The Grand Tour starts in Pyatigorsk which is 30 minutes away from Mineralnye Vody airport. The most common layovers would be in Moscow or Istanbul. The final point of the tour is Dagestan republic so your flight back should be from Makhachkala airport with the following layover in Moscow.
Besides the websites of the airline companies for booking, you can also use such aggregators as SkyScanner or AviaSales.
Navigation on land
To navigate in cities you can use such apps as Maps.me and 2GIS. Train tickets can be booked via RZD website or app. The bus booking system in the Caucasus is carried out mainly offline (you come to the bus station and buy a ticket half an hour before a departure). However, when in Pyatigorsk this website can be used for checking the schedule and online booking for some destinations. Taxi may become your favourite way of commuting as it's so affordable and fast. Use the app Yandex.Go to request a ride inside or between the cities and choose a credit card as a payment method to avoid dealing with cash.
There are always a lot of questions when preparing for a trip. Whether you have basic ones or, instead, some personal worries, please, feel free to ask them. We're here to make your journey smooth and carefree!
What else to consider
Weather: The North Caucasus stretches at over 1000 km and the altitudes vary from 400m to 5600m above sea level. It means that the weather conditions always depend on the exact location and may change unpredictably. We recommend using services such as Meteoblue to find out the forecast for the days of your travel there.
Clothing: Due to the active pace of our program, we recommend taking all comfortable clothes and shoes. See the list below. Moreover, you should remember that the republics of the N.C. are Muslim and the further away you travel from big cities the more conservative people are. Regardless of your gender, please, make sure to always cover your shoulders and knees; and women should also cover their heads when entering mosques or other sacred places.
Money usage: Russian Ruble (RUB) is the only currency used in the North Caucasus. You can exchange money from USD or EUR in any bank. There're no 24/7 exchange offices. Card payments are accepted in the majority of places in the cities but outside of them, even at ski villages, you're expected to have cash. The cultural aspect of money usage is that people often express their hospitality by giving you something for free. Offering money would offend a local, so for that case when you want to give something in return just get some small souvenirs from your country or at least a pack of tea from a shop nearby.
Internet connection: Mobile and internet connection isn't stable when going to the mountains or mountain villages. However, in the cities, there're plenty of places with open Wi-Fi Hotspots. In case you'd like to be more independent and have constant Internet access (where possible) you can buy a sim card at any mobile store. Among three major operators, we recommend MegaFon. The cost of an average monthly rate with unlimited data is 500-600 rub.
Things you need for the trip
There's nothing extra special you'll find in this list. But we think it's always easier to pack when everything important is written down. Save it!