Start planning your trip to Baku for the 2021 Azerbaijan F1 Grand Prix on June 4-6 with useful information about visas, money, language and weather.
Do I need a visa to visit Azerbaijan?
The visa application process for Azerbaijan is relatively simple; passport holders from the UK, the USA, Australia and most of Europe can apply for an e-Visa online in advance of their trip with just a copy of their passport. For a tourist stay of up to 30 days you can apply for the simple package for $20 USD (+ $3 processing fee). Applications are completed online using a credit or debit card, and can be processed in as little as three working days. Please be aware that if you have visited Armenia with your current passport, you will probably not be granted a visa to visit Azerbaijan due to border disputes between the two countries.
Azerbaijan Travel: Need to know
- Time zone: Baku is GMT +4
- Tap water in Baku is not considered safe for human consumption; bottled water is readily available and cheap.
- You drive on the right-hand side of the road in Azerbaijan.
- The country telephone code for Azerbaijan is +994.
- In case of a general emergency, call the general emergency line on 112. Be warned that you will need to speak Azeri, Russian or Turkish, so keep a phrase book handy at all times.
- Azerbaijan uses type C and F power sockets, just like the rest of Europe. Bring an adaptor if you are coming from the UK, USA or Australia.
Baku is not a dangerous city. Exercise common sense as you would whilst travelling in any foreign city, and you should have a stress-free time in the city. The most significant issue for tourists is probably driving in Baku, since many road users fail to stick to the speed limits – keep your wits about you! Don’t forget that the government in Azerbaijan is known to be repressive and authoritarian, so avoid any form of criticism in public.
The Azerbaijani currency is the manat (AZN), which is divided into 100 qəpik. The manat lost a third of its value against international currencies when the government removed a peg to the US dollar toward the end of 2015. This is bad news for the average Azerbaijani, but good news for international tourists to the Grand Prix. ATMs can be found all over the city, especially near metro stations. Currently, 1 AZN is equal to around £0.46 GBP, €0.53 EUR and $0.59 USD
Language & Culture
You can get by with English all over Baku, especially in shops, hotels, bars and restaurants. You’ll be equally comfortable talking Russian in Azerbaijan, but we’d strongly advise getting hold of an Azeri phrasebook or app before you arrive here. Turkish is another language that most Azerbaijanis can understand, so if you know a little Turkish, try it out slowly and see how you go.
Typically, Baku enjoys a Mediterranean climate, which means an average temperature of 14˚C (57°F) with hot summers and wet, windy winters. In 2021, the Azerbaijan Grand Prix takes place in early June. Average daytime temperatures should be above 20˚C (70°F) and around half of this at night. Don’t forget to pack a few warmer clothes, just in case.