How to travel to russia
during the covid-19 pandemic

Welcome to St Petersburg Essential Guide - Your Best Travel Guide to Russia

Find out how and who can travel to Russia during this ongoing global pandemic with our inside and fresh updates.

Since the beginning of the covid19 pandemic, which started on March, 2020, until today traveling across the world has become very difficult, expensive, and uncomfortable. The way we used to travel will no longer return to the way it was before and I think we all have to make peace with that but start learning how and where we can travel again.

Of course, I hope I am wrong, but currently I am not able to bring positive thoughts to the idea of returning to a pre-covid19 situation has the world has shifted into a new paradigm, which I won't mention here.  

With that in mind, if you have or want to travel to Russia, you should know that Russia has officially announced its borders will stay closed until September 30, 2021 or until further notice with the exception of a list of eligible countries I will now listed below.

In the event you are already in Russia, you should know that any foreigners in Russia with visas or other immigration documents that expire(d) after March 15, 2020 can STAY in Russia until September 30, 2021 OR up to 90 days AFTER Russia has officially opened to the foreigner’s home country.

Also, If you have a family member who is a Russian citizen and your visa has expired, you can get a new private visa and re-enter Russia. You can do that Here!

Keep in mind that for those who are already in Russia on valid visas during this travel restriction, you are allowed to stay. However, if you leave Russia, you will not be allowed to re-enter Russia until the travel restriction is lifted, which has been extended until further notice.

Who can enter russia during covid-19

For your information, citizens and residents of the following countries are allowed to travel to Russia. Official source HERE. If this applies to you, feel free to get a visa invitation HERE!

As of December 12, 2020 the Russian Government has established direct flights with:

  • United Kingdom
  • Tanzania
  • Turkey
  • Switzerland
  • Egypt
  • Maldives
  • United Arab Emirates
  • Republic of South Ossetia
  • Belarus
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Republic of Korea
  • Abkhazia
  • Cuba
  • Serbia
  • Japan
  • Seychelles
  • Ethiopia.

As of January 27, 2021 the Russian Government has established direct flights with:

  • Vietnam
  • Finland
  • India
  • Katar

As of February 8, 2021 the Russian Government has established direct flights with:

  • Singapore
  • Greece
  • Azerbaijan
  • Armenia

As of April 1, 2021 the Russian Government has established direct flights with:

  • Venezuela
  • Uzbekistan
  • Tajikistan
  • Sri Lanka
  • Germany
  • Syria

As of May 24 2021 the Russian Government has established direct flights with:

  • Iceland
  • Malta
  • Mexico
  • Portugal
  • Saudi Arabia

As of June 10 2021 the Russian Government has established direct flights with:

  • Hungary
  • Austria
  • Lebanon
  • Luxembourg
  • Mauritius
  • Morocco
  • Croatia
  • Albania

My country is not on the list... what can i do?

If your country is not on the list so you are a citizen (or resident) of all other countries, travel to Russia is allowed only for the following type of reasons:

  • Members of official delegations, employees of foreign embassies and consulates, representations of international organization in Russia and their family members;
  • Family members (spouses, parents, legal guardians, children) of Russian citizens, or of an ailing or recently deceased person in Russia regardless of citizenship, provided they carry documents confirming both condition and relation;
  • International truck drivers, crew members of train, sea, river and air crafts;
  • Permanent residents of the Russian Federation;
  • Persons taking part in equipment maintenance in Russia, provided their names are on the border service lists;
  • Highly qualified employees or other work visas, provided their names are on the border service lists;
  • Persons seeking medical treatment, provided they have an invitation from a medical organization or the Ministry of Health.

Need to urgently get to Russia but your country is not on the list of approved nationalities to travel to Russia?

We have the solution for you! Simply, get residency in Turkey within 2-4 weeks and be allowed to enter Russia as a Turkish resident. Regardless of your nationality we can help you get a Turkish residence so that you can apply for your Russian visa at the nearest Russian consulate of your country.

We can also arrange a medical treatment in St. Petersburg only, and so, issue you with a medical invitation to travel to Russia legally.

Get in touch with us today for more details!

i can travel to russia... what to do?

In the event you can legally travel to Russia then take into consideration the following information:

  • After getting a Russian visa, when boarding an aircraft traveling to Russia, including for the purpose of transit, you must have a medical document (in Russian or English) confirming a negative Covid-19 test result issued no later than 72 hours before crossing the border. You can provide such a document in another language, but in this case it must be translated into Russian, and the translation must be certified by a notary at the Embassy or the Consulate General of the Russian Federation.

TIPS: In order to save time and money, it’s recommended that applicants take the test where they provide certificates in English.

  • Before arriving in the Russian Federation, you must fill out a questionnaire. Find the template on the official website of
  • Please note that if your visa was issued on the basis of invitations issued by the migration department of the territorial body of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia (GUVM) on paper or in electronic form (the so-called FMS invitation), or on the basis of invitations of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Telex) sent to the diplomatic or consular office, then the passage of a foreigner through the state border of the Russian Federation is carried out by the border service according to lists (indicating the checkpoint and date of entry) sent by the inviting organization to the FSB, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Federal Air Transport Agency in advance, before the trip of the invited foreigner.
  • If, at the time of entry of a foreigner into the Russian Federation, his data will be absent in the specified lists, then even if he has a valid Russian visa issued in accordance with all the rules, he will most likely be denied entry. In this regard, when applying for visas on the basis of invitations from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, recommend that applicants in advance check with the inviting organization about the fact of being included in such lists.

IMPORTANT NOTE: This procedure does not apply to private visas issued on the basis of applications from a spouse on joint travel to the Russian Federation, as well as to private visas on special occasions (funeral, visiting a seriously ill patient). In the case of a private visa issued by relatives in the Russian Federation directly to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the data on the invitee from the police are automatically transferred to the border service;

  • After applying for your Russian visa, we highly suggest that you choose the shortest routes to the Russian Federation from your home/resident country. Avoid travelling through countries Russia has still open borders with (if you do not have residency in the corresponding country). We are aware of numerous refusals of the authorities of these countries to carry out further transportation to the Russian Federation, even with a valid Russian visa.

Check out our video about how to travel to Russia during covid-19.

Here's the link!

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