Gearing Up For World Cup
No, the United States won’t be represented in this summer’s World Cup in Russia, which begins on June 14th. It is the first time in 32 years the Yanks have miss the world’s biggest sporting event, but that doesn’t mean Americans no longer have an interest in watching, let alone need an excuse to travel.
Russia is not as attractive to American travelers to as the previous World Cup host, Brazil, was, due to many factors including, weather, time zone difference, flight prices, cultural differences and interior logistical issues. These factors atop of the aforementioned absence of the USMNT all play into an overall lack of interest in this year’s Cup, may make it the best opportunity for budget-conscious American soccer fans to plan a trip to the World Cup.
At this point, if you do decide to make a last minute trip to Mother Russia for the tournament, here are a few things you should know.
You will have to get tickets on the secondary market. The only match with tickets currently remaining through Fifa.com/tickets are for the Nigeria v Iceland match on the 22nd in Volgograd. Once you acquire said ticket, you will then have to register for a Fan ID. This is required for entry into any of the match stadiums. It also allows for visa-free entry into the country, free use of public transportation within host cities and allows for stay in the country from 10 days before the first match to 10 days after the last match.
There is limited hotel space available in most of the host cities. Several hotels have already been fined by authorities for price gouging, so be aware that that is a thing, but rest assure that they are being watched. You have more options going with a vacation rental, but there are still hotels with space available; more so after the second weekend of the event. Check Hipmunk.com, it is our favorite online lodging search engine, returning a very extensive list of options, but you will want to do your due diligence on the ones you like.