Interested in Moving to Russia? The Preparations to Be Expatriate

Is it finally happening? After months, even years of struggle, hard work, and patience, you have finally been offered a chance to live overseas and experience a once-in-a-lifetime adventure. After you have shared the good news with everyone in your circle, the nerves have started to creep in. As exciting a prospect as it is to throw all your things in the luggage and move across the world, the preparation can be overwhelming and complicated. However, fret not, if you start preparing early, you will find it manageable.

Moving abroad involves a lot of preparations and steps to take to get everything done such as visas, health care, job-hunting, and other support systems you need when you start to live in a new place. So, make sure you know all the necessities when you move overseas, whether it is moving across a country border or to an entirely unfamiliar country.

Moving to Russia

Russia is a country full of traditional and historical values and also Western influences. Although Russia is quite popular among expatriate, settling down there can be quite difficult. Moving to Russia is relatively challenging. It is not just because the expatriate needs to choose their future hometown but also because they need to negotiate the complicated visa regulations.

If you really want to move to Russia, you may experience frustrations which include a difficult language adjustment, bureaucracy, and extreme weather conditions. However, the cities in Russia nonetheless offer an appealing lifestyle with its rich arts and culture scene and active social life.

Also, becoming a Russian from scratch and accepting the fact that you have to be a greenhorn for a while is quite an experience. Jumping into one adventure to another, you may have to quit some of your habits that have been seated and fast-grown into your subconscious, daily activity somewhere along the way.

In this article, I have rounded up some tips to relocate. So, are you interested in moving to Russia? The preparations to be expatriate below will surely help you.


This kind of permit regulation can either be slightly complicated or a bureaucratic nightmare. However, with the right preparation and a good deal of patience, it can be manageable.

There are two most relevant visa types for expatriate in Russia and each with a distinct purpose and its own regulations as follow:

  • Business visa: It is for business-related travel to Russia, such as professional consultations, congresses, presentations, or contract negotiations. You need this visa to attend anything of a commercial event like an auction. It is only issued upon invitation by the legal entity from within Russia and does not allow for any actual employment.
  • Work visa: Obtaining this visa is the most important preparation before you actually relocate. It is actually your employer’s responsibility, but there are certain tasks that you will need to deal with yourself.


After your arrival, you need to let the local immigration authorities know about your place of residence within a week. If you have a work contract in Russia, they will carry out this task for you. Make sure you know whether it is your duty or theirs beforehand because violations against immigration regulations in Russia can have bad consequences. In some cases, it could even lead to deportation.


A lot of expatriates in Russia spend up to three years to complete their work visa for a predetermined stretch of time. However, do not worry; you will be given a temporary visitor status. Remember that you need to apply for a temporary residence permit if you want to stay in Russia beyond your initial assignment.

As with many other bureaucratic processes in Russia, this process is a rather intricate thing for which you may need professional assistance. Fortunately, relocation and immigration agencies usually provide legal advice and practical help to help expatriates throughout the major hotspots in Russia. However, you need to make sure that your chosen agency is experienced and reputable.

Culture Shock

Culture shock is a common reaction to being in a new environment. Although Russia has been known worldwide, it is still a very foreign environment for most expatriates. Your stress levels may rise as you try your best to adapt to the new environment. You may have difficulties to know the cities, the language, and all other little things.

Culture shock usually consists of three phases. The first phase is when everything seems new and exciting. You will have a huge urge to discover everything in euphoric delight and the foreign culture seems extraordinary. The second phase is when you start to notice differences and there will be some aspects of culture that annoy you. Homesickness usually happens in this phase and at times, you may feel like giving up and even begin hating the culture. The third phase is the adjustment. You finally manage to balance the pros and cons of foreign culture and accept the differences. You also feel more like yourself and begin to feel at home.

So, how do you cope with culture shock quickly? Here are the answers:

  • Think of your new surrounding as a challenge that has to be overcome. Many expatriates come back happier with their eyes open due to the new experiences they gain.
  • Do not isolate yourself because you are not alone. There are many other expatriates going through the same phases of culture shock. Try to reach people out and learn the language so that you can communicate better with the locals.
  • Keep your day-to-day experience in a blog or journal because writing helps you overcome the frustration are experiencing.
  • Keep yourself busy so that you will not miss home as much when you have a lot of things to do.

So, are you interested in moving to Russia? The preparations to be expatriate above will surely help you to adjust to the new environment.

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