In this post we will discuss the pros and cons of being a digital nomad in Russia, the biggest country of the world
Russia is the biggest country in the world and is pretty diverse on its cultures, landscapes and regions. Even if Russia is not an ideal destination for digital nomads, it can be a good option if you plan you trip thoroughly.
Russia for Digital Nomads: Overview
Russia has a number of interesting aspects that are probably attractive for digital nomads. The cost of living in the country is relatively affordable, and there are many different regions to experience.
If you like traveling by land, you can also take the Trans-Siberian railway through, an epic journey connecting Europe and Asia.
There are however a number of important set backs while traveling to Russia. The most relevant ones are getting visas and managing the weather.
Russian visa: Getting a Russian visa will probably be the most complicated part of your trip. Most Western passport holder will require a visa to enter Russia.
Tourist visas for most Western nationals can be issued for up to 30 days, while private visas can be of up to 90 days. Having a friend in Russia who is willing to help will definitely make your visa application to go smoother (and cheaper).
Weather in Russia: The best word to describe the weather in Russia is “extreme”. The Russian winter is famous for being extremely cold, but summer in many cities can be excruciatingly hot.
The best time of the year to visit Russia is spring and autumn. The temperatures during these months are mild and pleasant in most of the Russian territory. September usually has good temperatures for outdoors activities, and accommodation is cheaper than July or August.
If you are planning a longer stay as a digital nomad in Russia, arriving on early spring is probably the best choice.
Russia: Best Cities for Digital Nomads
There are many different cities with extremely diverse cultures in the Russian territory. In my opinion, Saint Petersburg has the best atmosphere in Russia.
The city offers the best variety of activities and restaurants. There are a significant number of tourists and it is relatively easy to meet people.
Irkutsk is also a great city, and an important stop if you are traveling along the Trans-Siberian Railway.
Russia: Internet Connection
The internet connection in Russia is pretty fast and stable. From my experience, I haven’t seen any website being blocked or restricted, and the average speeds have been always enough to watch HD videos.
WiFi is available in most public places (restaurants, cafes, shopping malls). Mobile internet is affordable and available throughout the country. You can easily buy a prepaid sim card and get 4G internet in most cities.
Russia: Renting a Place and Cost of Living
One of the most appealing aspects of being a digital nomad in Russia are the renting costs. In countries like Russia, Ukraine and Belarus, there is a strong culture of renting apartments per day, which outnumber hotels in most cities.
You can easily get a decent appartment for 1-2 people for roughly 15 dollars a day in most cities. Depending on the season and the city, this price can go up, especially in Moscow.
I wouldn’t call grocery prices as cheap, since they cost the same in Russia as in most countries of Europe. Restaurant prices are comparable to those in Hungary, Czech Republic or Portugal.