Entry to Russia will be much easier, as from 1.1.2021 e-visas for tourism, business, humanitarian and guest visits can be issued. The stay will be possible for up to 16 days. In order to attract more tourists to the country for the coming year, visa applications are now possible online. The processing time should be only four days.
Citizens from 53 countries (including Germany, Austria and Switzerland) can apply for a low-cost e-visa online for 16 days. The extremely complex and bureaucratic visa issuance is no longer necessary. The list still includes Turkey, China, India and Japan, but not the United States and Canada.
The introduction of a nationally valid e-visa was preceded by a pilot project launched in 2017, which included e-visas for entry and residence in the Federation District Far East, the Kaliningrad region, the City of St. Petersburg and the Leningrad Region. Now the e-visa will cover all external border checkpoints across the country, and entry and exit do not have to take place in the same region.
E-visas are valid for 16 days and the fee is set at 40 dollars. Children under 6 years old receive the e-visa free of charge. There is also no need to obtain a previous invitation. The main objective of simplification is to promote tourism and give businesses a boost, thereby contributing to the Russian economy.
Heiner Kubny, PolarJournal