Russia World Cup Travel Guide
The World Cup is just around the corner and football fans are excited about the tournament next summer.
Russia might not be far away, but it’s a whole other world, so we’ve put together a guide for you on what you need to know to get along with the locals, as well as food and the very national drink. important – Vodka.
Order drinks at the bar
You might be used to standing by the bar and waving a tenner in your local pub.
But that’s not how it is in Russia – so don’t do this if you’re finished for the World Cup.
Goran Pilipovic, director of Russia-based guided vacation provider Trafalgar, said: âIt’s better to sit down and then people will come and serve you. Don’t make a bunch at the bar. Wait your turn and the staff will come to you.
We Brits are known for our utter lack of self-control when it comes to alcohol.
Meanwhile, Russians are known for their love of vodka – put the two together and you have a pretty deadly combination.
It will be a battle not to be blind drunk after an hour if you mostly stick to vodka.
Goran said: âWhen I go to my Russian father-in-law, he will have a bottle of vodka on the table for me and one for him. But that doesn’t mean we’re going to finish it in the next hour. Your pace. “
He continued, âEat while you drink too – Russians always have zakusi (snacks) with their vodka, which are pickled vegetables, ham and cheese.
“And don’t order Smirnoff at the bar – it’s too sharp.
“The best vodkas to order are from milder brands, like Husky, Russian Standard, and Putinka.”
Toasts are important
If you drink with Russians, be prepared to toast a lot.
Don’t drink from your glass until the toast is ready – it’s very rude if you do.
You’re supposed to drink your shot all at once, but don’t worry if you can’t. Vodka is a strong substance.
And don’t forget this important advice from Goran: âDon’t drink beer and vodka together or you’ll have an almighty hangover. It’s the worst headache ever.
Even with the best of intentions, a hangover will happen.
The Russians stick with cabbage soup (Borscht) on a hangover.
While it might not sound as appealing as a Big Mac and some fries, vitamin C will resolve your hangover quickly.
It’s also light and easy to eat if you can’t cope with anything else.
If you are staying at a B&B or have been invited to a Russian house, be polite and offer to take your shoes off first.
Goran said: âIf your host says it’s okay to leave them on, then that’s okay.
âOtherwise, you will often be given a pair of slippers to wear. “
Respect your elders
It is a good idea to respect the elderly in Russia, especially babushkas (elderly women).
Goran said: âIt is a tradition in Russia that we respect the elderly.
âIt’s a good idea to get up and make way for someone older than you, especially if you are on public transport.
“They won’t come and tell you to get up, though.”
What is the long face?
Don’t be surprised if you see frowns when you’re in Russia, but don’t worry either – the locals are not unfriendly.
Goran said: âIt’s just the culture. Russians will be surprised how talkative you are.
âRussians don’t tend to show their emotions like we do. They keep it for family and friends, not strangers.
âDon’t expect people to be friendly at first. They will heat up over time.
âRussians are gentle people – enter without prejudice. “
The last word…
You might have been in Russia for a week, but don’t try to compete with the locals when it comes to drinking.
Goran says, âIt’s a different culture from drinking alcohol. They will drink you under the table.