IMPORTANT: Effective October, 1 2019 the holders of passports of certain countries (including e.g. Schengen area) could proceed with simplified electronic visa procedure that does not require invitation and is free of charge. Here is brief outline of the rules:
0) Electronic visas can be issued (starting since 01st October 2019) for all EU-citizens, also for Switzerland, Norway, and some other countries (53 in total). UK and USA are not in list unfortunatelly.
1) An e-visas will be free. Invitations, hotel booking confirmations or any other documents are not required for the e-visa. The time period for issuing e-visa is no longer than 4 calendar days from the date of submission of the complete application.
2) You apply through the Internet, and if succeeded, you will get a pdf-document with e-visa. You will need to print it out and present at the border control together with your passport. You don’t need to visit the embassy, visa centers, etc.
3) E-visa is a single-entry visa and is good for 30 calendar days from the date of its issuance. The permitted stay in Saint Petersburg and Leningrad region with an e-visa is up to _8_ days starting from the date of entry, within its validity period.
4) Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months from the date you applied for an e-visa. Your passport must have free space for border crossing stamps.
5) Foreign citizens who have arrived to the Russian Federation with e-visas are required to have a medical insurance valid in the Russian Federation’s territory for the entire period of stay.
6) You can fill in an application form for an e-visa on the website http://electronic-visa.kdmid.ru not earlier than 20 days and no later than 4 days before the intended date of entry into the Russian Federation.
7) And you will need a photo in JPEG to upload, that meet some reguirements, and this will be a hardest part of the entire process.
8) Visa is only good for visiting St. Petersburg and Leningrad region. You need to cross the border at certain points (e.g. Saint Petersburg airport)
9) More information is available at http://electronic-visa.kdmid.ru
10) Please read the application instructions very carefully. Especially the section that describes the names. It is very common that the name in your passport is different to the name in the machine-readable area (especially if your name happen to contain dyacritical marks, you’re having multiple names, etc) and this causes lots of issues as the name in your application must match the one in the machine-readable area, not something else.
To enter Russia for any purpose, most non-Russian citizens must possess a valid passport and valid Russian entry visa issued by a local Russian Embassy or Consulate. It is impossible to obtain an entry visa upon arrival, so travelers must apply for their visas well in advance. Travellers who arrive in Russia without an entry visa, will not be permitted to enter the country, and face immediate return at their own expense.
To have a visa issued, an official visa support document processed by Russian government or officially authorized companies is required. Visa support, i.e. visa invitation, is a document that allows you to obtain a visa to Russia based upon the purpose of the trip and the duration of stay in Russia. Please, note that visa invitation cannot be used in place of a visa. To obtain your actual visa, you have to submit Russian visa support’s original or copy along with required paperwork to the local Russian Embassy or Consulate of your choice.
Here is the brief overview of the whole procedure:
According to Russian immigration law, your Russian visa must be registered within 7 working days of your arrival (excluding weekends and official holidays). Registration of visas is a form of migration control within Russia managed by UFMS (Federal Migration Service Organization).
Basically, registration involves placing a stamp either in your passport or on your migration card and obtaining a registration slip. The stamps and registration slip show the period you are registered to stay in any one place. In addition to the dates it will also contain the name of the hotel, hostel and mini hotels, where you are staying.
If you are staying at a private accommodation, the owners of the apartments in Russia are not allowed to register you in the Migration system. For this reason, our event organizer partner, MAKO Congress Management is not allowed to prepare visa invitations indicating private apartments as a place of stay.
However, MAKO Congress Management will provide all delegates with visa vouchers in case of confirmation of accommodation in hotels, hostels, mini hotels from booking.com, expedia, etc.
The absence of the registration will not allow you to perform any legal actions and can be the reason for a penalty. Remember, your Russian visa is an exit as well as entry visa, and if you don’t register then technically it may lead to serious problems with the authorities including fines, detention, deportation and even being prevented from leaving the country.
Our event organizing partner will provide a visa support document (visa invitation) for all Spring Fling / Fringe / School participants needing one. If a family member(s) or partner will also be traveling, then it is recommended they apply for a Tourist visa.
Please, be aware that in accordance with Russian migration rules, we advice all Spring Fling / Fringe / School participants to obtain the Humanitarian visa (primary aim: participation in the cultural event). There are some exceptions though depending on the nationality, but do not worry – these exceptions will be handled on case by case basis by our event organizing partner.
On the basis of visa invitation, Spring Fling / Fringe / School participants may obtain a single entry visa for the period of their visit.
In case if hard copy is required (for some countries) additionally participant has to pay for express delivery service (such as DHL, Fedex, UPS, etc.).
PLEASE NOTE: in order to obtain the visa your passport must be valid for at least 6 months after the proposed date
To entry the Russian Federation, visa is not required for citizens of visa-free countries entering Russia for a specific period (from 30 to 90 days) and for specific purpose (tourism, business, etc.) and with some restrictions. Duration of their stay in Russia is limited. The list of countries that have a visa-free regime with Russia is regularly changed and supplemented, depending on how successfully international relations develop
For any details and questions about visas and visa procedure, please contact our event organizer partner by email firstname.lastname@example.org