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Main info


VISA

*If you are traveling with a tourist visa, please don’t forget to take a copy of your voucher with you (you will have to show it at the Customs and – very often – at the hotel). You had better make a copy before you take the documents to the Consulate.

* Please keep in mind that when you are traveling with a TOURIST VISA, your official purpose of visit is TOURISM, and if you have a BUSINESS VISA, your purpose of visit is BUSINESS. A purpose of visit declared by you and a type of your visa should match!

 * Don’t forget to get your visa registered at a hotel within the first 3 days on arrival. The stamp of registration should be put on the back side of your MIGRATION CARD. Please note that not registering your Russian visa may lead to serious problems: detention by police, fines on departure, prevention from boarding the plane, etc. We strongly advise you to register your Russian visa to avoid possible unnecessary inconveniences.

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HOW TO GET TO VLADIVOSTOK

*by air Korean Airlines and Vladivostok Airlines link Vladivostok with South Korea (Seoul, Pusan), Japan (Niigata, Tokyo), China (Harbin, Dalian, Mudanjiang, Beijing), Vietnam (Hanoi), North Korea (Hengyang), Thailand (Bangkok, Phuket) . Vladivostok Avia, Aeroflot and other Russian carriers make frequent flights to and from Moscow.

*by train You may choose this way if you are interested in traveling along the great Trans Siberian Railroad – Vladivostok is the Far East Terminal of it. So you may come after a visit to Moscow, Irkutsk or any other Transsib city. There is also a train from Harbin arriving to Vladivostok twice a week. PLEASE KEEP THE TICKETS THROUGHOUT YOUR STAY IN RUSSIA!

*by sea. The port of Vladivostok allows access for large passenger ships. There is passenger ferry services between Vladivostok and Sakaiminato (Japan, Tottori-ken), Republic of Korea (Dong Hae, Republic of Korea) around the year. Ferries can bring you to Vladivostok in two days once a week. The ferries carry vehicles as well as passengers, so this type of transportation will effect a saving of expenses, but it is not a real cruising. Food service offer 3 times per day meals; accommodation have two double-level twin beds and private bathroom. The only drawback is that the ferry schedule is rather unstable but usually the boarding is possible once a week year-round. Options for domestic travel are (in order of diminishing comfort): flying, railway, car, bus.

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MONEY

Use Rubles at all times, but take US Dollars or Japanese Yen or Euro with you for exchange at banks or at your Hotel. Avoid street-based money changers: let your guide change money for you outside the office hours. Changing older (pre-1996) and shabby US banknotes can be a problem. Traveler's checks are not so widespread in Russia, not every bank can change them, so, sometimes it may become a problem. The bigger shops, hotels and some restaurants accept Visa/Master cards. You can also cash your credit cards in local ATMs. Most local banks are open 9:00-18:00, some of them have an hour lunch break. Round-the-clock money exchange service is available in some hotels (though the rate is a bit lower than the bank rate).

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SEASONS/WEATHER

*Winters in Vladivostok are usually dry and windy, with occasional snowfalls. Temperatures may vary from -25°C to +3 °C.

*Early spring is still cold (sometimes it snows even in April!). Trees usually begin to blossom and turn green in late April-early May. Temperatures may get as low as -10°C (March, April) and as high as +18°C (May).

*The first part of summer is characterized by heavy fogs (especially in the mornings), drizzles and rains. But the weather is quite unstable – a period of good sunny weather may be followed by a week of rains or v.v. Beach season usually begins in mid July, when sea temperature warms up to +20-21°C. August is traditionally the best summer month in Vladivostok, except for typhoons coming mostly from Asian countries.

*Autumn comes to Vladivostok later than to Western part of Russia. September is “Indian Summer” time in Vladivostok – when it is still possible to swim and the average temperature is about +18°C. In late September and almost all October you may admire the picturesque Russian autumn when leaves of the trees turn different colors. November is rather dull and cold (up to -7-10°C), and in late November it usually snows for the first time. Best months for coming to Vladivostok – August and September. If you happen to travel in winter don’t forget to take REALLY warm clothes/shoes with you! You’ll need a preferably long, thick windproof coat, a hat with ear-flaps to guard against frostbite, gloves, scarf and thermal underwear. Shoes should be stout and water resistant in any season, and always come equipped for sudden chills.

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ID

Valid passport required by all. Note: whilst in the country, visitors must carry ID at all times. Rather than carry original documents, it is advisable to carry photocopies of passports and visas, which will facilitate replacement should either be stolen.

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COMMUNICATION WITH THE OUTSIDE WORLD

Though most newspapers and magazines are in Russian, the best hotels have CNN news channel. There are Internet Cafes downtown and in Business Centers of some local hotels.

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TELEPHONE

You can purchase telephone cards at any post office to make international and inter-city calls from pay phones. Inter-city codes:

8-dial tone Direct Dial Inter-City Access Code

8-dial tone-10 Direct Dial International Access Code

Vladivostok - 4232

Khabarovsk - 4112

Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky - 41522

Yakutsk - 41122

Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk - 42422 Moscow - 495 St.-Petersburg - 812

Useful numbers in all the cities:

Fire  01 

Police (Milicia)  02 

Ambulance  03 

Gas Leaks  04 

Inter-City/ International Phone Calls  07, 071, 072, 073, 074 

Directory Assistance (in Russian)  09 

Consulate General of India  7(4232)228110 

Consulate General of Japan  7(4232)267513 

Korean Republic Consulate General  7(4232)228133 

United States Consulate General  7(4232)268458 

US Consulate General, Info Department  7(4232)267017

Universe phone  of Rescue service: 010

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RUSSIAN CUISINE

Try traditional Russian pelmeni (meat dumplings), blinnis (pancakes) which you can combine with honey, herring or black/red caviar, borsch (beet-root soup) and many other local delicacies. Other popular dishes in Russia are: salads (for example, vinegret -salad with beet-root, potato, green peas, meet, etc), akroshka (cold soup made with mayonnaise on the water or kvas), uha (fish soup), etc.

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DRINKING WATER

Running water isn't drinkable if not boiled but you can easily purchase mineral water in all the shops (both non-carbonated and carbonated). Please make sure to emphasize that you want plain mineral water without bubbles when you order at a restaurant.

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TIPPING

There is no regular tipping policy in Russia. You can pay tips as large as you want if you find service good.

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SAFETY

Safety rules are universal – you should stick to them in every city worldwide, no matter where you travel. So just keep in mind the following recommendations:

* Walking at night use your common sense, don't go alone, don't go into dark unlit areas, or other areas you are unfamiliar with;

* Never leave your bags unattended. When sitting or resting, in public, be sure to loop the handle over your arm or leg;

* Any valuables should be locked away in a safe place (e.g. a safe deposit box in your hotel);

* Be on alert for handbag snatchers and pickpockets, especially in crowded places – markets, shops, etc.;

* Try not to carry your passport around everywhere you go. You may leave it in the hotel deposit box and take copies of passport and visa with you together with the hotel guest card;

* Always carry the address of your hotel in Russian and its telephone number and that of your embassy;

* Avoid buying food from street vendors;

* Be very selective and careful in establishing new acquaintances.

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ELECTRICITY

To use your electric-powered equipment, bring a converter and a plug adapter. The electrical current in Moscow is 220 volts, 50 cycles alternating current (AC); wall outlets take continental-type plugs, with two round prongs.

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LANGUAGE

Russian. But you'll be surprised how many people speak some English. Most good restaurants have menu in English.

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NATIONAL HOLIDAYS

Date

Name of holiday

January 01– 02 January 07-08

February 23

 

March 08

May 01-02

May 09

 

June 12

November 07

 

December 12

New Year

 Orthodox Christmas

Motherland Defender’s Day (former Soviet Army Day)

International Women’s Day

Spring and Labor Day

Victory Day (anniversary of victory over the fascist Germany in 1945) Independence Day

Day of Consent and Reconciliation  (former Revolution 1917 Day) Constitution Day

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All these holidays are not working days – most offices are closed. If the date of a holiday falls on Saturday or Sunday, the day-off is often shifted to Monday.

 
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