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What to Be Aware of Before Traveling to Russia

By on September 4, 2018 in Kamexplore

Russia is a fascinating country and more and more people are wanting to visit this interesting place, however, there are a few things that you should be aware of before traveling there. You want to be sure that you have all elements of your trip in order before heading there, follow these tips for a safe and fun trip to Russia.

Correct Paperwork

Obtaining a permission to visit Russia is absolutely necessary and these visas are usually only valid for 30 days, so when planning a trip to Russia you need to ensure that all of your paperwork is in order. If you are on a cruise ship that is stopping at St. Petersburg, then you will be able to enter the country for a maximum of 72 hours without a visa. This is only true, however, if you are with an organized tour group. Traveling on your own from a cruise? Then you will need to have a valid visa for entry to the country.

Applying for a visa to visit Russia can be quite complicated as there is a lot of red tape.  You may need to provide proof of your finances, by way of a letter from your bank, and even proof of travel insurance.

The papers that you need depends on your country of origin. You need to check with the Russian consulate for details on what is required; be sure to do this well in advance of your trip. You may also have to show your travel history for the last 10 years, which can be a challenge for some people if they have just gotten a new passport.

You need to be aware that it can take some time to get your visa, usually at least two months, so do not wait too long before applying. Flights are generally quite expensive and even more so if you wait until the last minute to book. Cheaper flights often mean several layovers before Russia and direct flights, regardless of where you are flying from, tend to be even more costly.

Language and Currency

The Russian language is difficult as they use the Cyrillic alphabet. Invest in a Russian dictionary to take on your trip. It is always useful to become familiar with some common terms; greetings, vocabulary to use in a restaurant, please and thank you etc.

You should also try to familiarize yourself with the words for exit and entrance so as to have some idea what signs are saying and you´ll get into the locals’ good books!

It is important to remember to exchange your cash for Rubles before your trip as it is tricky once in the country. You cannot always expect your credit card to be accepted, so be sure to have some cash on you.


In terms of safety, be careful to protect your valuables and cash. Buy a money pouch that you can wear close to your body to carry your cash and ID in; it is best to find a pouch that can stay hidden under clothing. That way you will be prepared when you arrive, and all of your valuables will be safely concealed where pickpockets cannot easily reach them.

Make sure to carry your identification and passport on you at all times in case the police question you.  You should take copies before you leave in case your ID is lost or stolen. Remember that the weather can change quite quickly in Russia, so pack some warmer clothes too.

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