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Russia Travel Information

Russia Travel InformationRussian authorities stopped all regular air traffic to/from Russia on March 27 as a measure to limit the spread of the covid-19 virus. Transit via Russia is therefore also not possible. The only flights to Europe now are any EU coordinated or Russian special flights from Moscow. For other relevant information about coronavirus and travel restrictions, see the section on Health and Entry.

Health

Coronavirus (covid-19): Self-isolation regimen to limit the spread of infection has now been introduced in large parts of Russia. It is the individual federation subject that introduces necessary anti-infection measures such as quarantine regulations, bans etc. based on local conditions. It is therefore important to be aware that there may be variations between the regions. Some regions have also introduced exit/entry restrictions. For more information see the website of the Russian government (Russian).

As of March 30, cross-border traffic from Russia has been temporarily suspended, with the exception of foreign nationals leaving the country. Individuals with dual Norwegian/Russian citizenship or Russian citizenship and residence permits in Norway can also leave Russia to travel to Norway (single departure). The latter exception follows from the government decree of 29 April.

The above also applies to outbound crossings to Finland for transit to Norway. Further travel plans to Norway must be documented (flight/ferry ticket for further travel without stay).

As of April 29, Russian border crossings (along national borders) are no longer closed for departure for Russian citizens who also hold another citizenship (eg Norwegian) or valid residence permit in another country (eg Norway). These groups thus have the opportunity to travel out of Russia across national borders to travel to the country in which they have permanent residence. However, such departure can only be carried out once. There are no restrictions on leaving for foreign nationals without Russian citizenship.

  • Countryaah: Moscow is the capital of Russia. Check to find information of population, geography, history, and economy about the capital city.

For trips across the Russian-Norwegian border, see the Murmansk section.

Questions related to Russian exit restrictions must be directed to Russian authorities, such as the Russian Embassy in Oslo, or local police (MVD's local office).

For travelers to Moscow: According to official statistics , Moscow is still the epicenter of the covid-19 virus in Russia. One must be prepared that the number of infected people will continue to rise rapidly in the coming days and weeks. Moscow has introduced stringent measures to prevent the spread of infection, including self-insulation for all inhabitants. This is currently valid until 13 May, but it may be further extended depending on the infection situation. All restaurants, malls and public parks are temporarily closed. It is also encouraged to refrain from visiting churches. All schools are also closed. It is only possible to leave the home in an emergency, and when purchasing food and pharmacy.

All travelers to Moscow must take into account the regulations issued by the Moscow mayor on March 5, 2020 on the introduction of a high emergency regime. According to the regulations, anyone traveling to Moscow from areas where new cases of new coronavirus infection have been registered must notify local authorities upon arrival in Moscow on hotline telephone number +7 (495) 870-45-09, and contact a doctor if they have respiratory symptoms. Travelers may be asked to provide contact information.

Those arriving in Moscow from countries with the spread of the coronavirus infection, including Norway, shall provide for self-isolation (quarantine) for two weeks from arrival. An electronic system has been introduced that requires that you have to search and get permission to leave the home for specific purposes. Those who violate the quarantine provisions are fined (information in Russian). For more information on the measures taken by the city authorities, see the website of the Moscow authorities (Russian).

For travelers to/from Murmansk county: On March 12, 2020, the Government of Russia decided to temporarily halt passage to Russia by foreign (non-Russian) nationals across the Norwegian-Russian border (Storskog/ Borisoglebsk).

The Norwegian border is also closed to foreigners without a residence permit, but for the time being it is possible for Norwegian citizens and persons with legal residence to cross the border to Norway, provided that Norwegian quarantine regulations are followed. On April 29, the Russian government changed the restrictions on leaving Russian citizens with dual (Norwegian/Russian) citizenship, as well as Russian nationals with residence permits in another country (eg Norway). Please note that 14 days of compulsory quarantine in Murmansk have now been introduced for all travelers to the county from other parts of Russia.

Persons who wish to travel to Norway via Storskog and do not drive their own car, should contact the Norwegian Consulate General in Murmansk (cg.murmansk@mfa.no, tel. +7 8152 400 300) for assistance in organizing transport to the border . From April 15 and until then, the border is open for passage every day in the period from 10.00 to 13.00 Norwegian time (11.00 to 14.00 Russian time). NOTE: You must arrange for transport from Storskog border station on the Norwegian side; It is currently not possible to book a taxi. Domestic flights from Kirkenes are reduced and can be canceled at short notice. Quarantine regulations can make it difficult to book hotel rooms in Murmansk and Kirkenes.

For travelers to St. Petersburg: All travelers to St. Petersburg must take into account the restrictions imposed by an elevated emergency regime that runs until May 12. The authorities are asking everyone (with a few exceptions) to stay home. Restaurants, malls and public parks are closed. The same goes for shops and malls other than grocery stores, pharmacies and others selling essential goods. It is also encouraged to refrain from visiting churches. The authorities recommend everyone to use a mouthwash/mask when staying in a public place (on the street, in the store/pharmacy, on public transport, in taxis, etc.).

Russian authorities are urging anyone arriving in St. Petersburg from countries where coronavirus infection cases - including Norway - have been identified to call 112 and provide whereabouts and contact information, as well as go on a 14-day quarantine (self-isolation) upon arrival. City authorities advise against people not living in St. Petersburg to visit the city.

It is recommended to contact the Russian Embassy in Oslo for further information on travel to the country.

More information about the coronavirus, spread and security measures can be found in the following sources:

  • Directorate of Health: New coronavirus
  • no: Information on travel advice and coronavirus
  • World Health Organization WHO (English): Coronavirus disease (covid-19) outbreak

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Russian health conditions are usually good, and food is usually cooked hygienically. It is not recommended to drink tap water. No special vaccines are required for short stays in Russia.

Russia has a rapidly growing number of people infected with HIV.

The Russian public health system has highly trained personnel, but the lack of equipment and medicines means that the standard is consistently lower than in Norway. There are international medical centers, dental clinics and specialty hospitals in the larger cities that provide high-quality assistance for a fee. The National Insurance Scheme does not cover health services for tourist stays and it is therefore necessary to purchase comprehensive travel insurance when traveling to Russia.

For official health professional travel advice, refer to the website of the Norwegian Institute of Public Health.

Entry

Please note that entry regulations may change. The Foreign Service is not responsible if the following information on entry regulations or visa requirements is changed at short notice. It is the responsibility of the traveler to ensure that travel documents are valid for entry and to familiarize themselves with the current entry rules for each country.

Visa: The traveler has an independent responsibility to read and comply with the entry regulations (visa regulations). use the correct application procedure, provide correct and accurate information and comply with visa requirements including validity. Always check that the correct visa has been issued (visa type, personal information, duration) before departure.

It is recommended to obtain information from the Russian Embassy in Oslo's website.

Russia has a visa requirement for Norwegian citizens. A visa cannot be obtained at a border crossing and must be obtained before entering the country. If you are in transit, you do not need a transit visa unless you change airport. For travel from Russia to Belarus and vice versa, a visa is required. Flights from Belarus always land on the domestic terminal in Moscow, and a visa is required for terminal change. The visa application must state which places you have planned to visit.

From October 2019, an electronic visa has been introduced for travel to St. Petersburg and Leningrad Oblast (county) as well as Kaliningrad and the country's easternmost part, for short-stay stays and on special conditions. E-visa is applied through electronic application portal. It is recommended to carefully read the application procedure and e-visa terms and conditions.

Please note that the name must be spelled exactly as shown in the electronic line at the bottom of the passport page with personal data without the use of æ, ø, å, ä, ö, etc. Note approved boundary place of entry and exit and for topical mode of transport (air/car; not for arrival by train). The departure time must not be exceeded. Entry from or exit to other parts of Russia by e-visa is not possible. Violation of the terms of e-visa may result in rejection at the border and expulsion for a period of time.

Any questions should be directed to the Russian Embassy or the Russian Visa Center in Oslo.

Stays beyond the period of validity of the visa are considered violations of Russian immigration law and can be punishable by a fine and entry ban. Persons residing in Russia must arrange to leave the country before the expiry of the visa and no later than the last day of validity of the visa. After the visa expiration date, people without a valid stay can be denied a hotel. See more details about assistance with expired validity on the website of the Norwegian Embassy in Moscow. Validity is counted from midnight arrival day at. 00:00 to midnight on the last day of the visa's validity period, at 24:00.

From 19 March, foreign citizens can renew their visas or temporary/ permanent residence permits in Russia. This applies for whatever purpose and upon renewal of a valid or already expired visa. He or she should contact the Ministry of the Interior's Local Migration Office (MVD) at the nearest police station at the place of residence to submit a simple written request for an extension.

More information on visas and other useful information can be found on the website of the Russian Embassy in Oslo.

Foreign nationals must register no later than seven days after arrival in Russia. Hotel or tourist organizations will assist with registration. If you live privately, you can for example. register the visa at the police passport department (pasportnyj chair/OVIR/). It is also possible to register by mail.

People with dual citizenship (Norwegian/Russian) should be aware that Russia does not recognize dual citizenship. Norwegian citizens who enter Russia on a Russian passport are considered Russian citizens in Russia, and the Norwegian embassy cannot normally assist the Russian authorities in such situations.

People who are traveling in Russia with Russian passports, must also go out with Russian passport (foreign passport), cf. "Travel document, passport," below.

Import and export: When entering, it is allowed to pass on a green zone with up to USD 10,000 (or other currency) in cash without having to fill out customs declaration papers. There is no upper limit for the import of foreign currency, but larger sums and valuable items such as electrical articles, jewelry, instruments and antiques must be cleared (pass on red zone). The clearance at entry is crucial for any export of currency/valuables again upon departure.

When leaving, cash must be cleared between USD 3000 and USD 10,000. The maximum amount for legal export is USD 10,000 (or other currency) unless otherwise stated upon entry. Customs clearance documents shall be available at all border crossings. For more details see here.

When importing cash, banknotes of recent date should be included, and the exchange of money must only be done at official exchange offices. However, it is recommended to bring as little cash as possible as most places are easily accessible at ATMs where credit cards can be used in the usual way.

There are strict restrictions on the export of Russian antiques, icons, medals, art and other objects of historical or cultural value. Therefore, receipts must be kept for all purchases of this type of item in Russia. Export certificates and approval from the Ministry of Culture must be obtained before the goods can be taken out of the country, but export certificates will not be issued for items older than 1917.

Travel document, passport: Persons who have refugee status in Norway will be issued a travel certificate (green passport). This is valid for all countries except the refugee's home country.

Persons with a residence permit pursuant to section 38 of the Immigration Regulations (strong human reasons) may be issued with an immigrant passport.

Persons who are not Norwegian citizens, but who have a residence permit and have been issued a travel certificate or foreign national passport, can in case of emergency (loss of passport) be issued a passport letter at the embassy for one return trip to Norway.

The embassy issues manual emergency passports in cases where Norwegians are stolen or have lost their ordinary passports. Emergency passports are only issued to Norwegian citizens. It is not possible to issue emergency passports to a dual citizenship person who has entered Russia with their Russian passport.

Press visa: Norwegian journalists need both press visa and accreditation in order to work as a journalist in Russia. It is important to be out in time if you want to travel to Russia as a journalist. Press visas must be applied to the Russian Embassy in Oslo or the Russian Consulate General in Kirkenes. Accreditation must be applied for from the Russian Foreign Ministry (MID).

For the complete overview, read about press visas and accreditation on the website of the Norwegian Embassy in Moscow.

Safety

In Russia, with the exception of areas covered by the Travel Council, it is mainly safe to travel but extra vigilance is recommended. Official travel advice from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has been provided for trips to the North Caucasus.

Note: Crimea (including Sevastopol) is part of Ukraine under international law. Accordingly, travel advice for Crimea is listed under Ukraine. You can see the travel advice here.

Note: In recent years, and now in 2019, a number of cities in Russia, including Moscow, St. Petersburg, and Murmansk, have on several occasions been hit by a large number of bomb threats aimed at shopping malls, railway stations, schools and others. public buildings. This has led to evacuation of buildings and temporary closure of relevant areas. So far, these bomb threats have turned out to be false. Norwegian citizens staying or traveling in Russia are generally encouraged to be vigilant, especially in public places, and follow the advice of local authorities.

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Norwegian citizens staying in or traveling in Russia are encouraged to be careful about the visa rules and always carry their passports. It is important to observe the validity of the visa and check the duration before departure. It is recommended to have a copy of your passport and visa somewhere in your luggage other than where the passport is stored.

From time to time, Russia is affected by terrorist acts or acts of loss of human lives, mainly in the North Caucasus and major cities. The terrorist attacks have previously been aimed primarily at Russian police, soldiers and government officials, but arbitrary terror has also been the cause of dozens of civilian victims, including foreign nationals. The most exposed public transport stations and transport systems, the railway stations and the subway, the subways.

The North Caucasus constitutes a particularly poor and uncertain area, where kidnappings, hostages, suicide bombers, road bombs and other violent incidents have occurred. Foreigners have also been affected. The embassy has little opportunity to provide consular assistance in the North Caucasus. Only strictly necessary trips to the region should be made.

In recent years, there has been an increase in racially and extremist motivated violence, including in connection with demonstrations by rights activists.

Russia, like many other countries, has its share of crime, and one should always be vigilant against pickpockets and scammers. Particularly vulnerable places are areas where many people are crowded together, such as on the subway, in the subways, at train stations, airports, markets, tourist attractions, hotels and restaurants. Foreigners have been found to be particularly vulnerable in and around nightclubs and on their way home after drinking new alcohol. It should be noted that in certain situations, the violence threshold can be significantly lower than what you are used to.

Homosexuality is not prohibited in Russia, but homophobic attitudes are prevalent in Russian society. Traditional and nationalist attitudes can manifest themselves in aggression or violence against people of non-Russian appearance or non-heterosexual lifestyle. In general, conflicts, etc., should be avoided where there is a danger that such conflicts may arise.

Prohibition of "propaganda against minors for nontraditional sexual relations" came into force on July 1, 2013. For foreign nationals, violations result in fines of up to 100,000 rubles (about NOK 14,000), possible administrative detention for up to 15 days, and expulsion from the Russian Federation.

Russian police check the identification papers of both Russians and foreigners on the street, and one should therefore always carry the passport to avoid any unpleasantness. If people are suspected of pretending to be police or seeking financial gain, one should insist on seeing identification, taking note of it, and possibly claiming to be taken to the nearest police station. Corruption is a problem in Russia, which can include both police and other government officials. In case of doubt, contact the embassy.

Financial fraud is common in various forms of publicity dissemination, especially over the Internet (see Warning against Internet Fraud).

Russia has a well-developed train network which it is mostly safe to use. However, one should not leave the passenger compartment unattended, and care should be taken especially when traveling by night train.

Russian flights comply with ICAO's international technical safety requirements for aviation (see ICAO). Domestic routes, especially in distant areas, may have varying security standards. The level of service is consistently at par with Western companies.

The Russian road network is of varying quality. International driver's licenses are required (as issued by NAF in Norway), and together with car insurance this is sufficient to drive a car in Russia for shorter periods. Russia became a member of the "green card system" in January 2009, but Norwegians unfamiliar with Russian traffic conditions should obtain the necessary information about this in advance. The Russians have high death rates in traffic and a restless driving style seen with Norwegian eyes. The driver limit is 0.0, but it appears that drivers are driving in the affected condition. Car robberies have also been reported along the country's roads. Pedestrians are not always taken into account.

Floods occur from time to time in Russia, mainly in Siberia, and earthquakes in the North Caucasus and Russia's Pacific region. At regular intervals there are also large forest and peat fires.

Norway is represented in Russia with embassy in Moscow, consulates in St. Petersburg and Murmansk and honorary consulate in Arkhangelsk.

Norwegian citizens who are staying for a shorter or longer period in Russia are encouraged to register on www.reiseregistrering.no.

Emergency telephones: Common emergency number: 112.
Fire 101, police 102, ambulance 103 (from landline or mobile)

In an emergency, contact the Norwegian Embassy in Moscow or the Consulates General of St. Petersburg and Murmansk. Outside the working hours of the consulates and the embassy, ​​travelers can contact the UD's operational center on
tel.: +47 23 95 00 00 or by e-mail: UDops@mfa.no.

Practical information

Russia spans eleven time zones. Time difference between Norway and central Russian time (Moscow, St. Petersburg) is in summer + 1 hour and in winter + 2 hours (UTC + 3)

The Russian ruble is the only current currency. It is not necessary to bring large amounts of hard currency. ATMs are very common in the larger cities, and most shops and restaurants accept credit cards. When traveling to smaller places one should bring Russian cash.

Area code +7, Moscow +7 495 and +7 499. The mobile network in Russia is of the GSM type and well-developed. There is coverage in all central areas.

Russia uses 220 volts with the same type of sockets as in Norway.

Banking, public offices and shops are usually open from 10am to 7pm. Many shops also have 24-hour service and Sundays. In less central areas, breaks in the middle of the day are common.

National Holidays: 1st-5th. January (New Year), January 7 (Russian Orthodox Christmas),
February 23 ("Fatherland's Day of Defense"), March 8 (Women's Day), May 1 (Workers' Day), May 9 (Victory Day), 12. June (Russian National Day/ Independence Day) and November 4 ("Day of Peace and Reconciliation"). If the holiday falls on a Saturday or Sunday, the day off is often moved to the nearest regular weekday.

Green card (car insurance): As of January 1, 2009, Russia, as the 45th country in a row, is a member of the green card system. This means that vehicles from the other 44 countries, including the Norwegian registered, with a valid green card issued in the country of registration can cross over the Russian border and drive in Russia without having to take out Russian border insurance.

Russian is an official language, and only a minority, mainly younger people in the larger cities, speak English. It is an advantage to know the Cyrillic alphabet. Russians dress relatively formally, and it is common to dress up when going out to concerts, restaurants, etc.

It is prohibited to photograph military installations or areas of strategic importance, including airports, and some public buildings.

The Russian border limit is set to 0.0. There are severe penalties for the use and possession of drugs. The conditions in the prisons are different from those found in Norway.

Below is a list of the Embassy of Norway in Moscow and consulates in Russia:

Royal Norwegian Embassy in Moscow
Address: Ulitsa Povarskaja 7, 115127 Moscow
Nearest Subway Stop: Arbatskaya (light blue line)
Phone: +7 499 951 1000
Fax: +7 499 951 1001
Email: emb.moscow@mfa.no
Website: https: //www.norway.no/ru/russia/
Office hours: 09.00-17.00 (16.00 Friday). Daylight saving time: 09.00-16.00

Consulate General of St. Petersburg
Address: Ligovsky prospectus 13-15 (3rd floor), 191014 St. Petersburg
Phone: +7 812 612 41 00/+47 23 95 90 00
Fax: + 7 812 612 41 01
E-mail: cons.gen.stpetersburg @ mfa.no
Website: Consulate General of St. Petersburg
Office Hours: 09.00-17.00 (16.00 Friday). Daylight saving time: 09.00-16.00

Consulate General of Murmansk
Address: Proezd Kapitana Tarana 25 (6th floor), 183025 Murmansk
Phone: +7 815 240 0300
Fax: +7 815 240 0301
E-mail: cons.gen.murmansk@mfa.no
Website: Consulate General of Murmansk
Office Hours: 09.00-16.00

Royal Norwegian Honorary Consulate, Arkhangelsk
Address: Ul. Pomorskaja, 16, 163000 Arkhangelsk, Russia
Honorary Consul in Arkhangelsk is Andrej Shaljov
Phone: +7 8182 65 10 43
E-mail: arkhangelsk@barents.no

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