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If you have finally decided to take the train journey of a lifetime, and are soon to book your berth on the Trans-Siberian Train, there is much to prepare. This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that is best enjoyed with the right preparation, and with that in mind, here are a few hacks that will help you to make the most out of your holiday on the Trans-Siberian Railway.
Spending Long Periods of Time Confined
The Trans-Siberian Railway is longer than 5,500 km and it takes a full seven days to traverse from Moscow to Vladivostok, which means you will be spending a lot of time sitting on the train compartment. If you enjoy reading, make sure you have a few good books and don’t forget a few power banks to keep your smartphone and digital camera going.
Take the Trans-Mongolian Route
There are two lines that branch off from the Trans-Siberian Train, and if you would like to see snowy mountains and wide-open plains, take the Trans-Mongolian branch, which will take you through Mongolia, ending up at Ulaanbaatar, the capital of Mongolia. You can check out this Trans-Siberian railway map to plan your route as it gives you a clear idea of what to expect.
Consider the Class of your Travel
There are three classes of Trans-Siberian Train berths, with first class being the ultimate in luxury travel, where you can expect a private cabin with an armchair and shower facilities. If, on the other hand, you prefer budget travel, the third class will get you there for half the price of the first class, but be prepared for a rough ride. Travelling third class will certainly give you an insight into how the locals live, and if you take enough provisions, you can avoid the expensive restaurant carriage. Second class is the preferred way for many tourists to travel, which is comfortable and at around $500 cheaper than first class, a whole lot more affordable.
Learn Some Basic Russian
You are going to be onboard with a lot of Russian folks, and like people anywhere in the world, the Russians definitely warm to foreigners who make an effort to communicate. Buy a good Russian phrasebook that is designed for the foreign visitor, as this will have many of the sentences you will want to use when conversing. There is an informative article on the many benefits of learning the local language when travelling, which does make for an interesting read.
Carry a comprehensive grooming kit that contains everything you need for personal hygiene, and it would be a good idea to also pack a basic first aid kit. The tour operator would be able to furnish you with essential information on what you should prepare for the journey, and with their help, your holiday should be a comfortable and pleasant experience and don’t be afraid to ask if you have any questions about the trip.
Are you planning on doing this trip? Let me know in the comments below.
*Disclaimer – This is a collaborative post. This post has been pre-written.