Russian Visa

Old Feb 11th, 2003, 05:12 AM
  #1  
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Russian Visa

<BR>I am planning a visit to Moscow in May under US passport. I will travel independently, and have some visa questions:<BR><BR>1. Can I get my visa on my own? Or is it not worth the trouble and I should use one of the internet services.<BR><BR>2. How do I get an 'invitation' as required for the visa.<BR><BR>3. How long will the embassy actually have my passport?<BR><BR>Thanks!
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Old Feb 11th, 2003, 06:36 AM
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Once you book a hotel then they send you the vouchers for you to send in and get a visa. I used a visa service because I was running short on time and needed to expedite things. Do a google search under russian visa and you should get lots of info on how to do it on your own and services that will help you. You should start looking to book a hotel now if you do a search you will find recommendations on this board.
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Old Feb 11th, 2003, 07:58 AM
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You can do it on your own, but it is much easier to use one of the internet services, such as gotorussia.net. If you use them everything is looked after, such as invitations,vouchers and you do not need to have hotel bookings
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Old Feb 11th, 2003, 08:25 AM
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Art
 
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Thanks for the question Queenie. I was about to post the same.<BR>
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Old Feb 11th, 2003, 08:30 AM
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<BR>You must be 'Aeroflot Art&quot;!<BR><BR>I, too, am taking Aeroflot.<BR><BR>BTW, I have good friends who lived in Moscow and also assured me the international flights are fine (Intra-Russia is apparently a different story...).<BR><BR>Looks like I'll go the internet visa route. Good luck!<BR><BR>Thanks much for all the info so far. Keep it coming!
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Old Mar 3rd, 2003, 12:53 PM
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Check the Russian Emabassy website for details of obtaining a visa. Just get their form, check the most recent pricing and turn-around time, and mail it in with your passport (and a return envelope) to the Emabassy or your area Consulate. See the following link and check under &quot;visas&quot;:<BR><BR>http://www.russianembassy.org/<BR>
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Old Mar 3rd, 2003, 04:25 PM
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Have a read of the up-to-date information about the Russian visa process on waytorussia.net<BR><BR>It is not as simple as filling out a form and sending it in.
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 01:08 PM
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Why would &quot;waytorussia&quot; be any more up to date than the Russian Embassy? Ultimately, the visa is granted by their Consulate, and they're the ones you need to please. (And, Fodors does not condone advertisement.)<BR><BR>Apparently one does not send the application to the Embassy, but to the proper Consulate with jursidiction over your district (my mistake, with some countries you can send it to either). But that makes the point, read what the Embassy/Consulates websites advise for obtaining the visa.<BR><BR>http://www.russianembassy.org<BR><BR>
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 02:11 PM
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You will not find any information on the embassy site with regards to the new emigration cards or other changes that are occuring. I did not see anything about declaration of currency. I would advice that you do not just depend on the information that is in the embassy site. The consulate couldn't care less about what happens to you when you arrive in Russia.
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Old Mar 5th, 2003, 11:38 AM
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If you mean the &quot;Migration Card&quot; it is easily located here:<BR><BR>http://www.russianembassy.org/consulat/contact.htm<BR>Take your time, look around.<BR>
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Old Mar 5th, 2003, 01:19 PM
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Garfield.......I don`t know which Russian Consulate you have dealt with but the Consulate in Ottawa where I obtained my Visa was very helpful and had all the up-to-date information. Applying for the Visa directly to the Consulate was the way I went all three times I applied.......two to three weeks was the normal time from applying.
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Old Mar 5th, 2003, 02:06 PM
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Hello Goldwynn<BR><BR>You are one of the few Canadians that I have heard from that has used the Ottawa Consulte. I would use them if I felt more confident with regards to the visa application. What bothers me is their requirement that all services in Russia must be prepayed - did you meet this requirement? Who issued the confirmation for your visit to Russia? Who provided your voucher? I am unable to meet face to face with the consulate, thus I found it easier to get my visa throgh an American agency, I received my visa from them in less than 10 days, without any prepaid or prebooked items. I am glad to hear that you had good results with the consulate in Ottawa.
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Old Mar 5th, 2003, 04:40 PM
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Hi Garfield: The only payment I made to the Russian Consulate in Ottawa was the price of the Visa which was $70 and the cost of secure delivery to my home. For the past three years I have rented an apartment for a couple of months in St. Petersburg......the landlord just Faxes me a Confirmation Voucher and a copy of that is forwarded along with my Visa Application to the Ottawa Consulate. Upon arrival in Russia, I just register with the local OVIR. I know that any of the local travel agents in my city will perform the same service, but I just prefer to do it on my own.
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Old Mar 5th, 2003, 07:14 PM
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Thanks for the reply, I was concerned about having to show that everything had been prepaid. I use to be able to register the visa at the airport on arrival but this service is no longer available and in the past I have never prebooked any accommodation and travelled independently on tourist visa. Now with the new Migration Card you must indicate the exact date and place of departure from Russia, how strictly enforced, it remains to be seen.
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Old Mar 9th, 2003, 08:30 AM
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Garfield......it certainly will be interesting to see what problems will occur with the new Migration Card. I must admit I didn`t have any problem moving around to other cities even though my visa showed an address in St. Petersburg. I flew to Urkutsk and took the Trans Siberian Express to Moscow.....my visa was checked and I was questioned but since I was not staying in Urkutsk for any great length of time there was no requirement for me to register with the OVIR. Officials there were most helpful and I was surprised at the ease of travel.
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Old Mar 9th, 2003, 02:44 PM
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Just don't stay beyond the expiration date on the visa.( My husband became ill and this was the last thing we were thinking about.)At the airport caused confusion and lots of money. Fortunately,we were flying business class so rectifying the matter was ultimately easy. On the plane, however, we met people with the same problem who went thru &quot;normal&quot; channels and had a terrible time getting everything settled.
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Old Apr 15th, 2003, 06:12 AM
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I've heard that we need to register upon arrival. Do we need to register in each city or just the first city?
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Old Apr 15th, 2003, 12:43 PM
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The rules say that if a foreign citizen changes the place of his stay, he should register in the new place during the first three working days after his arrival. (e.g. if you came to St. Petersburg for 4 days, and then plan to stay in Moscow for another 5 days, you should register twice - once in St. Petersburg, then in Moscow.)<BR><BR>For more information see waytorussia.net
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Old Apr 17th, 2003, 10:35 AM
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DB
 
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Russian bureaucracy is again leading tourism in the wrong direction, and once again becoming a headache after being &quot;reasonable&quot; for awhile.<BR><BR>By comparison, Ukraine has a plan for entering the EU and continues to simplify their requirements. They have eliminated the invitation on private visas for US and EU citizens (and some other countries), the separate registration with VVIR was eliminated (as opposed to Russia's implementation of the Migration card), and they no longer require the purchase of state health insurance upon arrival (that was a government scam). <BR><BR>Ukrainian visas are good for a 6 month period for US, EU, and some other citizens (otherwise 3 months), as opposed to 1 month for a Russian visa. As part of an ongoing experiment at one of Ukraine's lesser airports (Simferopol), one can get an 8-day visa upon arrival rather than applying beforehand (although it's usually best to take your time and plan ahead).<BR><BR>Ultimately, eliminating visa requirements would be the best for tourism.<BR><BR>
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