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Visa

Sorry, this may have been answered already but I have found conflicting information in regards to the new biometric visa that is (or isn't) required to enter Russia? Does anyone know if the biometrics are just for certain countries?

Thanks bunches
Jo

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2353 posts

Here is the Russian Embassy in Canada with the requirements for Canadians.

Here is from the Russian Embassy in the UK:

About the new requirement for foreign nationals and stateless persons to provide their biometric data when applying for Russian visas on the territory of the United Kingdom
In accordance with the Executive Order of the President of the Russian Federation No. 735 of 24 November 2014, «On Collecting Biometric Personal Data of Foreign Nationals and Stateless Persons», beginning 10 December 2014 the Diplomatic Missions and Consular offices of the Russian Federation in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the Russian Visa Application Centres in London and Edinburgh will start collecting biometric data (fingerprints) of all foreign nationals and stateless persons for each of their application for Russian visa.
Therefore, biometric data of applicants will be collected in person at the Russian Visa Application Centres in London and Edinburgh (in some cases at the Consular Section of the Embassy of the Russian Federation in London and the Consulate General of the Russian Federation in Edinburgh). In the event of refusal to undergo this procedure, the applicant will not be issued a visa.
Biometric data will not be collected when issuing diplomatic and official visas, nor for individuals under 12 years of age.
For nationals of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, the collection of biometric data will be implemented taking into account the principle of reciprocity.
As a pilot project this procedure will be implemented in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, the Kingdom of Denmark, the Republic of the Union of Myanmar, the Republic of Namibia and the Russian Foreign Ministry’s representative office at the border crossing point in Vnukovo International Airport. Following the completion of the pilot project, the duration of which has yet to be determined, the collection of biometric personal data will be gradually introduced at all Russian diplomatic missions and consular offices.
The fingerprinting procedure should not be considered as a tightening of Russia’s visa policy, but rather an essential element of its modernization. The use of additional biometrics in visa procedures for Russian citizens has been practiced for several years by the consular services of the US and the UK. The European Union countries are planning to introduce this procedure for Russian citizens in April 2015. The main objective of the new procedure is to improve the security of the visas issued in the context of preventing illegal migration, terrorism and other illegal activities.

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This data is collected because those countries require it from Russian visa applicant. For 33 countries, no visa is required at all because Russians get the same treatment. US citizens can get a 3 year multiple re-entry visa for no added cost above the 3 day Transit Visa. Luckily those countries where it is required, are not far from a consulate, unlike Russians who can have to travel 11 time zones for the visa interview and often are denied.