The majority of foreign travelers planning a stay in the Russian Federation are required to submit a Russia visa application to travel to the country, no matter the duration and purpose of the stay. There are currently only 54 countries whose citizens can visit Russia without a visa for short stays. All other passport holders traveling to Russia for a short holiday are required to submit a Russian visa application for tourism.
Foreign travelers planning a stay in the Russian Federation are required to submit a Russia visa application to travel to the country
From 2021, this type of travel document is expected to be available as an Electronic Travel Authorization through a simple online visa Russia application form. At the moment, getting a visa for Russia for tourism involves first obtaining a invitation letter for tourist and completing a visa application to Russia online, before submitting supporting documents at an Embassy or Consulate.
Application for Russia Visa
There are a variety of Russian visa types available, depending on the nationality of the applicant and purpose and duration of the stay. it is important to check the exemptions for each visa in case a different kind of travel document is required for the purposes of the stay.
Citizens of non-visa exempt countries planning a stay of up to 30 days for a holiday are able to complete an application for Russian visa for tourism. Citizens of the United States only are able to submit a Russia visa application for a stay of up to 90 days.
At present, the visa application for Russia involves first requesting a tourist invitation, which can be granted by a Russian tour operator or hotel or hostel in the country. it is then necessary to complete an online visa application for Russia on the Consular Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website and print a copy to present at a Russian Consulate.
How to Apply for Visa for Russia
Before completing the visa application to Russia or requesting a tourist invitation, travelers planning a holiday are first required to make accommodation bookings for every night of the intended stay. Evidence of this is a necessary requirement later in the process.
Once the applicant has obtained a Russia tourist visa and a completed copy of the Russia visa application form, the next step is to locate the nearest Russian Consulate in the traveler’s country of residence, to which the documentation must be submitted.
Citizens of 18 eligible countries traveling to the extreme Eastern territories of Russia are able to obtain an eVisa for Russian Far East countries without going to an Embassy or Consulate. This electronic visa is available exclusively through an online Russia visa application and is valid for a stay of up to 8 days in the region for a variety of purposes.
In order for the e-Visa application for Russia to be approved, it is necessary to meet the Russia visa requirements for information. When completing the online application form it is required to provide a range of personal and passport information, as well as to provide full travel itinerary details for the duration of the stay.
After filling in and printing the form, the applicant is required to present the copy at a Russian Consulate alongside the following supporting documentation:
The online application process will require the applicant to provide a range of personal and passport information.
- The printed signed tourist invitation
- A 3.5 x 4.5 cm passport-style recent color photograph taken against a white background
- A valid health insurance policy to cover the duration of the stay in Russia
- Proof of the accommodation bookings made for every night of the stay
- Documents (such as tickets for tours, attractions or festivals, etc) which support the travel itinerary supplied by the traveler
For more information on how to apply for Russia visa, see our page on additional tips for processing the application for stays for tourism.