Practical Information

 

Time

Time in Moscow is GMT+4:

 

Electricity

The Russian electricity system operates on 220 volts. 

Internet and Telephones

There are three national mobile service providers in Russia:

MTS : http://en.mts.ru/

Beeline :http://moskva.beeline.ru/customers/products/mobile/roaming/puteshestviya-po-miru/

Megafon: http://english.moscow.megafon.ru/

It is recommended to purchase a local sim card in order to save on roaming charges.

WiFi in Moscow is easily accessible, almost every restaurant, cafe and bar has a free access, just ask for a password. Free WiFi access is available at all metro lines since December 2014. 

Health

There is a huge amount of clinics and hospitals with all kind of medical specialists in Moscow. But most of them do not have English speaking personnel. As an alternative there are English speaking clinics like International Clinic MEDSI (http://medsi.ru/eng/icm/?site_lang=eng ) and European Medical Centres ( http://www.emcmos.ru/en/ )  and others that operate in Moscow. Many of these clinics operate 24/7 with emergency facilities and a pharmacy. They are all equipped with modern medical equipment and have qualified personnel, but most of them are probably twice more expensive than any other of Moscow's good clinics just for the luxury of having English speaking staff. So before travelling it would be a good idea to have a good insurance in place that covers health care in Moscow.

Pharmacies

There is a large amount of Pharmacies in Moscow, with many open 24/7. They are called Apteka in Russian with a green cross on their facade. For some drugs, a doctor's prescription might be needed. The largest pharmacy chain in Moscow is 36.6.

Vaccinations

Russia has no vaccination requirements.

Tipping

10% percent of the bill is considered to be a reasonable tip in Moscow. Although it is customary not to take a tip for granted and it is good to take into account the service received. This can vary in Moscow from one of the worse experiences ever to simply the most superb. Hopefully, discriminating in tips given will help push the standard of service given across the city and not only within high-end establishments. It is not easy to add tips to the credit  card bill, so it is advisable to try and pay tips in cash.

Business Hours

Moscow never sleeps! And it is really true, you can easily find the 24 hr supermarkets, bookstores, beauty salons, pharmacies and electronics stores. Standard business hours in offices are from 10.00 am till 6.00 pm. Museums and many cultural attractions are opened from 10.00 am until 8.00 pm. Most of the shopping malls are open at 10.00 am and remain opened until 10.00 pm. 

Safety

These tips might be useful to any other big city in the world. If someone would be telling you that Moscow is full of crime and corruption, ask them when the last time they have been in Moscow. The troubles of the nineties are well over, crime rates have been reduced significantly but, as in any other cosmopolitan city, it is good to take some precautionary measures as bad elements will always exist and it is impossible to completely eradicate crime. On central streets you can find special devices SOS of bright orange color for emergency calls. 

- Watch out for pick pocketing in crowded places
- Be attentive at crossing the streets not all Moscow drivers give way to pedestrians even on official crosswalks
- Carry the passport with you, as the police might ask you for documents
- You shouldn’t accept invitations of the street barkers offering to take part in any draws for "a free prize"
- You should avoid walks late at night without accompaniment on "sleeping areas" of the city
- Do not to display large amounts of money on you