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Electronic Visa to St. Petersburg: FAQ
October 4, 2019 16:51

From October 1, 2019, citizens of 53 foreign countries can enter St. Petersburg and the Leningrad Region with an electronic visa.


The list of countries whose residents will be able to visit St. Petersburg and the Leningrad Region with electronic visas includes: Austria, Andorra, Bahrain, Belgium, Bulgaria, Vatican, Hungary, Germany, Greece, Denmark, India, Indonesia, Iran, Ireland, Iceland, Spain, Italy, Qatar, Cyprus, China (including Taiwan), Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Kuwait, Latvia, Lithuania, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, Monaco, Netherlands, Norway, Oman, Poland, Portugal, Romania, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Northern Macedonia, Serbia, Singapur, Slovakia, Slovenia, Turkey, the Philippines, Finland, France.


Starting October 1, 2019, foreign citizens can apply for an electronic visa to visit the territories of St. Petersburg and the Leningrad Region on the specialized website of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs at It is available so far only in two languages - Russian and English.

In the form of an electronic document, single-entry business, humanitarian and tourist visas are available for registration.

If the purpose of the trip to the Russian Federation does not correspond to any of the above, then a foreign citizen must apply to the diplomatic mission or consular office of the Russian Federation for a regular (non-electronic) visa.

 It is necessary to choose the Russian region where the tourist is traveling, and the country from the list of states whose citizens are allowed to enter with electronic visa.

You can apply for a visa on the indicated website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation no earlier than 20 days and no later than 4 days before the expected date of entry into the Russian Federation. Along with the visa application, you need to attach a color digital photo in the form of an electronic file.


No invitations or confirmations or other documents are required for obtaining an electronic visa. All that is needed is to fill  an application on the site. The site is working around the clock.

Electronic visas are issued without any fees.

Before filling  an application for issuing an electronic visa, a foreign citizen will need to give consent to the automated processing, transfer and storage of the data specified in his application for the purpose of applying for an electronic visa. So you have to enter your personal email address and its confirmation, as well as come up with a password to enter the specialized website of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and confirm this password.

Until the expiration of the passport of the applicant, at least 6 months from the date of application for an electronic visa must remain. The passport should have free space for stamps on crossing the border.

Foreign citizens are personally responsible for the accuracy of their personal data provided by them for applying for an electronic visa, including the spelling of their last name and first name (s) in exact (literal) accordance with how they are indicated in the passport.

In case of complete or partial discrepancy of these data with the data contained in the passport (citizenship, last name, first name (s), date of birth, gender, passport number), or the provision of non-personal photographs, the  entry at the checkpoint across the state border of the Russian Federation  will be forbidden, and electronic visas issued on the basis of false data submitted will be canceled.

The only exceptions are cases when the names of a foreign citizen contain more characters than the format for applying for an electronic visa.

As stated in the explanations of the Russian Foreign Ministry, if a foreign citizen already has a valid Russian visa, then he does not need to receive an electronic visa specifically for visiting the Far Eastern Federal District, the Kaliningrad Region or St. Petersburg and the Leningrad Region. You can visit them on a regular visa within the period of its validity without the restrictions provided for an electronic visa. The validity of a regular visa is not extended by obtaining an electronic visa.


The status of the application can be monitored on the site. After making a decision on the application (up to 4 days), its status will take one of the following values: “Visa issued” or “Visa denied”, and a PDF file with the result of the consideration of the submitted application can be downloaded from the site.

In addition, messages on the progress and result of processing the application (also only in Russian and English) with detailed instructions for further actions will also be automatically sent to the applicant’s personal email address.

In the case of a positive decision on the issuance of an electronic visa, it will be necessary to print a notification of the result of the application. If there is no printer, then it is necessary to save the information specified in the notification in any other way so that it can be visually presented to the representatives of the transport company and to the border guards when passing passport control at the checkpoint at the entrance to the region.

If you do not receive a notice of the issuance of an electronic visa or a refusal to issue an electronic visa within four days, you should apply for a visa in the general manner to the diplomatic mission or consular office of the Russian Federation.


Tourists who arrived on any transport except the train will be able to get with electronic visas to St. Petersburg and the Leningrad region. 

Entry and exit are valid for entering and leaving the Russian Federation by air, road and water transport, as well as without using vehicles (on foot) only through the following checkpoints across the state border of the Russian Federation located in the territories of St. Petersburg and the Leningrad Region:

• Pulkovo checkpoint;

• sea checkpoints “Vysotsk”, “Big Port of St. Petersburg (Marine Station)”, “Passenger Port of St. Petersburg”;

• automobile checkpoints "Ivangorod", "Torfyanovka", "Lingonberry", "Svetogorsk";

• pedestrian checkpoint "Ivangorod".

Foreign citizens are required to have with them a medical insurance valid in the territory of the Russian Federation for the entire stay.


Electronic visas are issued for a period of 30 days, starting from the date of issue, with a permitted stay of up to 8 days from the date of entry.

The permitted stay in the Russian Federation with an electronic visa up to 8 days does not mean the possibility of staying for 192 hours (24 hours x 8) net time. The reference to the period of stay in the Russian Federation is always rounded up to 00 hours 00 minutes of the date of passport control at the entrance, regardless of the real time passport control.

For clarification, the Russian Foreign Ministry gives an example. You have an electronic visa valid from July 15 to August 13 and have passed passport control at the entrance at 20:00 on Monday, August 1. In this case, you need to go through passport control at the check-out before 23 hours 59 minutes on Monday, August 8 (and not before 20:00 on Tuesday, August 9). Also note that if you passed passport control at the entrance with an electronic visa, shown in the previous example, for example, on August 10, then in the future you need to go through passport control at the exit before 23 hours 59 minutes on August 13, that is, before the expiration date of the electronic visa.


Foreign citizens who have arrived on the territory of St. Petersburg and the Leningrad Region on electronic visas have the right to   travel only within the specified territories, a valid consular visa is required to travel to other regions of the Russian Federation.


Author: Anna Dorozhkina

Tags: St. Petersburg travel to Russia Russian regions   

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