SMU car insurance in houston by jennyyingdi

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									          Programs in Dallas


               2007-2008




          Handbook




      International Liaison Office
Vice Presidency for International Affairs
       Tecnológico de Monterrey
             Dallas, Texas
                                                    Table of Contents
                                                           Acknowledgment
                      This information has been prepared in cooperation with the Tecnológico de Monterrey’s
                                 partner institution in Dallas, Texas, Southern Methodist University.


WELCOME ................................................................................................................................................................... 4

BEFORE YOU ARRIVE ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….....5
      Health Insurance and Passports ……………………………..………………………………………………….……5
      Temporary Housing Tips and Options ……………………………………………………………………………….5
      Using Apartment Locators ………………………………………………………………………………………….….6

WELCOME TO DALLAS ………………………………………………………………………………………….……………..7
     Website for Maps and Driving Directions …………………………………………………………….………………7
     SuperShuttle Transportation Service (If Arriving by Airplane) …………………………………….……………….7
     Taxi Transportation Services (If Arriving by Airplane) ………………………………………………………….…..7
     Finding the Right Apartment and Signing a Lease Agreement ………………………………………..................8
     Suggestions on Furnishing Your New Home ………………………………………………………………….…….8
     Alternative Housing Options …………………………………………………………………………………………10
     U.S. Telephone Calling Cards and Services ………………………………………………………………..……..10
     Public Transportation Authority: Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) ……………………………...………...…..12

OTHER HELPFUL INFORMATION …………………………………………………………………………………….……..13
      Mexican Consulate in the U.S. ……………………………………………………………………………...……….13
      Pizza and Other Food Delivery …………………………………………………………………………..………….13
      Dallas Visitors’ Bureau …………………………………………………………………………………………….....13
      Entertainment and Attractions Website ………………………………………………………………………….....13
      Cultural Shock ………………………………………………………………………………………………….……. 13
      Social Customs in the U.S. ………………………………………………………………………….……………… 14

SETTLING INTO YOUR NEW HOME ……………………………………………………………………………….………..17
       Banking in Dallas, Addison/Farmers Branch, and Irving ………………………………………….………………17
       Opening a Bank Account …………………………………………………………………………..………………...18
       Transferring Money from Your Bank at Home ……………………………………………….…………………... 19
       Credit Cards ………………………………………………………………………………………….………………. 19
       Debit Cards …………………………………………………………………………………………….…………….. 19
       ATMs ……………………………………………………………………………………………………..…………….19
       Safety at the ATM ……………………………………………………………………………………..……………...19
       Mail Facilities .…………………………………...……………………………………………………………..…….. 29
       Aquiring a CellPhone………………………………………………………………………………………………… 20
       Cable/ Internet Services………………………………………………………………………………………………21

SHOPPING IN THE DALLAS, ADDISON/FARMER’S BRANCH, AND IRVING AREAS ……………………..……....22
      Grocery Stores …………………………………………………………………………………………...……………22
      Pharmacies ……………………………………………………………………………………………….………….. 22
      Discount Stores ………………………………………………………………………………………….…………... 22
      Locksmith (If you lock your keys in your car) …………………………………………………………..…………. 23
      Garage Sales / Yard Sales …………………………………………………………………………….…………… 23
      Thrift Shops ………………………………………………………………………………………………...………… 23
      24-Hour Restaurants …………………………………………………………………………………….………….. 23
      Some Ethnic Grocers and Restaurants ………………………………………………………………...…………..23

WELCOME TO THE UNITED STATES .......................................................................................................................28
     Public Transportation, Autos and Driving in the US .......................................................................................28
     DART- (Dallas Area Rapid Transit) …………………………………………………………………………………28
     International Driver License ...........................................................................................................................28
     Out-of-Country Driver’s License ……………………………………………………………………………..……...28
     How to Obtain a Texas Driver’s License ........................................................................................................28
               Handbook …………………………………………………………………………………………….……..29



                                                                              Page 2 of 37
          Driving Permit ……………………………………………………………………………………….………29
          Driver’s License ………………………………………………………………………………….…………29
Texas Non-Driving Identification Card ...........................................................................................................30
Emergency Roadside Assistance ..................................................................................................................30
Drinking and Driving …...................................................................................................................................30
What to Do if Stopped by the Police ..............................................................................................................30
Automobile Accidents .....................................................................................................................................31
Safety..............................................................................................................................................................31
          General Safety Tips …………………………………………………………………………….………….31
          What to Do if You Lose Your Wallet or Purse …………………………………………….…………….32
          Identity Theft ……………………………………………………………………………….……………….32
          Phone Solicitation …………………………………………………………………………….…………….33
          Reporting Incidents ………………………………………………………………………….……………..33
          Sexual Assault and Acquaintance Rape ……………………………………………….………………..33
          Tips for Tornado Season ………………………………………………………………….……………….33
Health Care Treatment …………………………………………………………………………….…………...…….34
          Non-Emergency Illness or Injury ……………………………………………………….…………………34
          Emergency/Life Threatening Illness or Injury …………………………………….……………………..34
          Pharmacies ………………………………………………………………………….………………………34
Transportation Providers ………………..........................................................................................................34
Directions to Social Security Offices and BCIS …….......................................................................................35
Useful Telephone Numbers ………..………………..………………………………………….……………………36




                                                                   Page 3 of 37
WELCOME
Estimado estudiante:



Nos da mucho gusto saber que participaras en el programa de SMU en Dallas .

Esperamos que este manual te ayude a contar con información relevante para tu estancia en Dallas.

Te pedimos que lo leas antes de venir.

Estamos seguros que tu experiencia en este programa marcará de una forma positiva tu vida
personal y profesional.

Atentamente

Leticia Santos-Zamarripa

Directora
Oficina Internacional de Enlace
Vicerrectoría de Internacionalización
Tecnológico de Monterrey
Dallas, Tx




                                            Page 4 of 37
BEFORE YOU
ARRIVE
Health Insurance and Passports
Prior to your departure from Mexico to the U.S., we recommend that you:

    1.   Bring three (3) photocopies of your health insurance card/document, two (2) for your reference and one (1)
         for the Liaison’s office files (in case of an emergency)

    2.   Bring your passport as official documentation of your Mexican citizenship



Temporary Housing Tips and Options
There are many economical motels and hotels in the Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) area in which you may choose to stay.
Yet, the chain of motels called Motel 6 offers some of the most competitive and economical rates. Please keep in
mind that this motel is only a suggestion and that you may decide to make accomodations at any mote/hotel that you
wish.

Here are the addresses, phone numbers, and links of Motel 6 locations that can be reserved for the 2-3 days before
you successfully locate an apartment adequate to your needs. It is highly recommended that you book such a motel
room for 2-3 days during your apartment search and before signing any apartment lease contracts or beginning
your internship. This will cut down on your stress and enable you to fully situate yourself and your belongings prior to
the start of your professional experience.

Web Link to make Reservations On-line: http://www.motel6.com/reservations/index.asp

Telephone Number (from within the U.S.) for Reservations in Spanish:               1-877-467-7224

Sample Motel 6 Locations in Dallas. Addison/Farmers Branch, and Irving closest to your work sites:

DALLAS - ADDISON
4325 BELTLINE RD
Hwy. Locater: I-635 AT MIDWAY RD, EXIT #23
ADDISON, TX, USA, 75001
Ph. 972-386-4577

DALLAS NORTHEAST
10921 ESTATE LANE
Hwy. Locator: I-635 AT PLANO RD/KINGSLEY RD
DALLAS, TX, USA, 75238
214-340-2299

DALLAS - FOREST LANE
2660 FOREST LN
Hwy. Locator: I-635 AT JOSEY LN/DENTON DR
DALLAS, TX, USA, 75234
972-484-9111




                                                      Page 5 of 37
DALLAS - NORTHEAST
9801 ADLETA CT
Hwy. Locator: I-635 AT SKILLMAN ST, EXIT #16
DALLAS, TX, USA, 75243
214-342-5400

IRVING - DFW AIRPORT NORTH
7800 HEATHROW DR
Hwy. Locator: SR 114 AT ESTERS BLVD
IRVING, TX, USA, 75063
Ph. 972-915-3993



Using Apartment Locators
Apartment locators are entities that provide free services for helping you find your next apartment in the major
metropolitan areas of Texas (e.g., Dallas/Fort Worth, Austin, Houston, etc.). These locators will ask you questions
about where you prefer to live depending on your internship site, available transportation, etc., and will then give you
several options to choose from depending on the availability. They offer incentives, discounts, options for move-ins,
and help you locate your next home in a quick and efficient manner.

Please wait until you arrive in Dallas and see the apartment before signing a lease. Also, if you will not have a car,
you might want to find an apartment near a transportation authority (DART: Dallas Area Rapid Transit) and a grocery
store.

Here are two of the better-known providers of free apartment locating services in the DFW area:


1. DALLAS APARTMENT LOCATORS

Home Page Address:                            http://www.dfwapartmentguide.com/index.asp

E-mail Address for Information:               info@getmovedfree.com

Toll Free (within the U.S.):                  1 - 877 – 340 - 3733

2. FINDIT APARTMENT LOCATORS

Home Page Address:                            http://www.finditapartments.net/

E-mail Address for Information:               info@apartmentlocators.com

Toll Free (within the U.S.):                  1 - 800 - 435 – 7368


  Preston         17390 Preston Ste. 261         Ph. (972) 248-2224
  Location           Dallas, TX 75252            TF: 1-800-528-6524
                       Email Us at:              Fax (972) 248-4196
                  nancydungan@ev1.net


3. PROMOVE APARTMENT LOCATORS

Home Page Address:                            http://www.promove.com/dallas/

E-mail Address for Information:               todd@promove.com

Toll Free (within the U.S.):                  1 - 888 - 855 - 5565




                                                      Page 6 of 37
WELCOME TO
DALLAS
Website for Maps and Driving Directions                                             www.mapquest.com
Mapquest.com is a great internet tool that allows you to map out step-by-step directions and illustrative maps of your
destinations. Just type in the “from” and “to” locations and Mapquest will give you a print out of your driving directions
for your use. It’s that easy!



SuperShuttle Transportation Service (If Arriving by Airplane)
SuperShuttle Contact Information                         1-800-258-3826                       www.supershuttle.com

What to Do Upon Arrival At Airport
(DFW) After collecting your luggage, locate the 'Information Board/Phone at baggage claim, Press the appropriate
number for SuperShuttle. After giving your location (the terminal and section are on the phone) to the Guest Service
Representative/Dispatch, proceed upstairs and outside to the orange 'Shared Ride' area and look for the blue and
gold SuperShuttle van.

(DAL) Dallas Love Field. After collecting your luggage, locate the phone across from luggage carousel. Push button
marked 'SuperShuttle'.

Approximate Fares
                                               DFW               DAL

  Downtown Dallas                            $16 - $23         $17 - $19

  North Dallas                               $17 - $26         $20 - $23

  Arlington                                  $19 - $34         $34 - $48

  Downtown Ft. Worth                         $16 - $29         $38 - $43

  Plano                                      $28 - $35         $27 - $35

DFW - Each Additional Passenger $8 to residential areas.

DAL - Each Additional Passenger $9 to residential areas.

*All fares should be considered approximate & from a general area.
**All fares are subject to change without notice - call to confirm.



Taxi Transportation Services (If Arriving by Airplane)
(Taxis will be more expensive as a whole than the SuperShuttle service. Please call your desired taxi company for
sample fare rates and quotes.)




                                                       Page 7 of 37
Yellow Cab Taxi Company                        214-426-6262
Checker Taxi Company                           214-841-0000
Terminal Taxi Company                          214-678-9008



Finding the Right Apartment and Signing a Lease Agreement
One of the most important decisions a person makes is finding a place to live. If you are renting, you will sign a lease,
which is a legal obligation to live someplace and pay rent for a certain length of time (usually six months or a year).
There are very few exceptions in which a lease can be broken. Therefore, your rental home should be chosen with
great care.

Once you find a place where you want to live, you will be required to fill out a rental application. In most cases, you
will be charged a non-refundable application fee (approximately $25-$35). You will also be charged a security deposit
(which can range from approximately $100 - $250). The security deposit is refunded when you move out if you have
kept all of the terms of the lease and if you are not responsible for damage to the apartment. Normally, there is an
inspection period after you move out before the refund will be made. The following charges are normally deducted
from your deposit:


1. Damage whether intentional or accidental
2. Damage due to wear and tear resulting from negligence, carelessness, accident or abuse on your part
3. Unpaid rent or charges
4. Reasonable costs for cleaning if you fail to clean

Some apartments may ask you for your social security number before they rent you the apartment. Since you may
not have a social security number yet, they may require a second deposit as equity. The deposit for not having a
social security number may vary across apartment sites so please inquire with each desired location for more
information.

If you make a commitment to lease a property for a specific number of months, you are responsible to pay the
rent for the entire time even if you move out early. If you have a 12 month lease for an apartment which costs
$700 per month and you move out 3 months early, you will be charged $2100 for the months that you were not
in the property. There may also be additional penalties charged for breaking the lease.

Most disagreements between residents and property owners occur because of misunderstandings about the
obligations taken on by each party when an apartment is leased. The best way to avoid problems is to:

1. Read your lease carefully before signing
2. Ask questions about anything that is unclear
3. Make sure everything is in writing and signed including any agreements in addition to the standard lease
4. Make sure you have a copy of the lease and any additional agreements
5. Make sure that the names of all roommates are on the lease

It is illegal to disable a smoke detector or remove the battery from a smoke detector without replacing it. It the
responsibility of the renter to maintain smoke detector batteries. Any who disables a smoke detector may be
responsible for the damages in the case of a fire.



Suggestions on Furnishing Your New Home
1. Furniture (e.g., sofa, bed frames, etc.) may be rented at the following sites:

   Cort Furniture Rental
   http://www.cort1.com/resident/resident.htm

   You may rent furniture without visiting the showroom. All furniture is in good condition. On the website the
   smallest bed listed is a queen size bed. If you want it cheaper, just ask for a twin.

   Aaron Rents
   http://www.shopaarons.com/productslist.aspx?CategoryID=42



                                                       Page 8 of 37
2. Other options for purchasing home furnishings:

        Option #1: Bedz King

        Bedz King offers twin mattresses (without the box spring) starting from $48! And, for a charge of $45 per
        location drop-off, delivers in the DFW area within 24 hours of the order.

        Address:
        900 E. Copeland Rd, Suite 140, Arlington, Texas 76011
        Telephone: 817-261-1225
        Web-site: www.bedzking.com


        Option #2: COSTCO
        (A Membership is required to shop here. Please contact Yecenia Camarillo if you want to purchase your
        mattress or other items at COSTCO: yecenia.camarillo@student.utdallas.edu)

        Costco offers a set of two twin mattresses for approximately $300; please see the link below for a
        description of the items.

        Westie: www.costco.com

        Costco Locations:

              East Plano
              3800 N. Central Expressway
              Plano, Texas 75074
              West Plano
              1701 Dallas Pkwy
              Plano, Texas 75093
              Lewisville
              851 S. State Hwy 121
              Lewisville, Texas 75067


        Option #3: Super Target

        You can buy a junior sized sofa/sleeper for $100 at Super Target via their website: www.target.com

        To visit a Super Target location in the Dallas area for home furnishings, please see the list below.


           Dallas NE SuperTarget
        6419 Skillman St , Dallas, TX 75231-7109 USA
        Phone: (214) 348-0240
        Hours: Mon-Sat 8am to 10pm Sun 8am to 9pm


           Richardson Sq Mall SuperTarget
        601 S Plano Rd , Richardson, TX 75081-4512 USA
        Phone: (214) 530-0183
        Hours: Mon-Sat 8am to 10pm Sun 8am to 9pm


           North Dallas Coit Road SuperTarget
        16731 Coit Rd , Dallas, TX 75248-1750 USA
        Phone: (214) 775-0206
        Hours: Mon-Sat 8am to 10pm Sun 8am to 9pm




                                                     Page 9 of 37
Alternative Housing Options
An alternative to renting apartments is renting a suite. Suites offer the comfort of furnished rooms specifically for
those individuals needing extended stays without contracts, leases, or minimum stays. Most suites include
refrigerators, microwaves, telephone and internet services, bed(s), other furniture, and housekeeping services at no
extra charge. Please see the following two options for more information on prices, as some students have found
these suites to be their homes this semester.

   Extended Stay Deluxe
    http://www.extendedstayamerica.com/hotels/dallas-las-colinas.html

    Location
    5401 Green Park Drive
    Irving, TX 75038
    Tel: 972-751-0808

   StudioPlus Deluxe Studios
    http://www.studioplus.com/hotels/dallas-farmers-branch.html

    Location
    4022 Parkside Center Blvd.
    Farmers Branch, TX 75244
    Tel: 972-385-6006



U.S. Telephone Calling Cards and Services
Telephone Calling Cards
In some situations, you may need to make a long-distance call while you are not at home. The cost of using a
regular pay phone may be very expensive. A phone card is a good option in this case. Usually, there are two
types of phone cards:

1. Pre-paid phone cards: You can buy this card in places such as airports, 7-11, Super Target, grocery stores, and
   pharmacies. The cards have various face values. You can recharge the card when you have used all the value.
   You need a major credit card to do so. You may also discard the card and purchase a new one when the time is
   used.

2. Telephone company cards: Your long-distance service telephone company provides this card. Your long distance
   carrier may send you one. The company will issue a bill after you have used it. It is best to compare the prices of
   the cards mentioned in this section. There can be an extreme difference in the cost of the various choices.


Local Service
1. Find out what local telephone company serves the area in which you live. SBC (formerly Southwestern
   Bell) and AT&T service most Dallas areas. Verizon services some areas such as Plano, Garland and Irving.

2. Call the company’s customer service number to ask for telephone service: 1-800-464-7928 for SBC, 1-800-
   222-0300 for AT&T and 1-800-483-4400 for Verizon. All numbers beginning with 800 or 888 or 877 are toll
   free calls.

3. You will need to provide the following information to obtain telephone service: actual address, social security
   number, and date of birth.

4. Telephone companies may ask for a security deposit. This may be included in the first month’s bill or the
   company may ask you to pay it before you receive service.

5. The company will give you your new phone number.




                                                      Page 10 of 37
6. You will need to provide your own telephone set. This can be purchased at stores such as Super Target,
   Wal-Mart or Walgreens.

7. The operator may ask you to subscribe to some optional services like “Call Waiting,” “Three-way Calling,” and
   other features for an additional cost. Please read the details in front of the White Pages Phone Book and consider
   their real value before you decide which services, if any, to purchase.


Long-Distance Service
Unlike many other countries, it is necessary to select your own long-distance service provider in the U.S.

1. If you have already decided, simply tell your local telephone company which long distance service you want
    when you order your basic phone service.

2. If you are not sure and want to shop around, you can tell your local phone company to wait several weeks.
    There are numerous long distance providers in the U.S. Some companies from which to choose are Verizon,
    Sprint, T-Mobile, as well as a variety of smaller companies. You may make a long distance call
    without subscribing to a long distance service by dialing 10 10 8111 before the number. This will cost 5
    cents per minute for a call within the U.S.

3. Ask students from your home country about long distance providers that they are using. It is likely that they
   know about the best deals.

4. Call the companies listed above. They all have toll free numbers and usually have a website. Find out their
   current promotion activities, promotion period, rates for interstate long distance service and international
   calls to your home country (cents per minute), and restrictions such as which time of the day (for example,
   11:00 am to 6:00 am the next day) has the lowest fares for making such calls.

5. Notify the local phone company after you decide, or, in most cases, the long distance company will do the
   job for you.

6. You can change your long distance carrier anytime you want, but there may be a small charge for doing so.

7. To make a long distance call, dial 1 within the USA, then the area code, and the phone number (for example,
   1-412-689-2231)

8. For international calls, dial 011 first, then the country code, city code, and the phone number.

         One Individual’s Notes on His Experience:

         Getting a phone line can get you into a lot of problems. If you look at a phone company’s website, it seems
         that everything is free, but its not!

         The basic service for getting a dial tone is between $12 and $15. If you are making international calls, you
         have to get an international plan. This is between $3 and $5. In total all companies end up about $18 a
         month. Then you have to pay for activation. This fee for most companies is $54 (including activation and
         installation). You may be able to get a discount on that.


Pay Phones
There is a slight difference in some pay phones. The instructions will be on the phone. Normally, you insert 50 cents,
listen for a dial tone, and dial the area code and number. Dialing an 800 or 888 or 877 number on a pay phone is
free.


Additional Information Regarding Phone Services
1. Call slamming: This is a practice in which your long distance phone service is switched to a new company
   without your permission and notification. This is an illegal practice, but it happens. To prevent this, read



                                                      Page 11 of 37
   your phone bill every month and call the customer service number on your bill if you notice any unusual
   charges or rates that are different than you have been quoted.

2. Call fraud: You may receive a call to verify some personal information. The caller may claim to be calling
   from your bank or credit card company, or the phone company. DO NOT answer or provide any personal
   information over the phone to such callers. If you have a question, call your credit card company or bank
   yourself and ask them if they have been trying to reach you. Call the police at 911 if you receive a call that
   seems life threatening or makes you feel that you are in extreme danger.


Public Transportation Authority: Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART)                                      www.dart.org

The DART is the most widely used method of public transportation. It consists of both rail and bus services for a low
price (a few dollars a day). Please visit the following DART Websites for useful information on the cost of passes,
specific fares to and from your home and work, and other useful information.


       DART Maps
        http://www.dart.org/maps.asp

       DART System
        http://www.dart.org/




                                                      Page 12 of 37
OTHER HELPFUL
INFORMATION
Mexican Consulate in the U.S.                                   www.consulmexdallas.com

Pizza and Other Food Delivery
It is customary to tip the delivery person 10%. When you call, ask them if they deliver to your area.

Downtown Dallas and Nearby Locations
Domino’s Pizza                                214-361-0200                4601 Greenville Ave.
Campisi’s                                     214-350-2595                5360 West Lover’s Lane #205
Papa John’s Pizza                             214-821-3600                4127 Greenville Ave.
Sagno’s                                       214-522-4646                5214 East Mockingbird Lane
Roly Poly                                     214-363-0522                3038 Mockingbird Lane
The Original Panda’s                          214-360-0700                10455 North Central Expressway
Jason’s Deli                                  214-821-7021                5400 East Mockingbird Lane

Addison/Farmers Branch
Papa John’s Pizza                             972-241-8585                3717 Forest Lane
Domino’s Pizza                                972-243-1010                13260 Josey Lane, Ste. 117
May Dragon Chinese Restaurant                 972-392-9998                4848 Belt Line Rd.

Irving
Domino’s Pizza                                972-986-1747                222 N Story Rd, Ste 118
Jason’s Deli                                  214-904-8200                10220 Technology Blvd. East
Lite Wok                                      972-255-9988                3414 W. Rochelle Rd.


Dallas Visitors’ Bureau (Fun Things to Do in Dallas)
cityview.com/dallas                           info@dallascvb.com                   214-746-6679 – 24 hours a day
www.visitdallas.com                           www.visitdallas-fortworth.com



Entertainment and Attractions Website                                              www.guidelive.com
Listings of movies, musical performances, concerts, attractions, art shows, restaurants, festivals, etc…



Cultural Shock
Cultural Shock is psychological disorientation due to being in a new culture. Broadly speaking, culture shock comes
from:
living, studying or working for an extended period of time in a different environment
having values that you held to be absolute brought into question because of cultural differences
being constantly put into situations where you are expected to function with maximum proficiency but where the
     rules have not been adequately explained.

As the above suggests, culture shock does not result from a specific event. Rather, it builds slowly from a




                                                     Page 13 of 37
series of small events often difficult to identify. Remember that the reactions are emotional and not easily
subject to rational management.

The four stages of cultural shock are:
initial euphoria
irritability and hostility
gradual adjustment
adaptation or bi-culturalism.

A person with culture shock may experience some of these symptoms:
homesickness
boredom
withdrawal (i.e., spending excessive amounts of time alone; avoiding contact with host nationals)
need for excessive amounts of sleep
compulsive eating and/or drinking
irritability
chauvinistic excesses
stereotyping of and hostility toward host nationals
loss of ability to work effectively
physical ailments.

Dealing With Culture Shock
There are several steps one can take to deal with culture shock.
Recognize the causes and symptoms of culture shock.
Replace what you miss with something from the host culture.
Nurture friendships with host nationals.
Talk both to host nationals and other internationals about your stress.
Keep your sense of humor. Recognize that anxiety is normal, and that you must be open, take risks and laugh at
    your mistakes.
Suspend negative judgments about the host culture. Give people another chance.
Be honest. If you are confused or misunderstood, admit it instead of pretending that the situation is fine.
Become actively involved in your new environment.
Spend time with people who are positive about the host culture and other aspects of life.
Look for logical reasons behind things that seem strange, confusing or threatening.
Have faith in yourself, the essential good will of your host employers, and the positive outcome of your experience.
Be open-minded. It is natural that people’s habits in the USA are different from those in your home country.
    There is no need to worry. You will get acclimated.



Social Customs in the United States
Americans, like all people, have unique social customs. A few are discussed below, but it is impossible to list them all.
By observing Americans and asking questions, you can learn about others.

Invitations
Americans make statements such as “You must come to see us” or “See you later”. This kind of friendly
statement is not necessarily an invitation. An invitation specifies a time, date and place. It is polite to respond to an
invitation with either “yes” or “no”. A “yes” answer requires you to attend unless you call to cancel. You can always
decline an invitation from your hosts; it is polite to say “no” or “no, thank you”. If you find you must cancel a meeting
or social engagement, inform your host as early as possible. It is considered impolite to accept an invitation and not
go.

Directness and Assertiveness
Americans would rather be told “no” when they give an invitation than to be told “yes” if the “yes” is not sincere or not
certain. If a person is too busy studying to accept an invitation or if a person does not want to accept an invitation, an
American would rather understand clearly that the response is “no”. Americans are direct in their conversations.
When talking to someone about something they don’t like, they may call it “constructive” criticism. Many Americans
do not think it is necessary to cover their negative feelings. Being honest in communication is often given more value
than preserving harmony in a relationship. Being assertive in expressing opinions or making requests is considered



                                                       Page 14 of 37
acceptable and even necessary, but being too “pushy” or aggressive is not. Distinguishing the fine line here is difficult
even for Americans.

Achievement Orientation
Achievement, progress and accomplishments are highly valued by Americans. Sometimes this seems to
diminish their value of sitting and talking and building relationships. Americans tend to identify themselves by their
work. It is common when meeting a new acquaintance to ask, “What do you do?” Even in leisure time, Americans
seem to constantly be pursuing activity and achievement.

Time
Americans tend to place more emphasis on punctuality than do people in many other places. You are expected to be
ready at the time agreed upon if someone is picking you up at your residence. When invited to someone’s home, you
are expected to arrive within five or ten minutes after the scheduled time, but never before that time.

When you plan to meet someone at a restaurant, theater or some other place where reservations have been made, it
is important to arrive at the time agreed upon. Many Americans feel that arriving late for social events or
appointments indicates a lack of respect for the person who is kept waiting. Americans will usually be on time for
meetings and engagements and will keep a schedule of their activities and expect others to do the same. Americans
seem to put everything on a calendar because forgetting an appointment is very serious to them. In meetings and
professional encounters being organized is highly valued, whereas “wasting time” in “idle” conversation is not.

Dress
Everyday dress is appropriate for most visits to peoples’ homes. You may want to dress more formally when
attending a holiday dinner or cultural event, such as a symphony concert or a theater performance. If you are
uncertain about what to wear, ask your host.

Individualism and Privacy
Americans place high significance on independence and responsibility. They often spend less time with family and
act more independently of family. This perspective can lead to a seeming lack of respect for parents and older
people, although parents and family are cherished by most Americans. As well as valuing individualism, Americans
place more importance on privacy than some cultures. This can be seen in giving each child a separate bedroom,
and expecting even close friends to phone first before coming by their home for a visit.




Introduction and Greeting
It is proper to shake hands with everyone to whom you are introduced, both men and women. An appropriate
response to an introduction is “I am happy to meet you.” If you want to introduce yourself to someone, extend your
hand for a handshake and say, “Hello, I am....”. Some Americans greet each other with a hug, if they are well
acquainted. If you do not wish to be hugged, extend your hand quickly for a handshake. Please be aware that your
culture may also consider a kiss on the cheek as a traditional way of greeting people. In the U.S., this
custom is sometimes not well-received as it may inhibit on someone’s personal space or offend them. To
play it safe, stick with a formal shake of the hand when first meeting.

Dining Customs
When you accept a dinner invitation, tell your host if you have any dietary restrictions. He or she will want to plan a
meal that you can enjoy. Cocktails or other beverages may be served before dinner. It is not necessary to accept an
alcoholic drink if you do not want one. You can always ask for fruit juice or a soft drink.

The evening meal is the main meal of the day in most parts of the United States. This is a time for family
members, including children, to be together and talk about topics of interest. Guests are encouraged to join in these
conversations.

Food may be served in one of several ways: “family style,” by passing the serving plates from one to another around
the dining table; “buffet style,” with guests serving themselves at the buffet; and “serving style,” with the host filling
each plate and passing it to each person. Guests usually wait until everyone at their table has been served before
they begin to eat. Hands may be used to eat foods such as hamburgers, raw fruit, fried chicken and sandwiches.




                                                      Page 15 of 37
It is all right to say “No, thank you” when you are offered a second serving of food. Accept more food if you want it,
however, as the offer might not be repeated. Most Americans think it is impolite to insist that people have more food
after they have refused a second serving. Eating all of the food indicates you have enjoyed the meal; it does not
indicate that more food should be served.

Thank You
It is not necessary to take a gift when you are invited to dinner. However, you may wish to present a small,
inexpensive gift to your hosts on special occasions or when staying overnight in their home. (A small item you
brought from home can be a pleasant surprise to hosts.) At the conclusion of a visit, thank the host and hostess for
their hospitality. A written thank-you note sent a few days after your visit is always appreciated.

Goodbye
Dinner guests usually stay for an hour or two of conversation or other activity after the meal is finished. If your host is
driving you home, he or she may suggest a time for leaving. In larger groups, it is not necessary to say good-bye to
everyone before leaving but of course you will want to locate your host and hostess to tell them good-bye and thank
them.




                                                       Page 16 of 37
SETTLING INTO
YOUR NEW HOME
Banking in Dallas, Addison/Farmers Branch and Irving
TO CASH A CHECK YOU MUST HAVE VALID U.S. IDENTIFICATION, A TEXAS DRIVER’S LICENSE, OR A
TEXAS NON-DRIVING IDENTIFICATION CARD (FOR MORE ON THIS, PLEASE REFER TO PP. 25-26.)

Bank of America 214-987-3658
6901 Hillcrest Avenue 214-987-3453
Dallas, TX 75205 214-987-9528 fax
Lobby Hours: Monday - Thursday 9:00 am - 4:00 pm;
Friday 9:00 am - 6:00 pm
Drive through bank Monday-Friday 7:30 am-6:00 pm

Bank One 972-647-1111
2900 Mockingbird Lane 214-265-0142 fax
Dallas, TX 75205
Lobby Hours: Monday - Thursday 9:00 am - 4:00 pm;
Friday 9:00 am-6:00 pm, Saturday 9:00 am - 1:00 pm
Drive through bank Mon-Fri 7:00 am-6:00 pm, Sat 9:00 am-1:00 pm

Chase Bank of Texas, N.A. 214-360-3170
6517 Hillcrest Avenue 214-360-3113 fax
Dallas, TX 75205 1-800-235-8522 service line
Lobby Hours: Monday - Thursday 9:00 am - 4:00 pm;
Friday 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Drive up bank Mon-Fri 7:00 am-6:00 pm, Sat 9:00 am-1:00 pm

Wells Fargo 214-692-8193
5809 E. Lovers Lane (inside the Tom Thumb grocery store) 214-696-0160 fax
Dallas, TX 75206 1-800-869-3557 customer service
Hours: Monday - Saturday 9:00 am - 7:00 pm;
Sunday 11:00 am - 3:00 pm



Addison/Farmers Branch
Bank of America 972-416-1616
1101 S Josey Ln
Carrollton, TX 75006-7320
Lobby Hours: Monday - Thursday 9:00 am - 4:00 pm;
Friday 9:00 am - 6:00 pm
Drive through bank Monday-Friday 7:30 am-6:00 pm

Wells Fargo 972-277-3700
3939 Belt Line Rd
Addison, TX 75001-4323
Hours: Monday - Saturday 9:00 am - 7:00 pm;
Sunday 11:00 am - 3:00 pm




                                                 Page 17 of 37
Irving
Bank of America 972- 506-5059
225 E John Carpenter Fwy
Irving, TX 75062-2200
Lobby Hours: Monday - Thursday 9:00 am - 4:00 pm;
Friday 9:00 am - 6:00 pm
Drive through bank Monday-Friday 7:30 am-6:00 pm

Wells Fargo Bank 972-255-2129
3535 N Belt Line Rd
Irving, TX 75062-7804
Hours: Monday - Saturday 9:00 am - 7:00 pm;
Sunday 11:00 am - 3:00 pm



Opening a Bank Account
YOU WILL NEED TO HAVE YOUR PASSPORT AND A TEXAS NON-DRIVING IDENTIFICATION CARD WITH
YOU TO OPEN AN ACCOUNT. (PLEASE REFER TO PAGE 26 FOR PROCEDURES ON APPLYING FOR A
TEXAS NON-DRIVING IDENTIFICATION CARD.)

To open any kind of bank account, talk to a customer service representative at the bank that is most convenient for
you. You do not need an appointment. The customer service representative will explain the types of accounts that are
available and will help you to open one. Your business is important to the bank, so ask questions about anything you
do not understand. You can ask the customer service representative for a service fee schedule so that you will have
information about the costs of various accounts. You will need to have your passport and your identification card with
you to open an account. You will be asked for your social security number. Make sure the bank knows that you are
not a U.S. citizen and that they give you a W-8 form. This form will exempt you from having to pay federal income tax
on the interest in your account.

There are different types of checking accounts: some even pay interest on your money, while others offer free ATM
or check cards. The type of account you will need depends on how many checks you write each month and the
amount of money you are able to keep in the account. Discuss the options with the customer service representative
and determine which type of account best meets your needs. It is very important to keep an accurate record of your
deposits and of each check written, because there are penalty fees if you do not have enough money to cover the
checks that you write. Each month the bank will send you a statement of your account, and you should make sure
that your records agree with the bank’s records.

Savings accounts are a safe way to invest your money. With a savings account, you can withdraw money whenever
you need it, and you can transfer money between saving and checking accounts. Most banks also offer money
market accounts and savings certificates that offer higher rates of interest. These certificate accounts have specific
minimum deposits, and the money must stay in the account for certain periods of time. If your monthly balance is
lower than the required minimum balance, the bank will charge you a certain amount of penalty fee. For large
amounts of money, you may inquire about a money market index account. Each bank has its own policies on the
various types of accounts.



Transferring Money from Your Bank at Home
It is possible to transfer money from your bank in your country to your bank in the United States. In order to do this
you need to know the address of the U.S. bank, the routing number of the U.S. bank (you can get this from the
customer service representative at the bank), and the account number to which you are transferring the money. You
will also need to check with your bank back home for any other procedures you need to follow.



Credit Cards


                                                     Page 18 of 37
You may want to apply for a bank credit card. You need to have a satisfactory “credit rating” in the United States in
order to get one of these cards, so they can be difficult to obtain when you first arrive.

By using these cards you receive a monthly bill for your purchases. It is important to pay the total bill by the date on
the statement. Otherwise, you will be charged interest (usually between 14% and 21%). Many credit card services
also charge a yearly fee. You should check the amount and select the card with the lowest annual fee and lowest
monthly interest rate. The most common bankcards are VISA, MasterCard and American Express, and they can be
used in most stores, restaurants and hotels.



Debit Cards
Debit cards are becoming more and more popular in the USA. They look much like the ATM cards and enable
customers to pay for purchases with money from their checking account without using checks. Cards branded with
MasterCard or Visa logos can be used wherever merchants accept major credit cards. Others require personal
identification numbers and can only be used at specified debit terminals, such as those found on gas pumps and in
grocery store checkout lanes. Debit cards are not as protected as credit cards in the event of theft.
ATMs
Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) are a computerized service through which bank customers can make deposits or
withdrawals, or transfer money from one account to another at any time of the day or night. They are located in
banks, some supermarkets, some gas stations and some shopping centers. You will need a plastic card (called an
ATM Card, a Cash Card, or an Instant Access Card) that is provided by your bank, along with a personalized
identification number (PIN). This is a four-digit number of your choosing which is kept secret. Never give your PIN
number to anyone, and do not write it down on or near your ATM card.

Instructions for operating the ATM are on the ATM machine. The person who opens your account can also show you
how to use the ATM. If you use ATM machines other than those in which your bank participates, you will be charged
a fee.



Safety at the ATM
ATMs are very convenient, but please be aware of the following:
1. Keep your Personal Identification Number (PIN) secret. It is best to memorize your PIN, but if you must carry it with
   you, keep it in a different place from your ATM card.
2. Don’t concentrate solely on the ATM screen. Be aware of your total surroundings at or near the ATM and cancel
   your transaction at the first sign of suspicious activity. Use an ATM with good lighting.
3. If you have already started a transaction and notice something suspicious, cancel the transaction and leave the
   ATM immediately.
4. Trust your intuition. If you have a doubt about the location, activity, the machine itself, or people nearby, bypass
   that machine and find another.


Mail Facilities
United States Post Office
There is a United States Post Office on the southwest corner of Lovers Lane and Greenville Avenue. This post office
is open from 8:30 am to 6:00 pm Monday through Friday; 8:30 am to 3:00 pm on Saturday; it is closed on Sunday.
This post office will send mail through the US postal system only.

For other locations near your home, information about zip codes, mailing rates, and post office hours please visit
www.usps.com. The USPS (United States Postal Service) may be reached 24 hours a day 7 days a week via toll
free number 1-800-275-8777.

Private Facilities
Private businesses exist where you can mail items via FedEx (Federal Express), UPS (United Parcel Service) and
the United States postal service.




                                                      Page 19 of 37
Aquiring a CellPhone
There are many options available for incoming temporary students/interns that could be used in your stay in the
Dallas/Ft.Worth Area. Most cellphone companies have different types of plans available and you can find whichever
fits your needs.

However the most popular options between temporary students are:

   Prepaid calling Services
   Plans
   Walkie Talkies

Where to buy these plans or cellphones?

The most popular and cheapest option is Wal-mart where the price for prepaid cell phones including telephone cards
range between $30-$40.

However in any nearby mall or shopping center there are always many distributors for the different cellphone
comapanies, To find the nearest distributor please look it up in their webpages:


Sprint/Nextel
http://www.nextel.com/

Tips: Good Service, Expensive, Great Coverage, Can use Walkie Talkie Service of Nextel that with an international
plan ($10 extra) can reach to Mexico and all over Latin America and have unlimited time.

Verizon
http://www.verizon.com/
Tips: Great Coverage, Average cost.

TMobile
http://www.t-mobile.com/
Tips: Few Plans, Average Cost, Great Service.


ATT/ Cingular
http://www.wireless.att.com/home/
Tips: Many different plans, Coverage everywhere, Expensive.

Alltel
http://www.alltel.com/
Tips: Great Local Plan, Cheap, Below Average Coverage



CABLE\INTERNET SERVICES
Most students today find it extremely important to acquire internet services to get in touch with families, do Homework
or do some Work.

Our recommendation for the quickest and cheapest services is:

TIME WARNER CABLE

Which has a variety of options available and fairly quick response time to setup your internet and/or Cable services in
your home.




                                                     Page 20 of 37
There are no contracts, just a quick installation fee that ranges between $10-$20 and a montly payment that range
sbetween $30-$90, depending on your plan.

Some good available packages are the bundle packages that includes: Road Runner High Speed Online Internet
service (8MB, Modem and Installation) and Time Warner Cable (Standard Channel Lineup) that will cost you 59.99 a
month (Prices Vary depending time).

Call : 972-PICKTWC (972-742-5892)
Sales and Customer Service phone lines are open:
Mon – Fri 8:00am – 9:00pm
Sat – Sun 8:00am – 8:00pm

Or Visit their webpage:

http://www.timewarnercable.com/Dallas/




                                                    Page 21 of 37
SHOPPING IN THE
DALLAS AREA
The Yellow Pages phone book lists businesses alphabetically by category. The Yellow Pages are a wonderful
resource. This list is not meant to be all-inclusive. Remember that in most of the Dallas-Fort Worth area there is a
sales tax of 8.25%, which is added to the price of an item.
Grocery Stores
Dallas Area
Kroger 214- 826-2901
Mockingbird at Greenville
Open 24 hours

Tom Thumb 214- 750-3200
Greenville at Lovers Lane
Open 24 hours

Fiesta 214- 887-3000
5334 Ross Avenue
Open 7:00 am – 12 midnight

Addison/Farmers Branch
Albertsons Supermarkets
(972) 241-0531
13100 Josey LN
Dallas, TX 75234

Tom Thumb Food & Pharmacy
(972) 241-7442
(972) 241-4426
3757 Forest LN
Dallas, TX 75244

Irving
Tom Thumb Food & Pharmacy: Grocery
(817) 481-5669
302 S Park Blvd
Grapevine, TX 76051

Albertsons Supermarkets
(972) 556-1332
(972) 556-0026
7730 N MacArthur Blvd
Irving, TX 75063



Pharmacies
CVS 24 Hour Pharmacy: (214) 887-6955




                                                     Page 22 of 37
6120 EAST MOCKINGBIRD LANE
DALLAS, TX 75214

For other pharmacy locations in Addison/Farmers Branch and Irving, please refer to page 30.



Discount Stores in the Dallas Area and Nearby
(Stores in areas other than Dallas are mentioned on page 9.)

Sam’s Wholesale Club 214- 373-3058
Membership required, grocery items included
8282 Park Lane at Greenville

Target 214- 361-2026
212 Medallion Center (Skillman and Northwest Highway)

Wal-Mart 972- 417-9146
North Central Expressway (75) at Spring Creek (north of I-635)

Super Target 214- 348-0240
Skillman and Abrams; groceries included

Target 214- 826-0331
City Place Location (Southeast corner of Haskell and Central Expressway)
can be reached via DART train

Dollar Tree 214- 370 5261
370 Hillside Village (northeast corner of Mockingbird and Abrams)
All items $1.00
Monday - Saturday 9:00 am-9:00 pm Sunday 12 noon-6:00 pm



Locksmith
Auto Lock Doc 214-969-0040
24 hour mobile service for lockouts, lost car keys, etc.



Garage Sales / Yard Sales
When people clean house and decide they have too many things or when they need some extra money and decide to
sell household belongings, they put their belongings in their garage, driveway or yard and have a sale.
You never know what you will find: clothes, dishes, radios, bikes, books, etc. The prices are always negotiable.

How to find a garage or yard sale:
1. Look in classified section of the Dallas Morning News. Garage sales are in the classified section “LO2”.
2. Check the date of the sale, the hours, and the address.
3. Check out the Dallas Morning News web-site for other information on sales: www.classifieds.dallasnews.com
4. The Highland Park United Methodist Church on the corner of Mockingbird and Hillcrest holds a large garage sale
   every year, usually in November.

*Be careful and skeptical when buying appliances at these sales.


Thrift Shops
These shops sell used merchandise: clothing, household items and some furniture. The conditions of these items
may vary.

Salvation Army 214- 630-5611




                                                      Page 23 of 37
5554 Harry Hines at Inwood

Goodwill Stores 214- 824-4351
1606 Greenville Avenue



24-Hour Restaurants In the Dallas Area and Nearby
Café Brazil 214- 691-7791
6420 N. Central Expressway at Yale

IHOP (International House of Pancakes) 214- 824-5300
4040 Abrams Road at Mockingbird




Some Ethnic Grocers and Restaurants in Dallas and Nearby
African Grocers
Africana International Food and Fashion
1788 W. Irving Blvd., Irving (817) 265-4150

African Restaurants
Abyssinia
7015 Greenville, Dallas 214- 691-0033

Dallul
2515 Inwood, Dallas 214- 353-0805

Queen of Sheba
3527 McKinney, Dallas 214- 521-0491

Safari Book and Coffee Company
204 Mandalay Canal, Irving 972- 432-9402

Asian Grocers
Binh Minh Market
4823 Bryan Street, Dallas 214- 826-2921

Din Hao Market
323 E. Polk Street, Richardson 972- 644-1980

Dong Yang Market
727 N. Belt Line Rd., Irving 972- 399-9898
Han Yang Supermarket
4460 W. Walnut St., No. 130, Garland 972- 276-9444

India Grocers
15 Richardson Heights, Richardson 972- 234-8051

India Imports
307 W. Airport Freeway, Irving 972- 438-6865

Kazy’s Gourmet
9256 Markville Dr., Dallas 972- 235-4831

Nanami Japanese Gourmet Market
17721 Dallas Parkway, Suite 104, Dallas 75287 972- 818-1488

Siam Grocers



                                                  Page 24 of 37
2636 N. Fitzhugh, Dallas 214- 823-8676

Taj MahaI Imports
26 Richardson Heights, Richardson 972- 644-1329

Vietnam Plaza Supermarket
230 S. Nursey Rd., Irving 972- 721-7032

Viet Tofu
3555 W. Walnut #203, Garland 972- 272-3685

Vietnam Plaza Supermarket
230 S. Nursey Rd., Irving 972- 721-7032

Asian Restaurants
Akbar Indian Restaurant
301 W. Parker, Plano 972- 423-3007
Bangkok City
4303 Greenville, Dallas 214- 691-8233

Edo-Ya
232 Farmers Branch Shopping Center, Dallas 75234 972- 247-0393

General China
1920 Skillman Street, Dallas 214- 827-3688

General Joe’s Chopstix
3018 Mockingbird Ln., Dallas 214- 369-6168

Haveli
1820 Valley View Ln, Irving 972- 313-0144

India Palace Restaurant and Bar
12817 Preston Rd., Dallas 972- 392-0190

Ino Japanese Bistro
1920 N. Coit #250, Richardson 972- 889-3200

Madina Restaurant (Pakistani and Halaal)
850 S. Greenville #110, Richardson 972- 783-9445

Ming Garden
1442 Preston Forest Square, Dallas 972- 239-1022


Panda’s
3406 McFarlin, University Park 214- 526-3333

Patel Brothers
104 Inge, Irving 972- 644-3972

Sushi on McKinney
4500 Mc Kinney Ave., Dallas 75205 214- 521-0969
Sushi Sake
220 W. Campbell Rd., Richardson 75080 972- 470-0722

Taj Express
4436 Lemmon, Dallas 214 –528 - 0200

Taj Mahal
10455 N. Central Expressway, #120, Dallas 214-692-0535




                                                   Page 25 of 37
UdipiCafé
35 Richardson Heights Shopping Center, Richardson 972- 437-2858

European Grocers
European Market and Deli
11613 North Central Expressway (75) 214- 696-5441

Kuby’s Restaurant and Grocery Store
6601 Snider Plaza, Dallas 214- 363-2231

European Restaurants
Addison Café-French Bistro
5290 Belt Line, Addison 972- 503-8100

Barclays, the Restaurant
2917 Fairmount, Dallas 214- 855-0700

Bavaria Grill
221 West Parker Rd., Plano 972- 881-0705

Café Athenee
5365 Spring Valley Rd., Dallas 972- 239-8060

Café Madrid
4501 Travis, Dallas 214- 528-1731

Euro Deli
670 N. Coit Rd., Dallas 972- 234-8052


Kuby’s Restaurant
6601 Snider Plaza, Dallas 214- 363-2231

La Madeleine
3027 Mockingbird Ln., Dallas 214- 696-0800

Liza’s Russian Cuisine
7515 Campbell, suite 606, Richardson 972- 248-2246

The Londoner
4291 Beltline, Addison 972- 458-2444

Wooden Spoon Scandinavian
1617 Avenue K, Plano 972- 424-6867

Latin Grocers
Fresh & tender Internacional Grocery
Floyd Rd. at Central Expressway, Richardson 972- 644-7224

Hernandez Mexican Foods
2120 Alamo, Dallas 214- 742-2533

Latin Restaurants
Brazil Brasileiro
215 E. Airport Freeway, Irving 972- 594-8894

Dallas Tortilla and Tamale Factory
1418 Greenville Ave, Dallas 214- 821-8854

Gloria’s (Mexican and Honduran Food, also live salsa and merengue entertainment on Fridays and Saturdays)
5100 Belt Line Road, Addison 972-387-8442
3715 Greenville Avenue 214- 874-0088



                                                  Page 26 of 37
600 W Davis St., Dallas 214- 553-9222

On the Border
3130 Knox Street, Dallas 214- 528-5900

Middle Eastern Grocers
Izmir Market and Deli
3607 Greenville Ave., Dallas 214- 824-8484

Kohinoor Grocery Store (halaal meat)
850 S. Greenville #116, Richardson 972- 994-9361

Salam Import Co. (halaal meat)
214 E. Spring Valley, Richardson 972- 235-4846

World Food Imports
13434 Floyd Cir., Richardson 972- 480-9911
Worldwide Food Inc.
1907 Greenville Ave., Dallas 214- 824-8860

Middle Eastern Restaurants
Ali Baba Café
1905 Greenville Ave., Dallas 214- 823-8235

Basha Restaurant
2217 Greenville Ave., Dallas 214- 824-7794

Café Istanbul
5450 W. Lovers Lane, Suite 222,Dallas 214- 902-0919
Café Izmir
3711 Greenville Ave., Dallas 214- 826-7788

Food from Galilee
6710 Snider Plaza, Dallas 214- 750-0330

Haji Deli
4621 West Park #108, Plano 972- 769-7669

Hedary’s Oven and Grill
7915 Belt Line Rd., Plano 972- 233-1080

Kostas Café
4914 Greenville Ave., Dallas 214- 987-3225

Tex-Mex Restaurants
Mi Cocina
13350 Dallas Pkwy Ste 100, Dallas 972-239-6426

Mi Cocina
7750 N. MacArthur Blvd., Irving - 469-621-0451

Chipotle
3771 Belt Line Rd. Addison 972-243-9088




                                                   Page 27 of 37
WELCOME TO
THE UNITED STATES
Public Transportation, Autos and Driving

DART (Dallas Area Rapid Transit)
The public transportation in Dallas (DART- Dallas Area Rapid Transit) includes trains and buses. You may call the
DART route and schedule number for specific questions: 214- 979-1111, otherwise, please refer to page 12.



International Driver’s License
he National Association of Foreign Student Advisors states that, according to American law, if the visiting tourist
accepts a job or attends school in the U.S. he/she then loses tourist status and will be required within thirty days of
arrival to obtain a Texas driver’s license.



Out-of-Country Driver’s License
How long can I drive with an out-of-country driver license?

Generally, a person 18 to 75 years of age with a valid out-of-country driver license in their possession may drive a
private, non-commercial motor vehicle in the State of Texas for up to one year from date of entry into the United
States, if their home country has reciprocity with the U.S. In order to check for reciprocity agreement status, click on
Reciprocity In Driver Licensing or you may contact License Issuance at (512) 424-5089 or by e-mail at
license.issuance@txdps.state.tx.us. 37 Texas Administrative Code 15.91. Currently, Mexico has reciprocity with the
U.S., so a Texas Driver License is not necessary for short-term stays. If, however, you would like to obtain a Texas
Driver’s License, then the following information will help you do so.



How to Obtain a Texas Driver's License
In the United States, it is mandatory to have a driver’s license for the state in which you live (or the country where you
permanently reside—Mexico). Any time you are driving, you must be in possession of your driver’s license and proof
of insurance.

There are many Department of Public Safety (DPS) offices where you may obtain a driving permit or a driver’s
license.

         DPS 11411 East Northwest Highway, Suite 111, Dallas (the northeast corner of Jupiter and Northwest
         Highway, in the Loehmann’s Plaza shopping center, east of the Loehmann’s store back in a courtyard)
         214- 553-0033 Hours: Monday – Friday 7:00 am-5:00 pm

         DPS 350 West I-30, Garland 214- 861-2125

         DPS 2109 West Parker Road, #224, Plano 972- 867-4221

When you need to renew your driver’s license or Texas non-driving identification card, you may visit any DPS
office. You may also visit: DPS City Hall, Dallas 1500 Marilla Street, 214- 651-1859; for renewals only.



                                                      Page 28 of 37
Handbook
The Texas Department of Public Safety publishes a handbook on Texas driving laws and traffic signals which should
be studied before applying for a driving permit or license. This handbook is now available in pdf format for download
at the following web link: http://www.txdps.state.tx.us/ftp/forms/DLhandbook.pdf



Driving Permit
Allows permit holder to drive while a licensed driver is accompanying him/her in the front seat. This is valid for a
limited period only. This permit will expire on your next birthday regardless of the time lapse between obtaining the
permit and the date of your next birthday. This permit is used by people learning to drive.

When you apply for a driving permit, you will be asked for your social security number. If you do not have a social
security number, you may take the form “Social Security Affidavit” with you and sign it in front of the DPS officer. This
form states that you have never applied for a social security number or that you are not eligible for a social security
number.

1. Take: passport and valid US visa
           $6.00 (subject to change)
           proof of social security number or rejection notice from social security office
           eyeglasses or contacts (if required)
2. Take the vision exam
3. Take the written exam



Driver’s License:
Authorizes one to operate a personal vehicle, without the supervision of another licensed driver.

When you apply for a driving permit, you will be asked for your social security number. If you do not have a
social security number, you may take the form “Social Security Affidavit” with you and sign it in front of the DPS
officer. This form states that you have never applied for a social security number or that you are not eligible for
a social security number.

1. Take: passport and valid US visa
         $24.00 (subject to change)
         proof of social security number or rejection notice from social security office
         eye glasses or contacts (if required)
2. Take the vision exam
3. Take the written exam
4. You may have to come back on a different day or later the same day to take the driving test if the office is very
   busy. You will be given instructions on this when you take your written test. When you take your driving test, you
   must have a car with a valid inspection sticker, current tags, and proof of insurance coverage before you can take
   this test. If you use a rental car, your name must be listed as one of the authorized drivers as well as providing the
   insurance proof.

   If you already possess a valid driver’s license from another U.S. State, you have thirty days in which to exchange it
   for a Texas driver’s license. There will be a fee charged. You will be asked to take the vision exam, but not the
   driving test.

   It is mandatory by law to have your driver’s license with you whenever you are driving. If you are caught driving
   without your license in your possession, you will be ticketed. If you lose your driver’s license, you must go to the
   DPS office and apply for a renewal. Take all of the above items with you.




                                                      Page 29 of 37
Texas Non-Driving Identification Card
A Texas driver’s license is accepted as a government-issued identification (ID). A government-issued ID is required to
cash a check, to show as proof of age and to check in for a flight at any airport. If you are not going to apply for a
driver’s license, you would be wise to apply for the Texas Non-Driving Identification Card.

Identification cards bear a distinguishing number similar to a driver’s license and are accepted, as government issued
proof of identification. Applicants should take a passport with a valid US visa and I-20 / DS-2019 along with $15.00
(subject to change) to the Texas Department of Public Safety Office.



City of Dallas Municipal Court Fines Lists
For information on fines, fees, and ordinance violations (which vary by city, county, etc., please see the
following site: http://www.dallascityhall.com/dallas/eng/html/courts_fines_list.html


Emergency Road Assistance
On the back of your Texas driver’s license, above the bar code in very small print is the phone number 1-800-
525-5555. This number may be called for emergency assistance if you have car trouble on the highway. A service
truck will be sent to your location.



Drinking and Driving
The legal drinking age in Texas is 21. A Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) offense or a Driving under the Influence of
Alcohol or Drugs (DUI) offense are serious matters. The definition of intoxication includes both alcohol and drugs. A
law enforcement officer, for good reason, may ask a driver to take a test to determine the amount of alcohol in his or
her body.

The legal limit is 0.08% of blood-alcohol concentration. If a person weighs 100 pounds, three drinks will make them
legally intoxicated. If a person weighs 200 pounds, four drinks will make them legally intoxicated. One drink is 1 oz. of
80 proof liquor, 12 oz. of beer or 4 oz. of wine.

The penalties for DWI and DUI offenses may include fines, confinement and suspension of driver’s license.

You should be aware the possession of an open container of alcoholic beverage in the vehicle will increase penalties.
Also, it is illegal to consume an alcoholic beverage while driving. If you plan to drink, it is best to have a designated
driver, who will not drink that evening.


What to Do if Stopped by the Police:

Shut off the engine and remain inside your car unless the officer requests that you exit.
Be polite and courteous. Never offer a police officer money.
Have your license, registration and auto insurance card or policy in a convenient location so they are easily
    accessible. Many police officers face violence when writing a traffic ticket. Fumbling around inside your car
    for “lost or missing” paperwork should be kept to a minimum. It could cause the police officer to fear you
    are looking for a weapon.
Keep your hands on the steering wheel and avoid making moves that could be interpreted as sudden or as
    threatening.
In the event other passengers are riding with you, ask them to refrain from making comments.
If the stop is at night and it is possible, pull over in a well-lit area.
Turn on the interior light and keep it on in order for the officer to see inside your car.
Do not argue with the officer. If you are treated unfairly, get the officer’s name and badge number. You can
    follow up by notifying the officer’s superior and filing a complaint against him or her. Arguing could result in



                                                       Page 30 of 37
   detainment and INS deportation.

Three or more traffic violations may result in your losing your visa status.



Automobile Accidents
If you have an auto accident, the first thing you should do is get the name and phone number of a witness. If the
accident is the fault of another driver, they may admit fault at the scene of the accident but change their mind at a
later date. The more witnesses you have, the better. A passenger in your car will not serve as a witness.

It is best to call the police before moving the cars. They will prepare an official accident report. Call 9-1-1 if there is a
need for an ambulance. Carefully record the following information:

         1. Name of the other driver
               Ask to see his driver’s license and write down the number
               Ask to see proof of insurance and write down the name and phone number of the
                 company and policy number

         2. Passengers in the other car: their names, descriptions, and locations in the car. (You should be prepared
            to supply the other driver with your license and insurance information also.)

         3. Exact description of the car
                Make of car, model, and year
                Color
                Location of damage to the car

         4. Exact time and location of the accident

         5. Name and badge number of the police officer if one arrives

   It is absolutely mandatory by law to carry automobile insurance. Anytime a police officer stops you while you are
   driving, the first thing he will ask you is to show your driver’s license and proof of insurance. If you do not have
   these documents with you, you will be ticketed, even if you have the documents at home.



Safety
Dallas, Addison/Farmers Branch, and Irving are large metropolitan areas; therefore, you should exercise common
sense and follow safety precautions just as you would in any large city throughout the world.

General Safety Tips
1. Do not leave a room, house, or car with doors and windows unlocked.
2. Do not open your doors to strangers.
3. Be sure that locks on your hotel or apartment doors work properly and are secure.
4. Do not carry valuables or large sums of cash with you. When traveling, be sure to carry traveler’s checks instead of
   cash.
5. Do not frequent parks or deserted public places after dark.
6. Do not attempt to arm yourself, since any weapon you carry can be used against you, and carrying a weapon
   (such as gun, knife, baton, etc.) is illegal.
7. Do not resist a robber or mugger but immediately report the crime to police.
8. Do not hitchhike or pick up hitchhikers. Only accept rides in taxis, NOT in privately owned cars.
9. When traveling, be sure to keep your carry-on luggage close to you at all times.
10. Do not go to areas of your town or city that are known to have problems with crime.
11. Do not walk or jog wearing stereo headphones. It is important to be alert to what is happening around you.
12. Always lock car doors and windows when you enter or leave your car.
13. Never leave belongings in plain view in your car. Lock them in the trunk.
14. Register, engrave, mark, and/or photograph all your valuables including bicycles, stereos, jewelry, vehicles,



                                                        Page 31 of 37
     computers, etc.
15. Avoid using ATMs in dark, isolated areas; it’s best to use machines that are highly visible in public areas such as
     supermarkets.
16. Never flash your cash. Always have “emergency” change for a phone call.
17. If you are intoxicated, you are less alert and an easier target for robbers and attackers.
18. Don’t mark your room key or key chain with your name, address, or telephone number.
19. Never let strangers into your apartment or home. This puts you and others at risk.
20. Be aware of suspicious persons and activities.
21. When out at night, always go with friends and stay in well-lit areas.
22. When walking or jogging, go against the flow of traffic.
23. Always have your keys ready to unlock the door to your car or residence and enter without delay. Lock the doors
     after you get inside.
24. Never get on an elevator with someone who looks suspicious. If someone who looks suspicious gets on, get off
     immediately.
25. Watch where you are walking and what is happening around you.
26. Lock all bicycles to a fixed object with a U-lock or D-lock.


What to Do if You Lose Your Purse or Wallet
1. Cancel your credit cards immediately. The key is having the toll free numbers and your card number
   handy so you know whom to call. Place the contents of your wallet on a photocopy machine and copy both sides
   of each license, credit card, Social Security card, etc. – everything you carry in your wallet. Then you will know just
   what you have lost and will have a record of account numbers and phone numbers to call to cancel all cards. Keep
   this information where you can find it easily, and never keep it with your credit cards.
2. File a police report immediately in the jurisdiction where it was stolen. This proves to credit providers
   you were diligent and is a first step toward an investigation.
3. Call the three national credit reporting organizations immediately to place a fraud security alert on your
   name and/or social security number.

         The numbers are:
         Equifax 1-800-525-6285 www.equifax.com
         Experian (formerly TRW) 1-888-397-3742 www.experian.com
         Trans Union 1-800-680-7289 www.transunion.com
         Social Security Administration also has a fraud line 1-800-269-0271.


Identity Theft
Identity theft occurs when someone steals your social security number or other information which gives them access
to all your financial records. They then use this information to get credit or make purchases in your name. Identity
theft is a growing problem in the United States.

To protect yourself against identity theft:

1. If you have a social security number, protect it! Be especially cautious about giving it out; memorize
    your number and do not carry your card with you; keep your social security card in a safe place.
2. Shred personal financial documents, such as bank statements, credit card bills, even unsolicited credit
    card offers that come in the mail. Identity thieves often dig through trash to find personal data.
3. If you are expecting credit cards in the mail, watch the calendar to make sure you receive the card in a
    reasonable amount of time. If not, call the credit card company.
4. When you are away from home, especially during the holidays, have the post office hold your mail or
    make sure someone you trust picks up your mail.
5. Watch your bank accounts closely. If bank statements and credit card statements are not showing up,
    that could mean someone has stolen your identity.
6. Get a copy of your credit report once a year and check it for accuracy.
7. Protect your financial information. If anyone requests it, insist on knowing why they need it and how
    they plan to use it. If you are a victim of identity theft, experts advise you to:

         1.Get copies of your credit reports and check for unusual activity.
                 The three major credit bureaus are:




                                                      Page 32 of 37
                   Experian 1- 888-397-3742 www.experian.com
                   TransUnion 1- 800-680-7289 www.transunion.com
                   Equifax 1-800-525-6285 www.equifax.com
         2. Ask that a “fraud alert” be put in your file. Lenders must contact you before granting credit in
            your name.
         3. File a report with your local police department.
         4. Contact the creditors where fraudulent accounts were opened in your name.
         5. Monitor your financial statements for further discrepancies.
         6. Notify the Social Security Administration fraud line 1-800-269-0271.

For further information on this subject, check the website of the Federal Trade Commission at
www.consumer.gov/idtheft. You may report identity theft to them at 1-877-428-4338.


Phone Solicitation
Do not give your name or any other personal information such as credit card number(s), address, or social security
number to anyone who calls you.

If you have made the call to a bank, business or agency, you may be asked for identifying information such as
address or social security number. In this case, you may supply the information.

Beware of phone calls asking for information to “verify your account”. Do not give out any information.
If anyone ever asks for personal information, don’t give it to them. Criminals use your personal information for various
illegal activities.


Reporting Incidents
Fires, health emergencies and crimes should be reported by calling 9-1-1 wherever you are.


Sexual Assault and Acquaintance Rape
For immediate medical and/or police assistance, call 9-1-1. Parkland Hospital is the only hospital in Dallas that can
perform a post-sexual assault exam that is admissible in court, should you decide to prosecute the offender later.
This exam must be performed before showering after the incident.

Other resources:
         Dallas County Rape Crisis Center               214 -590-0430
         The Family Place                               214- 559-2170


Tips for Tornado Season
A tornado is a rapidly rotating, slender, funnel-shaped cloud that causes damage along its narrow path. April, May
and June are known as tornado season.

A Tornado Warning means that perfect weather conditions for tornado activity exist.

A Tornado Watch means a tornado has formed, touched the ground and been sighted.

This information is broadcast on television and radio and emergency sirens sound. When the emergency sirens
sound a Tornado Warning is in effect, the following actions should be taken:

1. Do not evacuate the building.
2. If you are outside, seek indoor shelter immediately.
3. The safest place to take shelter is in an interior section of the building, away from windows or glass enclosures.
    This can be a closet or bathroom at home or an interior hallway at work.
4. Wait until the all clear signal is given.




                                                      Page 33 of 37
Health Care Treatment
For Non-Emergency Illness/Injury

    Primacare Locations
    (These clinics are open 7 days a week from 8:00 am to 9:00 pm)

   Dallas
    Primacare Medical Centers
    (214) 572-1124
    11910 Greenville Ave
    Dallas, TX 75243

   Addison/Farmers Branco
    Primacare Medical Center
    11888 Marsh Ln Ste 104
    Dallas, TX 75234-8083
    (972) 488-9222

   Irving
    Primacare Medical Centers
    (817) 416-8729
    5301 William D Tate Ave
    Grapevine, TX 76051


For Emergency /Life Threatening Illness or Injury
Call 911
• OR go immediately to a hospital emergency room, (please see list of hospitals in your area on pp. 32-33).

Pharmacies
Dallas Area
CVS 24 Hour Pharmacy: (214) 887-6955
6120 EAST MOCKINGBIRD LANE
DALLAS, TX 75214

Addison/Farmers Branch
CVS 24 Hour Pharmacy: (972) 732-6197
4610 FRANKFORD ROAD
Dallas, TX 75287

Irving
CVS 24 Hour Pharmacy: (972) 255-4155
2222 NORTH STORY ROAD
Irving, TX 75062




Transportation Providers
Below are some phone numbers and websites for information and reservation service on some of the better-known
U.S. transportation providers. 1-800 numbers are toll-free.




                                                    Page 34 of 37
Train Service
Amtrak (inter-city rail passenger service):   1-800-872-7245            www.amtrak.com

Car Rental Companies
Alamo Rent-A-Car                              1-800-327-9633            www.alamo.com
Avis Rent-A-Car                               1-800-331-1212            www.avis.com
Budget Car and Truck Rental                   1-800-527-0700            www.budget.com
Dollar Rent-A-Car                             1-800-421-6868            www.dollar.com
Enterprise (they deliver car to you)          1-800-736-8222            www.hertz.com
National Car Rent                             1-800-328-4567            www.nationalcar.com
Thrifty Car Rental                            1-800-367-2277            www.thriftycar.com

Airline Companies
American Airlines                             1-800-433-7300            www.aa.com
America West Airlines                         1-888-615-8558            www.americawest.com
Continental Airlines                          1-800-523-3273            www.continental.com
Delta Airlines                                1-800-221-1212            www.delta.com
Northwest Airlines                            1-800-225-2525            www.nwa.com
United Airlines                               1-800-241-6522            www.united.com
USAirways                                     1-800-428-4322            www.usairways.com


Reduced Fare Airlines (these Airlines have limited routes):

Southwest Airlines                            1-800-435-9792            www.southwest.com
Vanguard Airlines                             1-800-826-4827            www.flyvanguard.com
Airtran                                       1-800-247-8726            www.airtran.com




Directions to the Social Security Administration and Bureau
of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BCIS)
Social Security Administration
Building 2, 1st Floor
10600 Steppington Drive
Dallas, TX 75230
Toll-Free Number: 1-800-772-1213
Hours of Operation: Mon-Fri: 9:00 am to 4:00 pm

Directions:

    1.   North on Central Expressway
    2.   Exit Royal Lane
    3.   Left (west) under the freeway, then left again immediately onto the south service road of the freeway
    4.   Right on River Falls
    5.   Right just before Steppington Drive


Social Security Administration
3231 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd.
Dallas, TX 75210
Toll-Free Number: 1-800-772-1213
Hours of Operation: Mon-Fri: 9:00 am to 4:00 pm

Directions:

    1.   From I-30 take exit for Fair Grounds
    2.   Turn right on Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd.
    3.   Located between MLK Center and State Fair Grounds




                                                    Page 35 of 37
Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BCIS)
8101 Stemmons Freeway                   1-800-375-5283                   6:30 am to 1:00 pm M, T, Th, and F

Directions:

    1.      West on Mockingbird
    2.      North on Stemmons Expressway (I-35); stay on service road
    3.      Left under the freeway at Empire Central
    4.      The Office is on the corner of Empire Central and Stemmons




Useful Telephone Numbers
Emergency
Police – Fire – Ambulance                     9-1-1

Community – Non-Emergency                   3-1-1
(To seek information, report problems, request assistance)

Social Security                               1-800-772-1213


Utilities

Southwestern Bell (to get phone service)      1-800-464-7928

TXU Gas                                       214-741-3750

TXU Electric                                  972-791-2888

Dallas Water Department                       214-651-1441


Transportation

DART                                          214-979-1111
Super Shuttle (to and from airports)          817-329-2000
Yellow Cab Taxi Company                       214-426-6262
Checker Taxi Company                          214-841-0000
Terminal Taxi Company                         214-678-9008


Hospitals

Dallas Area
Parkland Memorial Hospital
(214) 920-9045
5201 Harry Hines Blvd
Dallas, TX 75235

Baylor University Medical Center: Patient Information
(214) 820-0111
(214) 820-6277
3500 Gaston Ave
Dallas, TX 75246

Addison/Farmers Branch
RHD Memorial Hospital
(972) 488-9167



                                                      Page 36 of 37
(972) 884-2422
7 Medical Pkwy
Dallas, TX 75234

Irving
Las Colinas Medical Center
(972) 969-2000
6800 N MacArthur Blvd
Irving, TX 75039




                             Page 37 of 37

								
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