Practical Info

The Info Section aims to give you some practical guidance to prepare your European lobbying “experience”, both in terms of understanding the EU jargon, preparing your trip to Brussels and Strasbourg, getting a feel of what’s hot in Europe by reading the multiple blogs that relate to it, and checking out the weather (on the latter, if you don’t have time, just consider it will be rainy: you’ll probably rarely be disappointed).
So if you’re looking for some practical advice and pointers, click on:

Glossary & EU Jargon

The Commission has put together a quite impressive glossary which lists over 230 terms relating to European integration and the institutions and activities of the EU.

This glossary contains not only definitions of terms, but also outlines how the individual terms have evolved, how the institutions work, what the procedures are, what areas are covered by a Community policy and provides references to the Treaties, if necessary.

It is possible to print out all the pages of the Glossary by selecting the “Full version” option, which is available at the top of each page.

Beyond the technical and legal expressions, the unofficial terminology used on a daily basis by the media and EU officials can be found on the Eurojargon page, equally developed by the Commission.

Preparing a trip to Brussels

Taxi Companies

Taxi on Place Luxembourg

Taxi on Place Luxembourg

Getting a taxi in Brussels is usually reasonably easy, except at the Brussels airport, where queues can be frightening, especially on a Monday at 8:00 am!

If you are in that situation, you are advised to either book a taxi beforehand, or make your way to the departures floor of the airport and jump in a taxi that is driving by to drop off people departing…

A detailed list of taxi companies can be accessed at:

http://maps.google.com/maps?ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&um=1&q=taxi+brussels&fb=1&view
=text&sa=X&oi=local_group&resnum=1&ct=more-results&cd=1

Hotels

Just a few pointers:

Subway

Belgian underground sign

Belgian underground sign

When preparing a journey in Brussels, using the metro or subway can be a convenient manner to go from one destination to another whilst avoiding traffic jams which can be painful.

A good place to plan one’s journey is the site of the STIB, the official site of the company in charge of the metro: http://www.stib.be/index.htm?guest_user=guest_en as it allows viewing map of the subway, busses and trams, as well as proposing a journey planner and timetables.

Airports

Click on the logos to access the website of the airport.

logo_brussels_airport   The National Airport of Belgium and Brussels (Located in the village of Zaventem, at about 10 km from the centre of Brussels). Nearly all international flights coming into Belgium arrive in this airport
logo_brusssels_south   The airport of the city of Charleroi, also called “Brussels South”, located at 46 km south of Brussels. On this website, travellers arriving in Charleroi will find information about the transport possibilities to Brussels.
logo_antwerp   The local airport of the city of Antwerp.
logo_ostend   The local airport of the city of Oostende.
logo_liege_airport   The local airport of the city of Liège

Weather

Tip for the really bored: by putting your mouse on the weather icons, you can make them spin slower or faster, and even reverse direction…if you are actually doing this right as we speak and enjoying it, you really need to find a hobby!

Preparing a trip to Strasbourg

First step is the Tourism Office of Strasbourg, at http://www.otstrasbourg.fr/?lang=en

Taxi Companies

A detailed list of taxi companies can be accessed at: http://maps.google.com/maps?ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&um=1&q=taxi+strasbourg&fb=1&view =text&sa=X&oi=local_group&resnum=1&ct=more-results&cd=1

pic40

Book early!

Hotels

Finding a room in Strasbourg in a half decent hotel during a plenary week is quite a headache, most MEPs and assistants booking one year advance to be in the centre! Moreover, most hotels handle a “no cancellation” policy due to the high demand. Just a few pointers:

Subway

The official site of the transport company in Strasbourg can be found here but maps and their explanation are only available in French.

Strasbourg metro map

Strasbourg metro map

Airports

logo_aeroport_interna The airport of Strasbourg

Weather