Latvia Shopping, Embassy and Communication

Latvia Shopping, Embassy and Communication



The official language is Latvian. Russian is widely spoken. Sometimes English or German is also understood, especially by younger Latvians. Latvian belongs to the Indo-European language family and is closely related to Lithuanian. Written, the two languages ​​are similar and can be understood to some extent, but spoken they are so different that Latvians and Lithuanians cannot understand each other. It is written in Latin letters. Diacritics indicate the correct pronunciation of certain letters, e.g. an overscore indicates a long vowel. There are no articles in Latvian. It is also typical to add -s/-is to masculine or an -a/-e on feminine nouns; this also applies to foreign proper names, which are always reproduced phonologically in Latvian orthography (e.g. Viljams Šekspīrs for William Shakespeare or Gerhard Šreders for Gerhard Schröder).


Goodbye = Uz redzēšanos Eight = Astoņi Exit = Izeja Please = Lūdzu Thank you = Paldies Tuesday = Otrdiena Thursday = Ceturtdiena Three = Trīs Entrance = Ieeja One = viens Friday = Piektdiena Five = Pieci Hello = Čau!/ Sveiki! Yes = Jā Wednesday = Trešdiena Monday = Pirmdiena No = Nē Nine = Deviņi Saturday = Sestdiena Six = Seši Seven = Septiņi Sunday = Svētdiena Toilets = Mani sauc Four = četri How much is it? = Cik maksā tas? Ten = Desmit Two = Divi

Public Holidays

01/01/2022 New Year

04/15/2022 Good Friday

04/18/2022 easter monday

05/01/2022 Labor Day

05/04/2022 Day of the Declaration of Independence

06/23/2022 Ligo (Midsummer Eve)

06/24/2022 Jani (St. John’s Day)

11/18/2022 Independence Day

12/25/2022 Christmas

12/26/2022 Christmas

12/31/2022 New Year’s Eve


Duty free shopping


The following items can be imported duty-free into Latvia (when entering from non-EU countries): When entering by plane: 200 cigarettes or 100 cigarillos or 50 cigars or 250 g of tobacco (persons aged 18 and over); When entering by land or ship: 40 cigarettes or 20 cigarillos or 10 cigars or 50 g of tobacco (persons aged 18 and over); 1 liter of spirits with an alcohol content of more than 22% and 2 liters of spirits with an alcohol content of 22% or less or sparkling wine (persons aged 18 and over); 4 l table wine (persons aged 18 and over); 16 liters of beer (over 18s); medicines for personal use; Gifts/other goods up to a total value of €430 (air and sea travel) or €300 (travel by train/car); Children under 15 generally €285. (a) Valuable items such as jewelry and furs should be declared. (b) Art objects older than 50 years require an export license from the Latvian authorities.

Import regulations

Travelers who bring meat and milk products, among other things, into the EU from outside the European Union must declare them. The regulation does not apply to the import of animal products from EU countries, Andorra, Liechtenstein, Norway, San Marino and Switzerland. Anyone who does not register these products must expect fines or criminal prosecution. More information is available from

Prohibited Imports

Narcotics, firearms and ammunition (import permit required), unprocessed milk and raw meat (see import regulations). There is a general ban on imports of live poultry, meat and meat products from third countries (with the exception of the Faroe Islands, Greenland, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland).

Import/Export to the EU

The movement of goods within the EU is unrestricted for travelers as long as the goods are for personal use and not for resale. In addition, the goods must not have been purchased in duty-free shops. Travelers may be asked to provide proof of their own personal needs. Member States have the right to levy excise duty on spirit drinks or tobacco products if these products are not intended for personal use. The following maximum quantities apply as personal requirements: 800 cigarettes (persons aged 17 and over); 400 cigarillos (over 17s); 200 cigars (over 17s); 1 kg of tobacco (persons aged 17 and over); 10 liters of high-proof alcoholic beverages (persons aged 17 and over); 20 liters of fortified wine (such as port or sherry) (over 17s); 90 liters of wine (of which a maximum of 60 liters of sparkling wine) (persons aged 17 and over); 110 liters of beer (over 17s); 10 kg of coffee; 110 l of non-alcoholic beverages; Perfumes and eau de toilette: No restrictions if it can be shown that the amount is for personal consumption. Medicines: Amount corresponding to personal needs during the trip. Other goods: The movement of goods within the EU is unrestricted for travelers. However, this does not apply to gold alloys and gold plating in the unprocessed state or as a semi-finished product and fuel. Fuel may only be imported free of mineral oil tax from an EC member state, if it is in the tank of the vehicle or in a spare container that is carried along. A fuel quantity of up to 10 liters in the reserve tank is not objected to. If additional quantities of these goods are carried, e.g. For example, a wedding is an event that could justify a bulk purchase. Note: However, there are certain exceptions to the free movement of goods regime. They relate in particular to the purchase of new vehicles and purchases for commercial purposes. (More information on car taxes can be found in the European Commission’s Guide to Buying Goods and Services in the Internal Market.


Duty-free sales at airports and seaports have been abolished for travel within the EU. Only travelers leaving the EU can shop cheaply in duty-free shops. When importing goods into an EU country that were bought in duty-free shops in another EU country, the same travel allowances and allowances apply as when entering from non-EU countries. More information is available from the Latvian Customs (website:

Contact addresses

Embassy of the Republic of Latvia

Consulate General in Zurich. Honorary consulates in Graz, Klagenfurt, Linz and Salzburg.

(Also responsible for Switzerland.)

Stefan Esders Platz 4
+43 (1) 403 31 12. Consular Section: +43 (1) 403 31 12 50.

Mon-Fri 09.00-17.00. Consular section: Public: Mon-Thurs 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. (by prior arrangement by telephone).

Embassy of the Republic of Latvia

Honorary consulates in Bremen, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt am Main, Hamburg, Künzelsau, Munich and Rostock.

Reinerzstrasse 40/41
+49 (30) 82 60 02 22. Consular Section: +49 (30) 82 60 02 10/12.

Mon-Fri 09.00-17.00. Telephone information: Mon, Tue, Fri 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.; Wed, Thu 09.00-12.00 and 13.00-17.00. Consular section: Tue, Wed, Fri 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.; Mon, Thu 1pm-4pm.


Business etiquette

Business cards are usually exchanged and appointments should be made in advance. Business in Latvia is conducted in a formal manner. Business attire is expected. A suit for men, a suit for women. Modern companies prefer a more casual outfit. At the beginning of the meeting you shake hands, gifts are welcome, especially watches or whiskey.

Opening hours

Business hours: Mon-Fri 8.30am-5.30pm.

Business contacts



According to, the country code is 00371.

Mobile phone

GSM 900, GSM 1800, 2G, 3G and 4G. Network operators in Latvia are Tele2, Bite, LMT. International roaming agreements exist. Roaming abroad can be used within the EU at the regular home tariff of the respective provider. Roaming charges were abolished within the EU in mid-2017. Nevertheless, it is often worthwhile to purchase a Latvian SIM card because the prices of the Latvian network operators are usually lower than the EU prices for roaming. Using a mobile phone while driving is only permitted with a hands-free system.


Tens of thousands of Tet WiFi hot spots across Latvia provide free internet access. With free use, advertising appears at intervals. Tet WiFi hotspot locations are often marked with WiFi stickers.

Post office

The main post offices (headquarters: Boulevard 19) in Riga are open until 8 p.m. and sometimes until 10 p.m. Mailboxes are yellow. Letters to Western Europe take 5-7 days to arrive. General opening hours of the post offices: Mon-Fri 09.00-18.00, Sat 09.00-13.00. Post offices outside of Riga are open Mon-Fri 09:00-18:00 and Sat 09:00-13:00. Stamps are available from post offices and kiosks.


Numerous German-speaking radio stations can be received via Astra satellites or via the Internet in Latvia, among other things.

Latvia Shopping

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