Tourism of the first quarter of the year – quite good, actually

Thanks to mild winter with at least some snow on the mountains, the first quarter of 2008 brought more than 10% tourists than the last year. Accommodation facilities hosted over 2,6 million tourists. Snowing attracted outdoor tourists, no drastic frosts attracted urban tourists. The other factor contributing was the fact this years’ Easter were in March already.

According to statistics, the number of tourists, who use better accommodation facilities. The highest increase of guests – 16,3% noted 3-star hotels. Those 5-star and 4-star hotels didn’t get left behind, as they were used by 15,3 and 12,8% percent more than in the last year.

Prague Shopping Malls Retrospective

A short hindsight to our toady Czech culture reveals already known: Our church is a shopping mall, our god is commercial success and Bata is our prophet. Nevermind expressed in numbers it goes like this: 250 shopping centres in the Czech Republic, from which 50 contain at least fifty different retainers.

Czech most buy clothes, second are shoes, third are computer components. Prague Hosts 38 percent of those centres. It is hard to believe twenty years ago a whole slab block estate would be supplied with one middle- sized grocery store. Now the same area is often surrounded by several supermarkets and in case that would not be enough, there’s a hyper- one within reach.

Read the whole article More ‘Market – Temples’

Survey: The Czech Republic is among full democratic states

After the survey about peace rate in various countries in the world, the Economist Intelligence Unit now focused on the current state of democracy worldwide in 165 independent states and two territories for the year 2006. States are divided into four groups according to the state of democracy: full democracies, flawed democracies, hybrid regimes and authoritarian regimes.

Countries are ranked in five main categories and that is electoral process and pluralism, functioning of government, political participation, political culture and civil liberties.

The Czech Republic was ranked 18th in the group of full democratic countries. It got the highest (=best) points in electoral process and pluralism, the lowest in government functioning. The Czech Republic was ranked better than such large democratic states as the Great Britain or France. For the detailed results of the survey click here.

Most Czech people like their job

According to the new survey made by SC&C agency for MF DNES, 82% of Czech people like their job. More than a half out of 1,295 respondents like their jobs even though they feel they are not paid enough.

29% of Czech people are satisfied with their job and their salary.
The most satisfied people have university degree. People with basic education like their job the least. The most satisfied are people from Olomouc district, the least from South Bohemia. Women and man feel almost the same satisfaction from their, even though women has often lower salaries. In Prague the average salary of women is even 10,000 CZK lower than men’s salary.

According to the psychologist Miloslav Solc, Czech people in general are hardworking, they like varied and independent work, they like to work in their own tempo and methods. On the other hand Czech people don’t like deadlines and they hand over their work at the very last moment.

Prague attracts IT companies

According to the chart made by the Belgian Federation for the Technology Industry Agoria, Prague is the seventh most friendly European city (out of 26) for companies dealing with information and communication technologies. The most friendly cities for IT companies are Paris, followed by Paris, London, Madrid, Stockholm, Amsterdam and Brussels.

The Czech Statistical Office informed that the Czech Republic had the most IT experts compared with the total number of employed people from all the new members of the European Union. The highest concentration of IT workers in the Czech Republic is in Prague (about 5%).

According to the director of the Czech branch of Hewlett-Packard Milan Prypon, the Czech labour market still lacks about 20 thousand qualified IT workers.

Czech roads are the sixth dangerous in Europe

Czech roads are the sixth most dangerous roads out of 24 surveyed countries in Europe. The research was made according to statistics showing how many people died on the roads per 100,000 inhabitants.

The most safe roads are in the Netherlands, then in Norway and Sweden. The most dangerous roads can be found in Greece, Poland and Belgium.

Only the last three weeks it cost 89 lives on Czech roads. According to analysts, high mortality on roads has several reasons. Czech people don’t fear the new road law any more, there are not many police officers on the street, the quality of roads is bad and especially many drivers are aggressive and reckless.

Prague is a good place to find a job

Prague citizens are convinced that it’s easy to find a new job in Prague, a survey of the European Commission showed on Thursday. This survey focused on quality of life in 75 cities in the EU, Turkey and Croatia.

More than 70 % of people living in Prague, Copenhagen and Dublin believe it’s no problem to find a good job in the metropole. The opposite opinion is shared in Palermo, Frankfurt (Oder) and Naples. On the other hand Prague people think it’s hard to find housing at a reasonable price and they are not satisfied with the quality of air.

The cities where people feel most satisfied in are Dutch Groningen, Polish Krakow and German Leipzig. The least satisfied are citizens of Turkish Instanbul, Italian Naples and Greek Athens. (This survey in detail can be found here.)

How honest are Prague people?

The researchers of Reader’s Digest conducted an experiment to find out how honest people in 32 cities in the world are. They “lost” 960 brand new mid-prized mobile phones in busy public spaces (30 phones in each city) to see how many phones would be returned.

The researchers observed the mobile phones from a distance by the researchers, rang them and waited. Passers-by either answered the phones, called to preset numbers programmed in the mobile phones or just kept the phones for themselves.

Prague scored eighth together with Helsinki, Budapest, Warsaw, Auckland and Zagreb. Only 7 mobile phones out of 30 were not handed back there. All but one mobile phones were returned in Ljubljana in Slovenia, only 13 mobile phones were handed back in Hong Kong and Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia. 654 mobiles were handed back in total.

The standard of living in the Czech Republic grows

According to the statistics of Eurostat, the Statistical Office of European Communities, the Czech Republic is getting closer to the standard of living of the older member states of the European Union.

Eurostat compared the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per inhabitant expressed in Purchasing Power Standards (PPS) in the EU countries. As the average of the EU27 is 100 PPS, the Czech Republic improve its rank from 74 PPS (26% below the average) in 2005 to 79 PPS (21% below the average) in 2006.

The GDP per person is the highest in Luxembourg (280 PPS), then in Ireland (144 PPS) and the Netherlands (131 PPS), the lowest GDP per person is in Poland (53 PPS), Romania (38 PPS) and Bulgaria (37 PPS).

The Czech Republic has more than 10.3 million inhabitants

The number of inhabitants of the Czech Republic grows – it is more than 10.3 million at the present time. It is caused especially by a growing number of immigrants, but also by a higher number of born children.

There are more born children, because the mothers were mostly born in the ´70s, the years of population boom in the former Czechoslovakia. However, the average number of born children is still very low – it is only 1.4 per one mother. That´s one of the lowest numbers in the world. According to demographers, the politicians are to blame for this situation, because they don´t support young families enough.

The growth of the population in the Czech Republic is therefore largely caused by immigrants. They are mostly from Ukraine, Vietnam and Slovakia.

Prague is more expensive than Miami

Mercer Human Resource Consulting published another annual Cost of Living Survey showing the most and the least expensive cities in the world. New York is the base city scoring 100 points, more expensive cities are ranked higher, less expensive cities got lower number. The survey compares cost of over 200 items, such as housing, food, transport, clothing, etc.

The most expensive city (out of 143 cities) remains Moscow (134.4p), London (126.3p) is in second position followed by Seoul (122.4p) and Tokyo (122.1). The less expensive city ranked in this survey is Asuncion (50p) in Paraguay.

Prague (85.6p) moved, thanks to strengthening of the Czech crown, to 49th position from the 50th in 2006. Our east neighbour Slovakia (89.2) climbed 17 places to 31st position. Such cities as Washington, Miami, Chicago, Zagreb, Budapest, Warsaw or Lisbon ranked even lower than Prague. Read more about the survey here.

The Czech Republic is a peaceful country

The magazine The Economist together with the Economist Intelligence Unit brought results of their Global Peace Index ranking 121 countries of the world from most peaceful to least peaceful.

The most peaceful country in the world is Norway followed by New Zealand, Denmark, Ireland and Japan. The least peaceful country is Iraq, a bit more peaceful are Sudan, Israel, Russia and Nigeria. See the complete list here.

The Czech Republic was ranked 13, which makes it one of the most peaceful countries of the world. The index took note of several factors – crime rates, prison population, trust between citizens, relations with neighbour states, arms sales, foreign troop deployments, and others.

Popular babies' names in Prague

Are you thinking of a suitable name for your baby? You can get some inspiration in the most popular names given now to babies born in Prague. The latest list of popular names was published by the Czech Statistical Office.

The most popular names in Prague are now Anna, Eliska and Tereza for girls and Jan, Jakub and Vojta for boys. In the list of the 10 most populars names are also female names Marie, Lucie, Ema or Adelka and male names Filip or Matej.

In the Czech Republic in general, the most popular female names are Tereza, Karolina and Natalie and male names Jan, Jakub and Tomas. Czech parents also chose some more exotic names, such as Nela, Vanesa, Adriana, Sofie or Flora, and Denis, Oliver, Sebastian, Tobias, Enrico or Nathan. Click here to see the calender with the classical Czech names. Read also about the Name Day in the Czech Republic.

Czech people like Tony Blair and the Slovaks

According to the survey of STEM agency, Czech people have the most positive attitute to the Slovak Republic, France and the Netherlands. ‘Good marks’ were given to the Slovak Republic by 83% of the respondents, to France and the Netherlands by 82% of the respondents.

These states are followed by Sweden and Denmark (80%) and Italy (76%). The least good marks were given to Serbia (36%), Russia (29%), Ukraine (27%) and China (24%). From the long-term view, the positive attitude of Czech people to other countries have a rising tendency.

Speeking about politicians, Czech people like British Prime Minister Tony Blair (67% of respondents with positive attitude), French President Jacques Chirac (65%) and German Chancellor Angela Merkel (62%). The least popular politicians are Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi (34%), Russian President Vladimir Putin (31%) and American President George W. Bush (29%).

Czech men are the second fattest in Europe

The European Association for the Study of Obesity (EASO) came with an interesting study showing what countries of the European Union have the most overweight men and women. The ‘fattest’ nation is Germany but Czech people are not so far behind in the rank. The thinnest Europeans live in Italy and France.

Czech men are in the second position from all the EU countries. 73.2 % of Czech men suffer from overweight or even obesity. Czech women are in the fourth position after women from Germany, United Kingdom and Cyprus. 57.6 % of Czech women suffer from overweight or obesity.

Doctors claim that overweight and obesity are caused by the lack of physical activities and excess of food. Both German and Czech people are known for their high consumption of beer that gives a lot of calories. Doctors are now discussing the problem on the 15th European Congress on Obesity in Budapest (22nd – 25th April 2007).

The most expensive offices are in the centre of Prague

According to the estate agency Cushman & Wakefield, the most expensive rents for an office in the Czech Republic are in the centre of Prague. An average rate for one square meter is 276 EUR. The most expensive offices can be found in London’s West End (2,009 EUR/m2).

The agency focused on 211 main office localities in 51 countries. The most expensive offices can be found in London’s West End (2,009 EUR/m2). The Czech Republic is 38th on the list. Low rents in Prague, comparing to other European cities, may be a good opportunity for foreign companies and investors.

Rents in Prague will probably grow, especially in the centre of the city and around Andel in Prague 5. Other towns attractive for their good location and even lower rents are Brno (180 – 210 EUR/m2), and Ostrava or Plzen (155 – 190 EUR/m2).

Prague is the third best place to live in the Czech Republic

MF DNES together with professors at Charles University made a unique survey about the best places to live in the Czech Republic. Some of the results were a bit suprising. The best regions to live are the regions around Pardubice and Rychlov nad Kneznou, Prague was ranked the third. The worst place for living is in the north of Bohemia.

Prague has the highest average salary, high pensions, low unemployment, many entrepreneurs and top medical care. On the other hand, flats and rents in Prague are very expensive, the air is polluted and there are relatively many criminals and drug addicts.

The quality of live in Czech regions was evaluated according to 50 criteria, such as average salary, rate of unemployment, infant mortality, prices of real properties, number of schools, sport institutions, etc.

Czech most popular names are Tereza and Jan

Czech calendar with names Czech people mostly chose names for their children from a Czech calender. The calender contains more or less one name on each day of the year. Czech people usually celebrate birthday and name day. Read more about name days in the Czech Republic.

According to the statistic, the most popular female names in the Czech Republic are now Tereza, Karolina, Natalie, Anna, and Eliska. The most popular male names are Jan, Jakub, Tomas, Adam, and Ondrej.

4,674 boys and 4351 girls were born in the first month of this year. 267 girls were called Tereza and 323 boys were called Jan (spoken variant of the name Jan is Honza). The most common surnames in the Czech Republic are Novak, Svoboda, Novotny, Dvorak, Cerny, Prochazka, and Kucera.

Are Czech people religious?

Czech Republic is known as a country with a low number of people who believe in god. The latest survey of STEM agency examined the truth of these world. The agency questioned 1222 people.

To the question whether they believe in god, 48% people responded negatively. Only 28% respondents said they believe. What about the rest? 24% of all respondents are mostly people without clearly specified faith.

Czech women believe in god more (36%) than men (20%). Faith in god is also present more among older people than younger. Also people living in Moravia or in small towns and villages under 5,000 inhabitants believe in god more. 80% of people who come from religious families, keep their faith. 84% people from atheist families won’t probably become religious in their lives.

Prague is the most expensive city in Central Europe

According to the survey Worldwide Cost of Living made by Economic Intelligence Unit organization, Prague stays the most expensive city in Central Europe. It was ranked 55th out of 132 assessed cities in the world.

Prague is more expensive than Lisbon in Portugal or Boston and Detroit in the USA. Prague is also the second most expensive city (after Moscow) from all post-Communist countries. The Czech capital is followed by Polish capital, Warsaw.

The most expensive cities are Oslo, Paris, Copenhagen, London and Tokio. The Economic Intelligence Unit advises to travellers on a budget to avoid Europe. In the top ten there are only two Asian cities, the rest are European ones. To learn more about the cost of living in cities around the world, click here