Visa Requirements 

For short single-entry visit to Russia for up to 14 days a tourist visa would be fine. It is not possible to obtain a visa at the airport or boarder, when entering Russia. Visas are issued by Russian Embassies/Consulates upon presenting an official invitation or reference number (issued by the inviting institution) and paying the consular fee. You can stay in Russia for the period of time stated on your visa. Additionally, it is important to note that your passport must be valid for a minimum of six months after the visa's expiration date and have at least two blank pages (which do not need to be consecutive).

Do I need a visa?

An increasing number of countries are signing bilateral agreements with the Russian Federation to allow visa-free travel for their citizens. The countries the citizens of which can travel to Russia without visas are divided into four groups with different requirements and different limitations on length of stay. They are:

Group 1
Citizens of the countries of the CIS (the Commonwealth of Independent States) are permitted to stay in the Russian Federation for up to 90 days without a visa.
Countries: Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Ukraine.

Group 2
Citizens of these countries are allowed to stay in the Russian Federation without a visa for up to 90 days in each 180-day period, provided they will not be involved in any commercial or work-related activities during their stay.
Countries: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Israel, Nicaragua, Peru, South Korea, Venezuela.

Group 3
Citizens of the countries in this group can stay in the Russian Federation for up to 30 days without a visa. They are not entitled to work while in Russia.
Countries: Cuba, Montenegro, Serbia (with biometric passport), Thailand, Turkey (total amount of days in Russia not exceeding 90 in each 180-day period), Hong Kong (up to 14 days).

Group 4
Citizens of these Balkan countries can also stay in Russia without a visa for up to 30 days, but must also show tourist documents (tourist confirmation and tourist voucher) or an official invitation to immigration officials.
Countries: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia.

If you do not fall in any of the Groups listed  above, please consult your nearest Russian Federation consulate or embassy to obtain the appropriate information regarding the process to obtain your visa.

Additionally, it is a requirement of Russian law that all foreign visitors be registered with the FMS (the Federal Migration Service) within three working days of their arrival in a Russian city or region. The responsibility to register a foreign traveler in Russia lies with the party that issues visa support documents. Almost all hotels have the right to register those clients who are traveling on a one-month Tourist Visa, and other companies which offer visa support for any type of Russian visa should also be able to register their clients on arrival. It is, however, always worth checking with the company beforehand. Your registration is recorded on a separate form, which you should keep with you at all times, and must submit at passport control upon your departure from the Russian Federation. Those who fail to register their visas may be required to pay fine when they try to exit Russia or if they are stopped by the police.

Travel Arrangements

By Air

Pulkovo Airport provides good connection to major European and world capitals. Please consider early booking of your flights.

At the airport you will have access to both, public transport and taxi to transfer to hotels.

Taxis should be booked at the "Taxi Kiosks" in the Arrivals Hall. The staff at the Taxi Kiosks speak English* and will calculate the cost of the journey to the hotel for you. Payment is by cash only (Russian Rubles). If you intend to stay in one of the hotels suggested by the Local Organisers (see below for information), the estimated cost of the journey from the airport is 1400.00 to 1700.00 RUR.

Using public transport will be less expensive than taxi, but will involve taking the "City Bus" or the "Minibus Taxi" and also the subway. Instructions with the best routes to take (from each airport  terminal) to the hotels will be included in this page as soon as we get confirmation of which terminals will be used for international flights in July.

* If you are concerned about communicating with taxi drivers who do not speak English, please print the Translated Taxi Instructions and bring with you.

By Train

You can also get to Saint Petersburg by train. Helsinki (Finland) has frequent trains to Saint Petersburg. If travelling by train you are most likely to arrive in Saint Petersburg at the Finlyandskiy Railway Station (trains arriving from Finland only) or at the Moskovskiy Railway Station (trains coming from countries other than Finland).

At the Railway Stations you will have access to both, public transport and taxi to transfer to hotels.

Taxis can be taken in front of the stations at an estimated cost of 600.00 to 800.00 RUR (if going to one of the hotels suggested by the Local Organisers). Payment is by cash only. Most taxi drivers speak English, but you are advised to print out and take the "Translated Taxi Instructions" with you. You can download the translated taxi instructions from the links below:

Translated Taxi Instructions - to Moscow Hotel and Nautilus Inn

Using public transport will involve taking only the subway, as both Railway Stations are connected to the subway. If you are staying in one of the hotels suggested by the Local Organisers, you can download the instructions for the journey from the Railway Stations to the hotels  from the links below. The map of Saint Petersburg Subway is also available to download.

From Railway Stations to Nautilus Inn - using public transport

From Railway Stations to Moscow Hotel - using public transport

Saint Petersburg Subway Map



Saint Petersburg is a very popular destination in July, when holidaymakers take advantage of the “White Nights”. For this reason, VLMG-7 participants are advised to make arrangements for accommodation well in advance.

With the intention to facilitate the arrangements, the local organisers have made bulk reservations in two hotels situated close to the meeting venue:

  • Nautilus Inn – about 750 m from RSHU
  • Moscow Hotel - about 1800 m from RSHU

Should you consider staying in one of these hotels, please contact the VLab TSO ( stating your accommodation preferences and dates of arrival/departure.

The deadline to take advantage of the bulk reservations is 15 May, so please make sure you contact the VLab TSO well in advance.

Nautilus Inn

Address: Rizhskaya ulitsa, 3  Saint Petersburg

Phone: +7 812 449 90 00


Distance from RSHU: approximately 750 m (see map below).

Type of room

Rates (RUR) / room / night 

Standard single


Superior single


Superior twin


Business single


Comfort single




For further information please check the Nautilus Inn Website (

Moscow Hotel

Address: Alexander Nevsky square, 2  Saint Petersburg

Phone: +7 812 333 2 444


Distance from RSHU: approximately 1800 m (see map below).

Type of room

Rates (RUR) / room / night

Standard single


Standard twin


Comfort single


Comfort twin






For further information please check the Moscow Hotel Website  (

Last modified: Monday, 9 June 2014, 4:00 PM