The UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office’s travel advice for Chelsea fans going to Bucharest for the Europa League match tomorrow night (March 7) has drawn comments from the local media. The Romanian press suggests that the travel advice paints Romania as a third world country, with the notification that urinating in public is illegal and warnings of theft from hotel rooms catching the media’s attention.
The advice given, however, is not unusual for the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) and the tone and content will be familiar to anyone who has used the site. Warnings over urinating in public, drug and sex offenses, drinking on the streets and the possibility of overtly drunk fans not being admitted to the match are perhaps more of a comment on the behavior of footballs fans than on Romania.
There’s plenty of useful info: guidance on taxi prices is worth checking and the the FCO advises Chelsea fans not to use the Piata Muncii metro station nearest to the National Arena, to prevent run-ins with crowds of Steaua Bucharest supporters. There are important details on procedures at the match, including muster points for Chelsea supporters, provision of shuttle buses and other particulars related to entering and leaving the stadium.
Although the FCO gives general guidance on avoiding being overcharged by taxis, it is well worth remembering that the airport is a favorite spot for unscrupulous taxi drivers. As a rule, it is better to avoid taxi drivers touting and hustling for business. The usual fare in Bucharest is of RON 1.3 to RON 1.5 per kilometer (EUR 0.28 to EUR 0.33). There has been a recent shake-up of the taxi provision at Otopeni airport, with a new dedicated taxi area and telephones to call taxi firms for free.
Read the FCO’s Steaua Bucuresti vs. Chelsea: travel advice