What is the change? Authorities have amended foreign registration rules that will be in effect from May 25 through July 25 for the 2018 FIFA World Cup soccer tournament.

What does the change mean? Foreign nationals will have three days, rather than one day as previously announced, to register with authorities upon arriving in cities that are hosing World Cup matches. Those who stay in hotels, sanatoriums, hospitals and similar institutions, however, will need to complete their registration within 24 hours of arrival. Other previously announced registration procedures will remain the same for foreign and Russian nationals.

  • Implementation time frame: May 25 to July 25.
  • Who is affected: Foreign nationals arriving in Kaliningrad, Kazan, Moscow, Nizhny Novgorod, Rostov-na-Donu, St. Petersburg, Samara, Saransk, Sochi, Volgograd or Yekaterinburg between May 25 and July 25 during the 2018 FIFA World Cup tournament.
  • Impact on processing times: The change will make it easier for foreign nationals to meet registration deadlines when traveling to the areas listed above during the tournament.
  • Business impact: Business travelers should note that the registration requirements apply during the specified times no matter whether they are traveling to attend soccer matches or not. Travelers may be affected, therefore, even if their purpose in Moscow or other cities hosting soccer matches has nothing to do with the matches themselves.

Background: Russian authorities recently announced that they would impose additional registration requirements during the World Cup, just as they did last year when the country hosted the Confederations Cup. Authorities then announced last week that they would ease requirements for foreign nationals, so that in most cases they will have three days to register rather than one.

BAL Analysis: Those planning to travel to cities hosting World Cup soccer matches are urged to follow the requirements listed above. Failing to do so could lead to administrative penalties, including fines of up to 7,000 rubles (about US$113) for visitors and up to 500,000 rubles for hosting companies and 50,000 rubles for hosting company officials. Foreign nationals who fail to register risk not only fines but expulsion from Russia.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Russia. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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