Moscow Launches Tourist Pass

MOSCOW, January 16 (RIA Novosti) – Moscow’s first discount tourist pass went on sale Wednesday, according to Web portal WowMoscow, in a bid to help make the Russian capital a more visitor-friendly destination.

The Moscow Pass grants both Russian and foreign tourists access to a variety of museums around the city, including the State Historical Museum, St. Basil’s Cathedral and the Multimedia Art Museum, as well as to sightseeing tours and restaurants. The list will expand as more venues join the project.

The card also allows tourists to skip ticket lines at most locations and save up to 25 percent on admission fees, according to the WowMoscow Web site.

Tourists will be able to order the pass online and have it delivered to any address in Moscow. In the future, WowMoscow, which conceived the project, plans to offer the card at train stations, airports, restaurants and souvenir shops. It currently costs 2,400 rubles (about $80).

The capital has long been derided by travelers as less than tourist-friendly, due to excessive bureaucracy, rudeness and a dearth of English signs and English-speaking service professionals.

Travel to Russia has also traditionally been difficult for many Western tourists, who are required to endure a long and often costly process to obtain even short-term travel visas.


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