gifts to russia

How to Celebrate New Year like a Russian

New Year’s is the biggest celebration of the year sacred to every Russian. No other holiday in the calendar is celebrated with such enthusiasm and there’s number of traditions and rituals associated with it.

12 p.m., December 31 – HIDE YOUR GIFTS

Those who like to postpone everything until the last moment have their last chance now to finish decorating Christmas tree. Since New Year’s in Russia occurs earlier than Christmas (which is celebrated on January 7), people exchange gifts on December, 31. Unlike many western countries where gifts are put in stockings that hang from the fireplace gifts in Russia are usually placed under the Christmas tree. That’s why the next important step is to hide beautifully decorated New Year’s gifts meant for friends and family members under the tree and start the countdown to midnight.

Christmas dinner feast1 p.m. – COOKING MARATHON BEGINS

Russian New Year’s just isn’t New Year’s without the salads. We’re not taking about light green salads either, but mayonnaise-infused and protein-thick works of art created by each hostess with their own touch. There are plenty of salads that can be found on the holiday table but only few are served in each family without exceptions. One of the most popular is Olivier salad made with potatoes, carrots, pickles, green peas, eggs, chicken or bologna all bound in mayonnaise. New Year’s literally doesn’t exist if this salad is not on the table. Selyodka pod Shuboi, or “Herring under a Fur Coat” is another not so simple must have. This layered carnival filled with herring, potatoes, carrots, beets, onions and mayonnaise has a festive purplish color which usually makes it a centerpiece on the holiday table. Caviar, mandarin oranges and champagne are also a necessity on New Year’s Eve. Russians even give them as gifts to the hosts and present to co-workers and friends.


New Year’s is without a doubt the most family-oriented holiday in Russia. Everyone gathers around the festive table, and many people make special trips from other regions in order to celebrate with their families. Close friends and even neighbors are also welcome but usually after midnight.

ded-moroz8 p.m. – TIME TO DRESS UP

Russians have their own Santa Claus called Grandfather Frost. He comes to children on New Year’s Even with his young granddaughter Snegurochka (the Snow Maiden). In exchange for gifts and sweets, children have to stand on a chair and recite a short poem. Usually parents dress up themselves, ask friends or neighbors or even hire professional actors who visit their kids to perform some amusing scenes and give gifts for New Year’s to Russia.

9 p.m. – TURN ON YOUR TV

New Year’s celebration can’t be considered complete without special holiday TV programs and movies. All channels start featuring entertaining shows early on December, 31 and finish only several days after. One of the most iconic Russian movies always shown on New Year’s Eve is “The Irony of Fate,” the story of an ordinary Soviet guy, who after a drinking binge at the sauna with friends, accidentally flies from Moscow to St. Petersburg, mistakenly breaks into a home that has the same address as his Moscow one, and finds the love of his life.


Regardless of their political affiliations, right before midnight Russians around the world tune in to hear the Russian president wishing everyone happy New Year. Once he finishes, the clock tower on Red Square chimes, fireworks burst into the air and the New Year officially begins. While the bells are ringing for one minute,  you need to crack open a champagne bottle, make a wish and clink glasses with your loved ones precisely when the clock strikes 12 if you want your wish come true.

Glasses of champagne at new year party1 a.m. – TIME TO GO OUT

Since New Year’s is a family holiday, Russians stay celebrating with their dear ones till around 1 a.m. and only after they go out to visit friends, set off fireworks and attend parties.


New Year’s Eve is just the beginning of the long winter holidays in Russia. On January, 1 nobody wakes up until at least 2 p.m. Plenty of leftovers from the night before will help you survive without cooking for another week or so. And the best part is of course to know that you don’t have to be back at work till January, 10 which makes it over a week to shake off the hangovers.

Happy Men’s Day in Russia!

mens day

Men’s Day in Russia is a popular holiday annually observed on February, 23. The celebration is all about honoring manhood and showing love and respect to all the important men in our lives. Presenting fathers, sons, brothers, fathers-in-law, husbands, boyfriends as well as business colleagues and bosses with Men’s Day Gifts and flowers is a beautiful tradition widely observed in Russian society.

Show the dearest men in your life how much they mean to you! Share your love this February, 23!


Tips for Sending Gifts to Russia for the Catholic Christmas Holiday

Those who have business associates, family members or a significant other living in Russia or parts of Eastern Europe should be aware of the differences—or some would say complexities—of the season compared to the Christmas season in the United States before sending a holiday gift or flowers to Russia.

When Russia was a part of the Soviet Union, Christmas was not widely or openly celebrated. As a result, New Years celebrations became much larger and came to include gift exchanges and “New Years” trees. However, after the fall of Soviet Union, Christmas began to be openly celebrated by many. Some Russians celebrate the holiday on December 25th, while others celebrate on January 7th because the Russian Orthodox Church uses the Julian calendar to determine religious holidays. December 25th celebrations are commonly referred to the Catholic Christmas holiday (even though many protestants celebrate on this day as well).

When sending a Christmas gift, any time between the middle of December and just before January 7th, you’d better schedule your delivery. However, if you know that recipients celebrate on December 25th, then earlier is better. Gift baskets and flower arrangements sent to offices can be delivered even earlier as employees generally have time off for the holidays.

The Catholic Christmas celebration includes a mix of religious and cultural traditions. Generally, families and friends meet to exchange Christmas gifts and to feast. Food and spirits make great gifts for the holiday season—favorites include chocolates, cakes, cookies, roasted nuts, fruit, wine, cheese, caviar and a variety of other gourmet treats. For many people, Christmas is a time to indulge in rich or expensive foods that they normally do not eat.

St. Nicholas is an important Christmas-time figure in Russia. During communist rule, Grandfather Frost (Ded Moroz) replaced the icon, but today you’ll see many decorations featuring St. Nicholas again. Christmas trees, generally triangle shaped evergreens, are decorated with ornaments and lights each year. Additionally, the colors red and green are used for decorations, clothing and holiday wrapping during the season while poinsettias and other red flowers are commonly used for decoration.

With all this in mind, sending flowers to Russia or sending a gift basket is a great way to celebrate the holidays even when you cannot be with your loved ones or if you have international business associates. When you send a gift overseas, it is best to choose a reputable company that specializes in gift delivery between your country and your recipient’s. is an example of a company that specializes in gift and flower delivery to Russia, CIS and Eastern Europe, so they carry Russian favorites in traditional Christmas colors and styles.

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