You will need a visa to enter Russia. Before you can apply for a visa, you will need an official invitation from the Federal Migration
Service of the Russian Ministry of the Interior. RLUS expects to receive the invitation between 3 and 10 weeks before departure.
RLUS cannot be any more exact than that, as Russian bureaucracy is notoriously unpredictable!
If you have dual Russian/UK nationality,
you will have to travel on your Russian passport. If you don't have one, please apply straightaway, as it can take a long time to
apply for it.
Your visa invitation will allow you to apply for a single entry visa for 90 days. On arrival in Russia, if your
course is longer than 90 days, the university or institute in Russia will extend your visa. In recent years they have also been able
to convert your visa to a multi-entry one. This will allow you to leave Russia during the reading weeks. There will be a small charge
for this. RLUS strongly advises all students to convert their visa to a multi-entry one, even if you have no plans to leave Russia
during your course. Each year one or two students need to return home in an emergency, e.g serious illness or death of a close relative.
If you only have a single entry visa, you may not be able to return to Russia to complete your course.
Please note that Russian
bureaucracy is unpredictable and there is no absolute guarantee that you will have your multi-entry visa in time to
travel during the reading weeks. You are therefore advised not to make any travel plans, until you have your multi-entry visa.
will send the student invitation (sample on the left) to the address you gave RLUS on your booking form. If it is being
sent to an address in the UK, it will be sent by Royal Mail Special Delivery. If you want it sent outside the UK, it will be sent
by UPS courier, as sending it by the most secure postal service Royal Mail can provide has proved unreliable. You will be expected
to pay the cost (currently £45).
Most students will apply for their visa in the UK. You need to apply through the VFS Global
website, and not directly through the Russian Consulate. There is a link on the left to their website. You will need an HIV test.
There is a link on the left to NHS test centres.
You can find out how to apply for a visa in the UK by dowloading
the file on the left. If you are a national of another country, or are studying ouside the UK, you may also apply in that country.
However, please note that the rules for obtaining a visa are different in different countries. You will need to contact the Consulate
concerned to find out how to apply. You can find the addresses of Russian Consulates worldwide by clicking on the link on the left.
Even if you apply in the UK, the documents required by non-UK nationals are likely to be different. There are full details on the
VFS Global website.