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On Obtaining A Russian Visa

Discuss international visas, immigration and citizenship issues.

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On Obtaining A Russian Visa

Post by JamesSa » July 18th, 2013, 3:06 pm

I am an American expat in Moscow. For Americans who are interested in expatriating here, it is actually a good time to do so.

As of Sep 2012, you can obtain a 3 year, multiple-entry tourist or business visa. Here's the trick: every 3 or 6 months, do a visa run in a neighboring country (because you are not technically allowed to stay more than 3 or 6 consecutive months in Russia).

There are agencies who can assist with this strategy. I suggest going to Kiev, Ukraine, for your visa run. When my 6 month visa expired last June, my girlfriend and I booked a hotel in Kiev for a couple days, then we returned to Moscow with no problems.

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Post by Jester » July 19th, 2013, 6:37 am

The requirements look hard as hell to me:

- Confirmation of the hotel reservation, a contract for provision of tourist services, confirmation of reception of the tourist, and register number from the Uniform Federal Register of the Tour Operators of the Federal Tourism Agency.

The Consular Division of the Embassy also has the right to call the applicants for an interview and request, if needed:
• a bank statement from the applicant;
• a statement from the employer regarding the applicant's wages for the preceding year/ half year, or month;
• medical insurance valid in the country to be visited and fully covering the period of the first trip;
• documents regarding the applicant's ownership of property in the country of his citizenship;
• a certificate on the makeup of the applicant's family.

Maybe the answer is that in practice they dont bother calling you and asking you for all that stuff if you've booked an organized tour with an authorized tour operator. But what kind of tour lasts 3 years??

If you have any more info on this please do post it.

Many of us are avoiding Eastern Europe, Ukraine and Russia because of long-stay visa difficulties.

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Post by xiongmao » July 20th, 2013, 1:55 pm

I heard you need an HIV test.

Getting the long term Chinese visa was an arse. I had a nervous wait for a FEDEX package. Then the humiliation and extra expense of the body check in China.

Thailand is also a pain but I only had to do a visa run because you can't get an ED visa inside Thailand. Now I'm on 90 day reporting which isn't so bad. It might mess up my other travel plans though.
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