Russian Visas

We have traveled extensively and needed visas for some of our trips, most of which we have gotten on our own. However, the Russian visa is more complicated than most. (I think Tauck should have something about it on their site more than just a link to Pinnacle TDS, because it is more complicated.)
1. Your passport needs anywhere between two and six blank pages, not including the amendments pages at the end. Pinnacle TDS says six blanks,; Zierer Visa Services says two. If you do not have blank pages, you will either need to get a new passport if yours is going to expire or add blank ;lages to your existing passport - which takes time. You can go to the US Passport Control site on line. You may need to expedite extra pages if you are close to going on your Russian trip.
Pinnacle charges $217 a person to add extra pages; but if you do it yourself, it only costs an expedited fee of $60 a person!
2. Even if you use Pinnacle or Zierer for the Russian visa, you will still need to fill out your visa application on line - use the Pinnacle link - and part of what you will need is the list of every country you have traveled to and the dates for the last ten years. Yes, last ten years!! Your passport, of course, is a great help in reconstructing.
3. You need a "letter of invitation." Tauck sends theirs directly to Pinnacle. If you are not using pinnacle, then you will need to call Tauck and get them to send one to you or your travel agent. You will need that for the visa. You will also need two passport photos.
Just thought some of you might like to know.
My husband Mickey and I are on the June 6th trip.

Comments

  • I feel that getting the Russian visa was very complicated. We are going on the May 30th trip, russia and Baltics. For the charge of $455 per couple by Pinnacle, most of the work was done by my husband and I. It took me an hour and half to do the first one. Then, when I got the hang of what to do, my husand's only took a half hour.

    Is anyone going on this trip on May 30th? We are joining in Helsinki on June 4th, due to the nature of our business, it is hard to take off more time.
  • Interesting. We are going on Russian Glories, Baltic Treasures in June and paid Pinnacle $515 for our visas. Is that the trip you are going on?
  • judy05 wrote:
    Interesting. We are going on Russian Glories, Baltic Treasures in June and paid Pinnacle $515 for our visas. Is that the trip you are going on?

    Hi Judy. My wife Debbie and I are going on the June Baltics tour. We're from NY and celebrating our 30th anniv with Tauck and you!

    m
  • What date are you going???? Please email me!! [email protected]
  • whew!!! I'm glad you all thought that Visa Application was complicated and "ridiculous"! It took me all afternoon to do it then teach my husband how to do it. Took him equally as long. To list not only all the countries that you visited in the last 10 yrs but last employment places, parents names, educational background? I wasn't applying for a job to the consulate for heavens sake! Thank goodness I never graduated in bioengineering or any type of engineering, worked at a chemical lab or for the secret service, etc. For sure I wouldn't finish that visa application and at the end be denies entrance! I finally got the "extra pages" that yes, cost an additional $ 227 + $ 515 (for 2 visas) along with our passports back just last week. All I can say is that hopefully this trip will be worth all this extra anxiety and be as memorable as I hope.
  • Has anyone applied for their Russian Visa directly at the Russian Consulate instead of using Pinnacle? We live in New York so getting to the office in Manhattan would be easy. Do they process it on the spot?
  • judy05 wrote:
    What date are you going???? Please email me!! [email protected]
    Are you going June 27-that's our scheduled trip-we are from South Florida-if so, I am [email protected]
  • judy05 wrote:
    What date are you going???? Please email me!! [email protected]
    Are you going June 27-that's our scheduled trip-we are from South Florida-if so, I am [email protected]
  • Loewenberg wrote:
    Hi Judy. My wife Debbie and I are going on the June Baltics tour. We're from NY and celebrating our 30th anniv with Tauck and you!

    m
    Donna and Jack from South Florida on Russian Glories, Baltic Treasures June 27. Will you be traveling then? Happy Anniversary!
    [email protected]
  • Donna, we will be on the August 8th tour.
This discussion has been closed.