Get your Russia tourist visa application and step by step requirements here. Easily download forms to get a travel visa for Russia.
Learn here how to prepare for your adventurous trip. Russia is an extremely large country with fantastic diversity. From the beautiful St. Petersburg museums and sculptures to the awe inspiring St. Basil's Cathedral in Moscow, a vacation in Russia will leave you enriched in cultural discovery.
You can find Russia visa requirements and application form instructions here to help you prepare for your thrilling vacation.
Get Your Russia Visa Application Here
The application is luckily not very hard to fill out although it is two pages long. There can be a bit of confusion over the way they ask some questions.
The first part is filling out basic personal information. When you come to the question asking what type of category of visa you are applying for, they are actually wanting to know...tourist or business, etc.
When the Russia visa application form asks for your host details, it is fine to list a hotel if you are not meeting anywhere there. Or if you are meeting someone, simply list their name, street address and phone number.
In the field that asks if you have medical insurance valid in Russia, it really does not matter whether you check "yes" or "no" as they will accept your application either way. So try not to get hung up on this question.
The second page of the application is a bit tedious but the questions are self-explanatory and easy to understand at that point. You will need to list your education history, military experience and answer a few standard yes or no questions.
2012 Russia Visa Requirements
One of the sometimes confusing parts of getting Russia visa approval is obtaining the visa support voucher. Check with the tour operator or hotel you are staying with to let them know you need visa support from them.
If they are registered with Foreign Ministry, they will be able to send you a voucher that you submit to the Russia Consulate with the rest of your documents.
In the case that the tour operator or hotel cannot provide a visa support voucher, you can contact one of the visa expedite services listed below and they will be able to help you out.
Take a minute to check that your application and passport both have your signature. Your application will most likely be rejected if the signature is missing.
You will need to spend a few dollars at a place like Walgreens, FedEx Office or your local post office to get a professional quality, passport-style photo to attach to the application.
Check to make sure your passport has blank pages still for the visa to be stamped in. The passport also needs to be valid six months after returning from your Russia trip. If it is about to expire or needs additional passport pages, contact one of the passport expedite services listed below who can quickly help you.
Russia Visa Expedite Services
There are numerous Russia visa expedite services available. Take some time to read reviews to make sure you are hiring a reputable company to handle your travel documents.
I recommend ItsEasy Passport and Visa Services Founded in 1976, ItsEasy Passport & Visa Services is a US Government registered passport and visa expediting company which has processed over 2 million passport and visa applications.
There is also FastPort Passport Visa Service. Since 2003 Fastport has provided online passport and visa expedite service. They are a registered courier service with the U.S. Department of State, foreign consulates and embassies which enables them to secure passports and visas for U.S. citizens nationwide as needed.
Best Time To Visit Russia
The best time to visit is right before summer as well as the tail end of summer. You will be able to skip all of the insects swarming about during mid-summer.
The middle of the summer is also the most overcrowded time so getting there before or after most tourists will give you a more peaceful enjoyable experience.
On the other hand, if you are brave enough to take on the frigid winters, you will be able to take amazingly beautiful photographs and soak in the splendid atmosphere of Russia winters.
Great Places To See In Russia
St. Basil's Cathedral is the must see experience of any Russia vacation. This extraordinary 16th century architectural feat continues to be one of the most recognizable buildings in the world.
While you are visiting St. Basil's Cathedral, you will already be at the famous Red Square. On the other side of the square is the Russian Kremlin. The massive open area is a breath-taking experience both day and night.
While many other museums around the world get more press, there are few, if any that are as impressive as the State Hermitage Museum. Located in St. Petersburg, take the informative tour to view the rich collection of truly stunning art.
Frequently Asked: Russia FAQ
What if I decide to stay longer than the visa allows?
You will definitely need to contact the embassy there in Russia as they do not take this lightly. It is up to them whether they grant you an extension or not. Anyone who overstays their visa length can end up in serious legal trouble.
How do I get the support visa voucher in my possession?
Tourists are allowed to receive a copy of the voucher via email or fax. The voucher you turn into the Russia Consulate while applying for a Russia visa, does not have to be an original.
Russia Hotel and Tourist Reviews
Feel like relaxing in a high end, luxurious suite? Look no further than Swissotel Krasnye Holmy in Moscow. Cheaper than the Ritz but with better reviews, you won't be disappointed.
Or if you need to stay on budget, there are more than enough hotels to choose from. Take a look at the Katerina Park Hotel which has stellar traveler ratings with affordable rates.
During your stay in St. Petersburg, check out the elegant Grand Hotel Europe by Orient-Express if you have some serious money to spend. If you need to save some money, consider staying at the Tradition Hotel which boasts the best hotel reviews in all of St. Petersburg while having reasonable prices.
Russia Travel Adventure Tours
The Moscow Tour of the Kremlin, The Patriarch's Palace, Assumption Cathedral, Archangel's Cathedral and the Deposition of the Robe Cathedral will take you back in time to marvel at the rich historical culture of Russia.
While in St. Petersburg, you must go on the Grand Tour. Explore Peter and Paul's Fortress which served not only as a fortress but also a prison and the burial grounds for past emperors. The tour also includes the prestigious Hermitage Museum and the stunning St. Isaac Cathedral.
Russia Flight Comparisons
The following list is compiled of airlines who frequently fly to and from the US and Russia.
United - Delta - KLM - Lufthansa - Air France - Singapore Airlines - American Airlines
Rental Car Options in Russia
You can choose to rent a car from the following companies to give the Russian streets a go. Europcar - Thrifty - Hertz.
If you are not feeling as adventurous and would rather peacefully enjoy your trip without the stress of driving in a new environment, opt for public transportation. It is a good way to mingle and immerse yourself in the culture.