The launch of an electronic visa in Russia is planned for July 15
A single electronic visa should work in Russia from July 15. According to experts, the program e-visa will greatly simplify travel to Russia. Importantly, e-visas will open access not only to group, but also to individual trips.
However, launching a new system can be challenging. The fact is that at present foreign tourists cannot pay in our country with the cards of their banks. The draft law is intended to solve the problem, allowing to remotely open accounts in Russia.
An experiment to introduce electronic visas for foreigners started in 2017. At first, they began to be issued in the Far East, in St. Petersburg and the Kaliningrad region. Foreign tourists who applied for a visa could not leave specific regions. The innovation was to be effective from January 1, 2021. However, the Government delayed the implementation of this decision due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
By law, the e-Visa is valid for 60 days and allows entry for tourists and business travelers. An electronic visa to Russia can only be single entry and is valid for 60 days from the date of issue; the period of stay in Russia during the validity of the visa is up to 16 days from the date of entry.
Travelers do not need invitations, hotel booking confirmation or other documents to obtain an e-Visa to Russia. To apply for a single-entry e-visa, travelers need to go to a special website or download the mobile application of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation. The application can be submitted 40 days before the expected date of entry into Russia, but no later than 4 days. The processing fee is $40; however, children under 6 years old can get a single e-Visa for free. Processing time can take up to 4 calendar days.
If approved for a Single Entry e-Visa, travelers should print or save it on their mobile device. It will need to be presented to the transport company upon boarding and to the border guard when passing through passport control at a checkpoint across the border of the Russian Federation.
In any case,, this is good news for inbound tourism, which literally collapsed last year. An e-visa will simplify entry into Russia for citizens from 52 countries, including those with which we have direct flights.