Starting from August 1, 2023, tourists from 55 countries, including several Middle Eastern nations, can now apply for an electronic visa to enter Russia. This new system offers several advantages over regular visas, eliminating the need to visit consulates or embassies. Travelers only need to provide a digital photo and a scan of the information passport page when applying through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia’s website, not later than 4 calendar days before their planned trip. The e-visa remains valid for 60 days from the date of issue and allows tourists to stay in Russia for up to 16 days. Additionally, a visa-free regime is already in place for citizens of the United Arab Emirates and Qatar.
The launch of e-visas is expected to significantly increase the tourist flow to Moscow. “To make the stay of guests from Middle East countries as comfortable as possible, Moscow is actively working on the improvement of infrastructure for international travelers. We also have close cooperation with Middle Eastern companies in the field of tourism, which allows us to expand our tourist offer and tailor it to the needs of our guests,” stated Evgeny Kozlov, Chairman of Moscow City Tourism Committee.
Moscow is committed to setting new standards in foreign travel services. Visitors to the capital can choose from a wide range of hotels catering to various price segments. Moreover, the city’s restaurants not only serve traditional Russian cuisine but also offer halal dishes in specialized restaurants.
In addition to e-visas, the convenience of traveling to Moscow is further enhanced by direct air flights connecting the UAE and Moscow, with more than 100 flights currently in operation. Regular flights are also available to and from other Middle Eastern countries such as Qatar, Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait, and more, providing faster and easier access to the vibrant and culturally rich city of Moscow.
With these recent developments, Moscow is poised to become an even more attractive destination for travelers from the Middle East, offering a seamless and enriching experience that caters to their preferences and needs.