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Thread: blog on Russia

  1. #1
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    blog on Russia

    if anyone is interested, i started a blog on Russia, well, more moscow actually. it probably wont be of interest to russians for quite some time as im starting with posts about visas and 'how to' stuff which wont be of any use to a russian. later ill go into other issues from things ranging to expats, rants about why the militsiya are so fked up and other such муть.
    if you're coming to Russia for the first time tho, there will be plenty of advice and useful info

    http://england-mosocw.blogspot.com/2009 ... chive.html
    Не откладывай на завтра того, с кем можешь переспать сегодня
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    http://england-moscow.com/

  2. #2
    Завсегдатай Ramil's Avatar
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    Re: blog on Russia

    Dear god, I've never imagined that getting a work permit in Russia is so difficult.
    Send me a PM if you need me.

  3. #3
    Hanna
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    Re: blog on Russia



    Haha --- I was going to write you a sharp response to 'inform' you that you're using an outdated flag for your banner, and that if Russia is that bad, then what are you doing there.. etc.

    But at the end of the day the post is entertaining and also very informative. After reading the whole piece I sympathise, and it's understandable that you want to vent a bit, plus decent of you to share your findings. This has clearly been a real pain in the neck for you. Frankly the registration and visa business seems a bit excessive.

    As for Europeans staying in Russia: Well we're all from the SAME continent for goodness sake, and the cold war is LONG over... One might think that it *ought* to be possible to cut backl on the red-tape just a little a bit... Even tourists need to "register" apparently.

    When countries give foreigners of certain nationalities a hard time with visas etc it's usually a case of mutual reciprocation. One of the parts need to back down first on the requirements; or there needs to be an agreement between the countries to relax regulations at the same time.

    So let's look at it from the opposite angle:

    I don't know what the EXACT situation is for Russians who want to work or study in the UK, but it's definitely no "open house". Russians need visas to enter the EU and sometimes they get DENIED and it's not even explained to them why...

    The few Russians I know in London are IT professionals and I imagine they are on the "highly skilled professional" visa programme or whatever it's called. I don't know how this programme works, but it IS very bureacratic and I've seen people have to go and fax things and chase the Home Office. They have to "prove" silly things such as where they went to middle school.

    To some degree this visa programme also means they are locked into a contract with the specific company they are working for. Not an ideal situation -- despite being top grade professionals the guys I know have to put up with all sorts of nonsense from the employer because both parties know that they can not easily walk away. Where I live (SW London) there are also some dirty-rich "new" Russians living - they probably invested enough in the UK to get a permanent residency that way.

    In order for Russia to back off all this excessive bureacracy, the EU or the individual countries probably need to make some kind of gesture.. I don't know what the reasons are for why this isn't done, but all the negative reporting about Russia in Britisih media tells its own story - there's some degree of mistrust and suspicion.

    Your report on bureacracy and having to deal with shady people to get around the problems is really off-putting! Although I had no concrete plans, I had actually considered the possibility if working in St Petersburg in the future. I know some Swedes and Finns there, who like St Peter. Plus there is a local IT industry there, and it is very close to Helsinki where I have some relations.

    I had not been planning this in any detail, but it's discouraging to hear that there's so much bureacracy. Perhaps if I DO want to live there I should just marry some Russian guy in a 'phony' marriage Win-win situation for both parties, or...? That would open up all of the EU for him, and I could come and go as I please in Russia without any annoying visas and registrations.

    The university dorms don't look very bad? I heard some grim stories about university accommodation in Russia in the 1990s - But your pics seem perfectly fine...

    Do you think you'll want to stay on in Russia after you graduate?

  4. #4
    Завсегдатай sperk's Avatar
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    Re: blog on Russia

    The thing I don't get is why they make it such a pain in the $%Y^ for tourists who just want to spend money in Russia...sorry, can't do that.
    Кому - нары, кому - Канары.

  5. #5
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    Re: blog on Russia

    Quote Originally Posted by sperk
    The thing I don't get is why they make it such a pain in the $%Y^ for tourists who just want to spend money in Russia...sorry, can't do that.
    I don't get it either. One reason is that sometimes quoted is that if visas were easier to obtain, we would be overflowed with illegal immigrants. But that seems stupid to me. We are overflowed with immigrants, but they come mostly from Central Asia. Yet we create problems to people from EU and other developed countries who could actually contribute to our economy by spending their money here.

    Well, I guess there must be SOME reason that is quite obvious and logical to the bureaucrats, but I don't know what it is.

  6. #6
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    Re: blog on Russia

    getting a tourist visa for russia is very simple. the reverse for russians is a nightmare too, trust me, i brought my ex gf back to england with me a few time a my current gf got refused recently (despite the fact that she had been there twice and all over europe)
    that to, is outrageous and i may post smt about it at a later date.
    but i was made that particular post for people who, like me once, wanted a way in (and later to stay) and didnt know where to begin. the thing is, i buy a work permit and visa which is something dodgey in itself - its not an official thing or anything, but its something companies ilillegallyo to make money that people dont readily talk about on expat forums (most expats are sent to russia via western companies and dont have to do anything). another thing is the people doing it are not always competent. i got my years registration yesterday, only to find out that it had expired already
    the only real option for staying in Russia officially and happily is tempory residence. but unless you have a russian wife or russian kids/family, forget about it.

    also @ Johanna. if you find official work, you wont have to worry about doing anything shady, but you'll need an employer to hire you first. you should go to spb probably as a studant first and then, while studying, seek out an employer. there are companies who are willing to officially hire you in which case you will be carefree (although i looked at the fms criteria for hiring a forigner and its a nightmare)

    i might make another post covering all visas to make it clearer so stay tuned
    Не откладывай на завтра того, с кем можешь переспать сегодня
    --------
    http://england-moscow.com/

  7. #7
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    Re: blog on Russia

    Quote Originally Posted by sperk
    The thing I don't get is why they make it such a pain in the $%Y^ for tourists who just want to spend money in Russia...sorry, can't do that.
    I really don't think the bureaucracy make it any harder for foreigners than for other Russians, it's just that Russians are used to it. The whole registration system is just bizarre to foreigners, for example.

    I was dealing with a company in Russia about six months ago and at the end of our contract they offered me a really good job for silly money, based in Moscow. They were willing to do everything necessary to set me up legally from paying for an imigration lawyer to handle the visas and permits to arranging an apartment. They wanted me for experience and industry connections that just can't be found (yet) locally. Unfortunately the fact that my wife and son both have Russian citizenship actually made it far more complicated (in our specific set of circumsnatnces) than if they'd both been as foreign as me, and the amount of hassle and hoop-jumping we (or rather, my wife) would have had to do and the ridiculous amount of time it would have taken made the whole thing impractical for both parties, so in the end I turned them down.

    On the other hand, my in-laws pissed away about £400 being turned down for visitors' visas to the UK at the end of last year when they're intention was basically to spend two weeks contributing generously to the UK economy, so it's probably unfair to single out Russian bureaucracy for any ire. The arbitrariness of the UK system was every bit as spirit-crushingly frustrating.

  8. #8
    Hanna
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    Re: blog on Russia

    Yeah, well these visa restrictions don't put off serious criminals anyway, because they can be circumvented. All that this achieves is to annoy normal Russians who'd like to travel or shop in the EU. And put Europeans off travelling to Russia.. It's a real shame.

    I've read that it's quite common for completely normal people to be denied visas to EU countries and not be given any explanation. For instance, I read about a female middle-aged Russian school teacher who wanted to see Florence and Venice and got denied twice in a row.

    I got really disappointed when I heard that my country (Sweden) is closing its consulate in Kaliningrad, right after promoting tourism to Sweden to locals there. It will be too much hassle for them to get a visa from Moscow or StPetersburg, and they'll choose other destinations for a short break. That's a pity!

  9. #9
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    Re: blog on Russia

    what do you russians think, would it be worth me doing duel language posts, or maybe translating posts that are not english specific (like getting visas)? you know, turn it partly into a duel langauge blog? or maybe just have some posts in russian that might be specific to something going on here?
    Не откладывай на завтра того, с кем можешь переспать сегодня
    --------
    http://england-moscow.com/

  10. #10
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    Re: blog on Russia

    I thought I heard once that if you somehow manage to stay (legally) in Russia for something like 5 (Or maybe it was more like 7 or an even more impossible number) years that you could, eventually apply for residency. Does that hold any water?

    I just realized if I do that CIE n00b course for a year I'll be a shoe-in to MGU or MGIMO or anywhere else, where my generous government will happly pay all my tution + cost of living expenses, books, etc.

    Anyways after 5 or 6 years studying in Russia would I be able to apply for SOME sort of legal residence by then?

    God forbid I have to marry a Russian woman...


    Вот это да, я так люблю себя. И сегодня я люблю себя, ещё больше чем вчера, а завтра я буду любить себя to ещё больше чем сегодня. Тем что происходит,я вполне доволен!

  11. #11
    Moderator Lampada's Avatar
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    Re: blog on Russia

    Quote Originally Posted by Dogboy182
    ...God forbid I have to marry a Russian woman...
    "...Важно, чтобы форум оставался местом, объединяющим людей, для которых интересны русский язык и культура. ..." - MasterАdmin (из переписки)



  12. #12
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    Re: blog on Russia

    as far as i know you can apply for temp. residency at any time but the catch is that after the first year you need to prove you are working and paying taxes - something only possible with a work permit as a student visa wont let you work officially. i remember hearing something along the lines of what you are talking about but stuff changes all the time. if you're interested, the latest rules for getting temp res (which lasts for 3 years, but after a year you can turn into a residence permit) are on the moscow ufms website.
    here's a list of documents you need if you apply outside of the quote (if you dont have a russian wife, kids, relatives- http://fmsmoscow.ru/rvp_text.php?nid=33&)
    and here are some more general rules: http://fmsmoscow.ru/rvp.php

    it's pretty unrealistic to get it without a wife tho as there are thousands of other gastarbiters waiting for residency
    Не откладывай на завтра того, с кем можешь переспать сегодня
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  13. #13
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    Re: blog on Russia

    Hm. Working and paying taxes. I have an irrational fear of working a 9 to 5 job. Well, I guess its something I wont have to worry about for another 5 years or so anyways, but its definitely worth looking into. As fast as Obama's spending those cash money dollars these days I'm sure I won't have anything left to study with by the 92nd anniversary of the oct revolution.

    I guess you were right after all Stick with the student visa ))

    Its funny though, now I recall, I don't think there is a real concrete timeline or set of rules they enforce to get residency or citizenship. I do
    remember reading about that American pro basketball player last year who plays(ed) for the Russian team at the Olympics. They just gave her citizenship so she could come to Russia and practice whenever she wanted and not have to go through any of the red tape. She doesn't speak Russian and she only spends 2 or 3 months (nonconsecutive) a year with her team.

    I'm not sure of any other countries that will let you become a citizen so easy. I thought Australia had an easy application process and the shortest waiting period. You only need to spend 2 years legally in Australia (or serve something like 60 days in their military) and you can apply for citizenship. I'm pretty sure even if someone came to America with the cure for AIDS they'd still have to wait like everyone else.

    Seems like the key to longevity in Russia is having a rare or marketable skillset. I wonder if I become an actor or something if they'll give me a passport too
    Вот это да, я так люблю себя. И сегодня я люблю себя, ещё больше чем вчера, а завтра я буду любить себя to ещё больше чем сегодня. Тем что происходит,я вполне доволен!

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    Завсегдатай it-ogo's Avatar
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    Re: blog on Russia

    AFAIK having high education diploma obtained in Russian university is enough reason to apply for the Russian citizenship.
    "Россия для русских" - это неправильно. Остальные-то чем лучше?

  15. #15
    Hanna
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    Re: blog on Russia

    I do remember reading about that American pro basketball player last year who plays(ed) for the Russian team at the Olympics. They just gave her citizenship so she could come to Russia and practice whenever she wanted and not have to go through any of the red tape. She doesn't speak Russian and she only spends 2 or 3 months (nonconsecutive) a year with her team.

    I'm not sure of any other countries that will let you become a citizen so easy...
    I know one -- United States allows that (and encourages it).
    People who've got skills that the US needs get citizenship fast-tracked. There are lots of examples in sport, science and culture. Many of the individuals in question originate from Russia or ex USSR.

    I hate it when Russia gets critisised for doing things that the US is already involved in to a much higher degree. Such double standards.

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    Re: blog on Russia

    Well, most probably yes these exceptions probably do happen from time to time. But the point I was trying to make was there are certain prerequisites that must be accomplished regardless if you want to naturalize into the US. Besides residing there for a period of time, you gotta take a test on the United States' history, culture, common knowledge etc. Friends I know who got U.S. citizenship by naturalization also told me there were (some) basic English lessons / quizes.

    The point I was trying to make in her case was I doubt that, well, I'd be interested to find out if this woman in particular was made to accomplish such tasks in order to receive her Russian passport. I'm more than willing to bet that she wasn't.

    I wasn't criticizing Russia. Even if I was, it was constructive criticism . Russian can't do wrong in my eyes

    Its just funny thats all.
    Вот это да, я так люблю себя. И сегодня я люблю себя, ещё больше чем вчера, а завтра я буду любить себя to ещё больше чем сегодня. Тем что происходит,я вполне доволен!

  17. #17
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    Re: blog on Russia

    Johanna

  18. #18
    Hanna
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    Re: blog on Russia

    For info: Some kind of entry documentation for Russia. I just came across it..
    Full form here, since part of it is obscured below.
    http://www.russianvisaguide.com/down...ourist_exp.gif
    (I am going to make sure I know all the words!)

    But they ought to revise the English that was used on this form, there are some mistakes.


  19. #19
    Hanna
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    Re: blog on Russia

    Quote Originally Posted by Aimak
    Johanna
    I will start a thread about this subject when I feel inspired... This is irritating me enormously. If you were able to see the news about Russia in British papers you would be so annoyed! I just want to bring it up in a sensitive way because I don't want to insult super-nice Americans on this forum, like Rockzmom and others...

  20. #20
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    Re: blog on Russia

    the picture abouve is of a tourist vocher. for a visit you moscow or spb you shouldnt need one, but if you do they can be easily obtained from any company that deals with visas (i use anyvisa.co.uk, but they are UK based). update:
    here's what i just googled about vouchers:

    Russian Tourist Invitation Prices and Processing Times – It is the cheapest type of invitation letters. Nevertheless, the price of a tourist invitation range widely. You can get one from FREE to $29 to $55, and it takes 15 minutes to 1 business day to issue it. You should know though that each travel agency/hotel pays an annual MFA registration fee; and their letter of invitation net cost is negligible (less than a $1). If you bargain correctly, you can get your tourist invitation for FREE with other travel services purchased with the firm. In general, your tourist voucher and confirmation are sent to by e-mail (scanned copy), by fax, or by post (if the Russian consulate requires originals, check with the consulate of your choice). Some consulates might ask a day-by-day itinerary, your invitation sponsor can provide you with such itinerary FREE of charge.

    Most often you get both required papers tourist voucher and reservation confirmation on one piece of paper. Otherwise, you will get two separate documents. They both have almost the same information (see below). A standard tourist reservation confirmation has a standard form, but tourist voucher does not. It can look different from one travel agency to the next. Both pieces of paper should have the control voucher number, name of the sponsoring organization, its address and phone numbers in Russia, tour reference number, your personal data, date of entry/exit and detailed description of your itinerary as well as the payment method for services rendered. Please make sure it has a stamp and signature of executing officer of the firm.

    IMPORTANT NOTICE: Technically speaking, voucher is a receipt from the travel agency confirming that you paid for services "provided", and the reservation confirmation is a confirmation for the consulate, which states:

    1. Your official TRIP purpose is TOURISM (Visa Questionnaire for US citizens -- Question #8 : Purpose of Trip – mark TOURISM, even though your actual purpose is different!);
    2. Organization by the such and such name, with such and such reference number is inviting you to tour Russia for such and such dates (Visa Questionnaire for US citizens -- Question #9 : Russian institution or organization to be visited, Question #16: Name and reference number of the tourist group)
    3. You "have purchased" a hotel reservation through a visa agency (Visa Questionnaire for US citizens -- Question #39 : Name, address and phone number of person or hotel in Russia –please write a hotel listed on your invitation letter); and
    4. You will be traveling to such and such cities in Russia (please list these cities on Visa Questionnaire for US citizens -- Question #10 : Itinerary (places to be visited)
    Не откладывай на завтра того, с кем можешь переспать сегодня
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    http://england-moscow.com/

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