I was leafing through the old visas in my EU passport, and to my great surprise, I found an expired unused visa for the Russian Federation. I have never been to Russia and I have never applied for a visa for Russia.

It is a business visa based on an invitation from a Russian bread company of which I had never heard before. Apparently, the unreliable visa service that was working for my last company got something mixed up (they also proved incompetent in dealing with other cases).

Of course, I would like to know how it was possible that such a visa was issued for me without me being involved. However, I expect that the answers could merely be speculation.

That leads me to my actual question: Could this visa become relevant for any future visa applications or can I simply ignore that it exists?

  • 1
    Yes it is relevant going forward and it is unwise to simply ignore it. Especially if you don't know what else is languishing in a computer somewhere that could jump out and create an awkward situation. I have been in detention in Sheremetyevo (but fortunately not as an end-user) and it can be an unwelcome disruption.
    – Gayot Fow
    Jul 14, 2016 at 19:11
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    That's...that's both awesome and terrifying. Does it have your name on it?
    – Mark Mayo
    Jul 20, 2016 at 11:08
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    @MarkMayo Yes, it has my name (in Cyrillic and Latin) and my date of birth, but no photograph.
    – user22443
    Jul 20, 2016 at 11:25
  • Wow, that is quite bizarre. Hopefully we get an answer for you.
    – Mark Mayo
    Jul 20, 2016 at 11:37

1 Answer 1


Could this visa become relevant for any future visa applications or can I simply ignore that it exists?

Absolutely. This visa is a matter of record, and depending on whom Russia shares their database with, it may be accessible to a country to which you apply in the future.

Although you have not traveled on the visa (it is not utilized) in the future if you were to apply for a visa to Russia this will definitely be raised.

It is not something to be ignored; you should rectify this situation. I would approach the Russian Embassy and ask for an appointment in order to explain the situation to them. Your visa will be cancelled (possibly the agency that facilitated your paperwork reprimanded) but most importantly - you will have a record of communication that you can use in the future if/when you are ever asked about visas to Russia.

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    If the question will be raised, a simple explanation "I got this visa for the business trip that got cancelled" will be enough. This may even be true: perhaps the OP's employer decided to get visa for him in advance. I think he should ask the visa service and his previous employer for explanations first, and leave the Russian embassy for later. Knowing our bureaucracy, asking for visa cancellation may cause more trouble than doing nothing: e.g. they may not find the correct option and mark the visa application as declined.
    – IMil
    Jul 25, 2016 at 0:15
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    Once you acknowledge the visa is legitimate - you have just opened yourself up to all kinds of questions about that visa; and now you are deeper into the rabbit hole. For example, they may call the (Russian) company to ask why the visa was issued. Jul 25, 2016 at 4:58
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    I agree that OP shouldn't lie. All I am saying is that there is a possible scenario: boss needs to send OP on a business trip to, say, China, and his colleague to Russia. But what if one of them will get ill or quit? They decide to play it safe and get Chinese and Russian visas for both employees. In this case it's hard to say that the visa was given in error. That's why I recommend to ask the employer and visa service company first. If they can't clarify the question, then next step would be the Russian embassy.
    – IMil
    Jul 26, 2016 at 20:12

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