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Salt Lake City

Travel Guide North America USA Western United States Utah Salt Lake City

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Introduction

Mormon Temple Spires, Salt Lake City, Utah

Mormon Temple Spires, Salt Lake City, Utah

© All Rights Reserved jengelman

Salt Lake City is the capital and largest city in Utah, with over 2.2 million inhabitants living in the metropolitan area. The city itself has almost 200,000 inhabitants. Internationally, the city was the focus of attention during the 2002 Winter Olympics and has been getting more and more popular since then with foreign visitors as well.

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Weather

Salt Lake City has a moderately continental climate with relatively dry conditions throughout the year. Summers last from June to early September with especially July and August seeing high average daytime temperatures of more than 30 °C. May/June and September/early October are much better and equally good given the fact that it's almost completely dry during these months and there is a lot of sunshine. Average precipitation is just over 400 mm (16.5 inches) and snow is possible from November to April, with most of it falling from December to mid-March. Temperatures during winter are slightly above zero during the day and below zero at night, though higher up the mountains temperatures drop significantly and snowfall is much higher.

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Avg Max2.4 °C6.4 °C11.2 °C16.3 °C22.2 °C28.2 °C33.4 °C31.9 °C26.2 °C18.9 °C10.4 °C3.2 °C
Avg Min-7.1 °C-4.1 °C-0.3 °C3.3 °C7.6 °C13 °C17.6 °C16.6 °C10.6 °C4.6 °C-0.6 °C-5.8 °C
Rainfall28.2 mm31.2 mm48.5 mm53.8 mm45.7 mm23.6 mm20.6 mm21.8 mm32.5 mm36.6 mm32.8 mm35.6 mm
Rain Days6.46.387.86.63.933.74.14.766.8

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Getting There

By Plane

Salt Lake City International Airport (IATA: SLC, ICAO: KSLC, FAA LID: SLC) is the major airport in Utah and is located several miles west of downtown Salt Lake City. It handles over 20 million passengers a year, mainly by domestic flights though there are still quite a few international connections.

By Train

The California Zephyr, operated by Amtrak, travels between Chicago and Emeryville (San Francisco), stopping en route in Salt Lake City.

By Car

Salt Lake City lies at the crossroads of two main Interstates. Interstate 15 runs north-south from Idaho all across cental Utah down to Las Vegas, while Interstate 8- runs east-west from southern Wyoming across northern Utah to northern Nevada and further towards California.

By Bus

Greyhound has buses throughout Utah and further away.

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Getting Around

By Car

Many international rental companies have a wide selection of rental cars and these include Hertz, Avis, Dollar, Thrifty, Enterprise, Budget and Alamo/National. Most companies will require you are at least 25 years of age, although younger people might be able to rent cars at slightly higher rates and with some insurance differences as well. A national driver's license is usually enough, but an additional international one is recommended. Also note that it usually costs more to include lots of other extra things. For example extra drivers, GPS, the first full tank, SLI (Supplemental Liability Insurance), PAI (Personal Accident Insurance, usually covered already at home), road assistance/service plan, and drop-off costs for one-way rentals.
If you want to book a car, it is recommended that you book your car before arriving in the USA. This is almost always (much) cheaper compared to just showing up. Also, try and book with a so-called 'broker', which usually works together with a few or many car rental companies and can offer the best deal. Some examples include Holidayautos, Holidaycars and Sunny Cars. Some of the cheapest deals to book from Europe, includes Drive-USA, which also has a German version.

For more information and tips about renting cars and campers, additional costs, insurance, traffic rules, scenic routes and getting maps and fuel it is advised to check the USA Getting Around section.

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Sleep

Budget

PropertyAddressTypePopularity
Camelot Inn & Hostel165 West 800 SouthHOSTEL81
America's Best Inn & Suites Salt Lake City1009 South Main StreetHOTEL-
Avenues Hostel107 F Street,Hostel76
Utah International Hostel50 South 800 WestHostel-
AAE Salt Lake Howard J121 North 300 West Greyhound Bus Amtrak Downtown LocationHostel-
AWA Hostel Royal Garden154 West 600 South Downtown Salt LakeHotel75
Motel 6 Salt Lake City1990 West North Temple StreetHotel-

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Keep Connected

Internet

There is a very small internet bar/cafe culture in the USA. Even then most of the internet bars/cafes tend be located in major urban centers. Accessible WiFi networks, however, are common. The most generally useful WiFi spots are in coffee shops, fast-food chains, and bookshops, but also restaurants and hotels more and more have a network to connect on. Some of them might require you to buy something and you might need a password too, especially in hotels.

Phone

See also International Telephone Calls

The general emergency phone number is 911. The USA has a great landline phone system that is easy to use. The country code for the U.S. is +1. The rest of the telephone number consists of 10 digits: a 3-digit area code, and a 7-digit number. Any small grocery store or pharmacy has pre paid domestic or international phone cards. These phone cards are very cheap and offer good rates. The once ubiquitous pay phone is now much harder to find. Likely locations include in or near stores and restaurants, and near bus stops. The cellphone network in the states is slowly getting better but is still not as good when compared to other western countries. Cell phones tend to operate using different frequencies (850 MHz and 1900 MHz) from those used elsewhere in the world (2100 MHz). This used to prevent most foreign phones from working in America. Phones must be tri- or quad-band to work in the U.S. Fortunately, technology has meant that most phones should now be able to pick up one of the U.S. networks. Prepaid phones and top-up cards can be purchased at mobile phone boutiques and at many discount, electronics, office supply and convenience stores. A very basic handset with some credit can be had for under $40.

Post

The US Postal Service is a very good and well priced mail system. There are post offices in every small and large town for sending packages internationally or domestically. Although some might keep longer hours, most are open at least between 9:00am and 5:00pm. If wanting to send a letter or postcard it is best just to leave it in a blue mail box with the proper postage. First-class international airmail postcards and letters (up 28.5 grams) cost $1.10. There are also private postal services like FedEx, UPS, TNT and DHL, which might be better value sometimes and are generally very quick and reliable too.

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Quick Facts

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Coordinates
  • Latitude: 40.771592
  • Longitude: -111.888189

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This is version 14. Last edited at 10:10 on Jul 11, 13 by Utrecht. 55 articles link to this page.

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