Gainesville

Travel Guide North America USA Southern United States Florida North Florida Gainesville

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Introduction

Gainesville is a city in the central north of Florida, USA. It is a popular music city and home to one of the biggest universities in the state. The population of Gainesville in the 2017 US Census estimates was 132,249, a 6.4% growth from 2010. Gainesville is the largest city in the region of North Central Florida. It is also a component of the Gainesville-Lake City Combined Statistical Area, which had a 2013 population of 337,925.

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Sights and Activities

  • Devil's Millhopper Geological State Park, 4732 Millhopper Road, ☎ +1 352-955-2008. W-Su 9AM-5PM. A bowl-shaped cavity 120 feet deep which contains a miniature rain forest. Visitors can enjoy picnicking and learn more about this sinkhole through interpretive displays. $4 per vehicle or $2 per pedestrian/bicyclist.
  • The Fest. One of America's premier independent music festivals concentrating mainly on punk; hundreds of bands, over three days in eight or more venues. Unmissable.
  • University of Florida, Phone: 352-846-2000. These folks are serious about their football and basketball. A full calendar of entertainment in sports and the arts is available. For information on the school's sports teams, known as the Gators, see the dedicated website. Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. University of Florida's stadium known as "The Swamp" seats over 90,000. It's one of the largest (and loudest) anywhere.
  • Stephen C. O'Connell Center. Florida's Stephen C. O'Connell Center has a reputation around the country – enthusiastic and friendly if you're a Gator...noisy, deafening and menacing if you're the opposition. Florida's student section, dubbed the "Rowdy Reptiles", has made the O'Connell Center one of the toughest places to play in the nation.
  • Curtis M. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts, 315 Hull Rd, ☎ +1 352-392-1900. Curtis M.
  • Harn Museum of Art, ☎ +1 352-392-9826. Tu-F 11AM-5PM; Sa 10AM-5PM; Su 1PM-5PM. SW 34th Street and Hull Road.
  • Lake Alice on the UF campus. Lake Alice is a sanctuary for alligators and birds. At dusk, bats that roost in a nearby bathouse fly out to feed on the insect life that the lake nourishes. A trip out at dusk to watch the cloud of bats is a popular local pastime.
  • Florida Museum of Natural History, SW 34th Street & Hull Road, ☎ +1 352-846-2000. M-Sa 10AM-5PM, Su 1PM-5PM. Nice Butterfly Rainforest exhibit (extra charge). Permanent exhibits include the Butterfly Rainforest: Where Science Takes Flight!, Northwest Florida: Waterways & Wildlife, South Florida People & Environments, Florida Wildflower & Butterfly Garden, and the Fossil Plant Garden. Suggested donation: Adult $6, seniors, students, children $4, under 3 free.
  • Hippodrome State Theatre, ☎ +1 352-375-4477. Hippodrome State Theatre on Wikipedia Hippodrome State Theatre (Q1619983) on Wikidata edit
  • Kanapaha Botanical Gardens, 4700 S.W. 58th Drive, ☎ +1 352-372-4981. M,Tu,W 9AM-5PM; Sa,Su 9AM-dusk. Adults: $5; Children 6-13: $3; Children under 6: Free.
  • Matheson Museum complex, 513 E. University Avenue, ☎ +1 352-378-2280. Monday - Thursday 9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.. Alachua County history. The complex contains a museum housed in the old American Legion Hall and Matheson House, the second oldest house in Gainesville.
  • The Santa Fe Community College Teaching Zoo. Tours by appointment.
  • Haile Village Center. An award-winning planning and development community that is a throwback to the traditional style and beauty of a New England town. Restaurants, Shops, Events, Parks, and Trails. It's just a shopping plaza.
  • Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park, 100 Savannah Blvd, Micanopy, ☎ +1 352-466-3397. Florida´s first state preserve in 1971 and is now designated as a National Natural Landmark. Alligators, wild horses, bison and over 260 species of birds live in many diverse habitats here. Eight trails provide hiking, horseback riding, and bicycling opportunities. Ranger-led activities during weekends, November through April. Exhibits and an audio-visual program at the visitor center explain the area´s natural and cultural history. A 50-foot-high observation tower near the visitor center provides a panoramic view of the preserve. Admission Fees - $4/vehicle (up to 8 passengers). Single Car Occupant - $3, Motorcycle Fee (one or two persons) - $3, Admission Fee $1 per person, Camping Fees - $15 per night, Picnic Pavilion - A 65 person picnic pavilion can be reserved for $30 plus tax, Group Camping - Camping fee is $4 for each person with a minimum fee of $20 per night, plus tax. Equestrian fee is $10 for both horse and rider.
  • Ginnie Springs Outdoors, 7300 NE Ginnie Springs Road, High Springs, FL 32643, ☎ +1 352 454-7188. Bring the family or a cooler of beer and friends and float down the natural spring-fed river. Amenities include beach volleyball courts, campsites, picnic tables, shower/bath facility, and dive excursions. Entry $12/person. Camping (including entry) $20/person.
  • Ocala Jai-alai and Poker, 4601 NW County Rd. 318 Reddick, FL 32686 (About 30 minutes south of campus on 441), ☎ +1 352 591-2345. Su-Th 12-12 F-Sa 1:30-1:30. Watch live Jai-alai or play in the new poker room. Runs tournaments and sit'n'goes daily. 18+.
  • Devil's Millhopper, 4732 Millhoppper Road Gainesville, Florida 32653. 9a-5p, Weds-Sun. In the midst of north Florida's sandy terrain and pine forests, a bowl-shaped cavity 120 feet deep leads down to a miniature rain forest. Small streams trickle down the steep slopes of the limestone sinkhole, disappearing through crevices in the ground. Lush vegetation thrives in the shade of the walls even in dry summers. A significant geological formation, Devil's Millhopper is a National Natural Landmark that has been visited by the curious since the early 1880s. Researchers have learned a great deal about Florida's natural history by studying fossil shark teeth, marine shells and the fossilized remains of extinct land animals found in the sink. Visitors can enjoy picnicking and learn more about this sinkhole through interpretive displays. $4/vehicle, $2/pedestrian.

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Events and Festivals

Holidays

  • New Year’s Eve - The US celebrates the outgoing of the old year and incoming of the New Year quite dramatically. Every state boasts its own parties to ring in the New Year, but none is more extravagant than New York’s Time Square, which sees people overflowing into the neighboring restaurants, bars, parks, beaches, and neighborhoods.
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Day (officially Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. and sometimes referred to as MLK Day) is an American federal holiday marking the birthday of Martin Luther King Jr. It is observed on the third Monday of January each year, which is around King's birthday, January 15. The holiday is similar to holidays set under the Uniform Monday Holiday Act. The earliest Monday for this holiday is January 15 and the latest is January 21. King was the chief spokesperson for nonviolent activism in the Civil Rights Movement, which successfully protested racial discrimination in federal and state law.
  • St Patrick’s Day - March 17 celebrates the US’s large Irish population. Many cities around the country boast boisterous parades and Irish-themed parties, especially New York and Chicago, where the river is dyed green. Be wary of the drunkenness that dominates as this is definitely a party-day.
  • Memorial Day - Memorial Day is an important holiday throughout the United States, but not for crazy festivities. Parades commemorating wartime heroes are often held and the day is also the ‘unofficial’ start of summer. Most visitors follow the crowds to parks and beaches, which are capped off with informal BBQs.
  • Independence Day - Also known as the Fourth of July, Independence Day celebrates the US’s break from the British during the 18th century. Barbecues, street parties, beach trips, and weekend getaways are commonplace to appreciate freedom.
  • Labor Day is a public holiday celebrated on the first Monday in September. It honors the American labor movement and the contributions that workers have made to the strength, prosperity, laws, and well-being of the country. It is the Monday of the long weekend known as Labor Day Weekend. It is recognized as a federal holiday. Beginning in the late 19th century, as the trade union and labor movements grew, trade unionists proposed that a day be set aside to celebrate labor.
  • Halloween - Halloween is a fun holiday on October 31 for all generations to dress up in costumes and relive their youth. Children walk around the neighborhood trick-or-treating for candy, while adults attend parties. Other seasonal events include haunted houses, pumpkin farms and carving, and corn mazes.
  • Thanksgiving - On the fourth Thursday in November, Thanksgiving is held in almost every home in the US. Tourists will have a hard time finding anything to do as the country essentially shuts down in observation. A typical Thanksgiving meal consists of turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie commemorating the original Pilgrim’s feast at Plymouth Rock.
  • Christmas - On December 25, Christians celebrate Christmas as the pinnacle of their calendar by attending church and opening gifts from Santa Claus. Almost everything shuts down to promote family togetherness. The northern regions hope to experience a “white Christmas,” with trees and festive lights blanketed by snow.

Sport

  • Super Bowl Sunday - the world’s most watched sporting event and one of the highest grossing TV days of the year, Superbowl Sunday is a spectacular extravaganza. Held the first Sunday in February, the Superbowl is the final playoff game between the NFL’s top two teams. The venue rotates every year around America, yet the local parties seem to remain. Pubs, bars and restaurants are great places to enjoy the Superbowl or locals throw their own parties with different variations of betting.
  • The World Series is the annual championship series of Major League Baseball (MLB) in North America, contested since 1903 between the American League (AL) champion team and the National League (NL) champion team. The winner of the World Series championship is determined through a best-of-seven playoff, and the winning team is awarded the Commissioner's Trophy. As the series is played during the fall season in North America, it is sometimes referred to as the Fall Classic.

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Weather

Gainesville's climate is defined as humid subtropical (Köppen: Cfa). Due to its inland location, Gainesville experiences wide temperature fluctuations for Florida, and it is part of USDA Plant hardiness zone 9a. During the hot season, from roughly May 15 to September 30, the city's climate is similar to the rest of the state, with frequent afternoon thunderstorms and high humidity. Temperatures range from 21-23 °C at night to around 33 °C during the day on average. The all-time record high of 40 °C was reached on June 27, 1952. From November through March, however, the Gainesville area has a climate distinct from much of peninsular Florida with 16 nights of freezing or below temperatures and sustained freezes occurring every few years. The all-time record low of -14 °C was reached on February 13, 1899, and the city experienced light snow and freezing rain on Christmas Eve, 1989. Traces of snow were also recorded in 1977, 1996, 2010 and 2016. The daily average temperature in January is 12.4 °C; on average, the window for freezing temperatures is December 4 through February 24, allowing a growing season of 282 days. As with the rest of the state, cold temperatures are almost always accompanied by clear skies and high pressure systems; snow is therefore rare. Temperatures reaching 38 °C or falling below -7 °C are rare, having respectively occurred on June 16, 2015 and January 11, 2010.

The city's flora and fauna are also distinct from coastal regions of the state, and include many deciduous species, such as dogwood, maple, hickory and sweet gum, alongside palms, live oaks, and other evergreens. Thus the city enjoys brief periods of fall color in late November and December (though hardly comparable to areas further north) and a noticeable, prolonged spring from mid-February through early April. This is a generally pleasant period, as colorful blooms of azalea and redbud complement a cloudless blue sky, for this is also the period of the lowest precipitation and lowest humidity. The city averages 1,200 mm of rain per year. June through September accounts for a majority of annual rainfall, while autumn and early winter is the driest period.

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Getting There

By Plane

Gainesville Regional Airport, (GNV IATA) 3880 NE 39th Ave, ☎ +1 352 373-0249. Flights from Atlanta, Miami, Tampa, Orlando, and Charlotte.

Major airports are in Jacksonville and Orlando.

By Train

Amtrak, toll-free: +1-800-872-7245. The nearest Amtrak station is in Jacksonville, Florida. Both the Silver Star and Silver Meteor service Jacksonville from Miami and Boston. You'll need to transfer to an Thruway connecting bus to to go Gainesville. The bus stops at the Rosa Parks downtown transit station at 700 Southeast 3rd Street. The bus ride takes about one hour and 45 minutes.

By Car

Interstate 75 runs north and south to the west of Gainesville.

By Bus

  • Greyhound, 101 NE 23rd Ave (west of Main St). Greyhound has regular service to Gainesville, running through Jacksonville, Ocala, and Tallahassee.
  • Megabus, 700 SE 3rd St (Rosa Parks Downtown Station). Service from Atlanta, Orlando, Tallahassee, Mobile, and New Orleans.
  • RedCoach. RedCoach offers a bus service from cities around Florida. The 4 RedCoach first and business class stop is located on Hull Road, across the street from the University of Florida's Southwest Recreation Center; the 5 RedCoach economy class stop is at the UF Commuter Lot on Gale Lemerand Drive.

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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.

By Public Transport

Gainesville Regional Transit System (RTS), Phone: 352-334-2600. RTS provides fast frequent service throughout the City of Gainesville and to some of the outlying areas.

Bus service is provided on 35+ routes. Some bus lines provide service until 2:00AM on weeknights. Late night service, referred to as the Later Gator, is provided on some lines, Wednesday through Saturday from 8PM to 3:00AM.

Weekdays 6AM to 2AM (Most Serviced Lines), Service can run from every 8 minutes on most utilized lines to every 60 minutes on less utilized lines. Make sure to check individual schedules.
Saturdays: 7AM to 7PM on most lines. Service every 30 to 60 minutes. Special Late Night Bus service begins at 8PM and ends at 3AM. These buses run every 10 to 15 minutes.
Sundays: 9AM to 5PM, very limited service. Buses only run every 60 minutes.
During school breaks and the summer holiday, RTS service runs less frequently with most routes ending service by 11PM.

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Eat

  • Dragonfly Sushi and Sake Company, 201 Southeast 2nd Avenue (at Union Street Station), ☎ +1 352 371-3359. 11:30AM - 10PM. A trendy downtown sushi bar, Dragonfly Sushi & Sake Company offers an innovative and gourmet selection of sushi, sashimi and Eurasian Fusion fare that's thought by locals and visitors alike to be some of the best in town, in an atmosphere that's hip and vibrant.
  • Ti Amo! Reasurant and Bar, 12 SE Second Avenue (Downtown Gainesville), ☎ +1 352 378-6307. Mo-Th: 4PM-10PM, Fr-Sa: 4PM-midnight. Great Food. Fantastic Wine. Classic Dining Space.
  • Leonardo's 706, 706 West University Avenue, ☎ +1 352 378-2001. Su-Th: 5PM-10PM, Fr-Sa: 5PM-11PM.
  • Amelia's, 235 S. Main Street (located in the downtown Sun Center), ☎ +1 352 373-1919. M-Th 5PM-10PM, F-Sa 5PM-11PM, Su 5PM-9PM. Excellent Italian fare in a cozy restaurant located in the heart of downtown Gainesville. $12-$20.
  • Leonardo's Pizza by the Slice, 1245 W University Ave, ☎ +1 352 375-2007. M-Th 9AM-10PM, F-Sa 9AM-11PM, Su 9AM-10PM. Eclectic atmosphere and great pizza highlight this popular eatery near campus.
  • Mr. Han's, 6944 NW 10TH PL, ☎ +1 352 331-6400. Open 7 days a week for lunch and dinner. A consistent recipient of the 'best Chinese restaurant in Gainesville' award, Mr. Han's serves up outstanding Peking, Szechuan and Hunan inspired dishes. There's a nightclub on the premises as well. $12-$40.
  • Liquid Ginger, 101 SE 2nd Place, ☎ +1 352-371-2323. Sun Center. Open every day for dinner, 6 days for lunch (closed Sa afternoon) M-F 11:30-2:30 M-Th 5PM-10PM, F-Sa 5PM-10:30PM, Su noon-10PM. A newer establishment in the downtown dining scene, Liquid Ginger offers an eclectic Asian fusion cuisine. It can get quite crowded on weekends, so a reservation is good to have.
  • Falafel King, 3252 SW 35th Blvd, ☎ +1 352 375-6342. If you're in the mood for falafel, gyro, baba ghanoush, tabouleh or some amazing hummus, this is the place to go. Located in Butler Plaza, this small restaurant gives you large amounts of delicious food for a really reasonable price.
  • Bento Cafe, 3832 W Newberry Rd and 3841 SW Archer Rd, ☎ +1 352 377-8686 (Newberry), +1 352 224-5123 (Archer). In the mood for sushi? Perhaps a bento box with some Asian fusion food? Or maybe just some boba tea or sake? Bento Cafe, with two locations in Gainesville, has a large variety of Asian foods and wonderful sushi! There's even a Gator Roll for those looking for the ultimate Gator experience in Gainesville!
  • The Swamp, 1642 W University Av, ☎ +1 352 377-9267. 11AM-2AM daily. Great college atmosphere for food and fun!
  • Mi Apa Latin Cafe, 114 SW 34th St. (The NW corner of 34th St and SW 2nd Ave.), ☎ +1 352 376-7020. Su-Th 7AM–10PM; Fr-Sa 7AM–11PM. Given its central location, it is walking distance from the west end of UF campus. It has a wonderful family atmosphere, with genuinely nice staff. The food is delicious and one of the finest examples of Cuban cuisine. A second location is in Alachua, Florida. About $16 with dessert and tip.
  • Kabab House, 1129 West University Ave (One Block East on University Ave From 13 Street), ☎ +1 352 374-2114. M–Th 11AM–10PM, F–Sa 11AM–11PM, Su noon–9PM. Kabab House serves meat (chicken, beef, & lamb) kababs cooked in the tandoor (clay oven). Offers wide variety of curries, rice and vegetables dishes. Serves halal meat. $15.
  • Indian Cuisine, 3550 Sw 34th St, Ste M, Gainesville, FL 32608 (Near the intersection of SW 34th St and SR-121/SW 35th Pl), ☎ +1 352-271-1190. Closed Mondays. Great Indian restaurant with eclectic menu. Good atmosphere and helpful staff. $12-20.
  • Miya Sushi, 3222 SW 35th Blvd (next to Publix), ☎ +1 352 335-3030. Su-Th 11:30-10 F-Sa 11:30-10:30. Korean joint with some Japanese dishes. Great sushi roll choices and Korean BBQ, tempura, and lunch/dinner boxes excellent. Try the dinner for two that comes with soup, salad, spring rolls, sushi and a beef dish for $28. $12-25.
  • The Jones Eastside, 401 NE 23rd Ave, ☎ +1 352-373-6777. Freshest breakfast all day, everyday. Some organic ingredients, vegetarian dishes. Friendly staff, and hip music. Must try.
  • The Hyppo (Downtown Hyppo(two other Hyppo locations are in Gainesville)), 214 S.E. 2nd Avenue (One block east of Main Street in downtown), ☎ +1 352 727-4233. 11 AM to 10 PM Sun-Th; 11 AM to 12 AM Fr-Sat. Serves frozen fruit popsicles. A large variety of unique flavors are offered, such as avocado coconut. The Hyppo is one of a chain of Hyppo establishments. Expensive high-end popsicles.
  • The Twisted Peacock, 3610 SW 13th Street (From I-75 take Exit 382 east to SW 13th Street and go north. Restaurant on west side of street), ☎ +1 352 505-6827. Mon-Sat 11 AM to 10 PM; closed Sun in summer. Indian restaurant. Quality of food excellent, and spicy. Serves beer and wine and some mixed drinks. $11.00-$30.00.

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Drink

There are bars all over Gainesville. It's traditionally known as a huge drinking town. UF president Bernie Machen has tried to wage a war against alcohol and binge drinking since he took over several years ago.

The town in general isn't quite as hip and wild as it once was. As admission standards at the university continue to rise, a different crowd has trickled in. But there's still plenty of diversity, and partying, in Gainesville.

The area referred to as mid-town, directly across the street from the school on University Ave., has some of the more traditional Gainesville bars. Grog House, Salty Dog, Balls, XS, and Gator City (formerly the Purple Porpoise in Gainesville's heyday) all share the same building. Almost any night of the week one can find great specials and large crowds. Near by is the restaurant/bar Swamp housed in a former professor's house. It is a can't miss both for the atmosphere and the decent food.

The downtown area is a combination of clubs and more laid back bars. Places like the Loosey's, Lillian's (a former music store) and Stubby's, a bar that features hundreds of imported beers, cater to an older crowd. Clubs such as :08 and Sky having dancing and music but are usually most crowded on "lady's night." Most recently Rockey's Dueling Piano Bar has opened and added to the city's diverse music scene.

Bars close at 2AM due to the "Rave Law", passed in the late 1990s when Gainesville became one of Florida's premier rave scenes. Last call can be as early as 1:30 AM. After the bars close roads can be dangerous due to drunk drivers.

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Sleep

  • Best Western Gateway Grand, 4200 NW 97th Boulevard, ☎ +1 352 331-3336, fax: +1 352 331-3337.
  • Comfort Inn West, 3440 Southwest 40th Blvd, ☎ +1 352 264-1771, fax: +1 352 264-9996. Offers guests free breakfast, an exercise room and a pool.
  • Courtyard Gainesville, 3700 SW 42nd Street, ☎ +1 352 335-9100, fax: +1 352 335-1502. Located just minutes from University of Florida and only 4 miles from the Swamp, the hotel offers a pool, hot tub, free high speed Internet, and rooms are equipped with fridge and microwave.
  • Fairfield Inn Gainesville, 6901 Northwest 4th Boulevard, ☎ +1 352 332-8292, fax: +1 352 332-2884.
  • Hilton Garden Inn Gainesville, 4075 SW 33rd Street, ☎ +1 352 338-1466, fax: +1 352 338-1481.
  • Holiday Inn, 1250 W. University Ave, ☎ +1 352 376-1661.
  • Holiday Inn, 7417 Newberry Road, ☎ +1 352 332-7500.
  • Holiday Inn Express, 3905 Sw 43rd Street, ☎ +1 352 376-0004.
  • Homewood Suites Gainesville, 3333 SW 42nd St, ☎ +1 352 335-3133, fax: +1 352 335-3570.
  • Motel 6 Gainesville - Univ. of Florida, 4000 SW 40th Boulevard, ☎ +1 352 373-1604, fax: +1 352 335-8314.
  • Residence Inn Gainesville, 4001 SW 13th Street, ☎ +1 352 371-2101, fax: +1 352 377-2247.
  • Paramount Plaza Hotel and Suites, 2900 SW 13 Street, ☎ +1 352 377-4000.
  • Sweetwater Branch Inn, 625 E University Ave, ☎ +1 352 373-6760. Sweetwater Branch Inn is a historic bed and breakfast and event venue in downtown Gainesville, Florida.
  • Hampton Inn: Gainesville, 4225 SW 40th Blvd, ☎ +1 352 371-4171.
  • Red Roof Inn, 3500 SW 42nd St (exit 384 off I 75), ☎ +1 352-336-3311. Check-in: 1pm, check-out: 11am. Offers an outdoor pool that is open year round and selected rooms offer microwave/microfridge units. All rooms offer T-Mobile high speed internet access (not included), "On Command Video" with a selection of free TV channels and pay-to-view as well as one well-behaved family pet. from $49.99.
  • Residence Inn Gainesville I-75, 3275 SW 40th Boulevard, ☎ +1 352-264-0000. Check-in: 4pm, check-out: 12pm. All suites hotel located 3 miles from the University of Florida. Suites provide full kitchens with complimentary internet and flat screen TV. Hotel amenities include complimentary hot breakfast, complementary parking, pool, and fitness center. $119.

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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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Contributors

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This is version 12. Last edited at 11:07 on Jun 14, 19 by Utrecht. 2 articles link to this page.

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