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I'm going to St Petersburg and Moscow next month on a tour.
I will have some time for myself, and I'd like to participate in sports-like activities (like flyboarding, bungee jumping, water parks etc). How can I book such activities at prices available to locals, as opposed to more expensive tourist pricing?

  • I've edited your question to (hopefully) make it somewhat less likely to be closed. – Eugene O Jun 26 '16 at 13:36
  • Just want to add that the football (soccer) games could be dangerous for a foreighners in Russia. – VMAtm Jun 26 '16 at 20:35
  • @VMAtm Not a fan of football ! – ReZa Jun 26 '16 at 23:32
  • If you are in Saint-Petersburg, ping me in a chat, I'll help if I am in town. – VMAtm Jun 28 '16 at 16:47
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Here are some techniques. Unfortunately the best ones require either knowledge of Russian (or a Russian-speaking friend, hostel employee willing to help, etc), or skillful use of Google Translate:

  • There are many "Groupon-like" sites in Russia, selling gift cards for various activities. They tend to be city-specific, so I can't point you to specific sites. Search for "подарки активный отдых (city-name)" or something like that. These sites list a lot of sports activities at reasonable (local) prices.

  • Once you find an activity you like, see if you can find the website for the operator of that activity. The trick here is to realize that many small activity operators don't have real web pages, but instead have pages on the VKontakte (vk.com) social network. You usually don't need an account to access these pages, and they often have prices listed, direct cell phone numbers for the operators, etc.

  • Try asking people on CouchSurfing in the city you're interested in to help you find and book the activities. Many Russian cities, even small ones, have active CouchSurfing communities, and there may be people there speaking your language. Just make it very clear that you're not looking for a place to stay, just some help with the language and perhaps someone to show you around.

  • Ask around in good hostels

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    I'm going to stay in 3 star or 4 star hotels in Moscow and St Petersburg. Will hotel staff kindly help me buying these tickets if I ask them? – ReZa Jun 26 '16 at 13:10
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    Depends on the person of course, but I don't think you can rely on this. Fancy hotels that cater to foreign tourists often have deals with specific, foreigner-oriented tour companies (often at inflated prices) and the hotel will probably push you towards these options. – Eugene O Jun 26 '16 at 13:32
  • so, If I've failed getting things on local prices, you think buying directly from those places are more reasonable than buying from hotel? – ReZa Jun 26 '16 at 23:47
  • Probably yes... – Eugene O Jun 27 '16 at 11:32
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Different prices for locals and foreigners are (or were) common in state museums, because it is assumed that we locals sponsor them with our taxes. As for the sport activities, they shouldn't be priced differently. After all, even having separate web sites with different prices won't work if you use Google Translate to read the Russian version. So just search online, maybe using automatic translation.

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