Al Thuraya Holdings

Thinking of Attending the 2018 Russia World Cup

NGS and Al Thuraya Consultancy are both well respected providers of travel security services. Specializing in point-of-incident response, medical/security emergencies and evacuations, they have partnered up to offer a robust package for their clients. As the football world turns its attention to the 2018 World Cup, thousands of international travelers are descending into 11 Russian cities. With expertise from these two companies, along with Al Thuraya Consultancy’s sister intelligence company ICESERVE24, we have created a list of recommendations for fans to consider before the football begins.


London, UK -- (ReleaseWire) -- 06/15/2018 --Security Advice

Tips before you travel:

- A visa for Russia is not required for visitors who obtained a FanID ( and

- FanID holders are permitted to stay in Russia from June 4 to July 25, 2018

- Visitors should have a valid passport for a minimum period of six months after the expiry date of their visa or FanID

- Upon arrival, visitors should sign an electronically produced migration card at passport control

- Visitors should keep the signed migration card as it should be presented to passport control upon exiting Russia

Mandatory requirements after arrival in Russia:

- Visitors should register in every host city visited within 24 hours of arrival. Registration can be done by hotels or guest houses; however, it is the responsibility of the visitor to ensure this process is completed.

- Visitors are advised to carry their passport and all accompanying relevant information on themselves at all times, as Russian police have the authority to carry out random identification checks

- Arrive early to matches to allow enough time for bag searches, screening areas and delayed traffic

- Expect additional wait time to clear security checks and passport control at airports, and security checks at railway stations and border crossings

Personal security advice:

- Trust your instincts and pay attention to abnormal changes in people's behaviours and the environment surrounding them

- Maintain heightened situational awareness and exercise caution and discretion in public places

- Establish baselines of the "normal" environment and be prepared to run or hide in the event of a threat

- Remain attentive to increases in security presence and/or activities in crowded areas

- Only eat and drink at respected establishments; avoid accepting drinks, food or drugs from strangers

- Implement a "buddy system" with other members of your travel group, including periodic check-ins

- Beware of using local mobile phone networks, wifi or communal hotspots due to the risk of cyber compromise by intelligence services. Even people who believe they are not important remain vulnerable to hackers.

Behavioural awareness considerations:

- Avoid engaging in political, religious or cultural debates, including topics about the Syrian civil war, Ukraine, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) rights and Russian geopolitical affairs; also, avoid acting in a manner that attracts suspicions or heightened response from security forces. Police are more likely to arrest for minor offences.

- Maintain a low profile and avoid clothing with flags, regalia, insignia or local football club jerseys

- Cooperate with security forces in the event of identification checks

Cultural and social awareness:

- Russia is well known for vodka and "samohonka", the home-distilled alcohol. Beware of the home-made bottles and try to stick to officially labels of alcohol. If you want to control your level of alcohol, do not leave your glass empty. In Russia, this is considered a call for a refill.

- Never accept friendly invitations to bars by locals, drugging and robbing travellers have been reported repeatedly.

- Despite many Russian girls being undoubtedly pretty, a dating service or an interest of a local girl towards a stranger might be a sign of fraud or blackmailing later. Stay polite, friendly, your actions could have consequences.

- Beware of scamming. Foreigners are often dragged into street lost-cash situation or they are requested a polite service like watching a bag for a while. These might end up in stealing money, hassle, or police involved. Politely deny, walk away, keep occupied with your own business and do not get distracted.

- Tap water is not recommended for drinking, yet bottled mineral waters are easy to access.

- Do not change money by street vendors, use banks, hotels or official kiosks. Payments by USD or EUR in cash are not allowed.

- Although smiling at strangers is considered a polite thing in some countries, in Russia the saying goes "smiling without a reason is a sign of a fool". Which is why Russians keep smiles for being with friends, relatives and generally for "important things".

If you or your employees of close relatives or friends are facing questions, doubts about the country security landscape, travel security issues, training and awareness on how to best deal with a major or "mass" security event, do not hesitate to approach our Global Security and Operations Center at ICESERVE24.

To get the full version of ICESERVE24's recommendations, including recommendations in the event of violence, civil unrest or terrorist attacks, as well as cyber security recommendations, contact us at

Further Services Available:

- Al Thuraya Consultancy clients have Global Security and Operations Center support available 24/7 by calling +421 44 563 0987.

- To receive time updates on incidents happening to your proximity, download ICEALERTS App on iTunes or Google Play

- To have your movements monitored 24/7 by Global Security and Operations Center, download ICETRACK app on iTunes or Google Play

- For additional information and advice, including a detailed 50-page white paper by Activity Based Intelligence unit on 2018 Russia World Cup, email

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