“We reserves Tuesdays for groups that should not pay fee, that means those traveling to Norway for culture-, sport and Barents cooperation,” says head of the visa section, Marit Egholm Jacobsen, to BarentsObserver.
For others, the Schengen visa fee is €35 (2.700 rubles), plus the handling fee to the visa centre, currently 1.760 rubles (€24).
In the Barents Region, Norway has visa centres in Murmansk and from this week also in Arkhangelsk.
“Visas free of charge and no service fee is good news,” says Egholm Jacobsen.
She explains that it will be for the officers at the Consulate General to decide which groups to be defined within these categories. Norway and Russia have over the last 22 years facilitated for thousands of people-to-people projects under the Barents cooperation frame. In addition to culture and sport, such projects include school exchange, environmental cooperation, indigenous peoples contact, education, youth and health projects.
“If these groups do their travel planning in advance, the processing time for such visas are 7 days,” explains Egholm Jacobsen.
“The groups will have to call us for an appointment time. If they then deliver the papers one Tuesday, they can pick up the visas the following Tuesday.”