Special Entry/Exit Requirements for International Cruise Ship Passengers

International Cruise Ship/Ferry Passengers: You are permitted to visit Russian ports without a visa for a period of up to 72 hours. You may go ashore without a visa during port calls, but only if you are with an organized tour and accompanied at all times by a tour operator who has been duly licensed by Russian authorities. Cruise ship and ferry lines offer shore tours that meet these requirements. If you want to do sightseeing on your own, you must have a visa. If you arrive in Russia by ship or ferry, but want to depart by air, train, or other mode of transportation, you must have a visa. You must present your U.S. passport to Russian immigration officers each time you depart or return to the ship during your port call in Russia. If your U.S. passport is lost or stolen while you are ashore, you will not be allowed to return to the ship until you obtain a replacement passport from the U.S. Embassy or Consulate. If your ship leaves Russia without you, you must obtain an exit visa to depart Russia by alternative transportation. Russian authorities may take up to 20 calendar days to authorize an exit visa, during which time you will have to remain in Russia at your own expense. These special entry/exit requirements for international cruise ship and ferry passengers do not apply to river boat cruise passengers. River boat cruise passengers must have a visa and should follow the general guidelines for entry/exit requirements.