Applying for a russian tourist visa in Bichkek

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Applying for a russian tourist visa in Bichkek

Post by SteppeByFeet »

We want to share our very recent experience of applying for two russian tourist visa in Bichkek (Kirghizistan). It was the easyest solution we found as travellers along the silk road (we are french). We succeed to apply the 16/06/15 but it's only in two weeks (the 30th) we will pick it up.

1. First step : to get a kirghiz visa

First, the main thing to know is that you need a proof that you are a permanent resident in Kirghizistan, because usually russian consulate accept only folders if you are resident of the country where you apply. Exactly, they request that "the expiry date of Kyrgyzstan visa should be not less than 3 months after the day of applying for Russian visa". It means that you need at least a little bit more than three mounths kirghiz visa from the date you get it to be able to apply for the russian visa.
So, in Bichkek, we went to O.V.I.R (ОВИР : Отдел виз и регистрации in the Департамент регистрации населения при Государственной регистрационной службе при Правительстве Кыргызской Республики.) which is situated in the center of Bichkek. Adress : Kievskaja 58 (near the crossing with Sovetskaja). Opening hours: 9am – 5 pm from Monday to Friday. Because we applyed for more than 2 mounths visa, we had to wait ten working days (two weeks) to get it. Furthermore, as we asked for more than a 3 months visa (4 exactly), the person at the counter refused to take our dossier. We went to the second floor to talk with the great supervisor (who is a woman). She talks a few words of english and with insistence she accepted to sign on our papers.

We were back on monday (the 15th of june) and first they announced us that we only got a three mounths visa, wich is just less than what we need for the russian consulate. We went to talk again with the supervisor who accepted to deliver us 3 mouths + 4 days visa since this day (and not the day we entered Kirghizistan, 3 mouths before), right enough to have two chances for the russian visa (tuesday and thirsday, the two only days the russian consulate is opened).

Secondly, when we got this visa, as everyone who ask for more than a 3 mounths visa, you don't get a tourist visa but a private visa. It means that theoretically, you are invited by a person or an organisation and you are like a permanent resident. So we learned that we also need to get registered within five days in an office where we went on tuesday morning (the 16th of june). We went there but after many talkings with a worker and her supervisor, they annonced us that we only had to find someone who write us an invitation letter with many things inside we don't remember (but which engage his responsability obviously). We decided to ignore this problem. Probably we will have to pay a fine on the border or give some money to the customs. Apparently, there is no other solution.

2. Second step : applying for the russian tourist visa

So in the afternoon of the same day we went to the russian consulate whose entrance is on the other side of the embassy (adress : 55 Manas Street, Opening hours: Tuesday/ Thursday, 2:30 – 4:30 pm. Open the tuesday and thirsday. There is no appointment system, only a nice guard who talks english).
First, this is the adress of the Bichkek russian consulate, wich is very difficult to find directly on the web because it is an english webpage of a website completely redacted in russian) : It indicates all the needed documents to apply.

We went with a complete and perfect dossier (all the copies in colour, the only photo needed sticked on the application form, etc...) and even shaved to look perfectly clean.
We gave :
- The print (in colour) of the form you have to fill on this webpage :
- Our passport and a copy of the passport (two first page only) in colour
- A copy of the invitation for getting a visa in colour (we asked it to russieautrement, a french agency wich works with a russian agency. they were very efficient). We also included a copy in black and white of our program details which was inluded with the invitation even if it's not required on the russian consulate website.
- The copy in colour of our Kyrgyzstan visa - One photo (the dimensions 3,5 Ч 4,5 cm) sticked on our form
- A medical insurance valid on the territory of Russia (we asked to our insurance company to send us by email a good scan with a beautiful signature and seal in colour, and to indicate specifically that our insurance cover us on the territory of russian federation).

That what we gave but they can require others things depending on your nationality, your transport mode, etc... check by yourself.

The only advice we have to tell is to give only good quality copies in colour because the man who passed right before us was refused to apply without an original of the invitation (we also didn't have the original).
After, when the man said everything was ok we went to pay to an other counter where our dossier was completely checked a second time. On the contrary of what we read on an other report, we had to pay 55 dollars per person and not 52 dollars.
Moreover, we had to fight a little bit to be able to come back in two weeks to pick it up and not 3. (On a last report we read 1 week but it doesn't seem possible anynore). We suspect them to encourage us to pays one hundred dollars to get it in 3 days. So you may be right to fight to reduce this 2 weeks period if you hurry.

We'll let know if we did succeed in two weeks when we will back in Bichkek!
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Re: Applying for a russian tourist visa in Bichkek

Post by steven »

Well done, not easy at all!
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