Russian Visa Invitation. How much it cost in 2020?

What is Russian Visa Invitation?

Invitation to Russia — is a document which you need to obtain a visa to Russia. This document is also called «visa support». Invitation indicates a person responsible for you at the Russian territory. There are several invitation types depending to a length of stay and visit purposes. Cost of invitations may range from 15$ to 478$.

Information on this website is available in the following languages:
Russian Russian, English English.

If you already know what is the invitation and want to get it:

Important information about the invitation to Russia for a visa:


It isn’t so difficult to obtain a visa to Russia as it may seem at first. In most cases it is required to get an invitation to Russia during a process of obtaining a visa. In this article I will tell you about all types of such invitations and where to obtain them fast and convenient. I recommend you to watch the following video for a quick introduction. We will consider this case in detail below.

How much does Russian Visa Invitation cost?

Cost of the invitation to Russia usually depends on the length of your stay in the country. Generally, the longer is a duration of a visa, the more is the cost of an invitation.

The cheapest and the most convenient is the tourist invitation for 30 days. Its cost in the 2020 is ≈15$.

There is a more expensive option, it is the business invitation for 1 year. Its cost is ≈80$. Besides there are special visas permitting to work. Their cost and the cost of invitations for them starts from 478$.

See the review of all invitation types

How and where to get Russian Visa Invitation?

In order to get an invitation to Russia you need to determine the duration of your stay in the country since the type of required invitation depends on it.

The most convenient, popular and the fastest option is the tourist invitation. You can get such an invitation from modern companies with online services right after the payment.

Different invitation types are being obtained in separate places and have various length of stay, processing term and the cost. In the next section dedicated to the overview of all invitation types, you will be able to choose an invitation of your need and follow to the deatailed description of how and where to obtain it.

Overview of Russian Invitation types

At first you need to determine characteristics of an invitation which depend on your requirements. For some people the main requirement is the speed of obtaining an invitation, for others the duration of a visa and the length of continuous stay on the Russian territory is important. Cost of the invitation and complexity of obtaining procedures is no less important.

So, the important characteristics for you are:

  • Speed – invitation processing terms
  • Duration – maximum duration of a visa, which is issued under your invitation
  • Cost – average cost of an invitation
  • Multiplicity – maximum amount of possible entries to the Russian territory

Further I will specify the main characteristics of different invitation types. Shown prices are average on the market in the 2020 for the citizens of the EU, USA, Japan, China. For the citizens of other countries prices usually higher depending on their level of migration risk. Positive criteria are highlighted in green, negative features are in red. If you have found needed invitation, follow the link in the list to read detailed information where I will describe all the feautures and recommend companies which issue such invitations.

  • Tourist invitation

    Speed: Instantly (online)
    Duration: Up to 30 days *
    Multiplicity: Double
    Cost: 15$
    Features: The fastest and convenient invitation. Industry «standard».
    * – for the citizens of the EU and USA it is longer! Read more
  • Business invitation

    Speed: Instantly (online) *
    Duration: Up to 1 year (up to 5 years for the EU)
    Multiplicity: Multiple
    Cost: from 40 to 207$
    Features: * – Some require offline issuance up to 20 days. Read more
  • Private invitation

    Speed: Up to 20 days
    Duration: Up to 90 days
    Multiplicity: Double
    Cost: 13$
    Features: There may be problems. Read the article Why it is not profitable to use a private visa?
  • Humanitarian invitation

    Speed: Up to 20 days
    Duration: Up to 1 year
    Multiplicity: Double
    Cost: 80$
    Features: May be issued by a special organization (Religious, social, educational, state). Due to criterias it is identical to the business invitation
  • Work invitation (work permit)

    Speed: From 2 months
    Duration: Up to 3 years
    Multiplicity: Multiple
    Cost: 478$
    Features: Permits you to stay continuously on the Russian territory. The 90 out of 180 days rule doesn’t apply.
  • Student invitation (invitation to study)

    Speed: From 2 months
    Duration: up 1 year
    Multiplicity: Multiple
    Cost: 1115$
    Features: It is required to study at university and attend classes. The cost of invitation is equal to a tuition fee for 1 year.

My opinion:

The simplest, the most convenient and the cheapest option is the tourist invitation. Such an invitation usually is issued online instantly right after a payment. In that case citizens of most countries don’t need to provide any documents.

In a case when you need to stay more than 30 days, I recommend to use business invitation. In most cases such an invitation also can be issued online.

I don’t advise to use a private invitation. It may seem to be cheaper but it is not. Read my article Why it is not profitable to use a private visa?

Russian Tourist Visa Invitation

You need a tourist invitation if you are going to visit Russia for a period up to 30 days. Tourist invitation may be a single or double-entry.

Tourist invitation is required to obtain a tourist visa.

Usually a tourist invitation is issued via online service and it is cheap. Appearance of the tourist invitation isn’t regulated by the law but there is obligatory information which must be stated in this document.

Invitation consists of 2 parts.

  • Tourist voucher indicates that you have bought tourist service such as hotel booking, for example. This document is the basis which allows a tourist company to issue a tourist confirmation of acceptance.
  • Tourist confirmation of acceptance is necessary to issue a visa to Russia to use bought tourist service.

Citizens of most countries don’t need to buy tourist service except of migration risk countries.

Usually these 2 documents are being printed on the one A4 page.

Russian Tourist Invitation from a Russian Travel Company

I have reviewed companies which issue invitations to Russia. Only companies providing quality and proven online service are included in the review.

Read more: Russian Tourist Visa Invitation

Russian Group Tourist Visa Invitation

Group tourist invitation may be issued for a group of 5 and more people, which is going to apply for a group torist visa at the same time to the same Russian diplomatic authority.

The route and dates of arrival and departure must be the same for all members of a group. Such invitation consist of a tourist voucher and confirmation of hotel booking and also a list of group members with their passport data.

Usually group tourist invitations aren’t issued because it is an extra complication, this fact is confirmed by the statistics of issued visas.

Russian Visa Invitation for passengers of cruise ship

Tourists travelling on a cruise ship passing through the Russian territory can buy special tourist tickets from a cruise company. They are analogous to the invitation to Russia and suitable for cases when tourists aren’t going to stay in St. Petersburgh more then for more than 72 hours and move around the city accompanied by a licensed and accredited guide.

Russian Business Visa Invitation

You need a business invitation if you plan to visit Russia with a business purpose. Such an invitation is suitable to those who want to spend in Russia more than 30 days. Business invitations and business visas may be single, double and multiple-entry. Usually business invitations are valid for 1 year.

Business invitation for a Russian visa is issued if only you have a permanent employment outside Russian Federation.

There are 3 types of business invitations depending on a bearer and way of issuing it by a Russian organization:

Remember! It is not important which way you use to obtain an invitation but such invitation can be obtained for you only by a Russina organization. If you or an individual in Russia applies strictly to the MFA or MIA, there will be a refusal. Only an accredited Russian company can get an invitation for you.

Read more: Russian Business Visa Invitation

Now, we are going to compare business invitation types:

Russian Visa Invitation from an organization

Invitation from an organization is a letter which contains a request to issue a visa for you. Only accredited at the MFA of the Russian Federation organizations are permitted to issue the invitation letter. Under such invitation you can get a business visa valid for the period from 30 days to 5 years, which allows you to stay on the Russian territory 90 out of 180 days.

I recommend this invitation type because it can be issued online. It is as convenient as tourist invitation but has longer valid period.

Advantages of this invitation type:

  • It is issued online in 5 minutes;
  • Doesn’t require the original letter.

Disadvantages of this invitation type:

  • Sometimes visas are not issued. Most often companies refund money in such cases.

Attention! In order to obtain a visa for 5 years, you need to get a 1-year visa first and visit Russia with it.

Invitation on a letterhead of the Main Directorate for Migration Affairs of the MIA

Invitation on the letterhead of the MDMA of the MIA is demanded way to issue business invitations to Russia. In order to obtain such an invitation an inviting party (legal entity) must make a request to the MIA and submit a pack of documents.

Advantages of this invitation type:

  • Increases the probability of obtaining visas for the citizens of migration risk countries.

Disadvantages of this invitation type:

  • Long waiting — about 20 days (may be expedited);
  • It is required to send an original by post (extra costs and time for the postage);
  • Duration of an invitatios doesn’t exceed 1 year.

Electronic invitation from the MFA (Telex)

Electronic invitation to Russia via Telex is an order to issue a visa sent via special communication channel from the MFA of Russia to a certain Consulate or Embassy. Only legal entities accredited at the MFA of Russia can issue an invitation via Telex.

Advantages of this invitation type:

  • Increases a possibility of obtaining visas for the citizens of migration risk countries;
  • It doesn’t require to be sent by post.

Disadvantages of this invitation type:

  • Long waiting. It is about 14 days (may be expedited);
  • More expensive than invitation from the MIA.

Russian Private Visa Invitation from the MIA

Private (guest) invitation is a document which is issued by the MIA at the place of residence of a citizen of Russia, who wants to invite you under his request. In order to obtain such an invitation, it is needed to complete an application form on the Public Services Portal of the Russian Federation or submit an application to the Multifuntional Centre. Then pay the state fee, wait 20 days and pass some bureaucratic procedures.

Attention! I don’t recommend to issue private invitations because it is time-consuming for the inviting party. Besides it may be inconvenient for you as well.

Why it is not profitable to use a private visa?

If you are going to visit your friend for a period up to 30 days, you should obtain a tourist visa because it is easier, cheaper and faster than issue a private visa. If you want to stay in Russia more than 30 days, I recommend to apply for a business visa.

Read more about Russian Private Visa Invitation

Russian Humanitarian Visa Invitation

Humanitarian invitation is no different from business invitation with one exception — not all companies may issue such an invitation but those which engaged in charity, sport or culture. These invitations aren’t issued online.

Read more about Russian Humanitarian Visa Invitation

Russian Work Visa Invitation

Work invitation is issed by an employer who is interested in your arrival to Russia and want to conclude an employment contract. Obtaining such an invitation is hard and expensive procedure.

Read more about Russian Work Visa Invitation

Russian Student Visa Invitation

Student invitation is issued by a higher educational institution you went to. You need to apply to a Russian university, get into it and pay for your education. Issuance of such invitation is also very difficult and expensive procedure.

Read more about Russian Student Visa

I have an invitation, what’s next?

After you got an invitation, you need to:

  1. Bear a valid passport
  2. Get invitation to Russia
  3. Get medical insurance
  4. Complete a visa application form on and print it
  5. Glue a picture 3,5х4,5 cm of you on a form
  6. Pay a consular (visa) fee
  7. Submit or send documents to the Russian diplomatic authority (passport, invitation, insurance, application form, receipt)
  8. Wait from 1 to 10 calendar days * and get a passport with a visa inside

Step-by-step guide to get a Russian Visa

* — Only for the EU citizens. It is from 1 to 20 business days for others


We have acquainted with all invitation types, their advantages and disadvantages. In this article I have given links to articles with an overview of companies which provide invitations. As I said before, I believe that the most convenient and fastest option is to get a tourist invitation to Russia. In case you need a longer stay, I recommend a business invitation.



If you have any questions ask them in the comments to this article. I will try to answer them all.

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0 thoughts on “Russian Visa Invitation. How much it cost in 2020?

  • Dear concerned,

    I need Russian tourist visa invitation.

    I have already traveled to Russia 5 times.

    Please provide me Russian tourist visa invitation so that I can apply for Russian tourist visa at Russian embassy Islamabad Pakistan.

    I need single, double or multiple (if possible) entry tourist visa valid for 1 or more months.

    I don’t need original document, scanned ,emailed copy of the invitation is enough.

    Please let me know your prices and payment methods.

    My WhatsApp. 0092 3214346751 ( Bilal)



  • Hi,

    I am unable to travel due to the COVID-19 Pandemic as India is under complete lockdown until April 30. My travel dates were 10April -21April. Kindly make the refund for the Invitation letters as this is a Global Pandemic.

    Awaiting your quick response.

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