Go Back   Horizons Unlimited - The HUBB > Planning, Trip > Travellers' Advisories, Safety and Security on the Road
Travellers' Advisories, Safety and Security on the Road Recent News, political or military events, which may affect trip plans or routes. Personal and vehicle security, tips and questions.
Photo by Mark Newton, Mexican camping

I haven't been everywhere...
but it's on my list!


Photo by Mark Newton,
Camping in the Mexican desert



Like Tree10Likes

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 21 Mar 2014
Gold Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Bermuda
Posts: 163
Russia, Sanctions, Credit Cards & ATMs

With the EU and the US initiating sanctions against Russia, arising from the developments in Ukraine and Crimea, we are seeing an impact on our access to funds as we cross Russia.

Mastercard and Visa have withdrawn all services from Russia so we can forget any hope of using credit cards in the country. Similarly, ATM cards are unlikely to be supported, although it has been suggested that we may still be able to get funds from a Citi Bank ATM (don't want to gamble on that possibility though).

Looks like we're going to have to carry sufficient cash to get us through Russia!
__________________
2014 overland adventure to Russia and Central Asia in Land Rover Defender www.bermudarover.com
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 21 Mar 2014
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Poland
Posts: 273
Credit Cards

The main question are the credit cards blocked for Russians citizens or everyone who want to make payment on Russian territory???
We will go to Turkmenistan and Iran in April/May and we will go throught Russia.
During my last trips in 2012 and 2013 I had no problems with ATM's and credit cards.

Do anybody know more about this problem??

Bartosz
[url=http://www.wyprawy4x4.com.pl]Wyprawy 4
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 21 Mar 2014
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: My place and other places.
Posts: 172
Are you sure its all services?

From what I can gather, its only related to certain banks, not across the board, such as Rossiya Bank because they are allegedly associated to Putin, or his close associates.

I think it is more of a attempt to prevent Russian customers from accessing their funds, especially overseas.

To be honest, it would be interesting to hear from someone actually in Russia what the situation really is, not what Western media are telling us.

Last edited by liammons; 22 Mar 2014 at 22:33. Reason: to keep everyone happy!
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 22 Mar 2014
Gold Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Bermuda
Posts: 163
The information that we were given from a bank was that we would not be able to use our cards at a Russian bank but that 'Citi Russia' should be able to take our cards.

Whatever situation existed in 2012, 2013, or two weeks ago is no longer relevant, as mastercard and visa only just withdrew services as part of the sanctions.

Hopefully the situation will be clarified in the next week or so but, in the meantime, I'd suggest that travellers prepare for the possibility that no cards will be accepted in Russia.
__________________
2014 overland adventure to Russia and Central Asia in Land Rover Defender www.bermudarover.com
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 22 Mar 2014
Gold Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Bermuda
Posts: 163
This BBC news story suggests that 99%v of visa services in Russia are unaffected by the sanctions. BBC News - Visa and MasterCard block Russian bank customers

However, these latest restrictions occurred without any warning, so it is entirely possible that the restrictions could expand beyond the banks that are currently affected. Worth watching developments!
__________________
2014 overland adventure to Russia and Central Asia in Land Rover Defender www.bermudarover.com
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 22 Mar 2014
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 1,377
Quote:
Originally Posted by liammons View Post
Apologies if this post offends anyone as being overtly 'political', its not meant to be; what I'm hoping to do is stimulate a bit of interest from those currently in Russia or with better connections, to see if problems are being encountered by travelers.
Yes, this thread was obviously started with the intent of helping travellers sort out potential issues accessing cash, so thanks for turning it into your political soapbox.

Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 22 Mar 2014
Super Moderator
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Gunma, Japan
Posts: 1,104
Quote:
Originally Posted by motoreiter View Post
Yes, this thread was obviously started with the intent of helping travellers sort out potential issues accessing cash, so thanks for turning it into your political soapbox.
Lets all avoid the topic of who is right or wrong, and keep on the topic of
who is affected and how. The why doesn't really matter becuase there is nothing any of us can do about it.
Discussing it here will just make it harder to find the facts travelers need!
We can start a new thread on the topic of who did what wrong and why on the HUBB Pub, where anything goes.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 22 Mar 2014
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: My place and other places.
Posts: 172
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bermuda Rover View Post
The information that we were given from a bank was that we would not be able to use our cards at a Russian bank but that 'Citi Russia' should be able to take our cards.

Whatever situation existed in 2012, 2013, or two weeks ago is no longer relevant, as mastercard and visa only just withdrew services as part of the sanctions.

Hopefully the situation will be clarified in the next week or so but, in the meantime, I'd suggest that travellers prepare for the possibility that no cards will be accepted in Russia.

I agree with you Rover, however I doubt the situation will be clarified that quickly, I think if I was planning a long Russian transit this year I would ensure that I had sufficient cash in hand to get out across the border if a total sanction on VISA/Mastercard transactions occurred suddenly, however likely/unlikely it may be.

Recently in Ireland one of the major banks ceased issuing any funds for about a day to customers and it was amazing how many people got caught out who were 50 miles from home not 5000 miles. It actually shocked me personally how many people are clearly totally dependent on electronic banking systems and just take it for granted how they will never 'let you down'.

I wouldn't go anywhere without access to a bit of 'real currency' for an emergency.

Hopefully the above is sufficiently apolitical so as not to offend (I have also edited my first post for the same reason)
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 23 Mar 2014
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: UK
Posts: 1,232
I have always advocated carrying a significant amount of cash (euro is king in the eastern Europe area) and using that rather than cards. I then spread it around myself and my truck, keeping a little bit for 'mugging money' (a habit from living in central manchester for several years! Enough to keep them happy so you don't get filled in, but not so much it's a disaster) and also my 'police fines' money in a different pocket(usually no more than 20e)

Although this was seen as being a technical ludite in another thread by some who feel nothing more than a couple of credit cards and a pair of pants are needed to travel, cash talks. You can always change cash, many places will even let you pay in euros in an emergency, although the rate will be crap and, apart from sudden unexpected problems like this the reality is, the more you use your card, the more likely you are to end up being a victim of card fraud (I had someone try to withdraw £700 on my card in Russia 6 months or so after leaving the Ukraine, fortunately the bank rang me before clearing the transaction).

My personal advice would always be, withdraw cash from a bank (after checking the machine carefully) and then use cash to pay for hotels, fuel etc, always. Keep the card for emergencies. Garages especially are notorious for stealing card details (it even happened in the UK shortly after chip and pin was introduced)

You can probably get a good rate in country if you have euros because everyone will be wanting to have their money in a relatively stable currency
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 23 Mar 2014
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 289
Quote:
Originally Posted by moggy 1968 View Post
'mugging money' 'police fines' money


And there was me thinking i was alone on doing this also.

"Police fines" money i love this one, when i get stopped for a traffic offence or somethink eles i am in the wrong for and say "can i pay a fine" with a smile

Last edited by WesleyDRZ400; 23 Mar 2014 at 05:04.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 23 Mar 2014
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 1,377
The sanctioned banks have a minuscule portion of the market and I'd be surprised if many westerners were affected while travelling through Russia--you'd have to search long and hard for one of the bank's ATMs, and anyway one of the banks said that it's ATMs work fine (within Russia).

I would probably slightly increase my carried cash but certainly not plan to bring all required cash with me, which I view as significantly more risky. As usual, the best thing to do is to bring a couple of different cards with you, so that if you have a problem with one, another should work.

Of course this could change if wider sanctions are imposed.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 23 Mar 2014
Contributing Member
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Humberston
Posts: 51
This link might help. It seems visitors will not be affected ...... so far.
Hoping for Magadan and back starting at the end of April would need a shed load of cash if ATMs not working.

Boycie



Russian Banks Face Problems With Visa, MasterCard on U.S. Sanctions - WSJ.com
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 23 Feb 2015
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 114
Just wondering how Credit and Debit cards are at the moment in Russia? Or would it be better to carry cash
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 24 Feb 2015
colebatch's Avatar
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: London / Moscow
Posts: 1,913
ATMs work
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 24 Feb 2015
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by colebatch View Post
ATMs work

Great. Hate carrying cash at the best of times


No man is truly married until he understands every word his wife is NOT saying.
Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 Registered Users and/or Members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Real Russia visa agency. Beware, be very aware... chris Trip Paperwork 13 12 Apr 2014 16:12
Go To Russia Visa Agency Bermuda Rover Trip Paperwork 0 18 Mar 2014 11:46
Russia to Georgia. Is anybody going this way via ? BigO Route Planning 21 2 Nov 2013 01:35
SIM cards in Russia for Travellers colebatch Northern and Central Asia 1 14 Jun 2012 16:30
Heading to Sakhalin Island (Russia) this summer -- need tips from those who've been! Guy Jinbaiquerre Trip Paperwork 7 6 Feb 2012 01:24

 
 

Announcements

Thinking about traveling? Not sure about the whole thing? Watch the HU Achievable Dream Video Trailers and then get ALL the information you need to get inspired and learn how to travel anywhere in the world!

Have YOU ever wondered who has ridden around the world? We did too - and now here's the list of Circumnavigators!
Check it out now
, and add your information if we didn't find you.

Next HU Eventscalendar

HU Event and other updates on the HUBB Forum "Traveller's Advisories" thread.
ALL Dates subject to change.

2024:

2025:

  • Queensland is back! Date TBC - May?

Add yourself to the Updates List for each event!

Questions about an event? Ask here

HUBBUK: info

See all event details

 
World's most listened to Adventure Motorbike Show!
Check the RAW segments; Grant, your HU host is on every month!
Episodes below to listen to while you, err, pretend to do something or other...

2020 Edition of Chris Scott's Adventure Motorcycling Handbook.

2020 Edition of Chris Scott's Adventure Motorcycling Handbook.

"Ultimate global guide for red-blooded bikers planning overseas exploration. Covers choice & preparation of best bike, shipping overseas, baggage design, riding techniques, travel health, visas, documentation, safety and useful addresses." Recommended. (Grant)



Ripcord Rescue Travel Insurance.

Ripcord Rescue Travel Insurance™ combines into a single integrated program the best evacuation and rescue with the premier travel insurance coverages designed for adventurers.

Led by special operations veterans, Stanford Medicine affiliated physicians, paramedics and other travel experts, Ripcord is perfect for adventure seekers, climbers, skiers, sports enthusiasts, hunters, international travelers, humanitarian efforts, expeditions and more.

Ripcord travel protection is now available for ALL nationalities, and travel is covered on motorcycles of all sizes!


 

What others say about HU...

"This site is the BIBLE for international bike travelers." Greg, Australia

"Thank you! The web site, The travels, The insight, The inspiration, Everything, just thanks." Colin, UK

"My friend and I are planning a trip from Singapore to England... We found (the HU) site invaluable as an aid to planning and have based a lot of our purchases (bikes, riding gear, etc.) on what we have learned from this site." Phil, Australia

"I for one always had an adventurous spirit, but you and Susan lit the fire for my trip and I'll be forever grateful for what you two do to inspire others to just do it." Brent, USA

"Your website is a mecca of valuable information and the (video) series is informative, entertaining, and inspiring!" Jennifer, Canada

"Your worldwide organisation and events are the Go To places to for all serious touring and aspiring touring bikers." Trevor, South Africa

"This is the answer to all my questions." Haydn, Australia

"Keep going the excellent work you are doing for Horizons Unlimited - I love it!" Thomas, Germany

Lots more comments here!



Five books by Graham Field!

Diaries of a compulsive traveller
by Graham Field
Book, eBook, Audiobook

"A compelling, honest, inspiring and entertaining writing style with a built-in feel-good factor" Get them NOW from the authors' website and Amazon.com, Amazon.ca, Amazon.co.uk.



Back Road Map Books and Backroad GPS Maps for all of Canada - a must have!

New to Horizons Unlimited?

New to motorcycle travelling? New to the HU site? Confused? Too many options? It's really very simple - just 4 easy steps!

Horizons Unlimited was founded in 1997 by Grant and Susan Johnson following their journey around the world on a BMW R80G/S.

Susan and Grant Johnson Read more about Grant & Susan's story

Membership - help keep us going!

Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events all over the world with the help of volunteers; we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.

You don't have to be a Member to come to an HU meeting, access the website, or ask questions on the HUBB. What you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.




All times are GMT +1. The time now is 17:41.