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More than 11 million people make this the most populous metropolis in Europe. And it keeps growing. Book a flight to Moscow and...
Do the Red Square
The heart of the city and access to the major symbols. The Kremlin fortification, the government palaces, towers and surrounding churches. St Basil’s Cathedral, whose colours and domes are recognised all over the world. And a spot that can’t go by unnoticed: Lenin’s Mausoleum.
Follow the onion domes
Orthodox Moscow is a world of its own and the opulent Cathedral of Christ the Savior is only the best example. The Metro is considered the most beautiful in the world — some stations are authentic art galleries. For a complete experience, make sure also to visit the Bolshoi Theatre and take a walk on Gorky Park.
Culture and Business
Make sure you have your passport and boarding pass with you. Depending on your country of origin, arrange your visa or other required documentation well in advance.
The climate in Russia consists of hot summers and very cold winters, with temperatures that can reach -30ºC and even lower, with heavy snow. Variations are great due to the very large size of the country. Average temperatures in Moscow in the summer are around 19ºC and -8ºC in winter.
GMT + 3 (Moscow) In other regions, the time zone may vary between GMT + 2 and GMT + 12.
Geography and Politics
Russia occupies part of Eastern Europe and much of Asia. It is the largest country in the world. It is a federal semi-presidential republic that has the president as the head of state and the prime minister as head of government.
Tips and Payment
The Russian Ruble (RUB) is the currency of Russia. It is good practice to tip around 5 to 15%, as there is no service charge added to the bills. Not all businesses accept credit cards, so it's best to always be prepared and have some cash in your pocket.
Language and expressions to memorize
The official language is Russian. Here are some useful words “Здравствуйте” (Zdravstvuyte) = “hi”; “пожалуйста” (pozhaluysta) = please; “Спасибо” (Spasibo) = thank you; “Прости” (Prosti) = sorry.
What to do
Be punctual, even if the other party is not. It is a sign of respect and you are expected to comply with schedules, especially when doing business. Adapt your form of communication depending on who you are talking to. There is a mix of old bureaucracy and Western thinking in Moscow and people who understand both systems are extremely valuable.
What not to do
Do not rush things. Russians like to get to know the people they do business with and sometimes that can make negotiations a little slower. Do not refuse invitations to dinner or for a drink after work - the Russians are very happy to welcome you - and get ready to do a lot of raising glasses in toasts!
What to wear
Choose a conservative and formal look. Suit and tie, or the female equivalent, and a good pair of shoes will always be the most appropriate option.
Men greet each other with a firm handshake. With a woman, a less firm handshake is the most common option. But if you are in doubt, wait for the other person to take the first step. If you are invited to someone's house, bring a bottle of wine or bouquet of flowers to show your appreciation.