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Advice on overland travel between Europe and Russia, via Belarus
Posted by Aleksandra Kasaeva on 04 July 2017 01:22 PM

There is currently a dispute between Russia and Belarus about third country nationals crossing the border between the two countries. The dispute was initially only directed at certain road crossings, and specifically excluded third country nationals crossing the border by international train.

However, Real Russia have received feedback from a number of our clients who have attempted to cross the Russia-Belarus border by international train (with the correct visas) and been turned away, with some being fined for attempting to make an ‘illegal’ border crossing.

It is worth noting that over the last few weeks we have also had a number of customers who have crossed over the border with no issues.Therefore, there is a little uncertainty as to whether it is, or isn’t, possible to cross the Russia-Belarus border by train.

Real Russia are currently working alongside the consulates, relevant border authorities and our local partners to clarify this situation.

In the meantime, Real Russia recommends caution when trying to travel between Europe and Russia, via Belarus. It is still possible to buy tickets that cross the Russia-Belarus border, but there is no guarantee that once at the border, regardless of having the correct visas, you will be allowed to cross.

There are a number of alternative routes available, avoiding the Russia-Belarus border; the most popular of which is to the north of Belarus, via Riga (Latvia). Via the south it is possible to travel via Kiev (Ukraine).

  • One train travels each day in each direction between Moscow and Riga, departing in the evening and arriving the following morning.
  • Up to six trains that travel between Kiev and Moscow each day, with flexible departure times, taking 12 to 13 hours to make the journey.

All of these trains can be booked via our online rail booking system. If you would like to book trains within Europe to, or from, either Riga or Kiev, we would recommend speaking to our travel specialists to ensure you choose the best route for your travel needs.

Check back to or our social media channels for updates.

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Vietnam Visa-Free Regime to be Extended Until 30.06.2018
Posted by Aleksandra Kasaeva on 22 June 2017 10:26 AM

We have good news for travellers planning to visit Vietnam!  The Vietnamese government have confirmed that they will renew the current visa-free regime for citizens of the UK, France, Italy, Germany and Spain until 30th June 2018. This visa-free regime allows citizens of those countries to stay in Vietnam for up to 15 days without a visa, for the purpose of tourism.  Furthermore, this visa-free regime will be extended to include citizens of the Czech Republic.

Anybody who is not a national of one of those countries, and anybody who is a national of these countries but is planning to stay in Vietnam for more than 15 days, must get a visa to Vietnam.

If you do require a visa, please do not hesitate to contact our visa team, who will be happy to help.

Are you thinking of extending your Trans-Siberian Railway adventure to include Vietnam?  Click here for train timetables from Beijing to Hanoi, and to book your tickets now!

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Translation and marriage services temporarily suspended
Posted by Tanya Pecheykina on 13 June 2017 02:27 PM
Our service for translation and marriage documents in London is temporarily unavailable and will be resumed on the 28th of June 2017. Any existing orders will be processed as normal. Should you have any questions, email us at or call on 0207 100 7370.
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Allow more time at Moscow train stations
Posted by Andrew Glenister on 05 June 2017 09:48 AM

During June and July 2017, football’s Confederations Cup will be held in several cities in Russia, including Moscow. Because of this, the Russian authorities are expecting an increase in passenger numbers across the rail network.

Because of this, changes have been made to passenger entry and exit for safety and security purposes.

The stations in Moscow affected are:

  • Kievsky
  • Belorussky
  • Yarolslavsky
  • Kursky
  • Kazansky

Of particular relevance to Real Russia customers are the changes made at Yaroslavsky Station, as this is where the trains travelling along the Trans-Siberian railway depart and arrive.

We do not have details of these changes, but they may include more thorough bag checks, and extended waiting times. This is likely to be particularly true at peak times, and on the days that cup fixtures are being held.

You can find a list of fixtures here.

We would advise allowing extra time when departing from, or arriving to, one of the listed stations.

Matches will also be held in Kazan, Saint Petersburg and Sochi, so please allow extra time at these stations as well.

While we have not been informed of changes to entry and exit at other stations across Russia that have no connection to the Confederations Cup, please allow extra time at these also, as summer is the busiest travel time in Russia, so waiting times in stations will increase accordingly.

If you would like to speak to one of our travel experts about this, or have any other questions, you can contact them here.

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Posted by Dominic Quiney on 02 June 2017 01:13 PM




*** Russian visa registration rules have changed ***


Please follow the link below for URGENT information regarding the need to register your visa within 24 hours if you are arriving in Moscow, St Petersburg, Kazan or Sochi between 1st June and 12th July 2017:


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