hostels & pensions: "A lack of budget hotels in Moscow" Top 5 Page for this destination Moscow Hotel Tip by MrBill

Moscow Hotels: 313 reviews and 295 photos

  not very flash
by MrBill

The hostels Moscow does have are of roughly the same quality as those that can be found in other major European capitals.

While visiting foreign businessmen have a choice of accommodation nearly as wide as in West European capitals, another type of foreign traveler, the humble backpacker, is less likely to find his traditional habitat of choice: the youth hostel.

Hostelling International maintains 263 beds in Moscow compared to 625 in New York.
But at the national level at least, hostels are still something of a rarity.

Hostelling International, the world's largest hostel operator with more than 4,000 hostels in 90 countries, maintains only 10 hostels in Russia -- compared with around 160 in France and 200 in England and Wales, along with an even greater number of independent operators.

There are plenty of high quality business hotels, but you can look to spend $150 a night and upwards. There is a real dearth of low-cost hotels A situation made worse by the destruction of several Soviet era hotels in the city center, which were not fancy, but supplied hundreds of additional beds to the city.

These hotels will be rebuilt, but it will take time, and when completed will most certainly be more expensive than the older hotels they are replacing.

Unique Qualities: The biggest hurdle standing between tourists and hostels is Russian bureaucracy.

"Visa restrictions are the No. 1 reason," A recent trip to Russia cost me 200 euros just for the visa alone.

While other East European capitals, such as Prague, Warsaw and Budapest, are packed with student travelers from Western Europe and the United States, this is not so in Moscow. The majority of foreigners coming to Russia do so in tour groups, as individual travelers often find it hard to overcome visa hurdles.

Also, there are not enough low-cost airlines servicing Russia at the moment. Germania flies in and out of Domodedovo airport, but the fare is 200 euros minimum, which compared to other low cost destinations in Weastern Europe is quite high.

So in the words of Kevin Costner, "if you build it they will come" means in Russia, until some of the barriers come down to attracting more backpackers and travellers on a shoe-string there is likely to little demand for low-cost hotels and hostels in Russian either.

Address: Moscow
Price Comparison: least expensive
Directions: Attached is a story in The Moscow Times on the current hotel situation as of June 2007 as my tips were written a few years ago. Thanks.
Price: US$40-80
Theme: Hostel

Review Helpfulness: 4 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated May 29, 2007
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