American Express-- There is no office in Antwerp. The nearest is in Brussels.

Area Code-- Antwerp's telephone area code is 03. You need to dial 03 both inside Antwerp and from elsewhere in Belgium. Dial just 3 (without the initial 0) if you're phoning Antwerp from outside Belgium.

Business Hours-- Banks are open Monday to Friday from 9am to 1pm and 2 to 4:30 or 5pm. Open hours for offices are Monday to Friday from 9 or 10am to 4 or 5pm. Most stores are open Monday to Saturday from 9 or 10am to 6 or 7pm; some stay open on Friday until 8 or 9pm.

Car Rental-- There are two Avis offices, one at Plantin en Moretuslei 62 (tel. 03/218-94-96) and a second at Boomsesteenweg 560 (tel. 03/829-10-00). Hertz is at Deurne Airport (tel. 03/239-29-21).

Currency Exchange-- The tourist office is a good place to change money and traveler's checks, as are banks. ATMs, identified by MISTER CASH and BANCONTACT signs, on the Grote Markt and at numerous other points in the city center, can be accessed by credit cards, bank cards, and charge cards linked to the Cirrus and PLUS networks.

Doctors & Dentists-- For required but nonemergency medical care in the Antwerp area, call tel. 03/286-11-86 (for emergencies, see below). For emergency dental care, call tel. 03/448-02-20.

Emergencies-- For police assistance, call tel. 101. For an ambulance or the fire department, call tel. 100.

Hospital-- For medical assistance, go to St. Elizabeth Hospital, Leopoldstraat 26 (tel. 03/234-41-11).

Newspapers & Magazines-- The Bulletin, Belgium's Brussels-based weekly magazine in English, also covers Antwerp, though not in as much depth as it does the capital.

Police-- (Politie) In an emergency, call tel. 101. In nonurgent situations, go to the Central Police Station, Oudaan 5 (tel. 03/202-55-11), or call the police information line (tel. 0800/123-12).

Post Office-- The main post office is at Groenplaats 42, open Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm, Saturday 9am to noon.

Restrooms-- Should you have a toilet emergency in the center of Antwerp, the very best address to find relief is at the Astrid Park Plaza Hotel, Koningin Astridplein 7 (tel. 03/203-12-34), across the square from Centraal Station.

Safety-- Crime is more of a problem in Antwerp than it is in Bruges and Ghent -- which is not the same thing as saying the city is unsafe. But it has a big international port and some of the low-life features that such places attract. After dark, you should exercise a little caution around Centraal Station and in the red-light district north of the Grote Markt, and it's probably wise to stay out of the Stadspark at this time. Take routine precautions against pickpocketing and other types of theft.

Transit Info-- For information regarding tram, bus, and Métro service, call tel. 070/22-02-00.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.