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Trip to Russia

Old Feb 8th, 2007, 01:42 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 2
Trip to Russia

Hi- I am looking for information regarding an English speaking guide. I have one person who charge $10 a hour for two people and don't know if this is reasonable or not. Also, do we pay for her lunch? I assume we pay for her admissions and if there are transportation costs, we pay for that as well. Please advise. joyceguttman
joyceguttman is offline  
Old Feb 8th, 2007, 02:25 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,124
The charge is reasonable, but if you have concerns you might try to negotiate. If your guide is an established individual who does this regularly, don't try to negotiate. As for the other items, such as meals, it will depend on the guide.

You might inquire as to whether the guide falls under the Russian government rules; they have rules for everything, and they probably have rules for guides. If the guide is following the rules, dont' argue.
Wayne is offline  
Old Feb 8th, 2007, 03:12 PM
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 559
Many, many questions come to mind:

1. Moscow? Saint Petersburg? Elsewhere? Both?

2. How did you find her? Was it a recommendation? Most guides specialize in something, if they are trained and schooled in it.

3. When does her rate begin- when she leaves home for the day, or when you actually enter a museum, etc?

4. Does she have official qualifications? If yes, she can help you by skipping lines that others wait in- if not, you will be amongst the masses...

5. Is it possible to pay for a whole day? This may be cheaper. Will she arrange for your transportation? Does she drive? Have a car? Have a driver for hire?

So, so many questions.

katya_NY is offline  
Old Feb 8th, 2007, 11:13 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 8,421
$10/hour is ridiculously "reasonable" (especially as opposed to €10 euros). Guides in Russia must have a license, and also additional seperate licenses for each venue (which admit them without charge). Surely you can communicate with your guide and resolve transportation costs.

In our experience guides in Russia are worth every penny and then some, and I cannot imagine wondering about "paying for her lunch" as she will likely be able to recommend a fabulous place with wonderful food at moderate prices.
djkbooks is offline  
Old Feb 9th, 2007, 07:54 AM
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 224
joyce, any chance of getting your guide's info? we are in Moscow until mid-March and would love an English-speaking guide at such a reasonable price!

MacPrague is offline  
Old Feb 9th, 2007, 10:18 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 478
At this point $10/hour is as cheap as you'll find anyone with a license (and this would be for a minimum of four hours). We always recommend that people do pay for the guide's lunch and transportation costs.

Not sure about the comment regarding rules in Russia and guides. You could find an unlicensed guide who is competent, but most people who do this as a profession are licensed. (Even in New York this can be an issue; I was in the Met with a class, the professor was lecturing us on a painting, and the guard said that she needed a permit to speak with more than 4 people at a time!).

Occasionaly the guide will be charged admission by sites (especially the lesser known places that don't have formal certifications).
Marc_David_Miller is offline  
Old Feb 9th, 2007, 06:14 PM
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 185
I used a guide when I was in St. petersburg a few years ago and her name is Olga Stepanova and her e-mail is [email protected]. I thought she was very helpful in helping me understand navigation of the metro,as well guiding me through the museums. If you are looking for Moscow maybe she can make a recommendation.
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