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Champions League Travel Advice: Spartak Moscow v Liverpool

Travel advice for Liverpool fans travelling to Russia for the FC Spartak Moscow v Liverpool match on Tuesday 26 September 2017.

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Date: Tuesday 26 September 2017

Venue: Spartak Stadium (Otkrytiye Arena), Volokolamskoye.sh 69, Moscow

Kick off time: 9.45 local time 7.45 UK time

As well as this advice, check out the travel advice for Russia.

Passport and visas

You’ll need a visa to enter the Russian Federation – make sure you apply for the correct type and duration of visa. For further information, see the Russian Embassy website and the website of VFS Global who manage Russian visa applications on behalf of the Embassy.

Before you travel to Russia make sure you’re aware of the terms and conditions attached to your visa for both entry and exit. If you arrive at an airport with an expired visa, you won’t be allowed to depart. Overstaying your visa can result in a delay to your departure from Russia, fines, court hearings, and possible deportation and a ban from entering Russia in the future. If you need an extension, you should arrange this before your visa expires.

Your passport should be valid for a minimum period of 6 months after the expiry date of your visa. If you’re travelling on a British passport issued since January 2017, make sure you’ve signed it before you travel. Some British travellers who have arrived at the Russian border with an unsigned passport have been denied entry into Russia.

Take out travel insurance for your trip, even if you are only going for one night – it could save you a lot of money if you get into difficulties. Your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) is not valid in Russia.

You must carry ID with you at all times. Take a photocopy of your passport and visa, and leave this in your hotel room.

All foreign nationals entering Russia must sign a migration card, which is produced at passport control in the airports. The card is in two identical parts. One part will be retained by the Immigration Officer on arrival. You should keep the other part with your passport; you will need it when you leave Russia.

Do not lose your passport whilst you are in Russia. If you lose your passport, you’ll need to get an Emergency Travel Document from the British Embassy in Moscow between 9am and 5pm. You’ll need to supply a passport photo, flight reservation details and a police report. The fee for an Emergency Travel Document is 100 GBP payable by Visa or MasterCard. You will also need to obtain a replacement visa – the British Embassy will advise on the process, but it will take time and is not a straightforward process.

The British Embassy will have a local presence at the match. If you need to contact the British Embassy during your time in Moscow:

Smolenskaya Naberezhnaya 10

121099 Moscow

Russia

Telephone number: + 7 495 956 7200 (follow auto recorded prompts to Consular Services – this is also the number for out-of-hours emergencies)

Office hours: Monday to Friday 9am – 5pm.

Getting to Moscow from the UK

There are no direct flights between Liverpool and Moscow, but it is possible to get a direct flight to Moscow from London. If you are flying with British Airways, fans will arrive at Moscow Domodedovo airport. Fans flying Aeroflot will arrive at Moscow Shermetyevo airport.

ATM and cash exchange offices are available at both airports. The current GBP rate is about 77 RUR. If you bring cash, it is recommended to take USD or EUR, as pounds are rarely used in Russia.

DME is approximately 46km from the city centre, and SVO is 34km from the city center.

The fastest way to get to the city centre from the airport is by Aeroexpress train, which runs from either airport every half an hour. Aeroexpress trains from DME arrive at Paveletskaya metro station. Aeroexpress trains from SVO arrive at Belorusskaya metro station. A one way Aeroexpress ticket costs 500 rubles (approximately £7). Return tickets are valid for 30 days and cost 1000 rubles (approximately £14). Further details can be found at the aeroexpress website

You can book a taxi from official taxi stands at both airports. They will be clearly advertised and run by popular Taxi Apps such as Uber, Gett, or Yandex. Official looking taxis can be unlicensed. It is not advisable to share a taxi with strangers or flag down what may appear to be an official taxi. At popular locations such as airports, you are likely to be approached by unofficial taxi drivers on arrival. You should not use these as many are unlicensed. Allow time for heavy traffic in Moscow.

Travel on the underground or Metro system is quick, cheap, and reliable. A ticket or travel card must be purchased from a ticket machine/office, located in any station foyer. The cost of a single journey is 55 roubles (approximately 70p).

Getting to the stadium

The Spartak stadium is approximately 14 kilometres north-west of Moscow City Centre. You should leave plenty of time to get to the stadium, particularly if you are travelling by taxi.

You should arrive at the stadium in good time for searching and ticket checking. The stadium will open the turnstiles 2 hours before kick-off. Kick-off is at 9:45pm local time, so turnstiles will open at 7:45pm.

The easiest and most efficient way to travel around Moscow is to use the underground/Metro system. All metro stations are marked with a big red “M.” To travel by Metro, a ticket or travel card must be purchased from a ticket machine or ticket office. These can be found in any station foyer. The cost of a return ticket is 110 rubles (approximately £1.50). It is also possible to buy and top up a “Troika” card, the Russian equivalent of Oyster. The stadium is located 200 metres from the metro station Spartak (Спартак). This station is on the purple line of the Moscow Metro (No.7).

You may get to the stadium by taxi. Where possible ask your hotel to get a taxi for you, ask for a telephone number of a reputable taxi company, or use an established company. You should agree the fare before getting into the taxi.

At the match

The Liverpool fans section is located in the southwest area of the stadium, blocks C224 and C225, in the upper section.

There is a strict search regime on entry to the stadium, with body scanners and searches in operation. You should co-operate with the stewards during the search. Bags larger than 25cm will be directed to a baggage storage area. You are strongly encouraged not to bring large bags to the stadium.

The usual list of banned items includes glass, bottles, cans and pyrotechnics. Fans caught trying to take pyrotechnics in the ground will be arrested. The stadium is covered by an extensive CCTV system and fans will be monitored at all times. You can’t bring food and drink into the stadium, but it’s available to buy inside. As per all UEFA games, no alcohol will be sold. Fans that arrive drunk at the stadium will be refused entry.

Away fans are normally held back at the final whistle to allow home supporters to leave. This may take 20 to 40 minutes. The Metro normally runs until 1am, and will be running at the end of the game from the station until all of the fans have left the stadium. After 1am you’re strongly advised to use a reputable taxi app.

Tips

As in any other city beware of pickpockets and bag snatchers at airports, railway stations, around the town centre and when using public transport – only carry what you need and leave spare cash and valuables in hotel safety deposits. The centre of Moscow has lots of bars and restaurants, many of whom will have English speaking staff. Typically, younger Russians are more likely to be fluent in English.

Drink spiking does happen and can lead to robbery, violence, and/or abuse. Unconscious victims can be left outside, which can be life threatening in the winter months. Buy your own drinks and keep sight of them at all times.

Don’t become involved with drugs. You can expect a long sentence for possession of even small quantities of drugs, regardless of whether they are “hard” or “soft.”

Most major high street banks and currency providers in the UK can pre-order Roubles (Russian currency). If you plan to buy roubles in Russia, you should take US dollars or Euros to exchange. Only change money at banks, hotels, and airport exchanges bureaus. It is an offence to change money from street traders.

Most hotels, restaurants, and larger shops accept credit cards. There are ATMs in most major cities. Consider informing your bank before you travel to Russia to avoid having a temporary stop on your card.

Contact the British Embassy in Moscow

British Embassy Moscow

Smolenskaya Naberezhnaya 10

121099 Moscow Russia

Telephone number + 7 495 956 7200 (also for out of hours emergencies)

Office hours: Monday to Friday 9 am to 5pm

For more information, please visit British Embassy Moscow website

Emergency services number 112

Further information

www.visitrussia.org.uk - general tourist information

www.lonelyplanet.com/russia/moscow - general tourist information

www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/russia - UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office travel advice for British nationals going to Russia

Published 22 September 2017