Life in Moscow: Student Reviews of the City

What is life in Moscow really like? What does the Russian capital have to offer? To help you stay up to date, we’ve asked our students to share what they found while abroad in Moscow! Finding Things SRAS: First, think of the city – what was available in terms of culture, shopping, and services. Were […]

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Buying a SIM Card in Russia: Free Russian Lesson

This free Russian MiniLesson will help you learn the vocabulary need to get a SIM card in Russia. If you are on a regular SRAS study abroad program, SRAS will help you to obtain a local SIM card. In many locations, SRAS can also supply you with a “burner” phone for use while on the […]

Russian MiniLessons: How to Address Strangers in Russian

The following bilingual Russian MiniLesson is meant to build your vocabulary by providing Russian phrases within English text. Hover over the bold Russian to reveal its English translation. When addressing strangers in Russia, it is important to maintain an appropriate level of politeness. The address should be in a formal manner, a person should apologize […]

International Airfare For Study Abroad

SRAS is not in the business of selling plane tickets, with the exception of group educational tours and domestic flights not available for purchase outside of Russia. An economy-class, round-trip ticket from New York to Moscow, as of June, 2020, averages between $500-1000, depending on the time of year, carrier, and other factors. If you are using […]

Moscow: Student Budgets and Logistics

Students in Moscow report spending about $90-110 a week average over the course of their stay. This covers groceries, eating at the university cafeteria, city transport, an occasional meal out, school supplies, modest weekend entertainment, and other general living expenses. Note that this guide assumes 70 rubles = 1 US dollar. Prices current as of […]

SRAS Guide to Living in Moscow

The following is a quick overview to some of those services and products that students often need in the course of a semester or summer abroad. This covers everything from haircuts to pharmacies and gyms to computer repair. Students should generally expect to need to speak at least some Russian when seeking out these experiences […]

Moscow Housing

SRAS Programs in Moscow are hosted at the Higher School of Economics (HSE) or Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO), depending on the program chosen. In both cases, students will live in the dormitories run by the respective institution. Dormitories for HSE The following is a compilation of student reviews about the HSE dorms […]

Arrival in Moscow: Student Impressions

Let our Moscow students let you know what to expect when arriving to Moscow! Heading abroad is always a big step and can feel exciting or overwhelming – or both. Learn from the experience of others and hit the ground running! How did you feel when you first arrived? Weston Weber (Fall, 2019): When I […]

Hard-to-Find Foods in Russia

In 2005, when this resource was first developed, supermarket chains in Russia were only first developing. Brand and product selection, while perhaps normal for a post-Soviet location, was disappointing and monotonous for most visitors. The restaurant scene, even in places like Moscow and St. Petersburg, also felt underdeveloped. Of the three things commonly looked for […]

Packing List for Study Abroad

A semester or year stay abroad requires considerable planning. You will need to consider the season and location as well as what you need to bring and what you should find abroad. If you will be spending winter months in most SRAS locations, luggage can quite easily become unwieldy, which can mean airline charges for […]

Moscow Travel Excursions from SRAS

Moscow is ringed with locations of historical and cultural importance. Below is a sampling of some of the trips that SRAS groups have taken in the past as part the cultural package offered with SRAS Programs in Moscow. Note that not all trips are taken each session and trips themselves may differ from session to […]

The Cultural Legacy of Peredelkino, a Day Trip from Moscow

It’s an exceptionally warm winter day in Peredelkino, a former writers’ village just 20 minutes from Moscow by commuter train. I have the pleasure of going on another well- organized and informative SRAS-arranged Bridge to Moscow tour to visit this iconic place. Peredelkino is a village with wide-ranging cultural value, from its status as a […]

Preparing for and Coping with Culture Shock

Some of our students report not feeling culture shock at all. Some are surprised by how much culture shock they experience. Often, those most affected are those who did not expect it. So how can you prepare to live in a new culture and get the most out of the experience? How do you prepare […]

Managing Your Cash While Abroad: A Student Guide

Eurasia today is quite affordable. Students are often surprised how far their dollars will go even in major cities like St. Petersburg and Warsaw – and very surprised at how far they go in places like Bishkek and Irkutsk. However, students can also be surprised at how easy it is to run into troubles – […]

Moscow to Riga – Weekend Trip

Moscow is a great place to explore, but sometimes getting out of the city is a must. Luckily Moscow is a centrally located travel hub connecting you to many great places for a weekend getaway, which can include, not only different cities within Russia, but cheap and direct flights to cities such as Helsinki, Tallinn, […]

Traveling to Kazakhstan from Moscow

Kazakhstan is located in Central Asia, a landlocked country and the ninth largest country in the world. I took a four-hour flight from Moscow to Almaty for a little over $100 (cheaper tickets are definitely available). The gargantuan mountains that tower Almaty to the south of the city dominated my first impressions of the city, […]

Dorm Cooking Tips and Simple Recipies

Many students come abroad with minimal cooking experience. Add to this the fact that you’ll need to shop in a foriegn language and that your kitchen situation can often be very basic, many students shy from cooking altogether. However, cooking and shopping can be great cultural experiences, not to mention a great way to keep […]

Home and Abroad + RSL – One Year with SRAS

I’ve recently completed my year-long term as a Home and Abroad scholar with SRAS. The Home and Abroad program is an intensive intern-scholarship program that helps fund an SRAS study abroad program. Home and abroad enriched my study abroad experience by encouraging me to do extensive research before heading abroad, and requiring me to get out […]

The Golden Ring: Kostroma, Yaroslavl and Rostov Veliky from Moscow

The Golden Ring, a group of historic cities northeast of Moscow, is known for kremlins, monasteries and churches preserved from the 12th–18th centuries. There are eight principal cities (plus several more that have come, especially as tourism in Russia has grown, to market themselves as part of the Ring). Thus, it’s impossible to see it […]

Trip to Vilnius, Lithuania from Moscow

I visited Vilnius in January 2018 to catch up with an old friend who’d moved there from America about a year earlier. Although it was my first time in the Baltics, and I had no idea what to expect, I quickly fell in love with the small, winding cobblestone streets, the old architecture and charm […]

Trip to Kazan from Moscow

After hearing my friends and professors rave about Kazan for months, a friend and I finally went from Thursday through Saturday during the last week of February. At a brisk -12C, it certainly could have been colder, but the wind did cause us to spend a little more time indoors. Nonetheless, Kazan lived up to […]

A Weekend in Minsk

As an SRAS student in Russia, you’ll likely have a multiple-entry student visa. This means that you should be able, with proper planning, to explore not only Russia, but other countries nearby. Near the end of the semester, four of my friends and I decided to do just that. We settled on Minsk, largely because […]

The Importance of Living Outside of Your Comfort Zone

Studying by itself can be challenging, which puts studying in a foreign country in a whole different level of difficulty. This past summer has been one of the most formative and informational experiences that I have ever had; but it may not have ended that way unless I took the advice from my professor before […]

Sergiyev Posad and the Lavra: Day Trip from Moscow

Сергиев Посад/Sergiyev Posad Троице-Сергиева Лавра/Trinity Lavra of St. Sergius Троице-Сергиева Лавра – open daily 8:00 to 18:00 Weekends churches are closed to the public Lavra’s Museum on-site closed on Mondays Free Admission to the monastery Train tickets round-trip – 600-1000 rubles   As our program rounds out to a close, some friends and I decided […]

Teaching English in Russia: The Complete Guide

Note that SRAS does not hire English teachers. However, many of our students, past and present, have inquired into the logistics of teaching while abroad, while as students or otherwise. We have therefore provided this resource. Demand for English teachers remains very strong in Russia. Ambitious young people who are hoping to make a career […]

Studying Russian in Moscow with SRAS

SRAS Program Review Russian as a Second Language – Moscow I decided to study abroad in Russia due to a long-held fascination of mine with the language, culture, and politics of the country, a fascination that was honed and augmented by my first three years of study at university in the departments of international relations […]

Literary History on the Trans-Siberian Railroad

This article originally appeared on SRAS.org in 2007. It is reproduced here, in updated format, as an excellent guide to using travel to bolster cultural understanding and professional insight.  A guide to scholarly growth through travel and the literary richness of the Trans-Siberian If you are studying abroad in Russia and you have an opportunity […]

Travel to Eastern Europe from Moscow

Note: This text, about a trip I took through Eastern Europe in 2006 is actually still surprisingly up-to-date. This is particularly true of the text’s main message – that actually visiting the places you’ve studied in college and written term papers professing your knowledge of is essential to actually knowing what you are talking about. […]

Volunteer Opportunities in Russia

Due to frequent student requests for such information, we have provided the following list of charities in Russia that generally accept volunteers and/or donations. Expenses, Legalities, and Logistics: Interested students should contact these organizations directly. SRAS bears no direct relation to them. None of these organizations, to our knowledge, offer volunteers financial or material assistance: […]

History of Vegetarianism in Russia

The following article originally appeared in Russian on Vegetarianskij.ru. It has been translated and adapted by SRAS for presentation here. History of Vegetarianism in Russia The official coming of vegetarianism to Russia was inaugurated with the opening of the first vegetarian society. This was in Saint-Petersburg in the mid-1860s. The society was humorously called “Ни […]

The Art of Daily Practice and Conversations

It’s a little bit surprising to look at the calendar and think that half of my first semester in Vladivostok is already gone. Seven weeks seem to have effortlessly drifted by in strict contention with my own efforts at learning the Russian language. I can say that my knowledge of Russian when I arrived in […]

Minorities Abroad: Additional Resources

This site isn’t the only resource for minority students studying in Russia, Eurasia, and Eastern Europe! Below is a collection of interesting and useful sites from around the web, featuring videos, interviews, and much more. (Thanks to the many folks on ADSEEES and SEELANGS who have shared them!) If you’d like to suggest an additional […]

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