Russia grants free e-visas for Indonesians visiting St. Petersburg and the Leningrad region

The Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood is one of the main sights of Saint Petersburg, Russia. Photo: Pixabay
The Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood is one of the main sights of Saint Petersburg, Russia. Photo: Pixabay

Indonesians who love to travel abroad are no stranger to the ordeal of laborious visa applications, given that our passports are simply not powerful enough to take us very far. But an increasing number of countries have been more open to Indonesian tourists recently, and starting tomorrow, Indonesian citizens are among those from 53 countries eligible for a free e-visa to enter Russia. 

Russia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced on their website that from Oct.1, tourists from 53 countries – a list which includes Malaysia, Singapore, India and Japan – will be permitted to enter the country with an e-visa “through air, naval, automobile, and pedestrian checkpoints located in the territory of St. Petersburg and the Leningrad region” (they noted that entry and exit on e-visa are not yet available if you go by trains). 

Indonesians were previously required to provide an invitation or confirmation letter as part of their Russian visa application, but the e-visa policy waives that requirement, saying tourists can simply fill in the application form on the website. 

“There is no need to waste your free time or working hours to visit the consular agency during its business hours. The website works 24/7,” the ministry posted on the website, adding that the e-visa takes about four calendar days (including weekends and holidays) to be issued, and is free of charge. 

Once issued, the single-entry e-visa will be valid for 30 days, permitting its holders to stay up to eight days from his/her date of entry, but within the validity period. It’s worth noting, however, that neither the e-visa validity nor permitted stay can be extended, as reported by Russian state news agency Russia Beyond

“You can fill in an application form for an e-visa on this website not earlier than 20 days and no later than four days before the intended date of entry into the Russian Federation,” the report said.

The free e-visa is not only available for tourists, but also travelers with business and humanitarian purposes at the Russian cultural capital and the country’s second-largest city after Moscow.


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