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We think outside the box

Relocation Services

A worry-free move involves more than packing and transporting goods. That’s why we take care of every detail. Whether your move is national or international, we can provide detailed planning, direct shipping, documentation, and advice on moves to and from any country.

Minimizing the Effects

Culture shock is not a myth, but a predictable phenomenon. Anybody who spends more than just a vacation abroad has to go through it. The intensity with which people experience it, however, depends on a lot of factors. Those who receive the least support on a professional and personal basis are usually hit the hardest. Expat spouses in particular often feel isolated and resentful when they experience life in a new cultural environment.
In order to avoid failed expat assignments and early repatriation, HR departments should support expats and expat spouses from the very beginning, e.g. in the form of intercultural competence training. Expatriates who organize their move abroad entirely on their own can also take measures to minimize the negative emotional effects caused by their relocation and try to soften the blow. If expats learn about the culture and people of their host country in advance, they will be less shocked by obvious differences in social customs, religion, language or food.

Where to Live

Finding suitable accommodation is among the most difficult parts of moving to Moscow. Some say, it is easier to find work than a decent apartment. Here is some advice on how to best go about the task.
Expats moving to Moscow have a choice between expatriate-only communities in wealthy suburbs and a more local experience in other Moscow neighborhoods. Families with children often prefer the expat compounds. These usually have international schools nearby, their own medical facilities, and plenty of green space. Other expats prefer the centrality of the Garden Ring or the slightly more Russian experience in other suburbs.
When deciding where to live in Moscow, take into account your office location, international schools for your kids and other daily necessities such as shopping opportunities. Commuting in Moscow is a very stressful and time-consuming affair. You don’t want to end up spending four hours in your car every day.

Visa Requirements

Moving to Moscow or going there for short-term visits requires a visa. Only citizens of some CIS states can enter Russia without one. To apply for short-term business and tourist visas, a letter of invitation from a Russian citizen or organization is necessary. 
Expats moving to Moscow in order to take up employment need a work visa. This can only be issued after a work permit for a particular position has been successfully acquired. Normally, your potential employer in Moscow takes care of the application process. Unless you fall under the new immigration category of “highly-qualified specialists”, the application process is relatively complicated and takes around four months.
It is generally easiest and least stressful to hire one of the many established visa services to deal with immigration authorities. This way, you don’t have to immerse yourself in the immensely complicated and constantly changing immigration regulations. The consulate of the Russian Federation in Washington, D.C. has up-to-date information on visa and the application process.

International Schools

Generally, private schools are a very uncommon phenomenon in Russia. Those living in Moscow, however, are lucky: Even for an expat hot spot, the city has a wide selection of international schools. Children of expats living in Moscow can often choose between studying according to a foreign national curriculum, the Russian national curriculum or the International Baccalaureate (IB) program. For younger children, many of the private international schools have attached kindergartens and childcare centers, making a family’s expat life in Moscow significantly easier.
International schooling is a major factor contributing to the high cost of life in Moscow. Depending on the school and grade in question, annual tuition fees range from around USD 7,000 to USD 13,000. Fees for kindergartens are usually slightly cheaper. Please also see the list below, with the most popular international schools among expats living in Moscow.
In addition to said international schools, many embassies in Moscow organize native-language schooling for children of embassy employees on their own premises. Children of other expats from the respective countries may be admitted as well. Currently, some of the embassies offering this type of schooling include the diplomatic representations of Poland, Bulgaria, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq and Korea.


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