As Russia has one of the most complicated visa procedures, and does not allow travelers to mail in visa applications, we strongly recommend that you apply through a visa service. In order to visit Russia, you will need to have an official tourist or business invitation before you fill out your application. The application is filled out online, printed and signed, and the consulates are extremely particular about the way the application is completed. Travelers who apply on their own face a very high rate of rejection – using a visa service is key!
*Note: Make sure to arrive at the French Diplomatic Office at least 15 minutes earlier to your appointment, and do not bring other people with you. It is not allowed to accompany others, only when they are children below the age of 18, or, individuals who need special assistance (people with health problems or disabilities). If you do not make it to appear in time, you cannot reschedule the same appointment and you can schedule a new one only after a day (24 hrs). If you are applying as a family, each family member must schedule its own individual appointment.
Affidavit of Support. In case one does not have a bank account or does not own enough funds to be taking care of their expenses during this travel, one must ask the visiting friends or relatives to sign an “official affidavit of support” at the corresponding office in his/her place of residence. Make sure you carry the original document when applying for the visa.
Other countries require either a passport valid on arrival or a passport valid throughout the period of the intended stay. Some countries have bilateral agreements with other countries to shorten the period of passport validity required for each other's citizens or even accept passports that have already expired (but not been cancelled).
The Affidavit of Support and financial evidence that derivative applicants must bring to the interview will vary based on who is financially sponsoring them. A derivative applicant is an immediate family member of the beneficiary of an immigrant petition. The beneficiary is the principal applicant, and spouses and unmarried children under age 21 are called derivative applicants. This only applies to preference visa categories and not to immediate relatives of U.S. citizens. See below for instructions on financial support documents for derivative applicants:
4. I suggest two things – (1) move your travel dates to July 15-30 and (2) apply for your UK visa first. UK visa takes about 30 days. Your passport will be at the consulate for those entire 30 days. There won’t be an option for you to know your visa status during those 30 days. It can be very stressful if you apply for your UK visa after your Schengen visa.
Water Hazards: Many of Brazil’s beaches have very dangerous riptides, even if the water looks safe. Ocean currents and waves are unpredictable, even in popular beaches frequented by tourists. Shark attacks are reported in the waters of some beaches in northeastern Brazil, particularly near Recife. Always observe posted warnings and never swim while under the influence of alcohol. Follow local authorities’ guidance and refrain from swimming alone in areas marked with red warning signs or at beaches where there are no municipal lifeguards or first responder services.
Many countries have visa policies and agreements that allow their citizens to travel freely between them without the need for a visa. For example, Canadians and Americans do not need visas in order to travel to each other’s countries, only valid travel documents. However, Canadians do need visas to travel to Bhutan, for example, since no visa agreement exists between the two nations.
There may be special passport requirements when entering a country. It’s common for countries to require one to two pages free in your passport. Also, many will countries require that your passport isn’t expiring within three to six months of your trip. We also recommend carrying spare passport photos with you when traveling. For more information, see our post on doing on your own passport photos.
Whether or not your destination requires a visa depends on your citizenship. Your best source of information is your country's Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs, Foreign Office, or a similar agency. Consult the website of this agency or department and search for the countries you plan to visit. You should be able to find country-specific information that details visa requirements. You can also consult the website of the embassy or consulate of the country you plan to visit.
Note: It may be possible to obtain a required visa upon arrival at some of these destinations. Significant restrictions often apply and requirements for entry vary. Check with the local consulate for details. Inquire with your airline if boarding is allowed without a visa. Immigration officials in the destination country can refuse entry to anyone for any reason. To minimize risk of being refused entry and to avoid excessive waiting for an on arrival visa to be issued, CIBTvisas strongly recommends that travelers obtain all visas prior to departure.
144-hours visit without a visa when in transit through Beijing Capital International Airport, Dalian, Hangzhou, Shijiazhuang Zhengding International Airport in Hebei, Nanjing, Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport and Shanghai Pudong International Airport, Shanghai Railway Station and the Port of Shanghai); Shenyang and Tianjin Binhai International Airport