection, some warm sweaters and sturdy walking shoes.

Contact Information

Salzburg College
Bergstrasse 12


Telephone +43 (0)662 842501
Fax +43 (0)662 842501-22
E-mail: info@salzburgcollege.edu

Your mailing address:
To receive mail in Salzburg, you can use your host family's address, your student dorm address, your apartment address or the Salzburg College address.

Cultural Opportunities

Salzburg not only has a world-famous music festival in the summer, but also operates a repertory theater with alternating performances of operas, operettas, and plays throughout the year, as well as several smaller theater stages.

Additionally, there are the well-known marionette theater and many concert halls. Concerts at the Mozarteum or other locations are given regularly.

E-Mail / Internet

  • WiFi is available at the College.
  • Bring your laptop computer as most of our professors use digital material!
  • Bring the proper adapter-converter (unless it is a dual voltage computer) and an adapter plug to run it in Austria.
  • A USB flash drive is useful and necessary to use the printing facilities available at Salzburg College (extra charge).


Austria operates on 220 volts AC, with the European 50-cycle circuit. That means that U.S.-made appliances will need an adapter-converter. Many electronic devices are now built with an automatic converter and will only require an outlet adapter. However, it is best to double check each electronic device individually.


Salzburg College suggests that you book your flight with STA Travel, Chicago as they specialize on student travel.

Graduate students and students participating in a summer session need to make their own way to Salzburg.

The undergraduate semester program begin with the initial field-study trip through Bavaria. You will need to purchase a ticket to Munich, Germany. Departures should be available from all major US cities for a reasonable price. You will need to book a round-trip ticket. For your return trip it is convenient to leave either from Munich (only 2 hours. from Salzburg) or directly from Salzburg.

Attention Semester Students: You need to make sure that you are at the Meeting Point inside the Munich Airport at the designated arrival time.

After completion of the program, you must travel to your departure airport for your return flight at your own expense.

The estimated cost for round-trip transportation from the U.S. to Munich is somewhere between $ 1000 (during low season in spring) and $ 1,500 (during high season in fall).


It is a nice gesture to present your host family, landlady or Austrian roommate with a gift when you arrive, but it is not expected. Anything from your home area would be especially nice. The gift should not be too expensive. It is the thought that counts.

Health Care

Salzburg College staff will recommend qualified doctors in case of need. If you have a pre-existing medical problem, it is advisable to discuss your travel plans with your doctor and to bring with you all necessary medications.

Please note that it is illegal to send medications in the mail. For special needs please contact Salzburg College in advance.

Pre-departure Medical Examinations:

Please complete all your examinations before departing for Austria and obtain copies of important health records, especially in the case of pre-existing medical problems.


Most experienced travelers agree that foreign travel is hard work! Therefore, it is best to be well rested, in good health when you start your trip.

Health insurance:
A comprehensive health and accident insurance policy that is valid outside the United States, including evacuation and repatriation coverage is a necessity for all study abroad participants. Students are responsible to arrive with the necessary travel insurance coverage.

According to § 11 Abs. 2 Z. 3 NAG () all persons applying for a residence permit or visa for Austria need to provide proof of a comprehensive health insurance which covers ALL areas and disperses payments directly in Austria. For this reason, Salzburg College has made special arrangements with our insurance provider. Salzburg College requires ALL students without a valid EU health insurance, regardless of the duration and nature of their stay, to sign up for this comprehensive health insurance which covers all medical needs in Austria as well as other European countries. This insurance will also include liability insurance for the duration of your stay.

Prescription medication:

If possible, please bring enough of your prescribed medications with you to last the entire semester. Transport them in your luggage in their original, labeled containers. Include a statement from your physician describing your condition and confirming the prescription. Medication sent by mail will be held up by the Austrian Customs Office and may be sent back if proper documentation cannot be provided.

Most American prescription drugs are also available in Austria. If this is the case for your medication, a prescription by your American physician will, with exceptions, be honored by our pharmacies.

Some medications for OCD, ADD or ADHD are severely restricted in Austria or illegal.

Please check with Salzburg College ahead of time if you have special needs.

Housing and Meals

Housing assignments:

Housing arrangements are made by Salzburg College. Austrian homestays, student residences and apartments (graduate students only), are carefully selected and paired with students in accordance to the students' housing requests. No final housing assignments are made before arrival and housing interviews will be conducted during the initial Bavaria Field Trip to insure the best fit for each student.


Weekday lunches (when program is in session, usually Mo-Th) for undergraduate students are provided by Salzburg College. Morning and evening meals are either provided in your Austrian home, by the dorm facility (except on weekends when the cafeteria is closed). These meals are included in the housing cost. No meals other than breakfast are provided during the field trips.

Provisions for vegetarians are made at the dorm. The families try to adjust but do not always find it easy to understand. Be prepared that it may take them a little while.


Laundry facilities are available at all housing locations. Families will either do your laundry for you, or show you how to use the washing machine yourself. It is always best to ask what the family would prefer.

International Identification Cards

The International Student Identity CARD (ISIC Card) gives students significant student discounts. Included with the ISIC card is the International Student Travel Guide, which lists discounts available in 65 countries the world over (28 countries in Europe).

Each country shows a selection of discounts on Airfares, Accommodations, Boat rides, Bus routes, Museums, Railroads, Shopping, Theaters, etc.

Independent Travel

There is also some time for independent travel-occasionally on weekends and during the ten-day break. Salzburg's central location makes it possible for students to do weekend trips to Paris, Venice, Prague, Switzerland, or other fascinating places.

Jet Lag

The phenomenon of adjusting to a new time zone after a long flight is known as "jet lag". It is a condition characterized by various psychological and physiological effects (such as fatigue and irritability)

It is both mentally and physically exhausting and you will need at least a day, if not two, to get used to another routine. Some people take a full week to adjust. Everyone's body responds differently to jet leg and it is important to rest accordingly.

Mail/Shipping Hints

If you plan to send packages to yourself or if you have your parents and friends send you things, please use the following mailing address:

Address the box to yourself in care of Salzburg College. Example:

Your name
c/o Salzburg College
Bergstrasse 12
5020 Salzburg
Austria (EUROPE)

Use well sealed cardboard boxes!

Very important:

For shipping personal property, please indicate on the box or in the shipping papers


This is to show the European customs officials that the goods are not remaining in Austria and therefore are not imported. Otherwise, a very high value added tax (VAT) and customs fee will have to be paid!

If someone sends you a gift from the U.S. please be aware that for gifts valued more than $22 you will have to pay a customs fee.

Please do not ship valuable possessions (cameras, laptops, etc). It has proven to be very time consuming and sometimes impossible to clear these items without having to pay duty.

Do not use mail-order from U.S. companies. You will have to pay import tax for goods shipped to you from outside the EU.

Do not mail medication. It will most likely be returned to sender by the Austrian authorities because the import of medication via mail is extremely restricted. Bring your personal medication with you (see also "Health Care").

Money matters

Exchanging currency before you leave

Experienced travelers always obtain some foreign currency before leaving on a trip abroad: You will need EUROS (€) upon arrival for initial expenses like taxis, tips, meals, etc. Also, having the local currency in advance will give you time to familiarize yourself with the money. You will then feel more secure when using it.

Carrying cash

Students are urged not to carry large amounts of cash with them but to use internationally valid cash or debit cards (ATM). Please talk to your bank to ensure that your card is indeed internationally valid.

Most major credit cards, such as Visa, Master Card and American Express, are accepted all over Europe in major stores. However, it is not uncommon for small shops and grocery stores to only accept cash. Always check with the individual store or restaurant.

Sending money overseas

Copy this information and leave it with your parents

You may underestimate the funds you will need while abroad. An emergency may happen. It may require cash that you don't have. In such cases, you will have to call or email your friends or family at home for money. Do this before you run out of money. Sending money overseas urgently can be time-consuming and expensive.

  • The quickest ways: Western Union transfers or American Express Moneygram.If your parents have an American Express credit card they can go to their AMEX office and wire money to you. With the proper identification (passport) you can retrieve it at any AMEX office within minutes. Unfortunately, this very quick transfer carries rather high fees. Western Union offers a wire transfer service which is just as fast and carries smaller fees.
  • You can also have money sent through a large commercial bank with international connections. Cabled money can arrive within 2 days, regular transfers can take at least one week.

It is not advisable to send cash in the mail

A word about personal finances:

Start budgeting from the first day of your arrival. You will find that money goes very quickly on such things as meals outside your home, independent travel, mail, etc. If you have extra money to take abroad, consider taking it.

Wise money management can make a trip smoother and, sometimes, cheaper.

Music Instruction

If you have enrolled in music instruction, you need to bring your own instrument (if feasible). It is also advisable to bring the music with you that you plan on studying while in Salzburg.

Packing Information

A trip should start relaxed, so pack well ahead of your departure. You will have a chance to check and recheck what's packed and to remember things you have overlooked.


Similar to the U.S., students in Austria usually wear jeans, t-shirts, dress sneakers, shirts, etc. to class and around town. however, sweatpants and jogging shoes are worn to the gym only and are not considered appropriate street attire.

For special events such as concerts, theater performances, dinner invitations Austrians definitely dress more formally (e.g. dresses, suits or pants and jackets with the appropriate dressy shoes).

Other useful things

A small purse on a long cord to wear around the neck which can be tucked into jackets or shirts, or a money belt around your waist. This is especially necessary when sleeping on trains or while touring large cities. It protects your passport and money against theft.

Helpful Hints

Keep in mind that walking is far more common in Europe than in the US. You will be surprised! Shoes should be sturdy enough to resist rough surfaces. Leave unnecessary electrical appliances at home.

Do not forget:

  • Your passport with the required visa
  • A serious guide book about Europe
  • A nice dress/suit or sports jacket
  • Sturdy walking shoes and nice shoes for dress-up occasions
  • Pajama, bathrobe and slippers
  • Folding umbrella, rainwear gear
  • Informal sportswear that can be mixed and matched
  • Towels and face cloth
  • A backpack, if you plan on travelling
  • Extra pair of glasses
  • Camera, charger
  • A security wallet
  • A good guide book about Austria
  • Electrical adapter plugs/converter for electrical appliances. (If you have dual-voltage appliances, you do not need a converter. All you need to buy is the adapter plug.)
  • A dictionary and a small language guide
  • Personal medication
  • Your laptop and a USB flash drive


Make sure that your passport is valid for three months beyond your intended stay in Europe. If you do not have a passport, apply for one as soon as possible at the passport agency nearest your home.


Austria is one of the world's most famous countries for outdoor alpine sports. Ski areas are within easy reach of Salzburg. Ski trips over weekends are available at relatively low cost. Salzburg College also organizes skiing and hiking outings.

Other sports are available to students through the University of Salzburg's physical education department. Sports offered include basketball, swimming, tennis, gymnastics, judo, fencing, folk dancing, etc.

Telephones Abroad

Direct dialing from the U.S. is easy:
If your parents want to call you at your host family or dorm, they will need to dial the following:

011: international access code

43: country code

662: city code plus actual telephone number

When calling from your host family, please ask for their permission first and keep the calls short. Host families sometimes have strict telephone-usage rules. Please accept them.

If you receive telephone calls at your host family, please keep in mind that it is not acceptable to receive calls after 10 p.m. (European time!) unless there is an emergency.

At the dorm facility you will be able only to receive calls. It is, however, possible to open a telephone account at the dorm in order to be able to dial out.

If you have a Cell phone (tri-band) and if it is not "SIM-locked" (check with your provider!), bring it with you. SIM cards with a local phone number are available in Salzburg for €10. Calls from cell phones are expensive, but you can receive calls from the U.S. without charge.

Local pre-paid cell phones start at € 20.

International Calling Cards

Calling cards and pre-paid calling cards are available; however they are decreasing in popularity. Please make sure to obtain your operator telephone number before leaving for Europe.

Pre-paid calling cards are also available in Austria and they are often much cheaper than U.S. purchased calling cards!


In Germany and Austria service charges are generally included. Although in some restaurants a small service fee is added automatically to the check, it is customary to tip a small additional amount (about 5% of the total).


Nearly everybody will find a variety of discount plans for train travel in Europe. In general, it is a good idea to compare the cost of any discount plan to the individual ticket prices for your journey.

For railpass information please consult the guide book "How to walk the Globe - Europe", a similar publication or the internet.

General train travel information:

When traveling long distances, get a seat reservation. For overnight travel, reserve a couchette (bunk-bed) for about €20. Nonsmoking seats and couchettes can be requested.

Bring a blanket or summer (small) sleeping bag to take on weekend travels.

Backpacks are the best option if you have to do a lot of carrying and travelling by train.

Airlines flyiing out of Salzburg: Salzburg Airport

Transportation around Salzburg

The best way to get around Salzburg is by bus or bike. Not all Austrian homes are in walking distance of the College. See "Budget Information" for cost of transportation.

VISA and Residence Permits

VISA Requirements

US-citizens can stay in Austria without a visa for up to three months. For a semester in Salzburg you need an appropriate visa (D VISA for Austria). The travel document needed is a passport that is valid 3 months beyond your stay in Austria.

If you are not a US citizens you are requested to contact the Austrian Consulate in your area for visa information (see addresses below). Failure to obtain the required visa will result in denial of entry into Austria or any other European state.

Required Documents For a Stay Up To Six Months (D VISA for Austria):

Completed and signed Schengen Visa Application. This application can found on the website: www.austria.org.

  • Two passport size photographs (not a snapshot).
  • Passport - must be valid at least three months beyond date of travel.
  • Letter of admission to Salzburg College (original).
  • Certificate of Enrollment which proves lodging and full board.
  • Proof of medical insurance - letter from insurance company confirming complete coverage during the stay in Austria, minimum coverage has to be USD 50,000 (copy of your insurance I.D. is not sufficient). Emergency coverage only is also not sufficient.
  • Proof of sufficient funds (bank statement).
  • Students (unless self supporting) must also include a letter of financial responsibility which must be signed by parents and notarized. Most recent bank -and/or income statement must be attached.
  • Copy of the travel itinerary or round trip ticket.The cost for a Schengen student VISA (C & D VISA) is currently $ 138 (EUR 100). More details

Only cash or a cashier's check will be accepted. If one wishes to have the passport returned by mail, a self-addressed, prepaid return envelope should be included with the application.

US-citizens studying at Salzburg College for semester apply for their visa under the guidance of Salzburg College after their arrival in Europe during the initial field trip in Germany. 

It is not possible to apply for a D Visa after arrival in Austria.

Please contact Salzburg College (info@salzburgcollege.edu) directly for guidance on completing the Schengen Visa Application Form.

Residence Permits for Austria

If the student is planning on studying at Salzburg College for the academic year, she or he will need to obtain a Residence permit.

The application for this permit will take place after the student's arrival in Salzburg with the local authorities. As an American citizen the student can enter the EU (and, of course, Austria) with a valid passport only.

The following documents are necessary for the residence permit application:

  • 1 passport picture
  • Passport
  • Original birth certificate
  • Police record (not older than 3 months)
  • Proof of internationally valid health and accident insurance, providing total coverage.

Salzburg College will provide the "Certificate of Enrollment" and the application form after the student's arrival in Salzburg.

The cost of a residence permit is € 110 at the moment (payable in Salzburg).

Austrian reprensentations in the U.S.


Austrian Embassy
3524 International Court N.W.
Washington, D.C. 3008

Tel: 202 895 6700,
Fax: 202 895 6750

Responsible for the following states:

Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia, US-Virgin-Islands, Commonwealth of the Bahamas

Los Angeles:

Austrian Consulate General
11859 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 501
Los Angeles, California 90025

Tel: 310 444 9310 or 310 473 4721
Fax: 310 477 9897

Responsible for the following states:

Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, Oregon, Utah, Washington, Wyoming, Pacific Islands

New York:

Austrian Consulate General
31 East 69th Street
New York, NY 10021

Tel: 212 737 6400,
Fax: 212 772 8926

Responsible for the following states:

Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Ohio, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Wisconsin, Bermudas,

Find more relevant information in our FAQ-section!

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