In this post I will update the situation of foreign citizens who can already travel to Russia, and the conditions they must meet, due to the coronavirus pandemic. Russia’s borders are already open to citizens of many countries, including Indian citizens.
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The Government of Russia restricted the entry of foreign citizens into its territory on March 16, 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic. However, little by little it has been allowing the entry of foreigners from certain countries.
Russia’s borders are already open to citizens of many countries, including Indian citizens.
1. List of citizens of countries that can travel to Russia
The list of national citizens (or legal residents in these countries) who can already travel to Russia through airports or by rail transport is periodically updated by the Order of the Government of the Russian Federation of March 16, 2020 N 635-r .
Citizens of the following countries have already open the borders of Russia:
- United Kingdom, Tanzania, Turkey and Switzerland (as of August 1, 2020)
- Egypt, Maldives and United Arab Emirates (as of September 2, 2020)
- Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and South Korea (as of September 20, 2020)
- Cuba, Serbia and Japan (from October 14, 2020)
- Seychelles and Ethiopia (as of November 13, 2020)
- Vietnam, India, Qatar and Finland (as of January 25, 2021)
- Azerbaijan and Armenia (as of February 03, 2021)
- Greece and Singapore (as of February 12, 2021)
- Venezuela, Germany, Syria, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Sri Lanka (as of March 31, 2021)
- Iceland, Malta, Mexico, Portugal and Saudi Arabia (as of May 24, 2021)
- Austria, Hungary, Lebanon, Luxembourg, Mauritius, Morocco and Croatia (as of June 18, 2021)
- Belgium, Bulgaria, Jordan, Ireland, Italy, Cyprus, China, Liechtenstein, North Macedonia and the United States (as of June 28, 2021)
- Albania, France and the Czech Republic (from July 28, 2021)
- Bahrain, Dominican Republic and Moldova (as of August 4, 2021)
- Iraq, Spain, Kenya and Slovakia (as of September 21, 2021)
- Andorra, Denmark, Djibouti, Colombia, Kuwait, New Zealand, Peru and South Africa (from October 2, 2021)
2. What types of visa are currently processed
For citizens of the above countries there are 3 options:
Option 1. Electronic visa (E-Visa). The issuance of electronic visas is currently suspended since the publication of the Order of the Government of the Russian Federation of March 16, 2020 N 635-r. At the moment it is unknown when electronic visas will be issued again.
Option 2. Regular or traditional visa. Since the electronic visa is suspended, to travel to Russia currently you have to apply for a regular or traditional visa, which can be for tourism, business, private travel, etc. Most of the countries listed in section 1 of this article must apply for a regular visa to travel to Russia.
Option 3. Travel to Russia without a visa (Visa-Free). There are countries that do not need a visa to travel to Russia, such as Cuba or Venezuela, among others, although under certain conditions.
3. Additional requirements for Covid-19
Taking into account that the Russian borders are open to citizens of the countries in section 1 of this article and the type of visa they must apply for, there are additional requirements for Covid-19 that all countries must meet:
- Covid-19 PCR test negative less than 72 hours before your arrival in Russia. The test result must be in English or Russian. It is no longer necessary to quarantine upon arrival at your accommodation.
- Fill out, before entering Russia, a questionnaire found on the website of the Federal Service for the Supervision of Consumer Protection and Welfare (Rospotrebnadzor): https://www.rospotrebnadzor.ru/files/news/авиаАнкета%20RUS.docx
4. Citizens of countries not contemplated in section 1
Foreign citizens from other countries in the world can enter Russia as long as they meet the following conditions:
1. Have a passport with a valid visa
2. Take a Covid-19 test in the 72 hours prior to their arrival. The result of this test must be in English or Russian. It can also be in other languages, but in this case you must have it translated to Russian, and validated by a consular section of the Russian embassy.
3. Be covered by one of the legal exceptions provided for entry into Russia. It is essential to ask in advance at a Russian consulate or Embassy to confirm this exception, and to be informed of the documents you need to submit at the border. Among these exceptions are the following:
- Foreign citizens who are relatives (spouses, parents, children, adopters, adoptees) and guardians of citizens of the Russian Federation. In this case, in order to enter the Russian Federation, they will need a valid passport, visa and a copy of the document proving the relationship.
- Foreign citizens can enter the Russian Federation if they are going to receive medical treatment, and in this case, they will need, in addition to the visa, an invitation from the health center, processed through the Ministry of Public Health of the Russian Federation.
- Foreign nationals who are travelling, in order to care for a close relative who is ill. In order to enter you will need a visa, a copy of the documents that certify the degree of kinship and documents from the medical institution that certify the health status of the relative or guardian.
- By order 1761 dated June 25, 2020, the list of exceptions to the entry ban has been expanded to certain categories of highly qualified workers, though under certain requirements.
Please, take into account current Russia travel recommendations from government authorities:
United Kingdom: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/russia