Safe to Travel to Russia?

Old Sep 17th, 2004, 08:47 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 59
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Safe to Travel to Russia?

I just read in the New York Times that the NBA cancelled an exhibition game in Moscow due to unsafe conditions. In light of the recent tragedies in Russia...what are your opinions about how safe it is to travel to Russia?
Bill2222 is offline  
Old Sep 17th, 2004, 09:28 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 478
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Everyone has to make their own choices, but it often helps to think things through rationally.

We live in a world that has changed greatly in the last 36 months. I never thought I would see fighter planes circling Manhattan, ready to shoot down stray civilian aircraft; a year or two ago people were stooped behind their cars in the DC area for fear of being the victim of a sniper.

Being in the travel business (and specializing in Russian travel) I read every State and Commerce Department safety bulletin, Warden report, etc. concerning Russia (specific incidents and issues are not always listed on the general web sites; there are more detailed and frequent bulletins and security briefings available). In addition, I regularly converse with American and Russian diplomats, security experts, members of think tanks/NGOs, the press, investors, and other people who are very well informed. The consensus is that there is no absolutely safe place in the world, and that Russia faces some serious challenges, but as far as safety for a Westerner in Moscow/St Petersburg, there is no more risk there than other world cities. Western Europe--France, Britain, Ireland, Germany, Italy, Spain--had many terrorist incidents/assassinations in the 1970s and 1980s, but people still visited its major cities, mostly without incident. Even New York City in the 1970s-1980s was far more dangerous a place than the tourist areas of Moscow and St. Petersburg today.

According to US State Department figures there have been only a handful of fatalities of American citizens in Russia in the last two years (seven) and only one American was a victim of terrorism (during the Dubrovka siege two years ago).

Personally I have family there and family members, colleagues and friends traveling between Russia and America; thank God none have been personally affected by these incidents.
Marc_David_Miller is offline  
Old Sep 18th, 2004, 03:57 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 22,897
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
My husband spent a week in Moscow on business 2 months ago. (I know things seem to have gotten a little scarier since then). Advice from his local business contacts was to take the same precautions one would take in any large city - plus - avoid flashing a lot of money, jewelery, etc. (that seems also a common sense precaution).

As with posts asking about safety of travel to any other part of the world (Egypt, Middle East, etc.) - statistical chances of being victim of crime or terrorism to any individual is very small. My opinion is that if you are so apprehensive, for whatever reason, about the trip that you could not have a good time - go someplace else.
gail is offline  
Old Sep 28th, 2004, 02:11 AM
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 165
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Bill2222, I think that it's time that this paranoia end. We just returned from Moscow on Saturday night. I felt safer there than in most American cities. We were on a cruise from St. Petersburg to Moscow, spending three days in Moscow. The only crime that we were aware of was pick-pocketing, primarily in the Metro. This can be avoided if you use commmon sense as to where you keep your valuables. There was fairly high secutity in some areas. The Moscow Circus had metal detectors, they checked your bags and randomly had a bomb sniffing dog check bags. The Bolshoi had concrete barriers, and to get into the airport, everyone, and every bag had to be scanned before entering the terminal and going through secondary security. Red Square had no obvious extra measures, and neither did the interior of the kremlin, unlike Washington, DC. As this was our first trip to Russia, we can't comment on whether there is elevated secutity from before the events of the past several months. We felt comfortable every place that we went in Russia. Yes, there is terrorism, but the most dangerous place to be in the last four years was sitting in your office in Manhatten. You can't give in to irrational fears, or the terrorists win. It would be a shame not to go to this beautiful country and cities because of these fears.
jackandann is offline  
Old Sep 28th, 2004, 05:23 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 135
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Have not travled to Russia as much as some, but have traveled to Russia more than most.
Like traveling anywhere, a degree of caution and awarness is needed. However, that said, even with all of the recent goings on in Russia, I feel safe traveling to Russia, and do it without any concerns or hesitations.
I agree absolutely with Mr. Miller. There is no more risk in traveling to Russia than anyother places in the world.
Russia is a wonderful country to visit. The people are wonderful. And I for one, am always anxious to return. And return I will in a few weeks.
Firstmate is offline  
Related Topics
Original Poster
Last Post
Jan 13th, 2007 10:08 AM
Sep 17th, 2005 09:39 PM
Oct 29th, 2002 02:19 PM
Marc David Miller
Oct 26th, 2002 11:23 AM
Aug 10th, 2002 03:24 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 09:35 PM.