Kyrgyzstan offers visa-free travel for travelers of many nations with high GDP per capita. Others can make use of the e-visa system or will have to apply through an embassy. An additional letter of invitation is needed for passport holders of certain countries.
Holders of passports issued by the following 61 nations are not required to obtain a visa for Kyrgyzstan up to the length of stay mentioned below:
- Indefinite stay
1 – provided being permanent residents of country of nationality.
- 90 days
- 60 days
- European Union / EFTA citizens except Bulgaria, Cyprus and Romania
- 30 days
You can enter and re-enter visa-free as many times as you like. Each time you get another 30/60/90 days. You can re-enter straight away: border guards are used to the procedure.
A visa-free agreement was signed with Serbia on 5 December 2017 but is yet to be ratified.
Kyrgyzstan tourist visa
The Kyrgyzstan tourist visa is issued for 30 or 90 days, with single or double entry. Longer duration and double entry are more expensive, but the procedure remains the same. You can apply at a Kyrgyz embassy of your choice, or online through the e-visa system.
Letter of invitation
To get a Kyrgyzstan tourist visa, most passport holders need a letter of invitation from a tourist company. However, citizens of some countries do not need a letter of invitation.
These are: (1) Albania (2) Andorra (3) Argentina (4) Brazil (5) Bulgaria (6) Chile (7) Cyprus (8) Indonesia (9) Israel (10) Macedonia (11) Mexico (12) Montenegro (13) Oman (14) Philippines (15) Romania (16) San Marino (17) South Africa (18) Serbia (19) Thailand (20) Turkey (21) Venezuela.
Citizens of these countries also do not need to register at OVIR. All others do.
The letter of invitation takes 2 weeks to deliver and is valid for 1 month from date of issue. So you need to get to an embassy within 1 month. Through the form on this page you can start your application immediately online. The price is 55 US$.
Since September 1, 2017, Kyrgyzstan has installed an e-visa system. Everyone can use it (sort of, see refusals below), but passport holders of Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan must put China in their application. If you want to apply for e-visa but you need a LOI, a tour operator needs to apply for you. You can start your application immediately through this form. Prices start from 63 US$.
Be aware that visa validity starts from the date of visa approval, not the “planned date of entry”.
- After submitting the application, a confirmation e-mail will come to your inbox, but this might take a few hours.
- After payment, it might take a couple of days before your application status changes to “Submitted”.
- Delivery takes around 1 week.
Travelers from the Indian subcontinent, Africa and Arab countries are often refused via the e-visa system and are advised to apply at the embassy. There have been some issues with payment, but most people from other countries have been able to get the e-visa without problems.
We have been told a refusal results in a 1-year ban to re-apply, but we have not been able to confirm this. All questions and reports are welcome in the Kyrgyzstan e-visa forum topic, while E-visa refusals are tracked here.
Eligible border crossings
In May 2018, the Kyrgyz government stated that e-visa holders are no longer confined to arrive and depart via Manas International Airport, Osh Airport or the Korday border. They can now arrive and depart from any border in Kyrgyzstan, either by land or by air.
Although departure has not been an issue through any border so far, we have had a report of someone who was turned back at Kordai and asked to enter 20 km further, and someone else who was refused at Sypatai Batyr by train. He later entered through Kordai without problems.
Additionally, local tour operators have questioned if it would work at more remote places like Irkeshtam. So far, though, we have no reports to confirm if it works or not.
Kyrgyzstan visa on arrival
With the introduction of the e-visa, we are not certain anymore about the rules concerning visa on arrival in Kyrgyzstan. We welcome your thoughts.
Border areas in Kyrgyzstan require a special border permit.
At least 5 travelers are needed for a group visa. You need to arrive via airplane. You can buy this through Caravanistan (add group visa in the extra questions field) at a price of 65$ per person. The group visa is an A4 format letter with a visa sticker, which you need to present to the immigration officer at the airport. This means you do not need to go to the embassy beforehand, and there are no extra charges when arriving in Kyrgyzstan.
If you plan to arrive overland, you cannot use the group visa, since there is no consular office at land borders. In that case, your gang needs to apply for a regular LOI if you need one, and apply for a visa at the nearest embassy.
Your passport needs to be valid for the period of intended stay. So no need for 6 months validity after expiry of your visa.
For your Kyrgyz visa application you will need:
- 1 filled out visa application form
- 1 passport picture (take 2 just in case)
- photocopy of passport is also sometimes required
- a letter of invitation (depending, see above)
Registering your stay
You may or may not be required to register your stay at the immigration police, depending on your nationality and the length of your stay in Kyrgyzstan.
For some 90 nationalities, since January 2017, registration is only necessary if you stay longer than the standard tourist visa or visa-free period for your country. You can double-check if you still need to register at the Kyrgyzstan registration page, where you will also find more info on the procedure.
Extending a Kyrgyz visa is possible in Bishkek, Karakol and Osh. You will definitely need a copy of your passport and your visa, your passport, a letter stating your reason for extension (you can write in English), a passport picture and money.
Bishkek, 2016: the visa department is located at 58 Kievskaya street, at the Department of Registration Population Settlement. It is open 9-12 and 13-16. Passports are received same day 17-18. There is a rule saying extension should be done at least 5 days before visa expires, but experiences point to being able to do it with less days left as well. Also, they might need a confirmation from your accommodation or a flight out. Go in the double doors and immediately up half a flight of stairs to your left. A visa application will cost you 5 som, and the extension costs 1,065 som. Make sure to have a passport photo with you.
It’s a lot of hassle. You will not be able to cross the border without an exit visa, so if you overstayed, your first port of call is the visa department at 58 Kievskaya mentioned above.
Bishkek, 2016: 10,000 som fine + 1050 som for the actual exit visa. I had 5 days to leave the country, and then I could turn around, come back in and my 60 day visa free allowance would start again. If I overstay my welcome once more – I’m deported. It’s confusing and very time consuming. Took me and my Russian best part of 2 days to complete. Needless to say if you don’t speak Russian or know someone who does – you haven’t got a chance. Excuse my French – absolute fucking madness.
Osh, 2018: 10$ fine + 50$ for the exit visa.
Since Kyrgyzstan gave visa-free to many countries, we get precious little updates, so note that many of the info here can be out of date.
Adress: Luganskaya 30A (near Dvorets Shkolnikov – Palace of School children) Opening hours: Monday to Friday, 9-12.30 (for applications) and 15-16.30 (for visa pick-up).
July 2016: I applied on Monday and received it on Friday. Documents received in the morning (go early and don’t be shy to jump the queue to ask questions or just get the form). Fee needs to be paid at Kazkommerzbank (use google maps to find a branch, the embassy gives an address which is not correct). One photo and copies of passport, Kazakh stamps and Kazakh immigration card with registration stamp (two stamps on the card). $60 for 30 days, date specific.
April 2012: British passport holder went for the slow option: 2 weeks wait while they keep your passport, visa is written in when you come back to pick it up.
March 2012: Belgian traveler got a 30-day tourist visa for 135$ the next day. The process for express visa is still the same as outlined in the report below.
June 2011: British traveler got a 30-day tourist visa for 150$ in one and a half hours. July 2011: British traveler got 30-day visa for 110$, same-day delivery. 1 week wait would cost 70$.
October 2011: Australian got 30-day visa on the spot for 115$, was told it was 60$ and 10 business days wait for regular processing.
Address: Ferit Recai Ertugal Cadessi. Opening hours Monday to Friday 9am – 5pm
July 2012: British national: took half an hour cost 50$ embassy kept passport while I went to the bank about 15 minute walk downhill 20 minutes back or a few minutes on the bike or a lira in a dolmus, return with receipt.
Adress: Caspian Plaza, 11th floor. Cafar Cabbarli 44. (Near the big round-about. Almost at the corner with Bəsti Bagirova). Updates collected here.
October 2016: Next-day, no hassle.
June 2016: For Argentinian passport: 55 USD to be paid in cash at the consulate/embassy. 1 photo, 1 form. No LOI, no hotel reservation.
Beijing embassy, China
Kyrgyzstan Embassy address: 10-11, Zone H, Jinrun Water Garden Villa, 18 XIAO YUN Road, Beijing (北京市朝阳区霄云路18号京润水上花园别墅H区10/11) [Easily searchable on google maps; it’s inside a residential area with military dressed guards outside the villa entrances. Closest entrance is the Southwest Gate on TIAN ZE Road] +86 10 6468 1348
Monday/Wednesday/Friday: 0930-1230 (application drop off only)
Monday/Wednesday/Friday: 1530-1800 (visa pick up only)
Bring: passport copy, home ID card copy, photo, LOI copy (one that shows your LOI number), application form (they don’t have hard copies… so print one from their website.
Go to Bank of China to pay visa fee. Apparently you must go to the Bank of China Headquarter Branch, address: 1 FUXINGMEN NEI DAJIE, BEIJING (西城区复兴门内大街1号). The embassy displays multiple BOC branch addresses, but supposedly only the headquarter branch accepts visa payments.
Their bank account number is 778350020559, which is a RMB account, meaning bring enough RMB cash for the equivalent payment in USD. They cannot exchange your USD/foreign currencies at the same counter, i.e. long queues at another window)
Fastest visa processing time is 3 days (i.e. Monday morning drop off, Wednesday afternoon pick up) for 115 USD.
Normal visa processing time is 5 days (i.e. Monday morning drop off, Friday afternoon pick up) for 65 USD. (refer to their notice board for latest prices)
The BOC headquarters is in downtown Beijing, which is very *** far from the embassy. Cab ride is 30-45 minutes one way. Metro is at least an 1 hour journey.
They say you can only go there to apply within 30 days after LOI issuance, and with 1-2 months prior to travel dates. (you may want to call to confirm)
June 2017: You cannot apply yourself, you must go through a certified agent. The embassy is does not pick up the phone. You can only apply for the visa 2 weeks in advance of going. The whole process takes 3-5 working days. If you need to apply early (in case the dates are tight); you must prove that you need your passport around those dates because you are traveling internationally to another country near those dates; and hence you are applying for Kyrgyz visa early.
Adress: recently moved to 56 Said Nosirov (same place as it is on the Lonely Planet map). Opening hours are erratic.Turn east at 110 rudaki and go straight towards the big red Kyrgyz flag. Old telephone number was 224-26-11, not sure if it still the same.
Opening hours: erratic, but try Tuesday and Thursday from 9:00-17:00, with a two-hour break from noon.
July 2015: Express option (10 minutes) is 90$, slow option is 50$ (2 weeks).
June 2013: 2 Romanians: Kyrgyz visa on the spot for 100$ (double fee) otherwise it takes a week to process.
July 2016: A 2 month visa would be $100, 3 working days, express next-day service is $200. Staff was unfriendly. Documents received only before noon.
Kuala Lumpur embassy
Address: Level 10, Wisma Sin Heap Lee building, No 346 Jalan Tun Razak, 50400 KL – Take the LRT to AMPUNG PARK and the building is behind the Ampung Park shopping complex
May 2012: Australian passport holders paid 208MYR (approx $65) each for single entry one month tourist visa. Passports + 1 copy plus two copies of form and 2 passport photos and payment confirmation submitted on Thursday afternoon and picked up at 11 Monday morning. No express fees required. You need to pay at the Maybank in the Ampang Park shopping centre across the street.
October 2011: It is possible to apply by post. Processing time 1 week. Cost 60£ for 1-month tourist visa.
New York embassy
July 2015: My husband, Canadian, and I, Chinese got our Kyrgyz visa at NYC consulate. Applications were sent from Canada. We both have LOI. We Fedexed in the applications on Day 1, and received our passports back on Day 3. It was very efficient.
They never picked up their phone though. Updates posted here.
Address: 30 Niyozbek Yo’li 6-tor ko’chasi, Тошкент, Uzbekistan. To get a taxi there, just ask a taxi driver to drop you in Toshkent Irrigasia va Meliorasia Instituti, which everyone knows about. From there it’s 1 minute walk. Google shows the correct location. tel: 137-47-93, 137-42-94, 139-86-13
Opening hours are no longer Monday to Thursday, but Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. It is closed on Wednesdays. Reception of documents: 10-12. Pickup of documents: 15-17
However, arrive early on as there is a list where the police outside the embassy write your name and that’s the number to enter. If you arrive by 9-9:15 am you will be better than arriving at 10am. Updates posted here.
July 2015: $110 for 6-10 processing days or $220 for the ‘express’ service of 3 days (taking into account that day as day 1). My jaw dropped. In the end, bargained down to $120 USD for the express service.
June 2012: The bank where you are supposed to pay for your visa is Bank Melli near Hamid
Alimdjan Metro stop, quite close really to the embassy (maybe 15 minutes walk), so maybe possible in a day. although they told me 3 working days for fast track i showed up a day early having paid and they just made me wait 10 minutes for visa. Price was $113 for 1-month visa.
Working hours: Sun-Thu (9-12 for submission, 4-5pm for collection). Adress: 5th Naranjestan st., 15 mins walking distance from Nobonyad metro (on line 3). The Google location of the embassy is slightly off, one needs to keep walking on the street for about 100 metres or more till they see a turn and embassy is just after that on left side. Embassy reports posted here.
September 2017: Took 4 visits but got it in the end.
Address: right next to the “Central Asian Hotel” (although it’s recently changed names). It is 10RMB by taxi from the train station. (Central Asian Hotel). Opening hours: 11.30am – 13.30 Monday-Weds and Fridays).
Where is the bank? You walk out of the door of the embassy, you turn right. After 25 steps you hit a kind of parking lot, you go right and straight for a little while towards a big building, through a kind of tunnel full of furniture decoration shops, all the way to the end, turn left and there is the Bank of China on your left side.
Taxis are difficult to come by once at the embassy. You need your passport to book train tickets in China, so try asking for it back while processing. Updates welcomed here.
June 2015: You can no longer apply for your visa in Urumqi, instead, you need to go to Beijing.
Comments are closed. If you have questions or embassy reports, head over to our forum’s visa section.