World Cup 2018 – Frequently Asked Questions

As the 2018 World Cup in Russia gets closer, Real Russia have received many questions from football fans and travellers, so we thought we would share some of the most frequently asked, along with their answers!

Remember, if you cannot find the answer to your question here, please feel free to get in touch with us!

What are the dates of the World Cup?

The 2018 World Cup in Russia will be held from the 14th June 2018 until the 15th July 2018.

Where in Russia is the 2018 World Cup being hosted?

The tournament will be held in the following 11 cities across Russia:

  • Moscow
  • St Petersburg
  • Yekaterinburg
  • Kaliningrad
  • Kazan
  • Nizhny Novgorod
  • Samara
  • Saransk
  • Sochi
  • Rostov-on-Do
  • Volgograd

Which documents do I need to get to the 2018 World Cup?

  1. Official FIFA ticket(s) to a match (or matches) at the 2018 World Cup, OR official FIFA confirmation that a ticket has been successfully allocated to you.
  2. A Fan ID.
  3. A passport with six months validity AFTER you return home from Russia.

If you have already purchased valid match tickets, and FIFA have either sent you your official match ticket or confirmed that you have successfully been allocated a match ticket, you must then apply for a Fan ID, which is compulsory for all World Cup spectators and allows you to enter and leave Russia without a visa during the World Cup.

You must have a confirmed ticket to be eligible for a FAN ID.

Which teams will be playing at the 2018 World Cup?

There are 32 teams, split into eight groups:

  • Group A: Russia, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Uruguay
  • Group B: Portugal, Spain, Morocco, Iran
  • Group C: France, Australia, Peru, Denmark
  • Group D: Argentina, Iceland, Croatia, Nigeria
  • Group E: Brazil, Switzerland, Costa Rica, Serbia
  • Group F: Germany, Mexico, Sweden, South Korea
  • Group G: Belgium, Panama, Tunisia, England
  • Group H: Poland, Senegal, Colombia, Japan

How is the World Cup tournament structured?

There are two stages to the tournament:

  • Group stage – 14th June to 28th June
  • Knockout stages – 30th June to 15th July

Can you tell me more about Fan IDs?

Of course. We have put together all the information you will need about Fan IDs into one handy guide.

If I don’t have a match ticket, where can I watch the games?

There are many bars across Russia that will be showing games.

In addition, FIFA will be holding ‘Fan Fests’ in many Russian cities. With big-screen coverage of the games, alongside live music and local food and drink, the Fan Fests will be the best way to watch the World Cup if you do not have a ticket to the games.

Is Russia safe?

Yes, Russia is generally a safe country to travel to. In fact, as the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office has confirmed that, for the 2018 World Cup, co-operation on numerous issues is in hand between UK and Russian police. You can expect security (including the police presence) to be stepped up for the World Cup, especially in the 11 host cities. Most visits to Russia are trouble-free, although crime can occur. See the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s official advice, and if you want to find out more about safety at the World Cup specifically, see their official World Cup advice page.

Is Russian train travel safe?

Millions of people, both Russian locals and tourists, travel safely on Russian trains every year. In many ways, they are the safest trains to travel on.

  • Each carriage is looked after 24 hours a day by at least one or two attendants, known locally as provodnitsas.
  • Each passenger must show their ticket upon entry, and present with it an official identification document; for foreign visitors, this will usually be a passport.
  • At every stop trains are checked to ensure there is no damageWith regards to remaining safe and secure on Russian trains, the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office has the following to say:
  • If you are travelling by overnight train in a sleeping compartment, store valuables in the container under the bed or seat. Don’t leave your sleeping compartment unoccupied as some compartments only have a simple lock on the sliding door. On some trains, there may be an additional security device, which can be attached to the fitted handle/lock unit. There may also be a steel switch at head-height on the door panel which, when pulled down, prevents the closed door from being slid open.
  • Don’t agree to look after the luggage of a fellow traveller or allow it to be stored in your compartment.

What are the phone numbers for the emergency services in Russia?

  • 112 is the general emergency services number to dial.
  • Ambulance, dial 103 from any mobile phone or 03 from any landline.
  • Police, dial 102.
  • Fire service, dial 101

In the unlikely event that you do require emergency assistance while in Russia, please note that not all operators can speak English, so it may be necessary to have a Russian speaker translate for you.

What should I do if I lose my passport when I’m in Russia?

If you lose your passport when you’re in Russia, you should go to your country’s nearest embassy or consulate, and they will be able to assist you. Here you will find a list of all foreign embassies and consulates in Russia.

If you are a UK citizen and you lose your passport in Russia, you will need to go to either the British Embassy in Moscow, or to the British Consulate General in St. Petersburg, where you will need to obtain an Emergency Travel Document, the fee for which is £100. See the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s “Be on the Ball” 2018 World Cup advice page for more information.

Do many Russians speak English? Will it be difficult to get around without speaking Russian?

English is the most commonly studied foreign language in Russia, although, usually, finding English speakers is considerably more difficult in Russia than it is in much of Europe. However, during the 2018 World Cup, there will be thousands of dedicated volunteers for the tournament in each of the 11 host cities, the vast majority of whom speak English, and many of whom may also speak some other languages. These volunteers are intended to help World Cup visitors find their way around Russia and the 11 host cities.

What should I do about money in Russia?

The Rouble is the currency in use in Russia, and can be acquired before you arrive in the country. If you would like to exchange money in Russia, it is easier to do so using US Dollars than other currencies.

Visa and Mastercard are widely accepted in major cities, though less so in smaller provincial towns and on trains.

I have more questions, what should I do?

If you have further questions, please contact us and our experienced travel specialists will be happy to assist you.