Kaliningrad is a Russian exclave located on the southeast coast of the Baltic Sea, between Poland and Lithuania. On July 1st, 2019, the government of Russia introduced an electronic visa to expedite the process of obtaining a visa for the region.
At the moment, in order to visit other regions of Russia for a holiday, the majority of foreign citizens are required to apply for a Russian tourist visa from an embassy or consulate, by first obtaining a tourist invitation online and then presenting supporting documentation in person. However, this is expected to change when then the Russian eVisa is introduced in 2021, which will allow eligible citizens to apply exclusively online for a tourist visa to travel to the whole country.
What Is a Kaliningrad Visa?
The Kaliningrad eVisa is an online visa which allows eligible citizens to travel to Kaliningrad Oblast for a short stay. It will allow a maximum stay of 8 days in the region and is valid for 30 days in total from the date of issue. Holders of the eVisa for Kaliningrad are able to travel to the territory for purposes of:
- Humanitarian reasons (sporting, cultural, scientific, or technological activities)
Applicants are able to submit an application exclusively online, eliminating the need to obtain a tourist invitation or apply in person from a Russian embassy or consulate.
The implementation of the eVisa for Kaliningrad follows the introduction of the eVisa for the Russian Far East in 2017, which similarly allows select nationalities to travel to specific regions in Russia for a short stay. These two pilot electronic systems are set to pave the way for the implementation of the Russia-wide eVisa in 2021.
Requirements for the Kaliningrad Visa
In order to submit an eVisa application, it is first necessary to meet the Russian visa requirements for Kaliningrad. The applicant must:
- Have a passport from an eligible country valid for at least 6 months from the date of application, containing free space to receive border stamps
- Supply a digital color photograph, passport-style
- Have a valid debit or credit card with which to pay the Kaliningrad eVisa fee
- Provide a current email address at which to receive the approved eVisa notification
Applicants are required to print a copy of the approved Kaliningrad eVisa to present to transportation staff and passport control officers when traveling to and entering Kaliningrad.
Those who travel to Kaliningrad Oblast with the eVisa for Kaliningrad will be required to enter the country at one of the following ports of entry:
- Air border checkpoint – Kaliningrad (Khrabrovo)
- Seaport checkpoints – Kaliningrad, Baltiysk, Svetly
- Railway checkpoints – Mamonovo, Sovetsk
- Road checkpoints – Bagrationovsk, Gusev
Who needs a Visa for Kaliningrad?
The eVisa for Kaliningrad is available for citizens of 53 eligible countries, including all European Union member states and many Asian countries. The full list of eligible countries for the Kaliningrad eVisa is as follows:
- Czech Republic
- Northern Macedonia
- San Marino
- Saudi Arabia
- South Korea
- Vatican City
Holders of the eVisa for Kaliningrad are required to both enter and exit Kaliningrad Oblast through one of the designated ports of entry in the exclave. The eVisa permits holders to enter and have free movement within the Kaliningrad region of Russia only. it will be necessary to apply for another type of visa in order to travel to other regions of Russia.
Kaliningrad Visa Application Online
Eligible citizens can complete the Russia visa application for Kaliningrad online to receive an approved eVisa via email
The form can be completed in around 10 minutes with personal and passport information, including name and surname, date of birth, and travel document number.
Applicants who will be accompanied by minors will be required to submit an individual eVisa application for each child, including for minors who are included in the traveler’s passport. All individuals from eligible countries, no matter their age, are required to have an individual eVisa in order to visit Kaliningrad.
The standard processing time for the Kaliningrad visa online will be 4 days, although in some cases this may take longer. Applicants are able to submit a Kaliningrad eVisa form between 20 days up to 4 days before the intended date of arrival in the region.