The Real Score About Expat Dating in Moscow

If you are looking for a date as an expat, being in a conservative country may not be the best situation to be in. Since the people are a bit more closed off, they may not be comfortable talking to foreigners, especially those coming from far-flung countries. 

Although the situation is more complicated, it does not mean that expats cannot find success in their love lives. 

If you are an expat looking to have a dating experience in Moscow, this guide is for you. Here are the things you should know while trying to land a successful date in the area. Have a quick look.

What Moscow Locals Think About Expats

expat dating in moscow

Dating in Moscow is a unique experience not available anywhere else in the world. Expats should realize that the locals have unique perspectives that have long solidified into social norms. Because of the situation, expats have to adjust to avoid humiliating themselves or offending others. 

If you are new to the area, here are some of the most common biases locals from Moscow have against expats:

1. Language barrier blockage

Although a small percentage of Moscow’s population speaks English, most of these people use the language for professional use only. 

Regular individuals cannot engage in comprehensive English communication. For locals, they do not feel the need to learn English. They are in Russia, after all! Almost all of the people there speak their mother tongue, and community members can understand each other. 

This reasoning is reflective of Russian’s exclusivity. In general, they are not very welcoming to foreigners. However, as time passed, some of the locals started becoming more hospitable to foreigners. 

2. Not here for long?

Dating is more complex for expats because the Russian dating scene is all about commitment and long-term relationships. Unfortunately, most expats likely leave after a few months or years. 

The locals do not like that. For them, the partner that the expat finds in Russia will only be for temporary relief and entertainment. The prejudice even extends to expats who decide to stay in Russia and live permanently there. In the minds of the people, having a non-Russian face automatically equates to becoming a temporary expat.

3. Selective favoritism

According to a survey, Russians have positive impressions towards Germans but have negative opinions of the Americans and the French. 

This preference stems from the countries’ old political connections. Russians have been brainwashed to hate France and the United States because of their previous political conflicts, that being with Napoleon Bonaparte and World War 2, respectively. On the other hand, Russia has good relations with the Germans because of their alliance in previous wars. 

As an expat, be mindful of your ethnicity, or at least how others might think you look. 

4. Stranger danger

It has been clear from the previous paragraphs that Russians, especially those from Moscow, are not fond of foreigners. With foreigners being strangers to the motherland, Russians cannot help but think whether or not they are spies from another country. 

For most people, an expat is a potential threat to national security and orderliness. Since this association has been normalized, the locals developed an unreasonable fear towards foreigners.

Although the country is only being cautious for its internal safety, the consequences of its actions stigmatized expats and created severe limitations on the dating scene in Russia. 

Crucial Expat Dating Tips in Moscow

expat dating in moscow

Finding a Moscow partner is not impossible. Amid their statuesque features and sharp gazes, Russian people have beautiful hearts that can love another immensely. If you manage to break through the wall of discrimination, single and interested people should be available.

1. Learn the language

As stated before, only a tiny portion of Moscow speaks conversational English. Only a few shop attendants, airport personnel, and government personnel can converse with you in times of emergency. 

Since finding a good English speaker in Moscow is quite a struggle, expats should learn the language instead. This strategy is good for expats who have plans of staying longer within the area. Speaking the language is also a way to impress a date.

2. Pay attention to your looks 

Looks matter to people in Moscow. They create a meaningful impact on how people in Moscow treat one another. 

An attractive male keeps his hair clean and clothes crisp. Meanwhile, looks are a bigger deal for women. For people in Russia, including Moscow, women should look majestic and flawless all the time. Russian society prefers women with long hair and a made-up face. The same applies to expats. 

3. Make a lot of friends

If you are planning to date in Moscow, do not just find potential lovers. Try to expand your social network as much as possible. 

Since romantic relationships have a higher chance of falling out than friendships, expats should develop a well-rounded social circle to continue enjoying their stay in Moscow. While most of society has an exclusive mindset, there are a few that are more progressive. 

Also, expats should consider finding other expats within the area. It is helpful to have someone who is in the same situation as you.

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4. Prepare your wallets

If you are a man trying to find a female date in Moscow, better prepare some cash. 

Men are expected to pay the bill, especially on first dates. It is considered disrespectful for men to try and divide the bill or ask the woman to make the payment. The gesture of having males pay for dates applies to female foreigners as well. If you are a woman trying to find a male date in Moscow, this situation could be favorable to you. 

The same goes for gifting. Males are more expected to give gifts to females than the other way around.

5. Take note of the country’s social norms

There are a few social norms expats should remember. 

For one, Russian culture expects men to make the first move. Most of the time, women will wait for men to signify their interest before they respond and express their romantic interests. In gist, expat men cannot expect Russian women to be vocal about their romantic interests in guys. 

Another social norm that expats should be aware of is the art of giving flowers. One rule in giving flowers is to never give a bunch with even numbers. Flowers with even numbers are reserved for funerals. Giving an even-numbered bouquet to a date is an immediate turn-off. 

6. Have an open mind

Although this sounds contradictory to the point of this article, do not limit yourself to what you know about the Moscow community. Just like any other place in the world, dating is just an act of finding a partner. So long as you are not doing anything illegal, you may express yourself to engage someone to like you. 

While most people from Moscow are conservative and traditional, a small percentage are open to western concepts and understand non-conventional cultures. If you do not want to conform to stereotypes, you can always shoot your shot.

7. Let people know you’re available

As an expat, you have to be strategic when it comes to dating in Moscow. Before pursuing killer first date ideas or going to the most romantic places in Moscow, you have to let singles know you are looking for a date. 

You may do this by asking your friends to recommend someone you can hang out with. You can also resort to online dating platforms and publicly set your profile as someone who is actively searching for a partner.

8. Put yourself out there

After letting everyone know you are single and ready to mingle, the next step is to set foot in the wild. 

Moscow has active social centers like clubs and night districts where singles gather. If you want this kind of socialization, head out frequently. Do not stop yourself from exploring. There should not be a limit on the places that you should go. Simply live your best life.

9. Do not settle

Did you find dates but felt like they were not the ones for you? Do not hesitate to explore even more. Maybe, bars and night districts are not the ones for you. 

Do not forget that Moscow is also rich in culture and arts. Try dating someone in theatres and art museums. These places allow dates to move at slower paces. Couples can have more opportunities to talk with each other and have a relaxing time.

Excited about dating in Moscow as an expat?

Expat dating in Moscow can be challenging, but it does not have to be grueling. If you are starting to lose hope, raise your chin a little and don’t give up! Take this guide to heart and enjoy your Moscow dating experience as an expat.

If you want to broaden your horizons, try out online dating in Moscow.

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