Crisis is a Good Reason to Travel to Russia
Reason #1: Prices, before the crisis and after
As the exchange rate went from 38 R to €1 to 85 R to €1, most prices stayed the same, so everything costs twice less now.
Reason #2: People are more open-minded
A few years ago when Russia was rich on oil money, many people were dazzled by oil-rush and would not be so open-minded to new opportunities and strangers. Now times are different. It's much easier to negotiate, to make arrangements, to find new friends, or to make deals, which are not necessarily about money but also about doing something interesting. There are proofs of the changing attitude anywhere: from business to culture. On the one side, many projects that were not profitable before are now much more attractive even if they have a low return rate. The landlords are now more attached to their tenants because they don't know what's going to happen next, so they want some security and stability rather than finding who can pay more. Finally, there are many small cultural venues opening up. And, as it's more expensive to bring artists from abroad now (as their fees are in euros or dollars), the local music and arts scenes are booming.
Reason #3: You don't need a tour anymore
Gone are the times when you needed an official tour or a hotel reservation to visit Russia. These days you can just get a visa support letter online, which will not tie you to any hotels or any itineraries and just travel to Russia independently. Also, a recent regulation allows American citizens to get 3-year visas with this tourist visa support and the citizens of the most South American countries, Israel, Thailand and South Korea don't need a visa at all!
We put together a quick guide to making your own DIY tour to Russia, with all the practical steps explained – check it out and forward it to your friends!
Sounds good? Make arrangements for your travel...
Contrary to what most people think it's quite easy to travel to Russia. You only need to get a Russian visa. To do that, get the Russian visa support online (it'll be delivered to your e-mail), print it out, and then bring it along with your passport to a Russian visa processing center near you (there are plenty). You'll get your visa in 2 weeks. In the meanwhile, get our travel guide book to Russia to find the best accommodation and plan the places you're going to visit (we recommend Trans-Siberian railway) and voila!
Comments, Questions, Feedback?