How is a Russian Business Visa better than a Russian Work Visa?

Before we talk about how a Russian business visa is a better choice over a Russian work visa, both types of visa must be considered, in some instances, a business visa and a work visa.

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1. Russian Business Visa:

A business visa to Russia can be achieved by a foreign citizen traveling for business, research, consulting, or business purposes but does not seek a job contract in the Russian Federation. However, the provision of order with a specified deadline or performing a contractual task or a one-time commissioning/provision of services is permitted. 

For Instance: giving lectures, attending business meals, providing maintenance support, offering consulting services, holding exhibitions, adjusting equipment as well as establishing business relationships, sharing experiences, and other relevant activities.

Processing Time: 

The business visa invitation is issued in 1 to 30 business days, while the visa-issuance process takes 3 to 30 business days, depending on the applicant's country of origin and nationality.

Validity Period:

The business visa is provided for one month to three years. However, the length of stay in Russia with a business visa is limited to 3 months out of 6 months.


The cost of a business invitation for a Russian business visa starts at around $40.

2. Russian Work Visa:

Russian work visas can only be issued to foreign citizens who plan to apply for contract work in Russia under the "Labor Code" of the Russian Federation. To be employed in the Russian Federation, a foreign citizen must achieve a work visa, which allows him to work legally, be paid, and stay on the territory of Russia until the end of its validity period.

However, the foreign person is only entitled to work in the organization specified in the visa. If you want to apply for a visa to work for another organization, it is mandatory to leave the Russian Federation and go through the entire visa preparation process again.

Processing Time:

Usually, organizing a work visa invitation takes about a month and a half.

Validity Period:

The Russian work visa allows for a continuous stay on the territory of Russia for the entire duration of the work visa for Russia, that is one year or three years. 


If no organization is willing to hire you and pay a significant amount of taxes for you, a Russian work visa for one year would be pretty expensive, ranging from 45,000 to 55,000 rubles plus the cost of translating the diploma and original documents posting cost. A three-year Russian work visa would cost 55-65 thousand rubles. For more details on prices and conditions for organizing a work visa, please contact our staff at


The Russian business visa can be provided much faster than the Russian work visa and costs less. When applying for this type of visa, a small package of documents is required to present to the consulate. The only drawback you can avoid is a limited length of stay in Russia, which is three months out of 6 months.

A Russian work visa is too expensive, takes a more extended period to organize, and requires a large pack of documents. But, it allows you to stay in Russia continuously for the entire duration of the visa.

Therefore, we recommend our customers select a business visa when planning a tour to Russia.

About This Author

Philip Diack is Founder and Managing Director of Passports and, a national passport and travel visa service with offices in Atlanta, Miami, Washington, DC, NYC, Denver and San Francisco.

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