Before you go on your awesome vacation to see the historic sites of St. Petersburg and enjoy the experience of the bustling streets of Moscow, you first will need to acquire a tourist visa for Russia.

When you get Russia visas for your group, there are three important tips you should know before applying.

Visa Support Voucher

For reasons that are hard to pinpoint, Russia has for years now required both tourists and business travelers to get a visa support voucher.

This means that in order to be considered for approval, the Russian tourist visa support first wants to verify that someone in Russia has obtained a visa support voucher for you.

This may seem bureaucratic and unnecessary additional steps, but it is a requirement that must be met by everyone.

If you go with a tour group, contact them to make sure they are in the process of getting a Russian visa support voucher for you. If you don’t go with a tour group, then contact your hotel and have them send you a voucher.

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Don’t stay at a hotel or go with a tour group? When you live with friends or family members who live there, your contact must get a voucher for you from the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Another easy way to get it is to pay for a visa service registered with the foreign ministry to get an invitation voucher for you.

After the invitation to Russia is sent to you, just submit it with your application when you are at the Russian embassy.

Need detailed application

It’s best not to be vague or leave the field blank when you fill out a visa application for Russia. The agent who checks your application can be suspicious if he feels something is missing.

At that time, he will not only ask you questions but may also ask you to sit and wait. When you wait, the Russian consulate will check your background to see if there is a red flag. To avoid delays, provide your complete permanent address and have all your host’s contact details in Russia.

Also if you’ve been in the military, go into detail on the second page of the application about your experience, skills and time spent in active assignments. Being runaway here will definitely raise a red flag.