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Russia Experiences Significant Increase in Tourism, Reflected in Visa Applications

Russia Experiences Significant Increase in Tourism, Reflected in Visa Applications


Russia has experienced an increase in the interest of travelers to the country, which was noticed in the increased issuance of traditional paper visas by Russian diplomatic and visa service centres abroad.

According to Prensa Latina, a partner of TV BRICS, the number of visas increased by almost 65 percent within one year – from 510,000 in 2022 to 840,000 in the following year, VisaGuide.World reports.

The issuance of 170,000 documents in the first five months of 2023, which resulted from the following months of the introduction of a unified electronic visa programme, has been one of the reasons for this increase.

The head of the consular department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Aleksei Klimov, revealed such data, which showed that the issuance of both paper and electronic visas issued, exceeded the one million mark.

In addition, around 221,000 visas were granted to citizens of countries that are considered to have conducted ‘unfriendly acts’ against the Russian Federation. Klimov noted that despite the diplomatic ties, foreigners interested in visiting the country are allowed to do so.

Russia is ready to continue to keep its doors open.

Aleksei Klimov, Head of the Consular Department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Available data for 2022 show that 687,239 visa applications were filed by Russian nationals in 2022, up from 536,241 recorded in the preceding years. Finland, Spain and Italy represented 60 percent of all visas issued to Russians in 2022, with 105,323 visas out of a total of 112,737 applications.

In addition, 166,893 applications were filed to Spanish consulates, which granted 154,450 out of those requests.

The number of other countries granting a high number of visas to Russian applicants in 2022 include Greece, which granted 61,840 visas out of 75,830 applications, followed by France with 55,285 out of 64,309 requests and 38,809 out of 48,895 applications filed in Germany. In addition, Hungary granted 25,081 out of 27,595 visa applications.

However, data also show that 83.3 percent fewer Schengen visa applications were filed by Russians in 2022 compared to 2019 levels, which can be due to the COVID-19 pandemic as well as the war in Ukraine, with the latter being the main reason for sanctions, leading to a decrease in visa applications.

In 2022, Schengen consulates and visa application centres processed a total of 7.5 million short-term visa applications, which is 55 percent down from the number of visas processed in 2019.



The article was first published here

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