10 Things That Just Make Sense in Prague

Oscar is living his best life (and twinning with the sign)

These things are likely true for other countries as well, but these are purely based on my experience of living in Prague for the last 2 weeks, and learning more about culture and how things are done here.

In addition to small bins outside your residence, these larger dumpsters are located every few blocks around the city for extra convenience

Recycling.

So efficient. Trash is divided into: general waste, plastic/aluminum cans, glass, and paper/cardboard. I even saw a bin specifically for cooking oils! So cool.

IKEA (and other stores, but currently my entire life is built by IKEA) sells small trash cans with little handles so you can easily carry them outside and dump them in the proper bins—without need for plastic trash bags. Read more about recycling here if you’re a nerd.

Not to mention, Czech people seem to be incredibly resourceful with re-using, re-purposing, or giving away items instead of just throwing them out.

Also, lots of solid gluten free options

Food & Beer Costs.

Native Czechs may not agree with me on this—but coming from the land of insane expenses (USA)—food and drinks are soooo, sooo, so affordable. Going out to eat doesn’t feel like a “bad decision” that is going to lead to financial ruin if you do it too often.

Going out to eat or have a beer also seems like more of an everyday thing, which is cool. A good way to hang out with friends, family, or coworkers and wind down a bit. OH and, dogs are allowed to come with you pretty much everywhere.

Energy Efficiency.

Czechs seem to not believe in air conditioning or clothing dryers. Having neither definitely saves a lot of money, and energy waste.

Adapting to life without either, after growing accustomed to them, is odd. At first, it was brutal. We were staying in an Airbnb that baked in the sun everyday like a greenhouse, and even with fans, it was hot AF. Now, we are living in an apartment that isn’t facing the sun, and has much better ventilation overall. Despite it being the last day of May, I haven’t needed or wanted A.C.

Life without a clothing dryer is kind of annoying. It’s not the hill I’m gonna die on, but hanging all of your clothes, bedding, etc. out to dry takes up a good chunk of space in our apartment, and certain items take a LONG time to air dry. It all just takes a little more pre-planning— if you wanna wear a nice outfit out to a date night, ya better wash it way in advance…and then plan to iron or steam it too.

Mini Market / Potraviny

Groceries.

If you need food or drinks for the house, you have a few options:

  1. A big grocery store, such as Albert, Billa, etc. which has a little bit of everything: fruit, veggies, meats, drinks, alcohol, and a little bit of household stuff. To me, these are comparable in size to a Dollar General Market (not a regular DG, the bigger ones) in America.
  2. Potraviny, a.k.a. “mini market”, which is more like a convenience store or what you would find in a gas station in America. But these are EVERYWHERE; like, on every corner practically. So super convenient.
  3. Other specialty stores, like cheese shops, butcher shops, etc.

Shopping.

Prague has several giant malls. Easily accessible by tram, bus, train…or your own two feet.

And by giant, I mean: 5+ stories tall, and underground as well. Containing everything from book stores, H&M’s, tech stores, Starbucks, huge cafeterias, pharmacies, and they usually have a grocery store inside too. They’re quite literally a one stop shop.

Beware of the slippery cobblestones!

Sidewalks.

Just about every sidewalk in Prague is “oversized”, meaning, you don’t feel like you’re going to step off the curb and get run over, and you can also share space with lots of other people, dogs, strollers, etc. And there are sidewalks EVERYWHERE. There are quite a few pedestrian-only streets as well.

Riegrovy Sady

Parks & Cleanliness.

In addition to the big sidewalks and overall walkability of the city, there are TONS of parks. Not quite the size of Central Park, but rivaling it in some areas.

You can walk in any direction and end up running into several cute little, very well kept, havens of greenery. Which are great to meander around in and escape the city life for a little while. Bonus: most of them allow dogs to frolic off leash!

I am also AMAZED at their level of cleaning and upkeep…not just in the parks, but the city as a whole. Literally 24/7, there are workers out picking up trash, changing bins, watering plants, and cleaning off the sidewalks. I see them every single time I go outside.

This is me taking a morning bath, but you get the point.

Sit Down Showers.

…or that’s what I’m calling them anyways. It’s literally just a bath tub with a shower handle, but something about sitting down to shower is much more relaxing, and I feel like I’m being more present.

The red number (Czech: číslo popisné or č. p.) describes the neighborhood, whereas the blue number (Czech: číslo orientační or č. o.) tells you the actual building number

Addresses and Wayfinding.

In Prague, your address is essentially just name of your street and building number. Plus your postal/zip code for shipping purposes. No one seems to use apartment numbers like we do in America. There are buzzers outside the front door with names on them, so you can let guests or delivery people in when they arrive.

Delivery companies will also call or email to give you an exact day and time of when they will arrive, rather than just leaving packages outside your door.

It’s also fairly easily to navigate around the city by using the large street names on each block. Each neighborhood is categorized by number, such as Prague 1, Prague 2, Prague 3, etc, which you can also see displayed on some street signs as well.

Transportation.

The options are endless! My personal favorite is to just walk—both for exercise and for sightseeing purposes. But you can pick from: bus, tram (on the street), train (underground), bike or scooter, or be lazy and call a Bolt (Czech version of Uber). You can really be anywhere in the city in a very short amount of time.

Despite this, I am really surprised at how many people still commute by car here. It seems like it wouldn’t be worth it for the cost, upkeep, and extreme lack of parking.

Old Town Square during the World Hockey Championships

…and that’s it for now!

These are just my initial insights after 2 weeks, I’m sure I’ll continue adding to this list.

Got more things for me to Czech out? Drop them in the comments below!

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