kbfispotter
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Flying To Moscow

Fri Jul 28, 2006 4:31 pm

Hi to all on Anet!

I am flying to Moscow for a long awaited vacation and research into one of my favorite Subjects: Russian Aircraft.

So, My question is what airport should I fly into, and what airline?
I have seen fairly inexpensive tickets into SVO on DL, UA, and LH, along with some even cheaper flights into DME on IB and BA. I also have a second question... For being on a plane for so long, is it worth the upgrade to business class? If so, what airline is recommended? IB has the cheapest rates, and I am about to go with them. Are they any good?

Kris
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workhorse
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Fri Jul 28, 2006 4:41 pm

1) It's DEFINITELY better to arrive to DME

2) From the airlines you listed, I would go with BA
 
tu114
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Fri Jul 28, 2006 4:55 pm

Surely for a trip to Moscow to research Russian planes, Aeroflot is the only way to arrive?
 
workhorse
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Fri Jul 28, 2006 5:07 pm

Quoting Tu114 (Reply 2):
Surely for a trip to Moscow to research Russian planes, Aeroflot is the only way to arrive?

Well... They fly 767's to the US, so it wouldn't change much...  Smile

On the other hand, once in Russia, you might want to pick up a Tu-134 or a Yak-40 domestic flight with some weird local airline.  Smile
 
kbfispotter
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Fri Jul 28, 2006 5:25 pm

Quoting Tu114 (Reply 2):
Surely for a trip to Moscow to research Russian planes, Aeroflot is the only way to arrive?



Quoting Workhorse (Reply 3):
On the other hand, once in Russia, you might want to pick up a Tu-134 or a Yak-40 domestic flight with some weird local airline.

I have thought about that, but I am on a budget, however... I am also looking at light to see how many new aircraft I can check off on my list of ones I have yet to fly on... I would love to add a Russian example to that list! One of the flights I am looking at has a return leg to London on an IL-96 on SU. Workhorse, How much would a quick domestic round trip cost?

Kris
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workhorse
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sat Jul 29, 2006 7:46 pm

Quoting KBFIspotter (Reply 4):
Workhorse, How much would a quick domestic round trip cost?

(Sorry for not answering before, was away from the PC)

Well, actually, I'm not the best person to ask about it since I don't live in Russia anymore, but, from my experience, it wouldn't be expensive at all. There was a great website for it, http://www.polets.ru , but I've tried it just now and it doesn't show prices anymore. And the English version is full of bugs.

Actually, it depends on the airline and destination (of course) but I think, with $300 you'll get somewhere and back no problem.

[Edited 2006-07-29 12:48:09]
 
moparman
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sat Jul 29, 2006 7:50 pm

Are you sure SU only uses B767 to NY? I have seen a IL96 in both JFK and IAD (IAD was several years ago though)
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RJ100
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sat Jul 29, 2006 7:54 pm

Aeroflot has cheap return fares from Moscow to St. Petersburg for approx. 100 dollars oneway, taxes and fees included. They fly the TU-154 and the TU-134 on that route.

Enjoy your trip, I'll be there too August 10-August 24, flying LH into SVO. DME is better though...

Regards,
RJ100
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DLBOIFIN
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sat Jul 29, 2006 8:06 pm

You might also check if AY has any good fares on JFK-HEL-SVO. As an added bonus you would get smooth M11 ride over the water and that classy, cool service of Finnair...
 
RAFVC10
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sat Jul 29, 2006 8:31 pm

Check about JFK-MAD-DME.

The spanish flight is the first of an european airline to arrive to Domodedovo.
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alespesl
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sat Jul 29, 2006 10:04 pm

Hey,
what about flying CSA Czech Airlines from EWR/JFK to SVO via PRG.
 
UN_B732
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sat Jul 29, 2006 10:23 pm

AY is usually very cheap to SVO, they make tons of money on Russians flying to Moscow, as a matter of fact their A320 to SVO and MD-11 to JFK are timed for a quick connection with 35-40 minutes.
The trouble is once you get to SVO, you get into a dreary old soviet airport. It's not the worst airport in the world, but DME is light-years better than it.
Is it worth it to upgrade to business? Unless your using miles, absolutely not. I would rather sit in coach, feel inferior, but go to Moscow $1500 richer, and spend it on many more pielmeni, kvas, and maybe a sidetrip to another great russian city.
-Mr. X
What now?
 
Pulkovokiwi
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sat Jul 29, 2006 10:28 pm

Quoting KBFIspotter (Thread starter):

I would be interested to know whether you intend going to the aircraft museum at Monino or Molino 15kms from Moscow. Even though it is not in military area you need a permit which apparently is a bit of a mission.
I thought I was wrong but I was only joking!
 
Gary2880
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sat Jul 29, 2006 11:05 pm

you need a permit to visit a museum?
Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel :- Samuel Johnson
 
hjulicher
Posts: 656
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sat Jul 29, 2006 11:41 pm

In reality, flying into DME is better than SVO, but really I don't think that it makes such a huge difference. Anyways, SVO is a more interesting airport, it's a relic of the past, and you can see the contstuction process of SVO3. How much does Aeroflot cost to fly? Usually they are on par with the airlines. Is there a alliance you prefer flying with? If skyteam, fly with SU or DL. Anyways, DME is nice, but in the end, what difference does it really make. I always fly to SVO, and it's gotten so much better that it's more important to take the lowest fare and fly into the airport with the lower fare.

BTW, Moscow is a VERY expensive city. So I would fly economy. It's not great for those on a budget. The complete western life is attainable in Moscow, but for a price and you should realize this. Unless you know where you are going, and where you are staying, I would be very careful, because things are more expensive than you would expect. It's like arriving in London for the first time, and paying 10 pounds for a coffee and croissant.

Unfortunately, Russians are all about making money now, so be careful what you pay for and what services you need in Moscow because you'll be ripped off. This, however doesn't mean that Russian people are ingenuine. They're just going charge western prices on westerners, unless you have excellent russian skills and know the flow of things there.

Take the metro when in Moscow, which is by far the best way to get around, and maybe you'll be astonished with the system. It's the best in the world, and the nicest, in the world, but it is the most congested too.

Currently on Swiss there are some really really low fares. The lowest I've seen in a long time. Leaving 9/5 and returning the 15th. Total cost $720 dollars. BTW, swiss flies into DME too. I don't know when your dates are, but this is what I found doing a quick search on orbitz.
LH 442
 
UN_B732
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sun Jul 30, 2006 12:10 am

Hjulicher, nice tips. Do you remember the $470 Aeroflot fares JFK-SVO? Those were the days! I actually got an op up on one of those, on an A310!
I've seen fares around ~$550-600 with taxes in the winter, but you really have to be flexible to find them. Yahoo! Travel has a good fare list tool. We just paid $800 with taxes on Finnair for leaving in early august.
-Mr. X
What now?
 
B777-700
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sun Jul 30, 2006 12:41 am

I was just there for aviation photography as well. Dunno if that's what you're going for, but photography can be a bit of a challenge. I for sure wouldn't do it w/out a language speaker, or you're asking for trouble. Further, all the spots are waaay out there, and not accessible by car.

If you're just spotting, the restaurant upstairs at SVO can't be beat!

Quoting Workhorse (Reply 1):
It's DEFINITELY better to arrive to DME

SVO is fine. I flew in on Delta about 2 weeks ago. I made it thru customs in 10 minutes tops. I can see where it might get congested, there didn't seem to be a whole lot of booths, but just have your stuff together, and smile at them. You'll be ok going in there.

None of the airports are the most convenient in the world for transportation to/from. You can always take a minibus to the closest metro station, it shouldn't be more than $2.

Contrary to popular belief, Moscow isn't THAT expensive if you play you cards right. There's good hotels to be found outside the city center for $50-75. Just find one close to a metro station, and that's the best way to get around, by far. A ride shouldn't cost you more than $2. Minibusses are also a great deal.

Unless you speak Russian, or have a friend that does, you're gonna pay more for things that aren't clearly marked, but it's still reasonable.

http://besthotelsrussia.com is an awesome site to help you with hotels / visa. Great crew there, they made everything painless.

Quoting KBFIspotter (Reply 4):
I have thought about that, but I am on a budget, however... I am also looking at light to see how many new aircraft I can check off on my list of ones I have yet to fly on... I would love to add a Russian example to that list! One of the flights I am looking at has a return leg to London on an IL-96 on SU. Workhorse, How much would a quick domestic round trip cost?

We did a trip to Sochi. Got an SU IL86 and SU-Don TU154. Both great aircraft! I think MOW-LED will have the most variety tho. Plenty of 154 and 134. Some Yaks, and even a heavy, as I believe Kras flies either the 86 or 96 on that route. A variety of obscure airlines too. Fares shouldn't be more than $200 typically.

SU and S7 can be booked on their websites easily. The others seem to be more difficult, you prolly will have to tkt them in Russia, or have a friend do it before you arrive.

Quoting Pulkovokiwi (Reply 12):
I would be interested to know whether you intend going to the aircraft museum at Monino or Molino 15kms from Moscow. Even though it is not in military area you need a permit which apparently is a bit of a mission.

This rumor is false. You do not need a permit for Monino. You just need to find the little booth where they sell tkts, which is a bit of a challenge. If you speak Russian, shouldn't be more than $1. (you're gonna pay more if you don't)

I could go on forever, but Moscow / Sochi was hands down the best vacation I've been on. Russians are the most welcoming people (once you get to know them   ) and it's no less safe than any other big city.

[Edited 2006-07-29 17:44:26]
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StarGoldLHR
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sun Jul 30, 2006 1:06 am

Quoting Pulkovokiwi (Reply 12):
I would be interested to know whether you intend going to the aircraft museum at Monino or Molino 15kms from Moscow. Even though it is not in military area you need a permit which apparently is a bit of a mission.

If you get chance this musuem is a fantastic record of Russian Aviation.


Included in the collection is all the main Tupolev and Illyshin flights including the Tu144 concordeski Tu104, Tu124, Tu114, Tu134, IL-18 etc etc

The musuem also has a row of LI-2 and DC3 used in the war including details on how they were delivered across Russia from the mid-west US over the Bering straights.

Other artifacts is tank carrying helicopters and the biggest passenger helicopter I ever saw.. the rotors are bigger than the aircraft around it.

Monino has the remains of Gary Power's U2 spy plane on display and his jump suit.

Other things in the collection include a space shuttle orbitor prototype.

The museum does need an element of bureacreacy to go around it.
The museum is located inside and active Russian Military base.

When I went I had to write the base commander for permission to visit. (This has to be signed in Russian and English).
You have to have a Russian Citizen to accompany you around the faciltity and they have to be fluent in your language.
You have to agree a date and time and be there with all documentation prior and your and your Russian citizens passport/visa documents 1 hour before.
You are then driven a bizarre route around the inside perimeter of the base (various things you can / cannot see).
You arrive at a building where you meet a 60 year old guy with a boeing cap ! who gives you some documents and a guide. Depending on the time of year / circumstance you may have an armed guard accompany (I did).

It sounds very hard to do, but overall it's pretty straight forwards, if you want to do it (and I really reccomend it) pm me for details. I have a Russian independent travel agent who arranged my trip for about £15 / $25US plus about 50p for the musuem entrance fee ! He made all the arrangements / picked me up and brought me back. (it's about 1hour from the centre of Moscow).



There are some drawbacks to getting here
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B777-700
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sun Jul 30, 2006 1:19 am

Quoting StarGoldLHR (Reply 17):
When I went I had to write the base commander for permission to visit. (This has to be signed in Russian and English).
You have to have a Russian Citizen to accompany you around the faciltity and they have to be fluent in your language.
You have to agree a date and time and be there with all documentation prior and your and your Russian citizens passport/visa documents 1 hour before.
You are then driven a bizarre route around the inside perimeter of the base (various things you can / cannot see).
You arrive at a building where you meet a 60 year old guy with a boeing cap ! who gives you some documents and a guide. Depending on the time of year / circumstance you may have an armed guard accompany (I did).

It sounds very hard to do, but overall it's pretty straight forwards, if you want to do it (and I really reccomend it) pm me for details. I have a Russian independent travel agent who arranged my trip for about £15 / $25US plus about 50p for the musuem entrance fee ! He made all the arrangements / picked me up and brought me back. (it's about 1hour from the centre of Moscow).

Um...at Monino?

We just walked right in.
If you don't chew Big Red, then @#$% you.
 
kbfispotter
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sun Jul 30, 2006 2:50 am

Thanks for the information. You have all given me something to think about.

Quoting Pulkovokiwi (Reply 12):
I would be interested to know whether you intend going to the aircraft museum at Monino or Molino 15kms from Moscow. Even though it is not in military area you need a permit which apparently is a bit of a mission.

I am going to Monino, aswell as Star City and a few other museums dealing with aviation and space flight. The company I am booking my trip through has set up all of the necessary permits and everything for all of the locations. I just need to choose my airfrare now.

Thanks again

Kris
Proud to be an A&P!!!
 
dairbus
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sun Jul 30, 2006 5:19 am

My brother and I were planning a trip this summer and we thought about going to Moscow. We decided against it since it seemed it would take some time to set up as far as visas, hotel reservatitions, etc. After reading the posts in this thread I am definitely going to give it a try next spring, heavy on the aviation and space of course.  wink 

Have a great trip Kris and post a trip report when you get back.



DAirbus
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RJ100
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sun Jul 30, 2006 5:31 am

The visa stuff is not a big problem these days. Best thing you can do is going to an agency. They will get official invitations and stuff for you and will go to the embassy for you.

Don't forget to register yourself within 3 days after arrival (if you are staying at a hotel the hotel will do for you). Remember that you need to register yourself again if you go to another city for more than 3 days.

Avoid Samara and Nishni Novgorod as entry/leaving point of your trip. Rumours have it that the local officials want to see original invitations (that noone has of course).

Apart from that I am sure you will like Russia and the great hospitality of the people!

Regards,
RJ100
none
 
kbfispotter
Posts: 658
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sun Jul 30, 2006 6:17 am

Quoting RJ100 (Reply 21):
The visa stuff is not a big problem these days. Best thing you can do is going to an agency. They will get official invitations and stuff for you and will go to the embassy for you.

That is what I am doing... I looked into going independant all the way, but costs and other things made me decide to go with an agent. I am going with MIRcorp, a local Seattle based agency that specializes in trips to the Former Soviet Union. I would highly recomend them to any one who is considering a trip to Russia. http://www.mircorp.com/. The only thing is that I just need to find cheap airfare now...

Kris
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UpperDeck79
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Tue Aug 01, 2006 9:43 pm

Quoting KBFIspotter (Thread starter):
is it worth the upgrade to business class?



Quoting KBFIspotter (Reply 4):
but I am on a budget, however

Is there some contradiction here?  Wink

In any case, have a nice trip!
AY and ANA rock!
 
flinhion757
Posts: 229
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sun Aug 06, 2006 9:01 am

My dad has a friend that went on a C-5. He went out of Andrews AFB. Some trip for the president... they had to load the whole motorcad anbd all. Anywat that is probably the best way lol
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TPAnx
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Sun Aug 06, 2006 10:38 am

Was in Moscopw several years ago.Tour group was upgraded to Armand Hammer's hotel..very nice...but a coke, and two vodka bitter lemons cost us 35 dollars!! (Ok, we should have asked about prices...we just laughed, and paid, and hoped some waiter's family was a bit better off because of it.)
You'll also find that the dollar is accepted everywhere.I never changed to rubles..tho my wife did for incidentals.
Enjoy the trip..I'd go back in a heartbeat..
TPAnx
I read the news today..oh boy
 
UpperDeck79
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Mon Aug 07, 2006 10:19 pm

Quoting TPAnx (Reply 25):
but a coke, and two vodka bitter lemons cost us 35 dollars



Quoting TPAnx (Reply 25):
You'll also find that the dollar is accepted everywhere.I never changed to rubles.

First you complain about prices and then admit never exchanging any local currency. Do you actually think you would get a regular rate with foreign money? What's your excuse for not exchanging any cash?
AY and ANA rock!
 
TPAnx
Posts: 1007
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RE: Flying To Moscow

Mon Aug 07, 2006 11:19 pm

Bill was totalled in dollars...
TPAnx
I read the news today..oh boy

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