Hours of Operation

DESTINATIONS russia hours-of-operation-28

TRAVEL TIPS

Hours of Operation

General hours for most businesses and banks are from 10 am to 6 pm. They’re usually closed on weekends, and many take an hour off for lunch. In Moscow, there are many 24-hour shops, grocery stores, and restaurants.

Consulates, government offices, ticket agencies, and exchange offices tend to close for an hour in the afternoon for lunch. Nothing stands between Russian businesses and public holidays, and the major holidays often involve a break of at least two days—three if they coincide with a weekend.

Most gas stations are open 24 hours.

Museum hours vary, but many are closed on Monday. Many museums close for one extra day (on which they'd normally be open) at the end of the month.

In general, pharmacies are open from 9 am or 10 am until 9 pm. There are, however, some 24-hour pharmacies in the major cities—check with the staff at your hotel to find those that are closest. Most shops and department stores are open from 10 am until 7 pm or even as late as 9 pm seven days a week. Fewer and fewer break for lunch for an hour in the afternoon. Restaurants and shopping arcades and malls are rarely closed at that time.

Holidays

Here’s a list of Russia's major holidays, most of which entail closures of many businesses; note that religious holidays like Christmas and Easter are celebrated according to the Russian Orthodox calendar. In addition, from May 1 through May 9 and from December 31 through January 13, the entire country shuts down. These are major holiday periods when absolutely nobody does anything: even medical clinics close. These weeks can pose a real problem for visitors, so try not to travel to Russia during these special holiday periods. Be aware, too, that on the day before a public holiday, everything tends to close early:

January 1–5 (New Year's), January 7 (Russian Orthodox Christmas), February 23 (Defenders of the Fatherland Day), March 8 (International Women's Day), May 1 (Day of Spring and Labor), May 9 (Victory Day), June 12 (Russia Day), November 4 (Day of Reconciliation and Agreement).

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