Overseas Vacationers Set for Simplified Visa Necessities to Enter Russia
As the tourism world awakens, countries are taking steps to get the industry up and running ahead of the eagerly anticipated summer season, which could look a lot more “normal” than we have become accustomed to in recent months.
Russia, for example, has made it easier for foreign tourists to enter the country. Last week President Vladimir Putin signed a law according to which foreigners can soon obtain a tourist visa for up to six months with a simple hotel reservation.
Under the current procedure, foreign tourists can obtain a Russian visa for either up to 1 month or up to 6 months if the principle of reciprocity applies between the state the tourist is from and Russia.
Now foreign visitors can get a six-month visa regardless of what policies their countries have regarding Russian travelers. The new law is expected to come into force 90 days after its official publication (May 26).
It should also be noted that Saint Petersburg is currently preparing to host three group stage football matches as well as one of the quarter-finals of the next UEFA European Championship, which will be played in several European cities from June 11th to July 11th.
International fans may enter the country without a visa on presentation of the fan pass introduced during the 2018 World Cup in order to take part in the games.
Millions of foreign tourists arrive
In April Putin declared in his annual speech to the Federal Assembly: “As soon as the epidemiological situation allows, we will lift the current restrictions and millions of tourists from all over the world will come to us”.
“This is particularly thanks to the e-Visa, as it will be possible in most countries to issue an electronic visa for travel to Russia in just four days, without unnecessary formalities,” he added.
We’ll see if President Putin’s prediction comes true, but for sure it is In the first four months of the year, 1.83 million foreigners visited Russia. Of these, only 13.4 thousand came to the country for tourist purposes.
Compared to January-March last year, the number of foreigners arriving in the country has almost tripled and the number of tourists is 24 times lower.