Tens of thousands of soccer-crazed fans are about to flood into the country in just a few months for the biggest soccer event of the summer. If you’re one of the lucky ones to score tickets, we’re jealous congrats!! The hardest part is over and it’s time to start prepping your fan gear and planning your trip. We’ve gathered some essential tips and helpful apps that you should have loaded on your phone before you go.
Stay safe and connected
First things first, you are going to need a way to stay connected in the biggest country in the world. We have a Global SIM Sticker and SIM Card perfect for you. We’ve even gone ahead and discounted it for you. You’re welcome.
You can make calls whenever you want so you never have to worry about losing your friends in the crowds. You also get free bonus WhatsApp usage with each data package!
Snap the action, not the buildings
Go ahead and take advantage of our 4G LTE speeds to share the game-winning goal with your friends! While you’re busy making everyone jealous of your trip, be mindful of what you’re taking photos of. It’s illegal in Russia to take photos of any government or military buildings.
Take advantage of free transportation
Not only does your ticket and fan ID get you free access to Russia (no visa needed) you also get free train access between the 11 hosting cities as well as public transportation to-and-from matches. With all this free transportation, there really isn’t an excuse to not explore the canals of St. Petersburg all the way to the Ural Mountains in Yekaterinburg. Navigate your way with our special rated data bundles that help you travel with the data you need.
Plan your attractions
Now that you have free transportation, start planning what you want to see. We recommend trying the Visit A City app for free itineraries, guides, activities and more.
Pro Tip: Hours of operation at attractions aren’t standard in Russia. For example, Lenin’s Mausoleum in Moscow’s Red Square is only open from 10 am until 1 pm and is closed on Sundays, Mondays, and Fridays. The Visit A City app helps take care of this as it displays hours of operation for each attraction so you can plan out your day to hit up all the spots.
Have a copy of your passport
If you’re a frequent traveler, chances are you do this already. If you don’t, we highly recommend you start, especially in Russia and during these busy games. It’s already common for Russian officials to stop you and ask for your identification but with the large numbers of crowds, we suggest leaving your passport in the hotel safe and carrying a copy with you.
Order vodka, hold the cran
You better bet you’ll be drinking vodka straight in Russia. It’s frowned upon to order cranberry or orange juice. If you’re looking for a chaser to save you, try a lemon or a separate glass of water. The good news is that it is traditional to eat snacks with vodka so just order plenty of food.
Talk the talk
If you’re not able to brush up on your Russian before you go, you’ll be relying on translation apps to help you navigate restaurant menus, street signs, and bathrooms. We recommend loading up your smartphone with these apps:
Can’t read a menu? No problem, take a photo of it and Google will translate it for you. This visual translation is currently available in 29 languages including Russian, French, and Italian. Voice translations and text translations are also available.
This is the best app for keeping up with translating conversations when you don’t have the time to type it out. Simply say the phrase and play the translation for whoever you’re speaking to. Perhaps your waiter when you want to make sure you’re getting the right food.
iTranslate is one of the most accurate apps for text translations. It can translate more than 90 languages.
We want to follow along with your trip (it’s not like we’re jealous or anything), tag your photos with #LetsRoam so we can see all the action! If you have any other travel tips for Russia, leave them in the comments below.