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Edinburgh guide

We’ve compiled some handy information to help you get to know the city of Edinburgh. It include travel details and the truth about what to expect from the weather.

Access to the City from Edinburgh Airport

Taxi – no need to book, always available at the Airport taxi rank – approx £18-20
Airlink Express Bus (website) – approx 20 minutes £3.50 each way

Getting Around Edinburgh

It’s a great city to explore on foot. Delegates will find the city not only visually stunning but also very accessible. For longer journeys around the city, there are plentiful buses and taxis always available.


Scotland: 5,114,600
Edinburgh: 495,360 (2011)


Scotland is part of Great Britain and plays a full part in its parliamentary democracy. The Scottish Government is based in Edinburgh, with authority over education, law, transport, health and some social services within the country. Great Britain is a member of the European Union.


Bank opening hours vary according to different banks so the following times are given as an indication
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday: 0900 – 1700
Wednesday: 1000 – 1700
Saturday: 0900 – 1200


Pound sterling
See for currency calculator
Scottish banks issue their own bank notes but they have exactly the same value as those issued by the Bank of England and they are legal currency in all parts of mainland UK.


British electrical standards are 50Hz 230 volts, so some North American and European electrical devices may require converters. All will require plug adapters.

Emergency Services

The telephone number for emergency services in the UK is 999.


There are no vaccinations required or recommended for entry into the UK. The Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, a large teaching hospital, is located just 15 minutes south of the city centre.


Since April 2006, there has been a ban on smoking in all enclosed public places throughout Scotland.


There is no bed tax. Value Added Tax (VAT) is charged on all purchases in shops, hotels, and restaurants at a rate of 20%. There are no other taxes on purchases.

Save Money On Your Event Expenses. Reclaim the 20% Tax.
People travelling to Scotland on business may be entitled to reclaim the 20% tax charged on event expenses as well as accommodation, business entertaining, meals, transport and much more. A company called Tax Back International can assist you. See their website or call +353 1 878 3361. Just send your original invoices and Tax Back International will process your claim. Terms & Conditions Apply.

The Truth About the Weather

5 Day Weather Forecast
Edinburgh enjoys a moderate year-round climate, with none of the violent extremes of weather which could interrupt a meeting schedule or social calendar. From April to September, temperatures are mild and compare favourably with other European cities; annual rainfall is less than in Frankfurt, New York and Rome.

A perfect Edinburgh day dawns with a clear blue sky, warm and pleasant in summer – though in winter often accompanied by a sharp frost. It’s always worth packing a sweater against the chance of changeable conditions, as well as an umbrella just in case!