Russia-U.S. visa requirements to be simplified
MOSCOW, August 14 - RAPSI. Visa requirements between Russia and the United States will be simplified starting September 9, the Foreign Ministry reports.
Pursuant to the agreement, the citizens of both countries will be granted multiple entry visas allowing stays for a term of up to six months after each entry. They will be also valid for 36 months after they have been issued.
As part of the Agreement, Russia is expected to issue business, private, humanitarian and tourist visas under direct invitation of the hosting party, and the United States is expected to issue B1/B2 tourist visas.
The decision to issue an individual visa will, as a rule, be made within 15 calendar days of having received the application.
The agreement abolishes the requirement for an official invitation for U.S. citizens visiting Russia. But those applying for a Russian tourist visa will still need to have an accommodation booking confirmation or have a tour operator's confirmation. In addition, if a U.S. citizen loses his passport in Russia, special exit visa will no longer be required.
U.S. citizens wishing to visit Russia should go to the (Moscow) U.S. embassy website, for further details regarding the new visa agreement.
The document, signed on November 21, 2011, was designed to simplify travel between Russia and the United States and to further develop economic, cultural, scientific and humanitarian ties between the two countries. The State Duma adopted the document on July 6; the Federation Council approved it on July 18, 2012. The agreement was ratified in late July.