European insurance requirement complicates visa application
European countries continue to make changes to visa processes in Russia. New requirements have appeared for submitting documents at the visa centers of several EU countries, which will become a new (and very serious) barrier to obtaining a Schengen visa.
The Hungarian Visa Application Center in St. Petersburg has begun accepting documents for long-term visas D (permit to stay). Documents can be submitted for the following purposes of travel: treatment, education, family reunification, work, scientific activity, volunteer work, remote work and other purposes.
From December 15, 2022, admission is scheduled to begin for long-term D visas in the Consular District of the Consulate General of Hungary in Kazan, respectively, it will be possible to apply for such a visa at the Exhibition Center in Kazan, Samara and Ufa.
We add that the Hungarian visa centers accept visa applications only in accordance with the registration of applicants in the consular district, or if there are documents confirming a long-term legal stay (study, work, living with a spouse/parents, etc.) on the territory of the consular district .
In the visa centers of Germany, the conditions for applying for visas have changed. Now along with paid tickets, proof of payment for the booked accommodation must be attached to the package of documents. Bookings from online services with deferred payment upon arrival will no longer be accepted.
Insurance must now be taken out only in European companies. The document must be in English or German, or with a translation into one of these languages.
The website of the German Visa Application Center has published information with new requirements for applying for Schengen visas. Now it is not enough for tourists to attach tickets purchased in both directions. The applicant will also be asked to confirm payment for housing and provide insurance made in a European company.
As for paying for housing, previously travelers could book it, but pay for the service already on the spot. Now this option is not suitable.
Also, the visa application center warned that the control over the issuance of visas will be more stringent.
To apply for a visa, the approval of the Embassy of Iceland in Moscow is currently required. To do this, applicants need to contact email@example.com with a description of the purpose and conditions of the trip to obtain permission to apply.
To obtain a national visa for Cyprus, Russian tourists will now have to stock up on a larger package of documents and longer time than before.
Recall that due to the suspension of direct flights between the Russian Federation and Cyprus, the consulates of Cyprus no longer issue pro-visas to Russians. To enter Cyprus, you will need a multiple valid Schengen visa, or a multiple national visa of Romania, Croatia or Bulgaria, or a Cypriot national visa. But now you need to provide copies of them if they were received within the last three years
This category of visa is issued to a citizen of the Russian Federation to enter Cyprus and is valid for one or more entries. A multiple entry visa may be issued for up to 3 years and in exceptional cases up to 5 years at the discretion of the Consul General.
The total stay on this visa must not exceed 90 days within a 180 day period.
Another important change has taken place since October: Russian applicants now require proof of financial status in order to obtain a Cypriot national visa.
It is obligatory to provide a copy of the accommodation voucher provided by the hotel in Cyprus (indicating all names of applicants, address of residence, contact numbers and terms of residence)/original contract for the purchase of real estate in Cyprus with a copy/original certificate of ownership with a copy.
If a Russian travels to Cyprus by invitation, you will need to provide an appropriate invitation with a certified signature of the inviting person, as well as a copy of his passport or identity card (ID card).
At the same time, the Consulate General may additionally request a bank guarantee (bank statements).
In all cases, the Consulate has the right to request additional documents from tourists proving the fact of the trip to Cyprus for tourism purposes.
As stated in the clarifications of the Embassy of the Republic of Cyprus in Moscow, Russian applicants must have air tickets to Cyprus and back (the entire route must be confirmed by tickets: the Russian Federation – a third country – Cyprus, Cyprus – a third country – the Russian Federation).
Tickets are not provided only by those applicants who own real estate in Cyprus, as well as applicants who have an invitation (Assumption) from a close relative living in Cyprus.
The terms for issuing national Cypriot visas have also changed. According to the Consulate General of the Republic of Cyprus in St. Petersburg, now the application processing time is from 3 to 5 business days (was 1 day).
Recall that the national Cypriot visa is issued to citizens of the Russian Federation free of charge .
From September 19, 2022, the acceptance of visa applications in certain cases has resumed at the consular missions of Latvia. Application for a visa can apply:
– family members of citizens of the Republic of Latvia (spouses, parents, grandparents, children, grandchildren, as well as dependents);
– family members of EU citizens;
– persons whose entry is related to humanitarian considerations: in case of a serious illness of a loved one or to participate in a funeral, if there is a threat to the safety, health or life of a person or a member of his family.
Each visa application will be assessed individually. If the purpose of entry is for humanitarian reasons, the visa applicant must provide documents confirming the purpose of this entry and kinship.
B The Malta Visa Application Center reminded that the Visa Facilitation Agreement between the EU and Russia has been suspended from September 12, 2022, according to which the application fee for adults will be 80 euros, and the processing time will take up to 45 days.
< p class="MsoNormal">Important: to submit documents, you must provide insurance from foreign, not Russian insurance companies.
Despite the fact that all restrictions on entry into the Netherlands related to COVID-19 have been lifted since September 17, 2022, the consulates of this European country have not resumed accepting applications for short-term visa.
The term for making a decision on issuing a visa in cases where the need for travel is not proven (private, tourist trips) is extended to 45 days, while in justified cases this period can be reduced to less than 15 days. Only single-entry visas are issued for tourist and private travel.
The Consulate may also request a pre-paid air ticket to your final destination in Slovenia. If there is doubt about the authenticity of the submitted documents, the visa will be refused.
To obtain a visa to Slovenia, you also need insurance from a foreign company. Priority is given to insurance companies from EU countries
Visa applications will be processed within 15 days, but the diplomatic mission has the right to extend the processing time up to 45 days. Special cases (funerals, sick relatives) will be agreed upon when accepting the application.
All applicants (except family members of EU citizens) need to provide a full set of additional documents, including proof of residence, proof of itinerary (tickets), proof of financial support for the trip: certificate of employment with salary information or other proof of financial means, at a rate of 56 euros for each day of stay.
Private applicants must enclose a complete package of documents with their visa application. With the exception of applications for a tourist visa, which are submitted by tour operators accredited at the Embassy. For them, the list of documents remains the same.
Terms for issuing short-term (type C) and long-term (type D) visas will be 15 working days from the date of receipt of the application by the Embassy. This period may be extended up to a maximum of 45 days for valid reasons.
The requirement of a number of EU countries that a Russian applicant has insurance issued by a European company arose due to EU sanctions: in Europe they want to be sure that, if necessary, the insurance company will be able to pay the sum insured in the Schengen area.
However, in practice, the overwhelming majority of Russians cannot afford European insurance: since Russian bank cards are not accepted abroad, a bank card from a foreign bank will be required. I.e. in fact, the requirement for insurance by a foreign company makes it impossible for most Russians to obtain a visa. You can turn to third-party services, but this increases the cost of the service. Also, the insurance document must be drawn up in German or English. Otherwise, make a translation and notarize it.
However, some European countries are loyal in this matter. Thus, the Norwegian Embassy in Moscow accepts insurance companies from Russian companies for short-term Schengen visas, but on the condition that they provide a guarantee of payments in the Schengen area. As of mid-August, the list of Russian insurers included 22 such companies.