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Any ideas or thoughts on current travel to Russia or Poland?

Need advice re: safety concerns
  • Tom
     asked this on October 08, 2011 at 02:50 PM
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Well visitors are always enquiring about these travel locations. No need to worry, they are indeed a great places to spend a vacation. I have visited many places in Russia such as Moscow, Red Square, St. Basil's Cathedral, The Kremlin and St. Petersburg, all of them are beautiful. We visited this place when there was a great tour organized by kosher travelers - http://www.koshertravelers.com/tours/koshertours.asp?expandable=2 , truly have wonderful memories. Poland is also a great location, positioned well in the centre of Europe. There are some great attractive towns and cities, such as Cracow, Zamosc and Warsaw to see on this tour.
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By all accounts, travel to Poland is considered relatively safe, though you should obviously take the necessary precautions to guard against pickpockets and other common street crimes and scams. You should be fine in most of the major tourist centers, though just be careful when going out at night or if you're traveling alone. Both the U.S. Department of State (http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1000.html) and British Foreign & Commonwealth Office (http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/travel-and-living-abroad/travel-advice-by-country/europe/poland) offer country-specific advice about travel to Poland. Honestly, most of the advice pertains to common-sense street smarts than being particular to Poland. For your reference, Away.com has also published a list of helpful tips in the following article about safeguarding your cash and personal possessions while traveling abroad: http://bit.ly/h7LiAc
  • Alistair
     answered this on October 17, 2011 at 11:46 AM
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For the first-timers, I would recommend starting with visiting Moscow and St. Petersburg. English is not much spoken, so it's easier to be a part of a group than being alone. Traveling in groups will also guarantee your safety (it's not such a huge concern nowadays comparing to 90s). Take a guide and research major landmarks you'd like to visit before your trip (to avoid sensory overload). Best time would be between May and September since the weather could be quite unpredictable. In the summer, you can experience famous white nights in St. Petersburg. In general, St. Petersburg is more tourist-friendly (and cheaper) compared to Moscow, which could be way too intense.

Since American citizens are required to obtain visa in order to enter the country, start planning your trip well in advance and make sure your passport is current. Credit cards are widely accepted, so there is no need to carry a lot of cash; you can exchange currency at any bank. Here's the link to the Russian Embassy's website where you read in detail about visiting the country. http://www.russianembassy.org
  • Julia
     answered this on October 14, 2011 at 12:19 PM
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