International routes operated by Russian Railways grow more and more popular, but not all of the passengers are aware of the fact that besides Russian visa they may also need a transit visa of another country to make the trip. In this short article, we'll list our most popular routes where transit visas are required.
Let’s start with European routes. Here the country you may need visa for is Belarus. Of course, in case Belarus is your major destination you will remember to take care of the visa. But in case you are travelling on board of a train going to a different country you may not even notice that you are crossing Belarus on the way.
Here are the international trains that go through Belarus:
- Train #23/24Moscow – Berlin – Paris. This train goes through the territory of Russia, Belarus, Poland, Germany and France. No matter if you are going to Moscow from Paris, Berlin or Warsaw you will still need Belarus transit visa for the trip
- Train #09/10 Moscow – Warsaw. This train also goes through Belarus, transit visa is required
- Train #17/18 Moscow – Nice. This train goes through Russia, Belarus, Poland, Czech Republic, Austria, Italy, Monaco and France. Again, no matter where you start your trip, as long as you go all the way to Moscow you will cross Belarus on the way
- Train #21/22 Moscow – Prague. The train goes through Russia, Belarus, Poland and Czech Republic
- Train #05/06 Moscow – Vilnius. The train goes through Russia, Belarus and Lithuania
- Train #79/80 St. Petersburg – Kaliningrad. The train goes through Russia, Belarus and Lithuania
- Train #29/30 ‘Yantar’ Moscow – Kaliningrad. The train goes through Russia, Belarus and Lithuania
Best is to take care of your Belarus transit visa in advance. You should apply for visa in Belarus Consulate in your country. Required documents may vary depending on your citizenship, but normally the list includes: 1) Passport 2) Russian visa 3) Ticket or ticket booking confirmation 4) Photos 3cm*4cm - have to be taken in advance! They don't provide this service at the consulate 5) Application form - also, better to fill it out in advance, you can upload it using the link: http://mfa.gov.by/docs/visa/visa_en.html
We do not recommend applying for Belarus transit visa while in Russia (just because spending time on sightseeing is much more enjoyable than spending this time at the Consulate!), but if you have to do this here are contact details and working hours of Belarus Consulate in Moscow: Maroseika Str., 17/6 building 4, Tel. +7 495 777-66-44
Days and times when you can submit your application: Mon, Tue, Thu, Fri 10:00 - 12:00
Days and times when you can get back the ready docs: Mon, Tue, Thu, Fri 16:00 - 16:30
Express processing time is 2 business days
Besides European destinations, you may need transit visa for Moscow – Beijing route. There are two trains on this route. The train #033/043 Moscow - Beijing goes through Mongolia and depending on your citizenship you may need transit visa for this country. In case you are planning to get off the train and spend some time in Mongolia, you will need a separate ticket for each leg (Moscow – Ulan Bator and Ulan Bator – Beijing) and a regular tourist visa for Mongolia. If your major destination is China and you don’t wish to go through Mongolia you should choose the train #19/20 – this one only goes on the territories of Russia and China.
Typical requirements for Mongolian transit visa: 1) Visa application 2) Color photo (36*47 mm, head size 25*35 mm, not older than 6 months) 3) Passport 4) Copy of the passport’s first page 5) Visa of the departure/destination country (Russia/ China) 6) Copy of the ticket (some consulates may require the original)
The shortest processing time available in Mongolian Consulate in Moscow is 5 business days, so we highly recommend you taking care of the visa in your home country.