Skip to main content
  1. Sports
  2. General Sports

Sochi Olympics Scene: Expensive and unaffordable for most all Russians

See also

SOCHI, Russia: Russian President Vladimir Putin chose the seaside resort of Sochi for the Winter Olympics site several years ago. He saw the potential as a lure for international travelers – having himself enjoyed many a vacation in the waterfront location, as well as in the mountain.

Many Russians, from all over this country’s expanse, have trekked to this haven to celebrate this symbol of national pride.

What many found, however, was shocking – a hit to their hard-earned savings accrued from an average annual salary approximating only $10,000 USD.

Apart from the sky-high Opening Ceremony tickets, a single ticket to a medal event, such as men’s hockey or figure skating, would set a commoner back nearly a half-month’s salary.

Compounding these expenses were inflated nightly rates for lodging (within the low – upper hundred dollar range), and even moderately priced meals (approximating $30-40 per seating).

Yet, likely the most egregious of inflated prices was quite evident at the Sochi Olympic merchandise stores. This national favorite chain of sporting gear stores had a strong, near-monopolistic grip on this market. Here high-priced items like t-shirts ($60-70), warm-up suits ($200-300), and even jackets for over $300 pulled at the fans’ tight budgets.

Taking advantage of this captive, yet proud, audience was this Sochi Olympics Organizing Committee which all sought to reap in profits. While selling official Olympics clothing, on par with Bosco’s pricing scheme, this organizer also gouged the consumer for even simpler items.

Pins, a cheap and universal way to own a piece of the Olympics, were way overpriced. These metallic trinkets, featuring sports symbols and mascots, ranged in price from $12 - $30. At past Olympics, these simple treasures could be enjoyed for as low as $8 and typically costing no more than $16.

In a frank conversation with a Russian visitor who could only afford to stay in Sochi for a long weekend, he said, “Most Russians, especially those (millions) in the countryside, could never afford such prices during the Olympics or any other time in Sochi.”



  • David Price rumors
    Should the bottom-dwelling Tampa Bay Rays trade or keep pitching ace David Price?
    MLB Rumors
  • Maria Kirilenko slideshow
    Feast your eyes on the former fiance of Alex Ovechkin: The newly-single Maria Kirilenko
    20 Photos
  • Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen has Alzheimer's disease, will step down
    NFL News
  • Sam responds to Dungy
    Michael Sam has the perfect response to Tony Dungy's controversial comments
    NFL News
  • Bella wardrobe malfunction
    Sexy diva Nikki Bella suffers wardrobe malfunction during WWE show
    Fight Sports
  • LeBron gives cupcakes
    LeBron James sends cupcakes to neighbors after press overtakes neighborhood
    Food & Drink