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When to get a Visa?

by theenglishway Online Now Mar 15, 2013 at 4:23 AM

I'm a British national who will be travelling from Eastern Finland, to St. Petersburg (probably on the train) around late June/early July. When's the best time to apply for a visa, please?

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8 Answers
  • Sunny_cat's Profile Photo

    Re: When to get a Visa?

    by Sunny_cat Online Now Mar 15, 2013 at 4:26 AM

    In April

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  • davidjo's Profile Photo

    Re: When to get a Visa?

    by davidjo Online Now Mar 15, 2013 at 5:13 AM

    http://ru.vfsglobal.co.uk/
    The visa application service has been outsourced so this is the link that will give you information on your visa. I might add that some outsourcing centers really screw things up through my experience but many embassies are doing this now, and i find this a shame!

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  • taurean_traveller's Profile Photo

    Re: When to get a Visa?

    by taurean_traveller Online Now Mar 15, 2013 at 6:00 AM

    VFS in our experience have been very good to deal with.Much better than the hours queueing outside the Russian Embassy in London only to be turned away at the last minute.We have always allowed around 10 weeks for total processing,sometimes quicker rarely longer.

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  • Gili_S's Profile Photo

    Re: When to get a Visa?

    by Gili_S Online Now Mar 15, 2013 at 9:31 AM

    If you are planning to spend the time also in Finland, you can get visa easily also in Helsinki, but allow at list one week for the process, you do not need to go to the embassy, but just use a local agent.
    For example I used this one, http://www.viisumipalvelu.com

    The location is just across the Russian embassy, They are pro in this, will arrange for you all the papers, I purchase from them the train ticket + the visa.
    I didn't have to spend any time queuing and no any hassle, basically I spent about 10 minutes for this whole process :)

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  • smirnofforiginal's Profile Photo

    Re: When to get a Visa?

    by smirnofforiginal Online Now Mar 15, 2013 at 11:29 AM

    As a British national you will need a letter of invitation & a travel voucher. Once you have them you are can apply for your visa whenever you like. You can fill out all the forms (there are tons of them!) online & then print & send with photos, vouchers, payment etc... The visas have been outsourced to an agency who are very thorough and efficient and will check up on the tiniest of details!
    Post office giros are the only means of payment.
    Once the visa is in process turn around is relatively fast. However, it took weeks for my visa to get to that stage!
    Apply when you are ready and when you can be without your passport. The visas will have your specific travel dates so it doesn't matter how far in advance you do this!

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  • Skillsbus's Profile Photo

    Re: When to get a Visa?

    by Skillsbus Online Now Mar 16, 2013 at 1:51 AM

    Hello,
    You wont be able to apply for your visa until 3 months before travel to Russia.
    I use this website as they do everything for you, including the letters of invitation. Also you will find the link to the form for filling out for your visa here.
    travel-direct.com/visas/russ...

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  • smirnofforiginal's Profile Photo

    Re: When to get a Visa?

    by smirnofforiginal Online Now Mar 17, 2013 at 3:10 AM

    Skillsbus wrote:
    Hello, You wont be able to apply for your visa until 3 months before travel to Russia.

     That is perhaps correct if using that link, however, I travelled, as a British citizen, last year to Russia and, using the agency that the Russian embassy in London request is used (ru.vfsglobal.co.uk/Tourist_d..., I applied for my visa more than 3 months in advance. It is of course possible in the last 7 moths since I was there they have changed the rules. Best to check out the above website as it will give you all the info you need. With re. letters and vouchers - some hotels will do this for you for free - some will only cover you for the time you stay with them (and this is no good as you need one voucher for the duration of your visit). For a very small fee one of my hotels covered me for the duration of my trip.

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  • whiteritter's Profile Photo

    Re: When to get a Visa?

    by whiteritter Online Now Mar 22, 2013 at 5:59 AM

    I would prefer to use primary sources

    www.rusemb.org.uk/contact/

    visa.kdmid.ru/PetitionChoice...

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