General advice to stay safe during your time in Russia

3 minute read
  • Maintain a low profile. Dress inconspicuously. Avoid displaying money, wearing jewellery or carrying obvious valuables. When walking in the street, keep your bags away from passing traffic
  • Before leaving your hotel for the first time, ask your concierge for areas to avoid
  • Always carry your local mobile phone. If you’re a member, ensure you have downloaded the CloseCircle app and you know how to use its various functions (call +44 203 948 6841 if you are uncertain)
  • When leaving your accommodation, take only what you think you need for a day out. Leave the bulk of your cash and cards, as well as any other valuables, in the hotel’s safe and not the room safe
  • If no such safe is available, carry cash in more than one place and keep a small amount separate to hand over to a criminal who confronts you. A dummy wallet – with a small amount of local currency, an expired credit card and some useless receipts – can be useful to satisfy a mugger. Keep the bulk of cash and cards in a money belt, which should only be accessed in private places
  • Understand the basic geography of your destination. Avoid high-crime or low-income areas if possible. If you find yourself disorientated, be discreet when consulting a map
  • On match days there will be hundreds of other fans also looking to enjoy the occasion and routes to the grounds should be well sign posted. Avoid those areas away from the fan zone where large groups of rival fans are drinking
  • Get to matches early and allow for bag searches and screening areas – stadiums will have enhanced security measures and restrict vehicular traffic
  • Avoid disputes, demonstrations, political rallies and commotions on the street. Move out of the area immediately
  • Ignore verbal ‘bait’ from passers-by – do not get into an argument – and avoid eye contact with strangers. If you suspect that you are being followed, enter any busy public place and if you believe it is warranted, call for help
  • Maintain a high level of information security. Avoid giving out personal information – do not discuss your plans with strangers
  • Limit your alcohol intake: alcohol reduces your level of awareness and impairs judgement. If you are drinking, do so within a group and ensure you return to hotel accommodation with your group
  • Do not accept food or drinks from strangers. Always keep your food and drink in sight in entertainment venues
  • Know what is going on around you – accept a threat may exist, be vigilant at your hotel/in transit, be naturally suspicious and have a cautious approach
  • Exercise common sense – if something doesn’t feel right, trust your intuition and make a quick decision to move to a place of safety

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