Money makes the world go round so before moving abroad it’s a good idea to look into the currency of your chosen destination. The currency of the Russian Federation is the Rouble (also spelt ruble) – the same currency that was used in both the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union. 100 kopecks (or copecks) make up a Rouble.
Although currencies like Sterling can be changed into Roubles at currency exchange kiosks at airports and banks (among other places) transferring your funds at the right time is essential.
Getting the best exchange rate possible can save you money and help make your global transition that bit easier so if you’re emigrating it’s strongly recommended that you seek advice from a trusted currency broker.
If you plan on staying in Russia for a significant amount of time you may want to consider opening a Russian Bank account.
Although the Russian banking system has experienced difficulties in the past (the Soviet Union didn’t have a retail banking tradition) it’s currently involved in a complex process of reconstruction, regulation and modernization.
You should still bear in mind however that the Russian banking system is generally considered to be of a lower standard than found acceptable in the West. For this reason the majority of foreigners choose to go with larger, international banking branches.
The Russian banking system includes commercial banks and the Sberbank Rossii (Russian Savings Bank/central bank)
Commercial banks are widely used and provide customers with savings deposit accounts. Some offer additional services like debit cards, investment and foreign exchange.
Few banks in Russia supply credit cards and cheques are rarely used (because of the extremely long amount of time they take to clear).
Although bank opening hours differ according to the branch the majority operate from 9am to 6pm Monday to Friday. Some also open on Saturdays.
Opening an account is quick and easy with savings and current accounts the most popular types.
As you will need to provide different documentation depending on the type of account/services you want it’s a good idea to ring the bank you wish to join and make enquires before you go. As soon as you’ve opened your account you can apply for an ATM card.