Moscow Travel Guide
Travel Politics / Russia Travel / Crimea Travel / Dobrolet / Aeroflot / European Union Travel / → All Tags
Meeting of the minds between Russia's Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev (center), Transport Minister Maxim Sokolov (right), and Aeroflot's Deputy General Director Vadim Zingman (left).
Citing sources within the Russian government, a series of news articles ran yesterday reporting that Russia was considering banning all European air carriers from flying in its airspace.
In general, such a move would be in response to the growing tension between the European Union and Russia over the political issues surrounding Crimea. More specifically, Russia is upset that the EU canceled its leasing agreement with the low-cost carrier Dobrolet, a subsidiary of the country's national airline, Aeroflot. Originally, the EU cancelled the agreement because the airline flew to Crimea, and the sanctions against Russia were widened after MH17 was shot down a few weeks ago.
If you haven’t yet heard of the Shukhov Tower, now’s a good time to check it out (at least on Wikipedia), as it might not be around much longer. The funky landmark is a radio tower over in Russia, and some have even called it the country’s version of the Eiffel Tower. We wouldn’t go that far, but there are preservationists eager to keep it hanging around for future generations.
The thing rises 525-feet into the Soviet sky, but structurally it's a little shaky and needs to come down sooner rather than later. Meanwhile, the aforementioned preservationists cite the symbolism of the tower as it relates to Russia’s history and past advances in telecommunications.
Sochi 2014 Olympics / Subways / Moscow Travel / Russia Travel / Olympics Travel / Free Stuff / Health Travel / → All Tags
Moscow is getting in shape for the upcoming Winter Olympics in Sochi, literally. Some subway stations in the Russian capital are accepting payment in the form of 30 squats.
If you're wondering how it works, try flashing back to those Nintendo Power Pads from the '80s. In front of the ticket booth, there's a blue pad on which you do the squats, while a screen keeps count of the number. At the end of squat 30, a subway ticket pops out of the doohickey. The brilliant initiative is designed as a way to get the population in better shape while also hyping the upcoming 2014 Winter Olympics?
Well played, Moscow.
Airline News / Low Cost Carriers / LCCs / LCC / Aeroflot / Russia Travel / Airlines / Budget Travel / → All Tags
It seems like pretty much each and every airline is considering—or at least has or had—a low-cost carrier sibling. Competition is pretty strong out there, so if you’re able to offer up a cheaper alternative it’s probably a good idea.
The latest carrier to throw their hat into the budget ring just might be Aeroflot, as there are rumors that the Russian carrier is thinking of launching an LCC beginning at some point in 2014.
Here at Jaunted we’re used to hearing about special deals to mark special occasions. And, let’s be honest, they’re normally pretty rubbish. So we’re massively intrigued about a new hidden offer that British Airways has come up with.
For some reason (maybe a BA person can explain), BA is classifying its four-hour Heathrow-Moscow flight as long-haul, and adding in planes that carry First Class and World Traveller Plus as well as economy and business. The route upgrade begins March 25, but for some bizarre-but-welcome reason, they’re offering a sneak preview of the new route on two specific flights next month.
Fly out on BA0872 on 4 March (8.40am start) and back on BA0873 on 6 March (at 6pm) and you’ll pay just £99 each way in economy, and £149 each way in business. Including taxes.
Airport News / Airport Hotels / Hotels / Airports / Layovers / Design Travel / SVO / Yotels / → All Tags
We're not going to say that sleeping in airports is uncomfortable. Everyone already knows that. We're here today to slam down the Bible, thumb our fist on the pulpit and do declare that there is a better way! There is hope for airport nappers! This hope is the Sleepbox and after spending several years as a popular concept and focus of design blogs, the Sleepbox has actually materialized as a physical, money-generating thing.
Just this week the first Sleepbox made its debut at Moscow-Sheremetyevo Airport and the international interest has been immediate. In all fairness, anything beating two luggages on the floor with a hoodie draped over them is a huge improvement. So now Sleepbox is accepting its first guests, offering rentals of 30 minutes to several hours while providing free WiFi, bunk beds, a folding desk, an LCD TV and "ventilation." Don't expect an ensuite bathroom, but do note that the bed sheets are automatically self-changing and there is luggage storage.
Want a bathroom? It's off to the Yotel with you.
Tragedies / Airport News / Travel News / Terrorism / DME / Russia Travel / Airports / FlyingWithFish / Airport Security / → All Tags
Steven Frischlingairline geek, professional photographer and travel security blogger of Flying With Fishsteps in to give us an update on the emergency situation currently playing out in Moscow:
Moscow's Domodedovo International Airport (DME), 26 miles southeast of Moscow and a favorite of low-cost carriers, was torn apart by a bomb blast earlier today at 4:37pm MSK, in the international arrivals lounge area.
The explosion is believed to be set off by at least one suicide bomber, although police postulate that the blast area is potentially from more than one bomb. The blast killed a confirmed 31 people, with more than 130 others injured.
Despite the fact that the explosion quickly filled the airport's single terminal with smoke, causing the airport's evacuation, Domodedovo has now miraculously reopened for flights just a few hours after the deadly terrorist attack. Russian news outlet RT.com reports that flights for this evening are departing on time.
Raise your hand if you can name any Russian airlines. Wait, you didn't know there was more than Aeroflot? Well there is, and one of them has their sights firmly set on more direct routes between Moscow and the United States. We're talking about Transaero, an airline that's been around since 1990 and will now begin flying to both New York and Miami later this month.
With only 50 planes, Transaero is far from being mistaken as a huge airline, but they are pretty major over in Russia and are favorites for holiday travel, with routes like Moscow to Sharm el Sheikh and Moscow to London. The new Miami service is unique as it will make Transaero the first airline ever to have non-stop flights between Moscow and Miami.
DD actually opened in Russia 11 years ago but demand was weak (Russians were reportedly confused by the donuts) and DD later closed their two shops. But this time, DD is intent on getting Russia to run on Dunkin' with plans to open 20 stores in Moscow.
The first restaurant in Moscow on Novy Arbat Street, one of the city’s most prestigious and historic areas, will be open to the public on May 11th. This opening marks Dunkin’ Donuts’ plans to expand steadily throughout Russia and Ukraine over the next several years.
Donuts Project LLC, Dunkin’ Donuts’ franchise partner in Russia, is set to open between 10 and 20 Dunkin’ Donuts restaurants in Moscow and the Moscow region in 2010.
Around 11pm last night EST, which would be during the morning rush hour in Moscow, two separate female suicide bombers detonated themselves in the subway underground of the city. The first occurred in a train at the main station Lubyanka, killing 23 on the train and platform and the second came at the Park Kultury station, killing another 12. The attacks again raise important questions about the safety of public transportation while turning an eye to Russia and their terrorism problems with Islamist rebels fighting for independence in Chechnya.
Russia is not new to subway bombings, but then neither are Tokyo, London or New York, the latter of which has foiled several attempts of terrorists to bomb and even cyanide gas the system. As a result, expect subway security to be beefed up in big cities around the world, especially in New York. Plan for random bag checks and remember that using common sense is a good defense. While there's probably no need to bring your flame-retardent suit on the train today, it's also a good idea to be aware of what's going on around you.
· Moscow Subways Attacked, NYPD Increases Subway Security [Gothamist]
· Two Blasts in Moscow Metro, Dozens Killed [RT]
· Tragedies [Jaunted]
Everybody has their own favorite travel memories, transcendent moments occurring far from home that spawn a new awareness and perspective on life. For me, a snowy trip to Moscow in January, 1993 is one of the fondest, as it was a moment that awakened in me the idea that the world is there for the taking, and all that is needed to visit somewhere exotic is simply to get up and go.
Obama-Around-The-World / Presidential Travel / Barack Obama / Moscow / Russia Travel / Michelle Obama / → All Tags
As President Obama continues to tour the world, we love that he's including his family and allowing them to be cultural ambassadors while he's tied up in meetings, like today's talks with Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev over arms control.
While Obama conducts business in the Kremlin, Michelle and the girls are literally down the hall with first lady Svetlana Medvedev, who took them on a tour of famous tourist sites within the palace, such as the Cathedral of the Assumption and the Amory Museum and its 190-carat Orlov diamond. The girls even took tea in the Winter Garden; we are so jealous.
According to the Russian paper Pravda and USA Today, the Obamas might however be sleeping outside of the Kremlin walls at the Ritz-Carlton, since the hotel has suspiciously blocked off reservations for July 5 thru 8. There's yet another clue as to the Obamas' hotel sleeping arrangements: "In its lobby, the Ritz-Carlton installed an over-sized, chocolate statue of an American Eagle and a Russian Bear in honor of the visit." Our jealousy sees no end.
· US first lady Michelle Obama tours Moscow's Kremlin as summit talks kick off [LA Times]
· President Obama's likely hotel choice while in Moscow: The Ritz-Carlton [USA Today]
· Presidential Travel Coverage [Jaunted]
[Photo: Stringer / AFP / Getty ]