Welcome to the Capital of Football! A Football Fan’s Guide to Moscow

Welcome to the Capital of Football! A Football Fan’s Guide to Moscow
Photo: Photo by the Mayor and Moscow Government Press Service. Yevgeny Samarin
For the first time in history, Russia is hosting the FIFA World Cup. It is also the first championship in Eastern Europe spanning two continents at the same time, Europe and Asia. The world’s best national teams will play at 12 stadiums in 11 Russian cities. Moscow will be the capital of this sports festival. We will make sure that football fans do not miss out on anything during the championship in Moscow and that they will get the most out of football and the Russian capital.

Moscow is the main host city of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, and will host 12 games including the opening and closing ceremonies. Seven matches will take place at Luzhniki Big Sports Arena, which will also host final, when the two best teams will clash for the World Cup. Five more games will take place at Spartak Stadium.

Organising the largest football event is not only a privilege but also a challenge for Moscow. Over the past seven years, Moscow has done its utmost and then some more. Luzhniki and Spartak have been brought up to full compliance with FIFA requirements and are rightly considered two of the best stadiums in the world. The transit infrastructure has been improved and new hotels have been built. The city has developed a cultural programme for guests arriving for the World Cup and arranged security for the sporting event.

Stadiums

Moscow matches will be held at two stadiums: Luzhniki Big Sports Arena and Spartak Stadium.

Luzhniki will host seven matches: the opening, then three group stage matches, a round of 16, a semifinal and the finals.

The World Cup will start with a match between Russia and Saudi Arabia on 14 June.

Spartak Stadium will host four group stage matches and a round of 16.

The first match will take place there on 16 June: Argentina vs. Iceland.

Moscow match schedule

Schedule of 2018 FIFA World Cup matches in Moscow

Match No

Date and time

Venue

Teams

 

1 (Opening)

 

6 pm, 14 June

 

Luzhniki Stadium

Russia (А1)

Saudi Arabia (А2)

 

7

 

4 pm, 16 June

 

Spartak Stadium

Аrgentina (D1)

Iceland (D2)

11

 

6 pm, 17 June

 

Luzhniki Stadium

Germany (F1)

Mexico (F2)

15

 

3 pm, 19 June

 

Spartak Stadium

Poland (H1)

Senegal (H2)

19

 

3 pm, 20 June

 

Luzhniki Stadium

Portugal(B1)

Morocco (B3)

29

 

3 pm , 23 June

 

Spartak Stadium

Belgium (G1)

Tunisia (G3)

37

 

5 pm, 26 June

 

Luzhniki Stadium

Denmark (C4)


France (C1)

42

 

6 pm, 27 June

 

Spartak Stadium

Serbia (E4)

Brazil (Е1)

51 (Round of 16)

5 pm, 1 July

Luzhniki Stadium

Group B winner —

2nd place in Group A

56 (Round of 16)

9 pm, 3 July

Spartak Stadium

Group H winner —

2nd place in Group G

62 (Semi-final)

9 pm, 11 July

Luzhniki Stadium

Quarter-final winners

 

64 (Final)

 

6 pm, 15 July

 

Luzhniki Stadium

Semi-final winners

Luzhniki Big Sports Arena

Luzhniki Big Sports Arena is the largest stadium in Russia and the former USSR countries and can seat 81,000. The stadium opened in 1956. In 1998, UEFA included it in the list of Europe’s five star football stadiums, and in 2008, granted it elite status.

In 1980, Luzhniki hosted a large sportive competition: it was the Moscow Olympic Games main arena.

The most recent renovation was held in 2013–2017, with the total area increased more than by half. A roof covering 100 percent of all seats, a 17x10 metre screen, a media roof of 39,000 square metres and 300 seats for people with limited mobility have been added.

A cable road was established between Vorobyovy Gory and Luzhniki for the World Cup.

Address: 24 Luzhnetskaya Embankment.

How to find

Metro station: Sportivnaya (Line 1) and Vorobyovy Gory (Line 1).

Moscow Central Circle station (MCC): Luzhniki.

Surface transit: Novodevichy Cemetery (buses M3, 64, 255, S12), Luzhniki Stadium (buses M3, 806, A; trolleybus 28) and Luzhniki Stadium (south) (buses M3, 64, 255, 806, A, S12, T79).

Spartak Stadium

Spartak is one of Russia’s most popular and best stadiums. It opened in 2014. It can seat 45,000 with expansion possible to 46,000, including 5,630 increased comfort seats. The stadium covers 54,000 square metres. For visitors’ comfort, the stadium has 20 elevators, two escalators and cash free technology: only credit and debit cards will be accepted as payment at the stadium. Spartak metro station opened along with the stadium in addition to a traffic junction with an overpass nearby.

Address: 69 Volokolamskoye Motorway.

How to find

Metro stations: Spartak (Line 7) and Tushinskaya (Line 7)

Railway station: Tushino

Surface transit: Tushinskaya Metro, Chkalov Club, Moscow Canal (buses 88, 248, minibus 456),

Moscow Canal (tram 6).

FIFA Fan Festival

If you have not got a ticket, it does not mean that you will be left behind this football celebration. All fans can enjoy the FIFA Fan Festival on Vorobyovy Gory. Its capacity is 25,000 people and admission is free.

Here, fans can enjoy matches broadcasted on a huge screen as well as live concerts and meetings with football icons and guests of honour. The food court has a rich choice of delicacies while souvenir shops have a wide range of memorable gifts. Vorobyovy Gory offers the widest panorama of the Russian capital. The FIFA Fan Fest will take up temporary residence in the picturesque park near the main building of the Moscow State University, which serves as a lasting symbol of Soviet architecture.

There is also a tourist information centre and a large bicycle parking.

Location

Lomonosov Moscow State University

At the intersection of Akademika Samarskogo Street and Universitetsky Prospekt.

How to find

Metro station: Vorobyovy Gory (Line 1), Universitet (Line 1), Lomonosovsky Prospekt (Line 13).

Free shuttles from Kievskaya metro and Luzhniki Sports Complex.

Cable cars will run from Luzhniki to Vorobyovy Gory.

FAN ID

To attend 2018 FIFAWorld Cup matches, you will need to obtain a FAN ID. FAN IDs will ensure visitors will have a comfortable and safe time at stadiums and the city during the championship.

Where to get a FAN ID in Moscow

How to get a FAN ID:

— by post;

— at registration and FAN ID collection centres:

34 Khamovnichesky Val Street

5 Koroviy Val Street, bldg.1

73 Volokolamskoye Motorway

— at My Documents integrated government service centres:

Flagship office: 2 Presnenskaya Embankment, ground floor of the Afimall City mall

13 Bakhrushina Street

33 Pravdy Street

3rd residential neighbourhood, bldg 21, rural town of Moskovsky.

What a FAN ID provides:

— visa-free entry: Multiple visa-free entries into Russia between 4 June and 15 July and multiple visa-free departures from Russia between 4 June and 25 July, 2018;

— free transit: There will be free public transit to stadiums on the days of matches in host cities (except for by taxi), as well as free railway transit between the host cities on additional trains. Visitors can obtain their free train tickets using their FAN IDs and game tickets by making one phone call: +7 800 775 20 18 (domestic calls) or +7 495 741 18 18 (international calls). Call operators speak Russian, English, French, Spanish and German;

— visitor itineraries for spectators;

— free guided tours, announcements, news, information about events.

Transit

Moscow’s public transit system is represented by metro, railway, buses, trams, trolleybuses, minibuses, taxi, car sharing and bike rental network.

All announcements, signs and notices on public transit have recently been recorded in English.

Metro

The metro is the most popular public transit system in Moscow, connecting almost all the city districts.

The Moscow Central Circle (MCC) is an above-ground circle railway integrated with the Moscow Metro. Passengers can transfer from the MCC to radial metro lines.

Operating hours: 5.30 am to 1 am.

Buses, trolleybuses and trams

Moscow public surface transport includes nearly 1,000 bus and 100 trolleybus services and around 50 tram services.

Public transit runs on a regular schedule and uses designated traffic lanes to avoid heavy traffic. Buses, trolleybuses and trams run from early morning until late night depending on the specific route and service. There are also 11 night services.

Fans can ride eight free S buses to the airports, metro stations and stadiums before the matches or after them. The buses have special World Cup stickers. Fans can also use 45 bus, trolleybus and tram services near the stadiums and the city centre for free. These routes can also be identified by stickers.

Fares

Metro, bus, trolleybus and tram fares are the same: 55 RUB during the day and at night.

When buying a multi-ride Unified travel card, passengers will receive a discount depending on the number of rides they purchase.

FAN ID holders can use public transit to get to World Cup venues for free on match days.

Taxi

Official taxi companies are operating in Moscow, with around 60,000 official taxi vehicles, or one vehicle per 200 people. This ratio of cars to people is higher than in New York, Paris and Madrid. All taxis in Moscow are yellow. Large taxi aggregators operate in Moscow. Using the service, passengers will be made aware of the fare before the ride begins. The average taxi fare in Moscow matches fares paid in other European cities.

Car sharing

First launched in 2015, car sharing is becoming very popular in Moscow. There are 15 car sharing companies in Moscow.

During the World Cup, users can sign up for car sharing online and using mobile apps with only two documents, a driver’s license and passport (foreign passports are accepted).

Average car sharing rates in Moscow: 8 to 10 RUB per minute.

Bike rental network

Bicycle is an excellent alternative to public transit and cars, one that offers mobility in the city centre and the ability to enjoy the view and warm summer weather. There is a bike rental network in Moscow, including 400 stations with nearly 4,000 bicycles.

To rent a bike, sign up on the velobike website and pay with either Visa or Mastercard: 150 RUB per 24-hour period or 600 RUB per month. Starting 9 June, cyclists can purchase a special plan which will be offered during the World Cup. The plan includes insurance and free rides of up to 60 minutes. The number of rental stations near Luzhniki and their capacity for renting and accepting bikes will increase.

For the convenience of foreign users, the mobile app, the website and the call centre of Moscow bike rental network will have an English version. Football fans can use promo codes and special offers.

Moscow Transport is a helpful service for planning your route in Moscow no matter what mode of transport, and even allows users to receive traffic updates.

The Moscow Metro mobile app now has a special section for football fans. Users can plan routes to stadiums, bike share stations and landmarks, and even find out game scores. The section is available in French, Spanish, Chinese, German and Portuguese.

Accommodations

Moscow has prepared 70,000 rooms in over 1,000 hotels. It is better to book accommodation via an aggregator or directly with a hotel. The Moscow Centre for Football Fans and Tourist Accommodations can also assist in finding a place to stay. Call operators can help football fans from across Russia and foreign countries to find the right price and location. The centre’s staff speaks five languages (Russian, English, French, Chinese and German).

How to book a hotel:

— on FIFA website;

— at the Moscow Centre for Football Fans and Tourist Accommodations. Phone numbers: +7 800 302 3112, +7 800 350 5112 (for international calls), +7 495 587 7112 (for domestic calls).

Stay connected

Tourists can always stay connected with various free Wi-Fi hubs which are available on the street almost everywhere inside the Garden Ring, as well as in parks, museums and many other public places.

Full list of public Wi-Fi hotspots

Select Moscow_Wi-Fi_Free and sign in to connect to the internet.

Free Wi-Fi is also available in the metro, on surface public transit and at bus stops. MT_Free requires registration when using it for the first time.

Free Wi-Fi is available in airports and railway stations, most hotels and hostels, and in many cafes and restaurants.

We speak your language

Moscow doctors, hotel staff, police officers, taxi drivers, inspectors and volunteers have all taken foreign language courses and special English phrase books were developed for bus ticket inspectors and taxi drivers.

At metro information desks, staff will explain fares, travel cards and payment methods in English to help people reach their destinations easily.

English-speaking employees serve customers in windows marked ‘We speak English.’

Tourist police officers are fluent in foreign languages. Look for officers wearing bands that say ‘Tourist Police.’

Around 5,000 volunteers speaking foreign languages will assist at airports and railway stations, at city events and on tourist routes. Free travel guides and city maps in Russian, English, Chinese, German, French and Spanish are available in visitor information centres.

Metro and MCC maps, navigation and directions have been updated for the convenience of football fans. Luzhniki Big Sports Arena, Spartak Stadium, FIFA Fan Fest venue and the city ticket collection centre are all marked on the metro map.

Mobile information screens that will help fans build their route have been installed near the arenas. The screen shows road blocks, closest transport stops and metro and MCC stations. All information is translated into English.

Visitor information centres:

— GUM (3 Red Square)

— Visitor information centre on Triumfalnaya Square

— Flagship visitor information centre in Zaryadye Park (Varvarka Street)

— Visitor information centre near the Cathedral of Christ the Savior (15 Volkhonka Street)

— Kolomenskoye Museum and Reserve Visitor Centre (39 Prospekt Andropova)

— Temporary visitor information centre on Revolyutsii Square.

Tourist Call Centre

Call centre staff will answer questions about tourist facilities, transit infrastructure and help in emergency situations. Employees speak Russian, English, German, French and Chinese. Phone: +7 800 302 3112, +7 800 350 5112, +7 495 587 7112.

Emergencies

In the event of an emergency, rescuers, police and ambulance are available to assist.

Foreigners will get free medical help in life threatening conditions (emergency medical help, ambulance service, specialised medical help) in public and municipal clinics.

Other medical help will be provided for a fee. It is recommended that you purchase insurance and call your insurance company before getting medical help.

Useful numbers

112, 101 Emergency service

101 Fire service

102 Police

103 Emergency medical help

Online help in English for calling ambulance