Visa to Russia
Most foreign citizens need a visa to come to Russia. The list of countries for which there are no visa requirements can be found here.
At the same time, some international visitors may enter Russia without a visa for a limited period of time and tourist purposes only. It means they cannot study in Russia, and the Higher School of Economic may take no responsibility for their stay in the country (e.g. they cannot live in the HSE dormitory and be registered with HSE).
Hence, all international IPSA - HSE participants must have a valid study (ordinary student) visa to Russia.
Visa guidelines for HSE international visitors can be found here.
Before the application, make sure that your Passport is valid for at least 1,5 years from the planned expiry date of the visa you intend to obtain.
Higher School of Economics issue visa invitations for those IPSA - HSE Students who have registered and paid all necessary participation fees. No extra charges are taken for visa invitations.
To request a visa invitation, you will need to attach a scan of your travel ID and enter necessary data in the registration form.
For the citizens of the European Union (except the UK and Ireland) the invitation is ready within 7 working days.
For the citizens of other countries the invitation is issued by the Federal Migration Authority and ready within 35 working days.
The Russian visa is normally issued within 2 - 3 weeks after the application (10 working days minimum), so please plan your time accordingly! At the same time, some visa centers and embassies have an express visa option.
The list of necessary documents may vary in different countries, but usually includes:
(1) The visa invitation from the HSE or the Federal Migration Service;
(2) A travel passport valid for at least 1,5 years and with at least 2 blank pages;
(3) Visa application form filled in on the website (visa.kdmid.ru);
(4) Color photo (please check the requirements with the Embassy);
(5) Medical insurance valid for the whole stay on the territory of the Russian Federation (including life insurance);
In some cases you may be asked to provide a negative HIV test, but usually it relates only to those staying longer than 3 months.
As a general rule, visa invitation from the Higher School of Economics is issued only for the period of the Summer School plus two days before and after the School (that is from August 6 to August 19). If you have any special circumstances (connection flights, other scientific / educational events in Russia), please let us know.
The Original of the Invitation
Please check at the Rusian embassy if you are required to provide the original of the visa invitation, and let us know about it in advance.
Applying for a Visa outside your Country
If you live in a country other than your country of origin, please note that (subject to your home country) you might be not allowed to apply for the visa in the country of your residence, or additional application requirements may apply (e.g. you might be asked to provide notary translation of your residence permit in the country of application). Please check with the Russian Embassy in the country of application.
All foreign citizens are obliged to fill in the migration card, which will be given to them when they cross the Russian border. You will need to fill in the card with your personal information, terms of stay and purpose of your visit, prospective residential address and inviting party. Please do not lose a migration card! In case of damage / loss of the migration card immediately inform us about it.
All foreign citizens need to register their visas upon arrival. Failure to register within 7 days will result in serious fines for both the visitors and the inviting party! After the registration you will be given a registration flip you must carry with you when in the city (you may be asked to show the slip when leaving the country by the border officers).
In case you stay in hotel / hostel: the hotel must register you automatically upon arrival (small charges may apply).
In case you stay in the HSE dormitory: the HSE staff will register you upon your arrival (free of charge)
In case you stay in private apartments / AirBnB: we do not recommend to use this option, as it might cause uncessary problems with your registration. Some hosts refuse to register their guests, and that results in complications for both the students and the Higher School of Economics. This option can be taken only if you do not need a visa invitation from the HSE and at your own risk.