- DO read the US State Dept Travel Advisories re: safety and immunizations, and any literature from your agency.
- DO get your passport and VISA right away; it takes time.
- DO get immunizations, important for any 3rd world country.
- DO bring American money into Russia.
- DO declare your gold jewelry properly upon entry, because Russia has strict laws on letting gold out of the country.
- DO bring a set of universal adapter plugs.
- DO make a copy of what you bring with you – passport, credit card, driver’s license, etc. in case they get stolen.
- Do pack with this in mind: in the summer the temperature can range from sunny and warm (80s) to overcast and rainy (40s).
- DO inform you credit card companies before you leave you’ll be using your credit cards in Russia.
- DO remember ice is water. Most tourists understand to avoid water, uncooked food and eating off the street in another country, but often forget that the ice in their drink was made from water!
- DO pay for good traveller’s medical insurance if you aren’t covered by, say, AAA, and make sure it includes emergency evacuation all the way home,not just to “a” hospital.
- Do not bring old, dirty US bills.
- Do not take Russian money into Russian.
- Do not bring traveler’s cheques. They’re rarely accepted.
- Do not expect bathrooms to have “Western amenities,” such as, says my guide book, “quality towels, soap and toilet paper.”
- Do not expect Russian buildings and elevators (including museums, churches and tourist spots) to be wheelchair accessible. They aren’t.