Russia Samara

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Jobs in Russia 27 Nov 2006
Hey all!
So in order for me to graduate I have to spend a semester in Russia--as you can tell I am really torn up about it. Really I am very excited! I will be done with all my classes and want to find a job. I am asking anyone to share their exp. working over there if they have and where a good place to look for work would be. I am a double major in Russian and Int'l Studies--so work in the embassy would be great. I am just not sure where to start looking. Any Ideas??? Anything will help. I would like to go to St. Petersburg or possibly back to the mission area if I could find something there. Really I would like to travel all over. Hope to hear from you. Thanks!
Tessa Hansen Send Email
Russian Dog 20 Sep 2006
I believe it is the Russian Wolfhound. The one that is big as a horse with thick black curly hair.
Mark William Gardner Send Email
Russian dog 18 Sep 2006
Does anyone remember the breed of dog that was huge almost like a giant husky, and was used for sheparding livestock in Siberia?

Russians would tell me they were used to kill wolves and foxes that came into their flock.
Brook L Harker Send Email
Travel to Russia 17 Sep 2006
I'm almost a 100% sure that you don't need to register if you're staying less than 3 days. So don't even worry about it. One thing though: make sure you carry your passport and your ticket with you everywhere. If you get stopped by "milicioner" on the street, you can prove that you got there less than 3 days ago. Otherwise, there could be problems!

Another thing is I'd recommend you go through a reliable agency to get your tourist visa. Home-stay invitations take a long time to make (about 1 month plus shipping) and are a hassle for a Russian citizen. Unless you have very close friends in Samara or Saratov, I'd say go through one of these websites that other people recommended to you.

Your hotel in Samara or Saratov will help you register. You won't even have to go anywhere, they do it all for you!

I could also recommend you a hotel in Samara.

If I can be of further assistance don't hesitate to contact me at or

Paulina Konovalenko-Gudgell Send Email
Thanks! 14 Sep 2006
Hey thanks everyone for the info, we are in the early planning stages now. Yes I believe we can get an invitation from a number of people there, so that sounds like the best way.

Could we get an invite from a person there for a visa, but still stay in hotels? I also imagine a flight from Moscow to Saratov or Ufa is pretty pricey compared to the train. And I love Russian trains!
Brook L Harker Send Email
Thanks! 14 Sep 2006
Hey thanks everyone for the info, we are in the early planning stages now. Yes I believe we can get an invitation from a number of people there, so that sounds like the best way.

Could we get an invite from a person there for a visa, but still stay in hotels? I also a flight from Moscow to Saratov or Ufa is pretty pricey compared to the train. And I love Russian trains!
Brook L Harker Send Email
Tourist Visa 12 Sep 2006
It IS a pain. I had one made this last summer and the geniuses at the travel agency put the wrong date on there. I had to drive up to the Consulate in San Fransisco and pay another $300 dollars for a one-day processing visa. You do need a travel agency if you don't have a personal invite. Major hotels have their own connections and will help you. For me registering was VERY easy. The first registration was done in the marriot during check in and the next registration (while we stayed at an apartment) was easy as well. We dropped it off in the morning and picked it up in the evening. The most important thing I can tell you is CHOOSE YOUR TRAVEL AGENCY CAREFULLY. Ours was through a church member in Utah. After all the bad service, delays, and costly mistakes we got no refunds and no help. I ended up talking to the consulate and taking two days to drive up there twice to fix things. Just make sure it's a reputable travel agency.
Ethan Kirk Send Email
Answer about travel 12 Sep 2006
You can go on a tourist visa or a homestay visa (a visa that you get from an invitation). I advise getting a homestay. Here's why. If you get a tourist visa, you have to have your hotel plans set and the hotels where you will stay have to send a visa support letter to the Russian embassy here. It's a hassle. Or, you can just pay like $20 and have a tourist agency create an invitation for you. Registration once you get to a city is not a hassle. The hotel does it for you. You only need to stand in the lines if you are staying at a friend's house. As far as accommodations go, I suggest staying in Hotel Rossiya in Moscow and Volga in Saratov. I always stay at the Rossiya. You can book both hotels online on I have used this agency twice and they are pretty reliable.
Jeff Mark Bennion Send Email
Travel to Russia 12 Sep 2006
This company in SLC can help with the Visa....its realllllllly easy. Takes a day or two and about $50.
Brent Simmons Send Email
answer for question on travel 12 Sep 2006
Hi, Well, there are a few options which you can use to come. One of them - get invitation from somebody who is living there (better to get from somebody in Saratov or Samara where you are going to travel - because in these small cities they don't have to pay much money as it for example in S-Petersburt or even Moscow - here the prices are not really reasonable for that piece of paper named INVITATION). So when you get one you can get visa from US embassy easily. When you'll get here in Moscow and S-Petersburg you can find hotel here - it is not very hard. Prices will be from $80/per night and more (for Moscow I can help you to find one and for S-Petersburg I can ask my friends to help) but for Samara - Saratov I don't have much clue (never done it). The other option is to get tourist visa by one of the internet sites (which works too... for example and the rest will be the same - hotels, train tickets you can get here... all the best, Svetlana
Svetlana A Shineleva Send Email
Reply to Brook Harker 11 Sep 2006
I served in 98-2000 in Samara, and I worked at the US embassy in Moscow for a couple years after that. I've never travelled back to the motherland on a tourist visa (I had a diplomatic one, so it was much easier). It is my understanding, however, that ANYBODY wishing to travel to Russia must have an invitation from somebody there. The easiest way that most people do it is to just go through a tour agency. They take care of the invitation for you, and they usually help you get registered once you're there. This is what I would recommend.

If you recall, every tourist MUST register in Russia once he/she arrives, and you would be no exception. I believe that you have to register within 3 days of arrival. I'm not sure how it would be for you, since you are only staying in moscow and petersburg for only 2 days each. The registration can be quite a pain. I have heard some reports of people standing in line for hours to get registered. Technically, you are supposed to get registered at each place you will stay, but I'm pretty sure that it only applies if you are there more than 3 days... What I'm saying is, you really need to find out before you go in order to save you a ton of hastle.

You can just do a google search for a travel/tour agency that specializes in Russia. They should have an office in the US, and you can call and discuss it with them in english. I would call at least two of them and ask them the same questions, just to make sure that you're getting correct info.

Sorry this wasn't too helpful. If you need anything else send me an email. Also, if you need to contact the US embassy once you get to Russia, the # is (095) 728-5000. Ask for American Citizen Services.

Good Luck!

Matthew Spaulding Send Email
Nelson Cookbook 11 Sep 2006
Hey Rachel, I was the artist on the Nelson cookbook (LOL) and I am certain I have an unscathed copy somewhere. I'll take a looksy ok? I'll scan what we're missing still if I can find it.

Brook L Harker Send Email
Questions on travel 11 Sep 2006
Hi, it's been 10 years since I was in Russia. My mother and I would like to go visit Saratov next summer.

Does anyone who has done this as a civilian have suggestions on how to book travel, where to stay etc. etc.? Are they allowing plain tourist visa's or do you have to get an invite from someone living there?

We want to go to Moscow for 2 days, Petersburg for 2 and Saratov for 3-4.

Any tips are appreciated! Otherwise I will figure it out in my broken Russian over the phone.

Brook L Harker Send Email
I second that reunion motion 06 Sep 2006
Finally back in the semi-area (ok I live out in the middle of the desert in Western Utah), but still, I'd like to see some folks that are around from the Gashler days. Any talk of some kind of get-together/reunion? Seems like there are a few of us kicking around here for a little while at least. Would be nice to see everyone.
Rachel Land Send Email
COOKBOOKS! 06 Sep 2006
At long last! The cookbooks have been scanned and are ready for your downloading and printing pleasure! Brent Simmons has graciously hosted them, and they can be found at
Brent says the page isn't pretty yet, but he'll be sprucing it up later this week.
Those filenames ending in "bklt" are set up for double-sided printing (I hope) so you can print out and fold up your own little booklet (numbering is out of order). The other files are straight scans (just opened it up and scanned page by page - numbering goes in order)

The Nelson cookbook is only a partial one. I scanned all of it that I had. If anyone out there has a complete one that they'd like to let me borrow and scan for archival's sake please let me know. :)

SO... a big thanks to all you patient folks who have been waiting for these.
Rachel Land Send Email

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