Do citizens of Kenya need a visa to visit Russia?

Any citizen of Kenya who intends to travel to Russia needs to apply for a Russian entry visa at the Embassy.

How to Get a Russian Visa in Kenya?

To apply for a Russian visa, any Kenyan national is required to sumbit a complete set of relevant documents. Among the documents required for the application for a Russian visa is a visa support letter (invitation letter).

The invitation must be arranged by the person who is a resident or a company owner registered in Russia. The type of invitation required and the processing time for arranging it depends on the purpose of visit. Different types of invitations need to be made for different types of Russian visas.

The four most common types are:

  • Tourist visa. Designed for travelers who plan to visit any of the Russian tourist destinations.
  • Electronic visa - for example: short-term trips;
  • Business visa suits those applicants who look forward to exploring business opportunities of Russia.
  • Private visa is meant for those who wish to visit their friends or family in Russia. We advise you to apply for a tourist visa instead, as the process of obtaining a private visa is much more difficult and costly.
  • Work visa is the document that must be obtained by anyone who plans to come to Russia to work in a Russian company.

Where to Apply for a Russian Visa in Kenya?

Russian visa applications submitted by Kenyan nationals are received and processed at the Russian Embassy located in Nairobi. See the details below.

Type of Visa Duration Purpose
Tourist visa 1-30 days Sightseeing, visiting friends in Russia
Electronic visa 8 days Trips for a short period of time
Business visa 30-90 days (up to 5 years) Search of business partners, attending conferences, long trips, long-term visits of friends in Russia
Private visa 30-90 days Official visits to meet with friends in Russia (Not recommended! See why)
Work visa 1-3 years Employment in Russia or permanent residence

Russian Tourist Visa Requirements for Kenyan Citizens

Tourist visa is the type of visa that should be obtained by any citizen of Kenya who wishes to travel to Russia for tourism purposes. Travel companies provide the service of issuing invitations for Russian tourist visas.

Read more: Russian Tourist Visa

Any company issuing this document must be authorized by the Russian Federal Register of Tour Operators. A unique reference number assigned to the company by this authority serves as a proof of registration. No particular format exists for tourist visa invitations. This is why invitations issued by different travel agencies will look different. However, each invitation must consist of two essential parts: a tourist voucher and a tourist confirmation.

Kenya is considered a high migration risk country by the Russian authorities, this is why the Russian Embassy will request additional documents in support of the visa application. Following the approval of your application, a tourist visa valid for the period indicated in the invitation will be issued. The length of stay permitted by it may not exceed 30 days.

Arrange an invitation for a Russian tourist visa for Kenyan Citizens

Go to Issuing a Tourist Invitation     Price $69.00

Russian Private (Visitor) Visa Requirements for Kenyan Citizens

If you're planning a trip to Russia for personal reasons, such as to visit a friend or a relative, private visa should be your visa type of choice. To obtain this type of visa, an invitation must be made by the person who is inviting you to visit Russia.

You will need to ask that person to apply at their local FMS (Federal Migration Service) office for this document. The following supporting documents must be filed with the application: a copy of the invited person's international passport, a copy of the inviting person's (host's) national passport, a certificate of income (from the host) and a guarantee letter stating that the host will accommodate the visitor for the entire period of his/her stay in Russia. Again, since Kenya is a high migration risk country, anyone who invites a citizen of that country to come to Russia is required to attend an interview with an FMS official.

Please note! We do not recommend using a private visa!
Find out why: Why not apply for a private visa?

Read more: Russian Private Visa

To process an application for issuance of a private visa invitation, it may take up to 12 or 17 working days, if a single-entry or double-entry visa is requested, respectively. Following the application process, the applicant will be notified of the status of their applications.

As soon as the invitation is collected, it should be sent by express delivery service to Kenya. Visitor visas are issued for one or two entries. They can be valid for a maximum of 90 days.

Arrange an invitation for a Russian private visa for Kenyan Citizens

Go to Issuing an Invitation

Russian Business (Commercial) Visa Requirements for Kenyan Citizens

Business persons holding Kenyan passports who wish to travel to Russia to meet with their business partners or attend an industry-related event need to apply for a business visa at the Russian Embassy. The application must be supported by a number of documents, including a letter of invitation issued by a Russian-based company or organization.

Read more: Russian Business Visa

The business visa invitation letter can be obtained by either of these ways:

Not all Russian businesses are entitled to make their own letters of invitation for foreign citizens. Any company wishing to issue an official invitation letter must be authorized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or Federal Migration Service. It takes as little as one hour to make this type of invitation.

To receive an FMS-approved invitation for a business visa the person who is responsible for arranging this document must apply at the FMS and provide a number of appropriate documents for approval. Normally, it takes up to 17 days to process the application. If approved, a business visa application will be issued on the official FMS-approved form, otherwise a letter of refusal shall be given to the person concerned stating the reasons for refusal in writing.

Telex invitation is the most convenient way to go through this stage of the visa process. No paperwork is required for this type of invitation. A Telex number will be given to the person who arranges it, and this number should be put on the application form submitted by the person who applies for a visa in Kenya. This type of invitation is processed in the following way: the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs sends an electronic message to the Kenyan Embassy via special communication channel instructing its employees to grant a visa to the specified person.

Read more: What is the Difference Between Telex And the Original Invitation?

Business visas can permit one, two or multiple entries to Russia. The maximum period of stay allowed by the type of visa is 1 year. However, holders of a business visa can stay for 90 days within each 180-day period. 

Arrange a letter of invitation for a Russian business visa for Kenyan citizens

Go to Issuing a Business Invitation

Arrange an FMS invitation for a Russian business visa for Kenyan Citizens

Go to Issuing a Business Invitation

Arrange a Telex invitation for a Russian business visa for Kenyan Citizens

Go to Issuing a Business Invitation

Russian Work Visa Requirements for Kenyan Citizens

Every stage of the process for obtaining a Russian work visa must be supported by the Russian employer who seeks to hire a foreign citizen. The employer is also required to have a valid permit to employ foreign workers. The first step towards successfully applying for your work visa is to receive a work permit and an official invitation for your visa application from your employer. These two original documents must be sent to you by regular mail. As soon as you obtain the visa, you must visit the office of your employer. Your employer is responsible for ensuring you have registered with the FMS.

Read more: Russian Work Visa

Two major advantages work visas have is that they are valid for 1 year and they can be renewed for another 1-year period without leaving the country. However, if a work visa holder decides to switch jobs, he/she will be required to go through the visa application process again.

Work visas are valid for 1 year (3 years for high skilled workers).

Arrange an invitation for a Russian work visa for Kenyan Citizens

Go to Issuing an Invitation

Russian Electronic Visa from Kenya

An electronic visa (hereinafter referred to as "e-visa") is a new type of a visa document. A visa invitation to Russia is not required for obtaining an e-visa. To obtain an e-visa to Russia use our “E-visa to Russia” service.

An e-visa can be only single-entry. The permitted stay in Russia on an e-visa is up to 8 days from the date of entry within its validity period.

The validity period and/ or permitted stay on an e-visa cannot be extended. To obtain an e-visa a foreign citizen needs a digital passport photo and a completed application form containing full and valid data at the official website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation.

Read more: Electronic visa to Russia for foreigners

In compliance with the Russian Government Regulation, Kenya is currently not listed among the foreign states eligible for an e-visa.

We recommend citizens of Kenya obtaining a common tourist visa for a stay up to 30 days.

Get Russian Visa Invitation

Russian Consular Offices in Kenya

Citizens of Kenya can apply for their visa at the following consular offices:

 Russian Embassy Locations in Kenya

  • The Embassy of the Russian Federation in the Republic of Kenya

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