Support The Moscow Times!

World Cup Fans Confuse Russian City Names

Gleb Garanich / Reuters

There are 11 host cities for the World Cup, but getting there is not always easy.

Several Swiss fans were in for a surprise after booking a hotel in Rostov Veliky — a Golden Ring city outside Moscow — instead of Rostov-on-Don, one of the World Cup host cities, where Switzerland was playing Brazil.

The tourists reportedly dialed 112 after being unable to locate their hotel, only to be told that they were in the wrong city, the Interfax news agency reported.

To prevent future mishaps, hotels in Rostov Veliky are checking up on foreign bookings, the report added.

The Yaroslavl tourism authorities have promised to invite the Swiss fans to visit “one of the region’s oldest cities,” Interfax reported.

Meanwhile, in a separate incident, several Chinese fans were stranded in Volgograd — another World Cup host city.

In two separate incidents, a Chinese man and two women were stuck at the train station with tickets departing from the similar-sounding Vologda, the head of Russia’s Transportation Ministry Yevgeny Dietrich told Interfax.

“We helped them and explained that Vologda and Volgograd are different cities and are about 1,500 kilometers apart,” he said.

Read more

Independent journalism isn’t dead. You can help keep it alive.

The Moscow Times’ team of journalists has been first with the big stories on the coronavirus crisis in Russia since day one. Our exclusives and on-the-ground reporting are being read and shared by many high-profile journalists.

We wouldn’t be able to produce this crucial journalism without the support of our loyal readers. Please consider making a donation to The Moscow Times to help us continue covering this historic time in the world’s largest country.