Just a month ago we had no idea, how to obtain Russian visa abroad and if it is even possible. Well, we had no idea, how to do it in Latvia either. Because then we had no plans about traveling to Russia.
But then, thinking about where to go after hiking in Nepal and realizing, that there are no any cheap destinations, except India, when you are flying out of Nepal, thought about traveling to Russia popped up in my mind. It would be summer. We could go on a train journey across Russia traveling by Trans-Siberian Railway… Why not? Let’s do it! If we can get a Russian visa without going back to Latvia, then we can do it!
Reading through forums we understood, that it’s possible. Only not always it’s easy.
Nevertheless we decided to try it ourselves, and it all went good. At first we were planning to apply for Russian visa in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. We contacted embassy and they confirmed, that we can do it there. But then our travel plans changed and at the end we obtained our Russian visas in Cambodia.
Obtaining Russian visa in Cambodia – step by step
We didn’t even think about it before, but as we understand now, it’s possible, that in some countries it may be easier or harder for you to obtain Russian visa. Do your research before if you have more than one option, where to apply for your visa. Because, for example, if you are in Cambodia now and it’s not a problem to travel to Thailand, where it’s maybe easier for you to apply for Russian visa, why not go to Thailand?
Here is how we obtained our Russian tourist visas in Phnom Penh, Cambodia:
- We bought a travel insurance. Most of Europeans are asked to have national medical insurance certificate valid for Russia. Our insurance is from Seesam Insurance. And we bought it through Latvian company Travelart.lv, explaining, that we need it to obtain Russian visa.
- We bought a Visa support letter + voucher. We bought it from the same Latvian company Travelart.lv for less than 10 EUR. Google for it! There are a lot of companies providing such a service.
- We filled visa application form online. You can do it on the site of Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation. To fill it you will need to know some data from your insurance certificate and Visa support letter and voucher. There is a question, if you have ever had a citizenship of Russia or USSR. If you choose – Yes, you will need to write when and why you lost it. We with Una were born when Latvia was still a part of USSR. If it’s the same with you, choose – Yes. Write a date – 26.10.1991. And reason – Fall of USSR. All 3 steps we did in 1 day.
- We went to Russian Embassy | Consular Section of the Embassy. We gave them our passports, one copy of the passport, one passport size photograph, printed out visa application form (step 3), printed-out medical insurance certificate (step 1), printed-out Visa support letter + voucher (step 2) and paid 40$. Visa processing fees that you will be charged depends on your nationality.
- One week later we received back our passports with Russian visas glued in. To be honest, it was a nice surprise, when they said – next Thursday you can come after your passports. Because we were expecting, that it will take about 2 weeks.
It’s a standard 30 day tourist visa, that we applied for. Things are different, when you are applying for business visa or, for example, work visa. And also as with visas for other countries rules are different for people of different nationalities.
There is a rule, that foreigners applying for Russian visa in Cambodia should provide a proof of legality of their stay in Cambodia.
In my opinion having a regular tourist visa should be enough. But from what I have read online, there have been situations, when people were asked to apply for 3 month business visa of Cambodia first in order to apply for Russian visa in Cambodia. We had ordinary 1 month tourist visas, and there were no problems. Here I must say, that we both are fluent in Russian, and in embassy we spoke Russian. Probably it helped us as well.
If you are thinking about applying for Russian Visa in Cambodia, first check out the website of Embassy of the Russian Federation in the Kingdom of Cambodia, to see aren’t there any changes.
Have you ever applied for Russian visa abroad? What’s your experience?
Author: Kaspars Misins
Kaspars is a long term traveler and travel blogger from Latvia. He loves going on long walks, reading non fiction books and spending time outdoors. Together with his girlfriend Una they are traveling – volunteering – working abroad since 2013. On WeAreFromLatvia.com they share their experience and things learned along the way.