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Communication in Russia
In Moscow, the main communications centers are the Central Telephone & Telegraph, 7 Tverskaya Ulitsa and 2 Novy Arbat.
In St. Petersburg, one is at 3/5 Bolshaya Morskaya Ulitsa. All are open daily from 9am-9pm.
A way to save money if you are making a lot of international calls is by using a callback service. For example, a call from Russia to Australia may be cheaper if the call originates in the US. After calling a US access number, an operator will ring you back with dial tone that can be used to call anywhere in the world. Another cost-saver is making phone calls over a Web gateway. IP Telephony in Russia sells prepaid telephone cards, and their rates are much lower that regular lines. Cell phones can also be rented in Moscow and St. Petersburg. Americans can rent a special phones (such as GMS) work in Moscow. It is now illegal to use a mobile phone while driving in Russia unless using a hands-free device.
Internet cafes are now found in cities and larger towns and most major hotels provide fax and computer / Internet services.
Calls within Russia
One can direct dial most cities in Russia from a hotel, home or office phone. From your hotel phone, first dial 8 and wait for a second dial tone. Now dial the city code and then the phone number. Moscow is (495), St. Petersburg (812), Kostroma (0942), Suzdal (09231), Vladimir (the main area code is 0922) and Yaroslavl (0852). If you do not know the area code, ask your hotel service desk to find out for you, or dial 07 for an intercity operator. You can also place calls from main telephone centers or special telephone street booths, called mezhdugorodhy. Unless marked as such, regular pay phones cannot make city to city calls. Most of these phone booths now use plastic phone tokens or cards, which are sold in stores, kiosks and Metro stations around the city (same token as for local calls).