When we applied for our Russian tourist visa for St. Petersburg in March, we were informed by the Russian counsulate in Seattle that for $20 more, we could apply for a 3-year visa. Guess they just started issuing 3-year torist visas recently. We decided to do it and figure we'll now plan to take a trip to Moscow and the Golden Ring cities in a year or two. We had no difficulty getting the visa approved. It's so expensive and stressful to apply for a visa we thought someone else might like this information.
Applying for a Russian visa doesn’t have to be stressful, the process while a bit byzantine is fairly straightforward and if you live in a city with a consulate like Seattle fairly quick. Ever since Invisa took over visa processing it’s pretty quick. You do your application online, print out the paperwork and go to Invisa with the papers, your passport and photos, the required fee and for the three-year-visa a short letter asking for the same. The ladies that work at the Seattle office are all friendly and speak excellent English so it all goes smoothly and unless there is a line you should be in and out in 10 minutes. Return two weeks later for you passport and you’re all set!