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Preliminary notice: Next trip May 02-23, 2008. Updates to follow
DATES  (planned as of this printing, dependent upon response)
  • May 02- May 23 2008
  • From Europe, leave a day later

  • ESTIMATED COSTS US$1900-2100 plus air fare. This covers lodging & meals, educational program, staff support, inter-city travel, organizational fee, visa invitation & visa issuance fees. This includes estimated costs for a visit to one or two towns outside Moscow (below).
    The cost range allows for two contingencies: 1) A small group, which would increase per capita fixed expenses. 2) An inflation surge or significant change in the ruble exchange rate. I'll collect the larger amount, less the $100 visa fee that you will pay directly to the Russian Consulate, and refund what is not needed for the above reasons. I'll also collect air fare for those for whom I am arranging flights (see Air Fares). Participation in the recruitment of study trip members is thus in everybody's financial interest. To help, you can request a paper flyer that you can copy and post where you work or study.

    => AIR FARES  Group arrangements in 2008 will be with Delta Airlines.
    Departures will be possible from most US and Canadian cities.

    A US$100 deposit to hold the seat and guarantee the fare must be paid by Christmas. The deposit is fully refundable until 90 days before the flight. Details will be provided in Information for Particpants (on this site) for cancellations after that date.

    PASSPORTS Obtain your passport NOW. It is needed for your Russian visa application well before travel. NOTE: USA passport applications ask when you will travel. The US Passport Office may process applications in the order of perceived need, so give a date prior to when I need the photocopy of your passport for the visa process, not the actual travel date.  Long passport delays may persist because of the new rule that even travel to Canada and Mexico requires a passport, so immediate application is critical.
    PHOTOS YOU NEED Passport (two if for USA passport). One for the Russian visa . Two you must bring with you for registering residence in Moscow. Two for emergencies (lost passport, etc.)
    DEADLINES  Application and US$200 deposit can be accepted now.. US$100 will be used for the flight deposit. US$50 will be used for the visa invitation fee imposed by the Interior Ministry of Russia and is non-refundable once the invitation is requested (see visa applications information).
    Balance: 17 Febuary for costs including the flight. (tentative date; to be revised)
    Amount of balance due currently estimated [to be announced]
    This is AFTER deduction of US$150 of your US$200 deposit (for flight deposit and via invitation) and of the US$100 visa fee you will pay yourself. It includes a US$100 contingency (see above).
    Anything remaining from the contingency will be refunded after the trip.
    Deposits can be made by personal check or money order. Final payment MUST be by money order, certified or cashiers check or wire transfer so that flights can be paid for and money transferred to Europe to cover our expenses without clearance delays.

    Flight rules are on Information for Participants

    VISA APPLICATIONS I will send you the Russian visa application or directions for obtaining it online and detailed instructions. If you are not in North America, you will receive instructions on how to apply in your country of residence. The Russian Ministry of the Interior must issue each invitation requested by Russian institutions. Its charge is US$30. This takes 3-4 weeks and requires that our host have a photocopy of the data-photo page of your passport. Only after our Moscow host sends me the Ministry's approval document for each of you can the "normal" visa application begin. That takes at least three weeks. We must therefore begin about four weeks earlier than before. For Americans, the visa application now costs US$100. This is retaliation for the same fee for Russians coming to the USA. The visa cost for other nationalities may be different.
    CANCELLATIONS Our trips require time and space commitments from different institutions and we travel when demand for airline seats and other facilities is booked well ahead. Costs also accumulate and cancellations may raise per capita fixed charges to your colleagues. My aim is to conduct the study trips, not collect penalties. I will refund the maximum possible, less US$75 and less any penalty assessed by the airline, for cancellations up to the date final payment is due for your trip. Then, the cancellation penalty is:
    --$300 up to 45 days before departure
    --$500 fewer than 45 days before departure.
    Cancellation penalties may be waived to the extent possible in extenuating circumstances or if a replacement is found in time.
    In addition, once the flight ticket has been issued, it becomes non-refundable.  You may want to purchase trip cancellation insurance for security.
    All participants must sign and return a Responsibility Waiver (to be sent later). By sending an application the depositor agrees to be bound by the conditions here.

    INTRODUCTORY NOTE Before becoming involved in adult higher education, my field was biochemical research and teaching. I have organized and taught travel courses since 1976, to France and then to the USSR, first while a university professor, now independently. This series of courses in USSR/Russia began in 1980. (For the full story of how the Moscow trips began, see the 1980 anecdotal account.) I've also taken North American and European youth groups to computer and ecology camps in the USSR, and experts to offer seminars in business methods to Russians. I accompany all groups. Participants will receive phone numbers of many former group members who can give personal advice about the trip. Since this trip is independently organized, I understand that potential applicants may want to verify the reliability of information in this announcement, and phone numbers or E-mail addresses of previous participants can be provided for that purpose as well.
    Do svidanie (Until we meet),
    Eric Fenster, PhD, Organizer

    Send your application and a US$200 deposit by check or money order payable to MOSCOW STUDY TRIPS to:
    Contact address and another e-mail (I'm trying to avoid address harvesting and spam)  will be provided to applicants by e-mail.
    Deposit checks will not be cashed until there are enough applicants to make a group.
    Fax and voice mail in USA: 1-206-888-4571     E-mail: moscowtrip2008@yahoo.com


    Trip: May 02-May 23

    NAME________________________________________________ BIRTH    day______/month_________/year______

    HOME ADDRESS_______________________________________________ SEX    M /_/   F /_/

    WORK/SCHOOL ADDRESS________________________________________________

    CITY_______________________________ ST/PROV____________ ZIP/POST CODE_________________

    COUNTRY__________________________ HOME PHONE (_____)____________________________

    WORK PHONE (_____)________________________ FAX (_____)___________________________
    NB Because of the new Russian visa procedure, you will need to send me the data-photo page of your passport by mail or fax, and I may need to mail or fax you the official invitation. If your home or office has no fax, please identify one at a shop that provides this service.
    E-mail ID(s): ____________________________________

    Briefly describe your current occupational and/or educational activity: [take necessary space]

    Please give background about yourself, including interests and activities in political, community, educational, professional, union or other relevant organizations, previous foreign travel and purpose (tourist, military, business). Underline current positions/activities. Have you any special requests for the program or for contacts? This information will be shared with our hosts to assist their planning--and with other members of your group so you can "meet" before we travel. [Use necessary space.]

    FLIGHT SELECTION Known fares: New York $873.60, Cleveland $1054.60, Detroit $1033.60

    Your departure city:  USA ___________________________________  Other city: ____________________________

    What problems do you anticipate with:    none   moderate    serious
                                                            Money?  /__/         / __/            / __ /
                                                            Time off? /__/        / __/            / __/
    When might such a problem be resolved, and do you require any letter?

    How did you learn about this trip and do you know any previous participants?

    Your passport # _________________ Expiration date______________ Issuing country ________________
    Send this information now or as soon as you receive your passport.
    Do you prefer to pay balance:
    By certified check/money order
    By international wire transfer?
    In euros?
    By US/Canada wire transfer?
    In pounds sterling?
    Smoker? yes no
    Dietary restrictions?
    -----------------do not write below this line-----------------
    $200 deposit rec'd ______
    Balance ($ ) rec'd ______
    Flt. Route _______
    Visa applic. rec'd ______
    Waiver rec'd ______
    Health form rec'd _______
    Information sent ______
    Readings sent ______