Russian Consulate.org is a non-Government based service.
Our website is privately owned and not affiliated with the Russian government. To find the closest Russian Consulate or Embassy nearest you, please consult the official site of the Russian Foreign Ministry. For US citizens, please follow this link to Russian Consulate of the USA.
Russian tourist visa invitations are not issued directly by the Russian government but are rather issued by a qualified Russian tour operator that arranges tour programs and hotel accommodations in Russia.
All citizens of countries other than Russia and some of the citizens of former Soviet Republics, entering Russia require a Russian visa. A Russian visa invitation from a Russian hotel, tourism company or individual citizen of Russia is required by Russian Consulates in order to apply for a Russian visa. Only the Russian Consulate can issue an applicant a Russian visa. Within seven business days of entry into the Russian Federation, the guest must register with the authorities. Usually hotels, tourism companies or the individual or company that has invited the guest will assist them with registration (sometimes for a fee, sometimes with no fee). If the guest fails to register with the authorities, they may have trouble while attempting to exit the country.
|Visit the Official Websites of Russian Foreign Ministry to Apply for a Russian Visa||Processing time||Fees|
|Visit Russian Foreign Ministry Site to Fill in Russian Visa Application and Apply||3-10 days||Free application|
|Visit Russian Consulate in USA for Tariffs for Visa Application Submission||3-10 days||140 - 450 USD|
The costs and fees associated with applying for Russian visas may be different depending on the citizenship of the applicant or depending on the Russian Consulate at which the applicant has applied.
Below is a list of the 3 most frequently types of Russian visas used.
Russian Tourist Visas
Russian tourist visas are mainly used for short stays. These visas are only valid for 30 days and may be either single entry or double entry (although double entry must be specifically applied for). A full list of documents necessary to apply is included in Russian Visa Requirements section of this website. Please note that the Russian Consulate will need the applicant’s original passport which must be valid for at least 6 months after the applicant’s planned departure from Russia. See Russian Visa Requirements or Apply for tourist visa.
Russian Business Visas
Russian Business visas are much more flexible than tourist visas as they allow the guest to stay in Russia for prolonged periods of time and may also entitle the guest to enter and exit the country more than 1 time. To be issued a Russian business visa an invitation from a Russian company is required, however the receipt of this invitation can usually be arranged through a visa agency. For further information see Russian Visa Requirements or Apply for business visa.
Russian Student Visas
Russian Student visas are fantastic if the applicant can receive one. They allow the guest to receive student, local prices for Russian theaters, train tickets, plane tickets, museums and much more. The only catch is that the applicant must be enrolled in a Russian institution of higher education. To receive the proper documents to apply for this type of visa, the applicant should contact the administration of the Russian school in which they are enrolled. See Russian Visa Requirements.
Other types of Russian Visas
There are a number of other types of Russian visas (Transit, Diplomatic, On the spot visas) however they are not as popular as the ones listed above. For example, the Russian transit visa can be used when the applicant just plans to pass through Russia en-route to another destination. The problem with these visas is that because of unforeseeable problems associated with travel, the guest may or may not make it out of Russia before the visa expiration which can lead to difficulties. Diplomatic visas are only issued to diplomats. On the spot Russian visas are very rare and should therefore not be counted on.
Russian Immigration Cards
Immigration cards are handed out to foreigners entering Russia at all border points. They must be filled out, submitted to the passport control officials at entry point and also submitted to passport control when leaving the country.
The cards have 2 identical sections in which the entrant must fill out personal data, information on the organization that invited them, passport details, visa number, etc. The first section is given to the border control on entry into the country, the second section is given on exit.
The immigration card should be carried at all times along with the guest’s passport.
Example of Russian immigration card
Medical insurance is required for the citizens of Israel and Finland and Estonia, as well as for the citizens of Schengen Agreement Member States (Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain). Medical insurance is not required for US citizens.
Russian Visas for Children
If children travel on their own passport, they will require Russian visas. If children are written into their parents passports and do not have their own, they will be listed on their parents visas. If a child travels with someone other than their parent, a notarized affidavit from their parent giving the other person the permission to accompany the child is necessary. If the child has a different last name than their parent, a copy of the child’s birth certificate should be shown to Russian passport control officials.Almost all visitors to Russia require a Russian visa to enter the country