Russia to expand e-visa program, Canada still yet to be included

MOSCOW — Russia has announced that it will be expanding its e-visa program to include the 27 EU countries as well as non-EU Schengen members Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

The new e-visa system will come into effect Jan. 1, 2021, making it possible for those travelling for business, tourism, sports, cultural, scientific and technological purposes to easily apply through an app.

Currently, e-visas are only available to nationals of a few select countries, however several other world countries like China, Japan and South Korea will soon be eligible.

As of now, there are no plans for Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States to be included in the program.

According to the head of the Russian Federal Agency for tourism, Zarina Doguzova, e-visas will be single entry and valid for at least 14 days.

“I will lift the veil of secrecy here, it might be even longer if the Russian President supports us,” she said. “But generally, we are talking about at least increasing it from eight to 14 days for sure.”

She also noted that though there is currently no fee for the e-visa, one may be implemented at a cost of approximately €50.