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Life Aboard the Imperial Russia Trans-Siberian Train

The Imperial Russia Trans-Siberian train is a once in lifetime experience for many of the people who take it. For such an important trip we like to provide a much information as possible and we know that you are likely to have many questions about the practicalities of such a train trip.

Below you will find answers to the most frequently asked questions. Of course, if you have any additional questions please do not hesitate to contact us as we are deligthed to help you with your trip of a lifetime.

BAR

A bar car is included in the train formation, which is open all day and through the evening & until the last passenger retires. Smoking is not permitted in the bar area. All drinks are for extra charge. No bar car available on the route from Ulan-Bator to Beijing on the trains to/from Beijing.

CAMERAS

We recommend that you take with you any spare camera batteries that you may require for your trip.

MONEY

Travellers cheques are almost impossible to use outside of Moscow and the large hotels and we advise against bringing them. It is therefore necessary to bring sufficient cash to cover all likely souvenir purchases and additional personal items on the tour. ATM machines dispensing Russian Rubles now exist in nearly all the cities along our route. Only Russian Rubles are accepted onboard.

LAUNDRY

This Service is chargeable per item, available on the train, and operates from car attendants.

DOCTOR

There will be a doctor on board the train throughout the journey. If you need any regular medication you must bring sufficient to last the duration of the trip. You should also bring a copy of your prescription. Russian medical services are very efficient for foreigners – but this should in no way be considered an alternative to full medical insurance cover. The railways have their own hospitals along the route and your Tour Manager will assist if necessary.

DRESS

On and off the train dress is casual. In the evening we suggest smart casual. There may be an opportunity for a swim in Lake Baikal, so please include some swim wear in your luggage.
Please avoid wearing short clothes during the visits to churches and mosques, even if the weather is warm. If not, you will not be allowed to visit inside some churches. When visiting a mosque, you need to take off your shoes, but can keep your socks on.Please remember to bring appropriate headgear. Women are required to cover their hair with a headscarf or shawl in Russia’s orthodox churches. Men must not wear short trousers inside the church.

ELECTRICITY

Sockets in hotels and on the train use a standard European 2-pin style adapter, 220 V in hotels. Each train car has 110 V (dc) and 220 V (ac) sockets suitable for recharging video batteries and shaving.

FOOD & DRINK

All food is included (except for dinner on the arrival day) and three meals per day will be provided. A generous allowance of wine, beer or soft drinks is available in the bar car for extra charge. Tea, coffee and mineral water are available from your carriage attendant throughout the tour free of charge. Unfortunately for security reasons we no longer accept credit card payments on board the train, so any expenses should be settled in cash, either as you go or at the end of the tour.

INSURANCE

Please remember to bring with you, either the original or a copy of your travel insurance policy, stating clearly the company, policy number and 24 hour medical emergency telephone number. It is very important that we have all insurance and emergency contact details prior to departure, so please make sure you complete and return the information request forms as soon as possible.

WATER & SHOWERS

We do not recommend to drink tap water on the train. Small bottle of water is daily available in your cabin, during meals and tours. Extra bottled water can be provided by your car attendant any time upon request. As it is not running water onboard and the quantity is limited, please be wise having a shower on the train for your and other travelers convenience. Water in First Class Plus and First Class showers needs some time to heat before it can be used by the next customer.

LUGGAGE

Please keep luggage to a minimum, as there is limited storage space inside the cabin for luggage storage & oversized luggage maybe difficult to stow. We strongly recommend using the soft type of suitcase, as it is easier to fit in the cabin. Soft-topped luggage is easier to store. Clients can have assistance to store their luggage.

SECURITY

Each car has two car attendants, one of whom is always on duty. We recommend that you do not leave the bathroom window open during the stops.

PASSPORTS & VISAS

A full passport with at least 6 months validity remaining on entry into Russia is required for the tour. We strongly recommend taking spare passport photographs and a photocopy of the personal details pages of your passport with you. Keep your passport with you at all times. Keep your duplicate copies separately, preferably in your luggage.

SMOKING

Smoking is not permitted anywhere on the train except the last sleeping car’s end vestibule and on platforms during station stops. Smoking is also not permitted on buses during the city tours, airport transfers and during group meals at restaurants.

TOUR PROGRAM

Our tours are specifically designed for the adventure traveler who wishes to combine the thrill of travelling through the many countries featured in our brochures with the comfort and safety afforded by our “Hotel on Wheels”. We provide a varied and sometime intensive tour program. There are some days when you will have an early start, occasionally before 8 am.

TIPPING

Tipping is at your discretion.

HOTELS

The final information about hotels will be sent closer to train departure.

TOUR TIMINGS

We receive the final train timings from Russian Railways only 10 days prior to the tour. The program may be altered depending on the final arrival/departure times of our train.

INTERNET

We do not have Wi-Fi capability on the train.

VACCINATIONS

No vaccinations are listed as official requirements for Western Tourists visiting Russia, China or Mongolia. Recommended vaccinations include Tetanus, Polio, Hepatitis A, Typhoid and low dose Diphtheria. However, health requirements are constantly changing and you should consult your professional medical adviser or Travel Clinic well before you depart.

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