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Russia  - Expedited Visa Services

Visa to Russia
Expedited Visa Services

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The article below provides important information about travel to Russia. For comprehensive Visa Application instructions, please see the specific Visa Requirements page for your Visa Type (business, tourist, etc). Our step-by-step instructions guide you through the process. We guarantee the accuracy of your application and expedite it with the appropriate Consulate. Our team is here to help with online chat, phone & email support.

09/21/2012

What is the Russian ILS?



If you’re looking into a visa to enter Russia, you may have noticed a new agency popping up. It’s Invisa Logistic Services or ILS, a Russian-owned management company hired by the Russian embassy to organize the processing of Russian visas. The Russian Embassy Visa Section formerly consisted of a small room staffed by two visa officers, open for three hours each morning. As the number of visa applications increased the Embassy simply could no longer handle the demand. In walks ILS.

The bottom line: ILS is the middleman that all persons seeking Russian visas must go through.

What does this mean for you?

ILS is in charge of collecting visa applications from applicants, passing them on to the Russian Embassy for processing, and then returning the passport (hopefully with visa) to the applicant. The idea is to streamline the visa application process but the method has its own difficulties not to mention an added charge to the applicant.

Firstly, ILS is not a visa service and does not provide customer service. This means that:
  1. ILS does not review applications to insure they are correctly completed and that the appropriate documents have been submitted. If you have tried completing the Russian visa application, you are aware that it is fairly complicated to complete.
  2. If an application is incorrectly completed or there are problems with the invitation, the application is returned to the applicant and the consular fees are not refunded- keep in mind consular fees start at $170.00!
  3. Reports of customer dissatisfaction with ILS have arisen, as reported by a variety of sites, discussed here.
On the other hand, Passport Visas Express.com provides you with expert guidance in completing the visa application.
  1. We preview your documents prior to submission to insure they will be accepted and processed in the time frame you request to meet your date of departure.
  2. If an application is rejected because of something they missed, then they would pay the consular fee again upon resubmission. As an customer service agency the burden of insuring your application is correctly submitted is on them- talk about peace of mind!

Secondly, ILS charges a fee of $30, which is rolled into the consular fee that each applicant pays. ILS charges this fee to everyone, regardless of whether you use a service like Passport Visas Express.com or submit the application directly to ILS. However, ILS also charges additional fees to individuals who send applications directly to ILS (these charges do not apply when using Passport Visas Express.com):

  1. In addition to the $30 processing fee ILS charges a second $30 fee for “mail processing”- that’s right they charge you to open the mail.  Passport Visas Express.com does not have such a fee.
  2. ILS charges $35 for USPS certified mail, which is not the quickest way to return a passport, nor the safest or most reliable.
  3. ILS does not offer rush processing for mail service. If you want your visa in a hurry (less than 2 weeks) you will need to visit them in person to submit and collect your passport. Passport Visas Express.com offers rush processing for all applicants. Visas can be processed in as fast as 4 business days.
  4. ILS offices are jurisdictional—what this means is you must mail your application to the ILS office that services the state you reside in. Passport Visas Express.com can submit applications by hand to the ILS office in Washington, DC, regardless of where the applicant resides.

Passport Visas Express.com will be more than happy to work with you and your business or tourist needs when traveling to Russia. Travel has its own hassles; don’t let the ILS be another one. Passport Visas Express.com combines expert customer service and an affordable cost to get you what you need to take you where you need to go.

 

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