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Russian Visa, Dual Citizenship, Travel Agencies vs Consulate

+2 votes
Hi, I was wondering if someone could shed some light on this. It is my understanding that if you were born in Russia but left before 1992 you're not a citizen of Russia but still have to provide proof of this when applying for visa. If you left after 1992, you are a citizen no matter what, and will not get a Russian visa unless you renounce your citizenship.

Now, I left as a kid with my parents after 1992. I never had my own internal or foreign Russian passport. I am a US citizen now and have been for a while. I think i'm still registered somewhere in my home city in Russia, since my relatives still get notices for me to be in army once in a while. However, I've applied for visa with travel agencies before and always have gotten a visa. I put down the real year I left russia on the application and also the fact that US Passport is only one i've ever been issued by anyone. So I'm wondering what the deal is? WOuld i be refused a visa if I went to the consulate myself? How do travel agencies are then able to get me visas? Do they have some kind of "arrangement" with consulates? This is very intersting to me since I dont know if I should or can get a Russian passport, since the only russian thing I have proving my identity is my birth certificate, and no way or proving when I left or anything else. Or, do they Russian authrotiies not consider me a citizen at all since i'm not in any internal databases and never had any kind of Russian passport?

Thank in advance.
asked Mar 5, 2015 in Russian Visa by Cheburatorr (150 points)
Cheburatorr, technically you are a Russian citizen. You got visas to Russia, because the consulate did not pay attention to the rule. It happens. Do not be surprised if next time they refuse to issue your visa.

1 Answer

+1 vote
I'm not aware of this 1992 rule, but if the rule is such that if you left Russia after 1992 you are a citizen of Russia, then you should not need a visa to go to Russia, you just need to get a Russian passport at the Russian consulate... Your birth certificate should be enough to prove that.

If they don't consider you a citizen or if you're not a citizen, then simply apply for a Russian visa with your US passport.

Regarding whether or not you should apply personally or if you should use an agency to do that - probably if you go through an agency it's going to be more expensive but they'll have to deal with all the questions of the consulate, so maybe it's easier for you. But choose a good one, we actually have a list of the ones that we recommend on http://waytorussia.net/RussianVisa/Agencies.html
answered Mar 5, 2015 by Aleksey (540 points)