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Northern Asia Topics specific to Russia, Central Asia (also known as "the 'stans"), Mongolia, Japan and Korea
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Old 2 May 2012
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Money on the Road Russia Mongolia Siberia

Hi Guys

Just looking for some advice on the best way to manage out finances on the road through Russia Mongolia Siberia.

Eastern Russia I expect should be fine for CC and/or ATM at Fuel station?

Mongolia cash everywhere except UB? American Dollars or Euros? What would you recommend?

Siberia ? Cash again for fuel etc or CC/ATM

Would really appreciate any advice

Thanks in advance

Callum
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Old 3 May 2012
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In general, Eastern Russia, Siberia and Mongolia are all vast and remote places and as you can imagine have suspect communication connections to allow for consistent and dependable ATM or CC services. The exception to this is the major centers i.e Vlad, UB, Chita, etc.

Safest approach is to stock up on enough cash in the larger centers and expect to use that until you get to the next town of significance and repeat. That way if you do get to use your plastic here and there, it'll be a pleasant surprise and not something that you were absolutely relying on.
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Old 3 May 2012
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Great thanks for your reply.

What cash would you carry. Local currency/american dollars/Euros?

Callum
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Old 3 May 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Landroverholic View Post
Hi Guys

Just looking for some advice on the best way to manage out finances on the road through Russia Mongolia Siberia.

Eastern Russia I expect should be fine for CC and/or ATM at Fuel station?

Mongolia cash everywhere except UB? American Dollars or Euros? What would you recommend?

Siberia ? Cash again for fuel etc or CC/ATM

Would really appreciate any advice

Thanks in advance

Callum
Almost all bigger fuel stations you can use CC do so when you can.
ATM's you can found almost every where even in Gobi so withdraw local cash amount that you can survive week or so + safe. Have reserve funds on $ & €. In Russia it's strictly illegal pay or except foreign currency on payment if you try don't get caught and pay more bribes only rubble's or CC. Have couple of CC just in case if you lose one or if it's not working and safety issue.
Don't pay bribes to Russia police just wait and let them understand that you have time that will ruin they business when they are stuck on your case and all others are passing by.
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Old 3 May 2012
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In Russia and KZ, ATMs are far more common that you might imagine. Even on the Road of Bones a town like Khandyga has at least 3.

Mongolia is broken up into dozen of provinces, and each provincial capital has ATMs.

Keep local currency in your wallet and 300-500 USD stashed away for emergencies. Generally if you ever need to use your dollars these days, you will have to change them into local currency first.

If you are driving across Russia and taking several weeks - then there is no point taking out 50 quids worth or rubles at a time. Take out plenty so you wont run out before the next major town.

I would use ATMs and the cash that flows from them more than credit cards. Russia (outside of Moscow) is still predominantly a cash economy. Use your plastic (debit cards I recommend) to get cash, and that cash to provide your liquidity, rather than expecting to get too far on credit card purchases outside of the cities.
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Old 3 May 2012
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Thanks guys

Your advice is always greatly appreciated

Regards

Callum
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