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njs7t3



Joined: 30 Aug 2012
Posts: 60
Location: Moscow, Russia

PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 6:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would hardly have accepted the contract if I hadn't thoroughly considered every single thing that you have listed maruss. They wouldn't give me the exact location of the accommodation, so my assumption is that it will be far away and probably not in a great part of town. I assume that my shifts will be split, probably drastically and in various locations. I am learning Cyrillic already and buying a coat. The contract promised that the domicile will be within 90 minutes of work and will be private and not shared, so I am expecting NEITHER.

I am a newly qualified teacher, and unless you'd like to offer me a spectacular job somewhere, I am going to be exploited wherever I go. I don't appreciate condescension. I know you despised your time in Russia for "days and even weeks," but I feel that it is right for me. We shall see.

Nexus, SashaD, smithrn, and everyone else who has been encouraging and given me actual insights and information, thank you heartily. I'll be posting new threads as things develop.
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Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
Posts: 9567
Location: Moskva, The Workers' Paradise

PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 6:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Best of luck, fella! And do let us know how it all works out. Final word of advice: have a thick skin, as well as coat. Locals can be quite gruff - some would say rude and boorish - but usually do not mean any real harm. So, try not to take offence. Though saying that, I do not always manage myself! Especially with regards to poor, poor customer service, e.g. snarly old maids behind a till who expect me to have exact change for the privilege of them selling me over-priced tat.

Ah, the joys that await! Surprised

Seriously, it is a great adventure. Well worth the occasional ropy moments.

All the best!
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expatella_girl



Joined: 31 Oct 2004
Posts: 224
Location: somewhere out there

PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 9:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

~Just a couple of tips I hope will be helpful~

The best place to buy a coat to take you through the Russian winter, is in Russia. By all means take your American coat along, but by January you will discover that a Russian winter coat is in order. Styles in Russia are very different from America and winter coats there are of heartier quality. For example, Russian woolens are much heavier than anything you can find in America, and Russian winter coats will be of long length whereas most American stuff is parka-ish which isn't going to cut it in a Russian winter.

The rynok at Konkovo has the best coat selection in Moscow. Two huge buildings full of them. Bookmark this.

And the credit card thing. Credit card use in Moscow can be risky. Lots of fraud. Avoid using credit cards as much as possible. Russia is largely a cash economy anyway. Pay cash for everything. Cash is king. Avoid large bills like thousand ruble notes as Russians hate making change, keep wads of tens and hundreds available in your front pants pockets. Don't carry a wallet in your back pants pocket and try not to bring a wallet out when making purchases. Cash in front pockets.(boots are also a good place)

BE SURE to advise your US credit card company and your US bank debit card issuer in advance that >you will be using your cards in Russia<. Many US financial institutions will immediately cancel any card that turns up with a Russian charge. Russia and Ukrania are the world capital of credit card fraud.

Eat lots of borsh! It's good for you. Smile
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smithrn1983



Joined: 23 Jul 2010
Posts: 320
Location: Moscow

PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2012 5:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

expatella_girl wrote:

The best place to buy a coat to take you through the Russian winter, is in Russia. By all means take your American coat along, but by January you will discover that a Russian winter coat is in order.


I never had a problem with my American winter coat here, except that by the second winter the wonders of Russia had rid me of some excess weight (yay!), and I had to get a new one.

On the whole, I'd advise buying your clothes in America as clothing is VERY expensive in Russia. A number of my students prefer taking trips to Italy when they need new clothes instead of buying them here.

I'd also advise bringing some thermal underwear along. You won't need it most of the time, and frankly I hate wearing it, but on the few days when the temperature drops to -25C, I'm glad that I have it.

I second the Borsch. Not only healthy, it's also quite tasty.
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njs7t3



Joined: 30 Aug 2012
Posts: 60
Location: Moscow, Russia

PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2012 5:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I find that hard to believe, but I'll try anything at least once. Very Happy
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Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
Posts: 9567
Location: Moskva, The Workers' Paradise

PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2012 5:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Coats can be bought over here, but they can be quite expensive if you don't know where to go. Stay away from high street chain stores - vastly over-priced. As said, you can get most of what you need at home, much, much cheaper. Hat, gloves, scarf, stout boots should be on your list too.

Incidentally, a friend of mine uses some skiing (I think!) equipment to navigate the slippery pavements. I don't know what they are called, but they are like rubber bands which you slip over your ordinary boots. A little like mini elastic crampons. They give good firm traction when walking on snow and ice.

Something like this: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Perfect-Solutions-Traction-Slip-Ons-Large/dp/B002ULFQ8I

Good luck!
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maruss



Joined: 18 Mar 2003
Posts: 1023
Location: Cyprus

PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2012 4:11 pm    Post subject: No offense intended...... Reply with quote

My point was to find out all you can BEFORE taking the plunge,rather than face problems later,as I have seen so many people there do.Also bear in mind that to supplement your meagre salary the only way will be to get some private students,which many people do on the quiet, despite what the firm says their official policy is!The main obstacle to this can be your schedule and if you end up with one which prevents you from that you will be at a big disadvantage.......most adults work during the day so therefore they only have free time very early in the mornings(which I don't recommend for the reasons I wrote before)or in the evenings or maybe at weekends if you feel inclined to work then?If you are lucky enough to get a work schedule which gives you even a couple of free evenings per week then grab it because you will soon fill them with private lessons where you can earn serious money!
By the way,I never suggested that I hated everything about Russia-as you will see from my postings under other subjects such as the Leningrad symphony etc. there are things about it which I really enjoyed-but on the other hand,I hate seeing people exploited anywhere,especially as I think that anyone prepared to go there from abroad with the best of intentions and for what is a very low wage compared to other expat jobs which admittedly are for skilled and experienced managers etc,should at least be shown some appreciation by their employer...but then that is Russia!
I will be genuinely interested to read how you get on so do keep us posted-one thing I almost guarantee is that you will have an experience which is quiet different from most other places so I hope the positives will outweigh the negatives for you...therefore I sincerely wish you good luck too.Please also feel free to p.m. me if you prefer.
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njs7t3



Joined: 30 Aug 2012
Posts: 60
Location: Moscow, Russia

PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2012 7:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you maruss. Your goodwill is appreciated.
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White ice



Joined: 28 Aug 2012
Posts: 37

PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2012 9:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

good luck njs7t3!

i am also hoping to head to Russia after I do my Celta next month.

make sure you check out a hockey game whilst your there!
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