Results 1 to 3 of 3

Thread: Getting a Letter of Invitation for a visa

  1. #1

    Default Getting a Letter of Invitation for a visa

    We are traveling to St Petersburg in late September on a cruise, but we want the option of leaving the ship without being on one of their shore excursions. In order to get a tourist visa, we need to quote a Letter of Invitation with a reference number. Normally tourists get this from a hotel, but we will be on the ship. I have tried to obtain this through the travel agent and the cruise line but they cannot/will not supply. If I pay a lot of money to a visa agent here in Sydney they say they can get it, but that will be a last resort. Can anyone help with advice on this? If I book a Peters tour will I get an invitation number?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    St Petersburg, Russia



    You will not get an invitation for a Russian visa simply by booking a tour with us. Yet there are other ways of obtaining an invitation easily. Contact us by email for details.

    There are two options you can choose from in your situation:

    1. Get a visa. That’s where you need the invitation letter, and that is something that you can do relatively easy (see my remark above). Once you’ve got a visa you will be able to get off the ship any time you please, and stay ashore on your own. You may even be able to book a hotel in the city so you won’t have to return to the ship in the evening. This would make sense if your ship is docked at the remote terminal called the Marine Facade. Most cruise ships end up there, and only a few lucky ones are docked at the centrally located terminals. What is the name of your ship btw? We will be able to tell you where exactly your ship will be docked if you give us the name.

    2. Make advantage of the visa-free entry scheme which cruise passengers are eligible for, under certain conditions. For that you must book your entire shore itinerary with a local tour company such as ours. Visa-free entry will be granted for the duration of the shore excursions (and not for the entire time of you ship’s stay in St Petersburg). In other words, you won’t get any “free time on your own” in the city, only the right to disembark for the duration of the tours you book with us. We will design an individual programme for you, of any duration and including any visits to the sights, attractions, any activities etc. This will be your own personal programme - we will give you our guide for the entire duration of it, and arrange everything else that comes with it such as transport, museum tickets etc. We will deal with the immigration to get you cleared for visa-free entry - you won’t have to do anything (apart from discussing the tour programme with us).

    The programme must have fixed start/finish hours on each day. Once we’ve agreed on the programme and the costs we will file your papers with the immigration and have you cleared for visa-free entry. After that we won’t be able to change the hours. This is obviously less flexible than getting your own visas, and possibly more expensive than getting your own visas, but then you won’t have to deal with the consulate and visas at all.

    I hope all above makes sense:-) Essentially, you can choose between being a “normal” independent tourist with your own visa, or a buying an all-included set package of private shore excursions (but with no right to wander around on your own).

    Have a great cruise!


  3. #3


    Thank you this is very helpful advice. I will likely send you an email shortly.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts