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Northern Asia Topics specific to Russia, Central Asia (also known as "the 'stans"), Mongolia, Japan and Korea
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  #1  
Old 24 Feb 2013
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Russian 1yr business visa without prior visa

Hey guys,

I've been going through the Northern Asia forum and the paperwork forum here trying to find out if anyone has been able to apply for the 1 year visa without a prior Russian visa. A few people have hinted that it can be done but I can't find a thread on the issue. I thought we were set to apply for a 3 month business but it seems that you can only start the LOI process 45 days before the entry date by which stage we will already be on the road.

If anyone has managed to talk their way in to a 1 year visa, preferably an Aussie, could let me know how they went about it I would be much obliged.
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  #2  
Old 24 Feb 2013
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We applied for a 1 year business visa in 2008 and got it. It was the first time we traveled to Russia and the first time we applied for a Russian visa.

We applied at the Sydney embassy in person. We applied on British passports, but had the relevant resident visas for Oz, hence them accepting our application.

We used David at Stantours to arrange our LOI etc for us. The timing for the visa was a bit tight, but managed to get it done in time.

Not sure how the rules have changed since. When we applied, there were talks of not issuing the 12 month visa for 1st applicants, but it was ok for us. Good luck, hopefully you get it.
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  #3  
Old 4 Apr 2013
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Hi
Currently sitting in Vladivostok waiting for car.should have it in 2 hrs. It has taken10 days so far.
We have been to Russia before and even then a Business visa was hard to get.
If you want info e mail on nickhese@hotmail.com
From Brisbane
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  #4  
Old 7 Apr 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bens109 View Post
Hey guys,

I've been going through the Northern Asia forum and the paperwork forum here trying to find out if anyone has been able to apply for the 1 year visa without a prior Russian visa. A few people have hinted that it can be done but I can't find a thread on the issue. I thought we were set to apply for a 3 month business but it seems that you can only start the LOI process 45 days before the entry date by which stage we will already be on the road.

If anyone has managed to talk their way in to a 1 year visa, preferably an Aussie, could let me know how they went about it I would be much obliged.
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Here is some info I saved concerning new visa procedures.I don't remember where I copied it from.

"
The U.S. Embassy in Moscow is pleased to announce that the historic U.S.-Russia visa agreement will enter into effect September 9, 2012. The agreement will facilitate travel and establish stronger ties between Russia and the United States, as it will benefit the largest segment of travelers in both our countries: business travelers and tourists. Starting September 9, Russian and American travelers for business or tourism will be eligible to receive visas valid for multiple entries during a period of 36 months.
Thanks to the agreement, three-year, multiple-entry visas will become the standard “default” terms for U.S. citizens visiting Russia and Russian citizens visiting the United States. No formal invitation will be required to apply for a business or tourism visa, although applicants seeking Russian tourist visas must continue to hold advance lodging reservations and arrangements with a tour operator. Both sides have also committed to keep standard visa processing times under 15 days, although the circumstances of individual cases may require additional processing.
For Americans in Russia, the agreement lifts the previous restriction limiting stays in Russia to 90 days within any given 180-day period—just like Russian travelers, they will now be permitted stays of up to six months. In addition, “exit visas” will no longer be necessary in the case of U.S. citizens who lose their passports while in Russia."

I used GoToRussia to process mine.It cost me $337.I sent my application to them a week ago.They checked everything to make sure it is filled out properly and then forwarded it to the russian Embasy.I should get it back in about a week.

With a 3 year multi entry visa,if something postpones your trip,you still have 2 more years to use it.No need to reapply and pay again.
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  #5  
Old 7 Apr 2013
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I goet a 1 year isa in 2011, the best option is to ask David Berghof from Stantours, he organised all the visas for me and even if you can't start the process earlier than XX days before, he could do it and arrange all my central asia visa + 1 year business russian visa. It depends from which country you are and what agreement your contry has with russia. I am from Switzerland and a 1 year russian visa costs about 500$.
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  #6  
Old 8 Apr 2013
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Russian visa policy works on the principle of reciprocity. If your country makes it very hard or very expensive for Russians to get visas, then it will be hard or expensive for you to get visas from them. In the case of Australia, its not that expensive. I get them annually in my Australian passport for about 200 bux a time. In a UK passport its about 300 bux.

If it is costing you 500 bux for a visa for a swiss national, then you can deduce from that how much the Swiss charge Russians for a 1 year multi entry business visa? Yep ... about 500 bux.
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Last edited by colebatch; 18 Apr 2013 at 06:29.
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  #7  
Old 12 Apr 2013
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I'm a Brit and just (today) got a 1 year multi-entry business visa without having a prior visa. Don't know how it is for a Aussie though...

(I used RealRussia - they dealt with everything hassle-free)
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  #8  
Old 14 Apr 2013
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I should get my multi entry Business for 1 year the next 2 weeks.

I had no russian visa before.

The visa agency says, that it is possible with a letter of invitation from the foreign ministry in Moscow, they cost about 250 Euros

More problems are for GB, Canada, USA, Australia.

Thats what they say
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  #9  
Old 18 Apr 2013
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I have had 2 consecutive one-year business visas for Russia, and will be obtaining a third one this summer when the current one expires. I need them for my work (delivering aircraft to Asia, via eastern Russia).

It's a straightforward process to get a one year, multiple entry visa for Russia, but it is not a simple process, and it can't be done quickly. You will need to fill out several forms (and they have to be filled out perfectly, in black ink - I had one rejected once because I used blue ink), then you need an invitation letter from a Russian organization.

You submit the visa application to your local embassy, but all the processing is done back in Russia. The invitation letter needs to be sent to the folks in Russia who approve the visas. Finally, the approvals come through, and you pick the visa up at your local embassy. Plan on spending 6 to 8 weeks to get everything done.

Personally, I use a visa agency to look after everything for me. They charge a fee, but they know how the game is played and they look after doing everything. Most visa agencies can also magically come up with an invitation letter that will suffice to get you the visa.

I have travelled to 65 different countries in the past 3 years (all for business purposes), and without a doubt, Russia is the biggest PITA so far as getting and renewing a visa is concerned.

Start the process early - at least 2 months ahead of time!

Michael
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  #10  
Old 18 Apr 2013
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For my case, that is what i did, more than 2 months ahead.....
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  #11  
Old 1 May 2013
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russia visa

i will arrive in spain at the end of the month and want to enter russia from finland in july. i have one australian passport.

can anyone suggest the best course of action?

should i (or do i have to) DHL my passport back to australia?

i'd like to get a multi-entry business visa to make it easier to go in and out of stans and mongolia.

should i be contacting stantours or realrussia for an LOI to send with an application to the embassy in sydney?

thanks in advance.
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  #12  
Old 1 May 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dajg View Post
should i (or do i have to) DHL my passport back to australia?
You need to send to Australia. Unless you have residency elsewhere, then you can also send it there. If you DHL it (or Pony Express or UPS or ....) you need to ensure you include a pre-paid envelop/express bag to return it to you. Allow 2 weeks or so for processing in Sydney, plus transit time.

If you want a ME business visa you will need to include a short CV about yourself, in Russian. (Thank the Aussie government for that one).
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