From September 1, residents of Russia will be able to apply for a tourist visa to Finland only in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Petrozavodsk and Murmansk, Interfax reports citing the Finnish Foreign Ministry.
VFS Global, Finland’s visa application partner in Russia, will only accept applications on Mondays.
“If you submitted your visa application in the wrong category, or are requesting a tourist visa on a day when tourist visa applications are not accepted, you need to book a new time and apply on the correct day,” the ministry said.
Earlier in August, the Finnish government announced that it would reduce the issuance of Schengen visas to Russians from September 1 to one tenth of the previous level. Finland will give priority to family, work or study visas.
After the Russian invasion of Ukraine, some EU countries stopped or restricted the issuance of visas to Russians. The European Union also canceled the simplified procedure for issuing visas for Russian diplomats and businessmen. In the summer, the EU countries bordering the Russian Federation proposed to limit or completely stop issuing tourist visas to Russians.
According to the Financial Times, the foreign ministers of the EU member states plan to support the abolition of the simplified procedure for issuing Schengen visas to Russian citizens, which has been in effect since 2007. Officially, this can be announced on August 30-31. If the decision is made, Russians will have to provide more documents to obtain a Schengen visa, the consular fee will increase from 35 to 80 euros, and applications will take longer to process.