The today’s Russo-Polish relations leave much to be desired. The current political situation and the European Union’s sanctions against Russia have made the trade and market relations between Moscow and Warsaw rather unstable.
On the other hand, cultural relations are in a very good shape. Moscow has been hosting annual festivals of Polish culture; Russian Move Weeks, theatrical and music performances have become a tradition for major cities in Poland. This bolsters the cultural traditions and Russian-Polish tourist flow.
To visit Russia, any Polish citizen will need a visa. This requires preliminary submission of documents to the Russian Embassy in Warsaw, or to a consulate general in Gdańsk, Krakow, or Poznan.
Russian Visa Types and Procedures for Polish Citizens
To obtain a Russian visa, a Polish citizen will have to make an appointment with one of the consular services and submit the following documents:
- a valid Polish passport;
- a correctly filled application form from visa.kdmid.ru;
- a consular fee payment receipt;
- a health insurance policy valid for the entire stay in Russia, with a minimum coverage of EUR 30,000;
- 3.5 x 4.5 photos in color on a light backdrop;
- an invitation to Russia from a natural or legal person.
An invitation from a private or legal person is the primary purpose-specific document for Russian visa.
|Type of Visa||Duration of stay in Russia||Number of entries granted||Purpose of visit to Russia|
|Tourist Visa||up to 30 days||single or double entry||tourism, sightseeing, learning more about the Russian cuisine, history, and traditions|
|Business visa||30 to 90 days (up to 5 years in some cases)||single, double or multiple entry||participation in business meetings and conferences, making contracts|
|Private visa||30 to 90 days||single or double entry||meeting with friends and relatives in Russia|
|Working visa||1 to 3 years||multiple entry||working for a Russian entity|
Visa to Russia from Poland: Price
Standard processing time is 4 to 20 business days. A single-, double-, or multiple-entry Russian visa will cost a Polish citizen EUR 35. In some cases, document processing can be accelerated to 1–3 business days. However, such acceleration carries twice the fee (EUR 70).
If a Polish citizen decides to use visa center services, they will also have to pay a service fee of EUR 25.
Attention! Consular fees are not refundable in case of denial! Caution is recommended when doing the paperwork.
Russian Tourist Visa for Polish Citizens
A Polish citizen who wants to visit Russia as a tourist for sightseeing, learning its culture and traditions, will need a tourist visa. This type of visa is issued within one business day for a period of 1 to 30 days. It can allow a single or double entry.
Obtaining a tourist visa requires a tourist invitation to Russia.
Tourist invitation to Russia for Polish Citizens
A tourist invitation can be issued by a travel agency registered in the Uniform Register of Tour Operators. This document usually consists of two parts: a tourist voucher and a confirmation of reception.
The format is not regulated, which is why each travel agency can use its own format. The obligatory details are as follows:
- travel agency’s name and ID;
- the Polish citizen’s passport details;
- name of the hotel where the Polish citizen is going to stay;
- the cities planned for visiting (max. 5);
- number of entries;
- duration of the foreigner’s stay in Russia.
Russian Private Visa for Polish Citizens
A private visa is necessary if the applicant goes to Russia mainly to meet their friends or relatives residing there. This type of visa is issuable to Polish citizens for up to 90 days; the processing takes 12 business days. It is possible to obtain a single- or double-entry visa.
In addition to the standard documents, you will need a private invitation.
What Is a Private Invitation to Russia?
A private invitation must be obtained by the Russian inviting party and then mailed to the Polish citizen. This invitation must be issued on a state-approved form obtained from a GAMI MIA office.
The document must specify the following:
- purpose of the foreigner’s visit to Russia;
- the Polish citizen’s passport details;
- the inviting party’s details;
- visa validity and number of entries.
Each private invitation bears a unique ID and can only be issued to the Russian inviting party after the invitee’s details have been verified.
Attention! Shall they discover any previous violation of law (criminal records, unpaid fines, or deportations from Russia), the invitation will be denied!
Russian Business Visa for Polish Citizens
A business visa is issued to a foreign citizen to participate in business meetings and conferences in the Russian Federation. The Polish can obtain a single-, double-, or multiple-entry business visa. Maximum validity is 5 years for the EU citizens.
To obtain a business visa, a Polish citizen will need a business invitation.
What is a Business Invitation to Russia?
A business invitation for a Polish citizen must be provided by a legal person accredited by the DCA MFA or by the AFMS.
A business invitation to Russia for Polish citizens (actually, for any foreigners) falls into three categories:
- a letter of invitation from an entity;
- a Telex invitation;
- an AFMS form.
Letter of Invitation From an Entity
A letter of invitation is issued on the letterhead of the inviting entity and has advantages over other types of business invitations:
- fast processing time (5 minutes to issue), ready immediately after paid for;
- much cheaper than other types (Telex or AFMS form)
- you do not need to submit the original paper to a Russian consular department, which will save the postal fees.
The format of such invitations is not standardized; this document contains a DCA (MFA of Russia) request to a Russian consular service or embassy. The Polish citizen will only need the ID they will provide when filing their visa application with a Russian consular service in Poland.
AFMS-form business invitations are issuable upon a Russian inviting party’s request. It can be issued within 12 business days for single- or double-entry visas, or within 17 business days for multiple-entry visas.
Russian Working Visa for Polish Citizens
A Polish citizen will need a working visa if planning to travel to Russia to work for a Russian company. Visa processing can be sped up if the applicant has a work permit and an invitation to work from a Russian company.
Long-term working visas are issuable for up to a year. Extending such a visa requires leaving Russia and re-applying.
Attention! Invitations to work are not purchasable! If you do not have an employer in Russia yet, you can visit the country on a tourist visa to find a job.
The whole procedure is as follows:
- obtain a Russian work permit;
- obtain a 3-month working visa;
- register with the migration office upon arrival;
- extend your working visa for a year;register with the migration office for up to a year (i.e. until the work permit expires).
The employer is responsible for the Polish citizen’s timely registration with the migration office. The working visa is yearly extensible without need to leave Russia. However, if the Polish citizen finds another job at a different company, they will have to leave the country and do all the paperwork again.
Consular services of the Russian Federation in Poland
Russian Embassy in Poland
Belwederska 49, 00-761 Warszawa.
Phone: +48 (22) 621 3453
Fax: +48 (22) 625 3016
Consular Department (visa support)
Belwederska 25C, 00-761 Warszawa.
Phone: (+48-22) 122-10-12
Fax: (+48-22) 849-40-85
Opening hours: Mon, Tue, Thu, Fri 8 am to 12 pm (document submission only at 3 to 4 pm)
Consulate General of the Russian Federation in Gdańsk
Stefana Batorego 15, 80251 Gdansk—Wrzeszcz, Rzeczpospolita Polska
Phone: (8-10-48-58) 341-10-88, 341-96-39
Fax: (8-10-48-58) 341-62-00, 341-40-92
General Consulate of the Russian Federation in Krakow
Biskupia 7, 31144 Krakow, Rzeczpospolita Polska
Phone: (8-10-48-12) 422-26-47
Fax: (8-10-48-12) 422-90-66
General Consulate of the Russian Federation in Poznan
Bukowska 53a, 60567 Poznan, Rzeczpospolita Polska
Phone: (8-10-48-61) 841-77-40
Fax: (8-10-48-61) 847-49-97