Russian Tourists Are Left Broke In Bali And Can't Withdraw Money As Sanctions Hit

Russian tourists have been left unable to withdraw cash overseas due to sanctions put in place over Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

Last week, Visa and Mastercard revealed they had suspended operations in Russia, while a number of the country’s banks have been cut off from international payment systems.

As reported by Reuters, this has left Russian travellers in Bali, Indonesia, broke and unable to get cash out of ATMs.
A protest over the Ukraine war in Bali. Credit: YouTube/SEA Today News
Speaking to the outlet, 27-year-old tourist Konstantin Ivanov revealed he hasn’t been able to access money for days.

He said: “This has created a huge problem for us... we have been left completely stripped of our finances.

“It's like they have been completely frozen and we cannot use our finances over here.”

Ivanov added that he may have to get a job while out there in order to generate living costs.

Meanwhile, the manager of a local cafe explained that he’d noticed less Russian customers in recent days, and those who had come in often paid with cash instead of credit card.

Reuters noted that around 1,150 Russians entered Indonesia in January 2022, and a similar story is unfolding in other countries.
Credit: YouTube/SEA Today News
That includes Thailand, where approximately 7,000 Russians were recently left stranded due to flight cancellations.

Although sanctions have blocked Russian travellers from using the global payment system SWIFT, Denis Tetiushin, an embassy spokesperson, said there’s alternative help.

He explained that the country’s Pochta Bank is offering a virtual card through China’s UnionPay system, adding: “It's free of charge and people may open it wherever they are.”

The news arrives as Western sanctions continue to strangle the Russian economy, causing a collapse of the ruble.
Credit: Alamy
A growing number of businesses are cutting ties with Russia in the wake of Vladimir Putin's invasion as many countries have imposed tough economic sanctions, Sky News reports.

Apple, Microsoft, PayPal and even IKEA are among the businesses which Visa and Mastercard have joined in their boycott of Russia as the conflict continues.

Visa chief executive Al Kelly said the company felt 'compelled to act' after 'Russia's unprovoked invasion of Ukraine', while Mastercard described the current conflict as 'shocking and devastating'.

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