Do not travel
Latest Travel Alert
The Department of Foreign Affairs is recommending against travel to the Russian Federation until further notice.
Irish citizens who are in Russia are advised to carefully consider the necessity of their continued stay, and make plans to leave. Information on current departure options from Russia is below.
Irish citizens resident in Russia who have not already done so are recommended to register with the Embassy using the Department’s Citizens’ Registration Facility.
On 7 April 2022, two diplomats from the Embassy of Ireland were instructed to leave Russia. This has diminished the ability of the Embassy to provide services to Irish citizens in Russia.
While normal operating hours continue in both the Visa office and Embassy, citizens should be aware of significant delays in processing documentation, including passports. This is due both to reduced staffing in the Embassy and ongoing difficulties in international post and shipping.
Citizens should also be mindful of the reduced ability of the Embassy to provide support in crisis scenarios, particularly for citizens situated far from Moscow.
If you have a query or need to make an appointment please contact the Embassy by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
If you have a query regarding visas, please email IrishVisaMoscow@dfanet.ie
EU Sanctions and Effects on Business
Since the invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, the EU has introduced the most extensive restrictive measures (sanctions) in its history. These sanctions include measures targeting specific sectors, including the financial, energy, technology, defence, media and transport sectors, as well as individual measures targeting named persons and entities. EU restrictive measures are legally binding on all natural and legal persons in Ireland and the EU. EU Council Regulations have direct effect, and must therefore be complied with in the same way as domestic Irish legislation. In Ireland, it is a criminal offence to contravene EU sanctions.
All persons and entities considering doing business with Russian entities or travelling to Russia should ensure that their activities do not contravene EU sanctions, including the sanctions introduced since February 2022. Detailed information on sanctions in respect of the situation in Ukraine is available here. The EU Sanctions Map has information on all EU Sanctions Regimes in effect, as well as lists of the individuals and entities sanctioned under each Regime, and links to the EU legal acts for each Regime. A consolidated list of persons, groups and entities subject to EU financial sanctions is available here.
Mass Gatherings and Arbitrary Detention
Irish citizens in Russia should be vigilant about their own safety and avoid mass gatherings, including protests or demonstrations. Please also be aware that new laws that affect media freedom of expression can be used to impose severe and arbitrary sentences of up to 15 years in prison. Irish citizens should be mindful this includes posting or sharing banned content on social media.
Banking Restrictions in Russia
Irish citizens in Russia should be mindful that increasingly severe limitations on banking, including the withdrawal of Visa and Mastercard services, may directly affect their ability to access their money for the foreseeable future.
Transport Routes Out of Russia
There are severely limited or no flight routes to the EU. Citizens wishing to return to Ireland via air are advised to book flights via Istanbul, Dubai, or Abu Dhabi.
Citizens intending to travel through these countries to Ireland should consult the Department’s Travel Advice in advance:
Unfortunately, it is not possible to predict when direct flight routes to EU countries will resume.
Options also exist for overland departure from the Russian Federation.
The Department is aware of a bus route from St. Petersburg, to Tallinn in Estonia that may of interest to Irish citizens. Details of this route can be found here:
Citizens intending on taking overland routes to neighbouring EU countries should check the travel advice for those countries before booking tickets (www.dfa.ie/travel) and ensure they comply with entry requirements including with regard to COVID-19.
Citizens in Ukraine
If you are an Irish national inside Ukraine, please register your details here and monitor the travel advice, which is updated regularly:
Travel to the Russian Federation
The Russian Government has introduced a number of preventative measures and travel restrictions to limit the spread of COVID-19 within its borders. These measures are regularly updated and are subject to change at short notice. We recommend all inbound passengers to check regularly with their travel agent and/or airline, and to check the website of the Russian Embassy in Dublin to make sure they have the most up to date information.
Please be aware that at present, Covid-19 restrictions are decided and enforced on a regional and municipal basis. These restrictions vary considerably across the country and can change at short notice. Any inbound arrival should liaise closely with their hotel and/or travel agent to make sure they are aware of local restrictions, which can include the closure of most public spaces and transport.
All foreign citizens arriving in Russia at present (including transit passengers) are required to present a medical certificate indicating that they have tested negative for COVID-19 within the past 48 hours. The test must be a Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test and the certificate must be in English or Russian with the time and date of the test clearly shown. Foreign citizens are also required to complete a special passenger locator form during their flight as a condition of entry. Foreign citizens can also be requested to undergo random COVID-19 testing at the airport on arrival in Russia.
The Russian Parliament has postponed nationwide legislation to mandate QR codes for entry to shops, transportation, and other public spaces . It is unclear when this legislation may enter force. but when it does it could heavily impact incoming travellers without a vaccination certificate that is recognised in Russia. At present, vaccinations carried out in the EU are not recognised in Russia for the purposes of QR codes and other health-related measures.
As the epidemiological situation evolves, Irish citizens who are resident in Russia are advised to monitor local media for the latest advice and information and to comply with all COVID-19 related restrictions. Irish citizens are advised to carry identification with them at all times if going outside.
Check with your doctor well in advance of travelling to see if you need any vaccinations for Russia.
Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation
General Travel Advice
Irish citizens travelling to Russia are advised to respect the validity of their Russian visa. A visa over-stay of even a few hours can have serious consequences potentially involving a court appearance, fine, and travel ban of up to 5 years.
A short-stay e-visa system (maximum 8 days) was introduced for nationals of 53 countries, including Ireland, wishing to travel to Saint Petersburg and its region https://electronic-visa.kdmid.ru/spb_home_en.html. Irish citizens should take note that these visas are only valid for travel to and within the St. Petersburg (Leningrad Oblast) region and are not valid for travel to the rest of Russia.
A similar system of electronic visas has been introduced for the Kaliningrad region http://electronic-visa.kdmid.ru/klgd_home_en.html.
These additional visa programmes may be affected by the overall approach by the Russian Government to COVID-19 prevention.
Irish citizens should ensure that the name on their visa exactly matches the one in their passport. Even a minor difference in spelling will result in entry to Russia being refused. The Embassy has no ability to assist in such cases.
For information relating to Ukraine, please visit the Department’s Travel Advice.
Given the volatile security situation in the North Caucasus, we strongly advise against all travel to Chechnya, Ingushetia, Dagestan and to the eastern and southern parts of Stavropol Krai bordering Chechnya and Dagestan, including the Budyonnovsky, Levkumsky, Neftekumsky, Stepnovsky and Kursky regions.
We also advise against all but essential travel to North Ossetia, Karachai-Cherkessia and Kabardino-Balkaria (including the Elbrus region). Terrorism and kidnapping are a risk in these areas.
You can contact the emergency services in the Russian Federation by dialling 112.
Any Irish citizens normally resident in Ireland who are seeking assistance travelling home should contact the embassy.
Irish citizens resident in Russia who have not already done so are recommended to register with the embassy using the Department’s travel registration facility.