Travel insurance for Canadians, it’s worth it!

While we hope that you never need to actually use your travel insurance, having one is not only required but it’s also a practice of basic common sense. Accidents do happen and often at the worst possible time. Traveling to another country can be a wonderful way to make new friends, discover new places you’ve only read about, and no matter your age, increase your knowledge of the world. However keep in mind that no one is invincible, and knowing that emergencies won’t get out of hand can provide you with the reassurance needed by your family members who are not joining you on your journeys.


We at VisaCenter are here to provide you with several useful few tips to keep in mind in regards to your travel insurance.

  1. You must ensure that your chosen travel insurance provider includes coverage for emergency treatments and hospitalizations. Not all carriers cover medications and physician’s office visits. Those who are seeking a travel insurance that will meet such requirements should make sure that urgent medical care and emergency room visits are also covered by the insurance as a standard coverage, and not as an additional option sold separately.
  2. Travellers often assume that costs for such insurance coverage are quite high, however, this does not need to be the case. It is possible to get a low cost travel insurance that not only is affordable for most people’s budgets but that will also cover, and adequately so, any related medical costs incurred during a stay in USA, Australia, Russia, China, Africa, Schengen countries (Europe).
  3. Your travel insurance policy number and other information should be readily available in the event that you need to present it to health providers. We recommend making a photocopy of your travel insurance documents prior to traveling. Do not wait until you need healthcare services to look for your policy in your luggage.
  4. Your policy information should also be safeguarded to prevent fraudulent use of your insurance by scammers and other criminals at another location. It would not be cost-effective to acquire a low-cost travel insurance only to have it be misused by someone illegally. Being careless with your information can sometimes create hardships when may require to obtain travel insurance again in the future.
  5. In addition to health and medical coverage when traveling, protecting your luggage from loss is one of your most important duties during transit. After you’ve arrived at your destination, finding out that another passenger has run off with your gear can be a horrible shock. Protecting the investment you’ve made in your gear can also be covered, making losses such as this less painful.
  6. Another aspect of travel is discovering that cancellations do happen. Unless the fine print states that you’ll receive a refund, often you’ll have to wait for a replacement of what you’ve purchased. This can create extreme hardship especially in the case of accommodations. Cancelled flights, cancelled accommodations, and even cancelled excursions can all also be covered by travel insurance policies. While you might be able to catch another flight, or wait a few hours until the next one leaves the airport, this can cause you to lose your intended hotel room. If your hotel has cancelled, where will you stay in your destination city? A tour can easily be replaced, but finding another that will suit your needs and in the same time frame might not be found so easily.


Searching for the right policy may take some time, so starting as soon as you know you’ll be needing it will take a lot of the pressure off you and allow you to find the perfect policy that covers all of your needs. As always, if you have any questions or want to get a price quote on travel insurance, call or us or simply visit at:



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We demystify the reasons why your visa application may be delayed or rejected.

Why you travel visa application may be denied

Why you travel visa application may be denied

If you are traveling to a country with entry visa requirements, you must apply for a travel visa in advance and prepare all required documents properly. Coming from VisaCenter experience, there may be a list of reasons why your visa application may be delayed in its processing or rejected completely.


11 reasons your visa application is delayed:

  1. Visa application form is incomplete, i.e. while completing it you have omitted one or several items.
  2. Visa application is not signed and/or not dated.
  3. Visa application form is not in the required format. Many countries now require that the visa application form be first filled-out on-line and then printed out. Russia, Brazil, and India are examples of countries that require this format. In other cases, such as China, visa application forms must be filled out on your computer and then printed, but not filled out by hand.
  4. Passport is not signed by the owner. The holder must sign Page 3 of his or her Canadian passport.
  5. Passport is damaged. This applies to obvious damage, such as torn pages, cover(s) or unauthorized, non-official markings (scribbles made by your child or notes by yourself). In addition, a “washed” passport is also unacceptable. It may seem OK to you, but not to the visa officer at the consulate.
  6. Photos not in line with requirements. Photo booth photos or self-made photos are not acceptable. You may have your photo taken at any VisaCenter office locations or at a professional outlet, like Wal-Mart, Costco, etc.
  7. Additionally required documents are not presented, presented incompletely or do not meet the standards. Each country has a different list of documents that must be submitted along with the core ones (passport, photo and visa application form). In some cases it is an invitation from the person or organization from that country, or /and bank statement, printed out itinerary, International Certificate of Vaccination for Yellow Fever, etc. Some consulates are asking applicants to bring an extra copy of some of the documents being submitted. For example, when you submit for Russian visa you must attach a copy of the main page of the applicant’s passport.
  8. Incorrect payment of consular visa fee, in the case of an incorrect amount or form of payment. Most consulates accept only money orders, so sending them cash or personal cheques is classified as an incorrect form of payment.
  9. Incorrect mailing address. In many cases, consular divisions of embassies are located at locations different from the address of the embassy itself. If you send your visa application directly to the embassy, you can be sure to expect a delay in processing. In the case of Russia and China, neither the embassy nor the consulate accepts visa applications from the general public. You must use a visa center only – no other choice.
  10. No return pre-paid envelope/waybill enclosed to return your passport with visa or enclosing the envelope of the service that the consulate is not using. Some consulates, for example, are using only certain courier companies and if you attach a pre-paid waybill from a different company they will not send it back to you.
  11. Political and/or consulate relations between two countries. Sometimes when the relations between countries are getting worse, this may negatively reflect on visa issuance processing.

Top 5 reasons your application is rejected:

  1. The country you intend to enter has blacklisted you.
  2. You have provided false, in-complete information
  3. You failed to meet additional requirements
  4. You failed to attend a visa interview at the consulate.
  5. You failed to pass a visa interview at the consulate.

In the majority of cases, consulates do not provide any explanation or detail as to why a visa application has been rejected and/or you are denied an entry visa.

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Travel Visas News Digest


Here is the round-up of the news related to travel visa issues for the last 2 weeks:

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Moscow in a day

Moscow, http://www.visacenter.caMoscow, the capital city of Russia, has plenty to offer to a curious visitor. This ancient city, built around an amazing historical backdrop ensures a memorable experience for tourists all around the globe. In fact, the sights and attractions are so many, that it often becomes very difficult to cover them in a short trip.
Following are the places which a traveler with a day off from his busy work schedule should try to see in Moscow:

Red Square: It is a must visit spot in the Russian capital Moscow, Red Squarecovered by historical sites such as Kremlin’s walls, Lenin’s Mausoleum, State History Museum, and St. Basil’s Cathedral. The Red Square and Kremlin both got recognition as UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the year 1990.

Arbat Street: The Arbat Street is an excellent place to remove boredom. It is filled with restaurants, tourist cafes, and souvenir shops. The little by-streets revolving around Arbat will give you an experience of “ancient Moscow spirit”. A bit of knowledge in Russian will help you to negotiate the prices inside a souvenir shop at Arbat Street.
Tretyakov Museum: This is arguably Moscow’s best museum. Tretyakov is renowned for its compilation of fabulous Russian art. Famous works of contemporary Russian artists provide the museum a magical touch. Experts consider Tretyakov as one of the best art museums in the world.
Novodevichy Convent: Built during the early part of the fifteenth century, Novodevichy constitutes a gorgeous fortress along with the convent. This historical complex is considered as the most preserved in the city of Moscow. The famous Novodevichy cemetery is also placed near to it. Well-known people like Boris Yeltsin, Raisa Gorbachev, Nikita Khrushchev, Konstantine Stanislavski, Nickolai Gogol, and Anton Chekhov have been buried here.
Tverskaya Street: The Tverskaya Street is Moscow’s hottest fashion spot. It includes numerous prestigious boutiques and fashion stores. The street is also dotted with coffee houses, theaters, hotels and restaurants. The unique architectural style of the street will definitely catch your attention. You will also spot the planet’s busiest McDonalds near the end of the street.
Christ the Savior Cathedral: This is the world’s tallest Orthodox cathedral. It was destroyed by the orders of Stalin in the year 1931 and was rebuilt again in the middle half of the nineties. An underground museum documents all the details of the cathedral and its surroundings in the most interesting fashion.

Kremlin: Finally, your short trip to Moscow must never get over without a visit to the Kremlin. Classic ballet performances during the afternoon add to the charm of the place. You must also not miss the glorious churches at Kremlin and the armory for its diamond collection.
With proper planning, you can easily cover all these above mentioned places within a day’s time. However, the majority of foreign visitors to Russia must always remember to apply for travel visas, which can be easily obtained from Russian visa centers in Canada, UK and USA.

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Russia: Top 20 Hotels

In Russia most of the hotels are expensive. But unfortunately, high price does not guarantee the adequate services. So the following rating prepared by Tripadvisor should be more or less objective reflection of the actual situation and guidance where to stay while in Russia. And yes, do not forget to obtain Russian visa before going. This can be done at VisaCenter offices in UK, Canada and USA. Or if you are somewhere else you may get Russian visa support and get visa from the nearest Russian Embassy or Consulate.


W St.Petersburg - #1 Hotel in Russia

1. W St. Petersburg
St. Petersburg, Russia
2. Tradition Hotel
St. Petersburg, Russia
3. Alexander House Boutique Hotel
St. Petersburg, Russia
4. Lotte Hotel Moscow
Moscow, Russia
5. Swissotel Krasnye Holmy
Moscow, Russia
6. Moscow Marriott Royal Aurora Hotel
Moscow, Russia
7. Grand Hotel Europe by Orient-Express
St. Petersburg, Russia
8. Nevsky Forum Hotel
St. Petersburg, Russia
9. Nas Hotel
St. Petersburg, Russia
10. Radisson Royal Moscow
Moscow, Russia
11. Ararat Park Hyatt Moscow
Moscow, Russia
12. Taleon Imperia Hotel
St. Petersburg, Russia
13. Katerina Park
Moscow, Russia
14. Hilton Moscow Leningradskaya
Moscow, Russia
15. Hotel Baltschug Kempinski Moscow
Moscow, Russia
16. Rossi Hotel
St. Petersburg, Russia
17. Hotel Giuseppe
Kazan, Russia
18. Renaissance St. Petersburg Baltic Hotel
St. Petersburg, Russia
19. Hotel Peter 1
Moscow, Russia
20. Holiday Club Spa & Wellness
St. Petersburg, Russia

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Russian visa application form – secrets revealed…

How to Fill Russian Visa Application Form with Ease!

This is a manual on how to fill-out Russian visa application form correctly to ensure the acceptance by strict and often unfriendly visa officers at Russian consulates. Please note, that this type of the application form can be used only by the applicants with the passports of Canada, United States, United Kingdom and Georgia. The manual is structured to make it easy and clear what to write in the box for each question, starting from question one till the last question #41. If you do not have the application form itself you may find it at Russian Visa Center site.

#1. Nationality
Indicate your citizenship. If you have dual or triple citizenship, write down one that corresponds to the passport that you are applying with.

#2. Last name
Write exactly as in your passport

#3. First and middle names
Write exactly as in your passport

#4. Date of birth
Write exactly as in your passport in the following format: dd/mm/yy.

#5. Sex
Indicate gender as per passport

#6. Purpose of visit.
Depending on the nature of your visit choose one of the following: tourism; business; work; study; private in accordance with the following criteria:
– Tourists are those visiting for leisure, cruises, tours
– Business visitors are those who travel for conferences, business/government meetings, signing official documents, visiting company branches
– Work visa are for those who are going to take employment in Russia. Applicants of this category must possess a number of documents, which are required for the application. You must contact Visa Center for this list.
– Study visa are for those who are going to take educational course in Russia. Applicants of this category must possess a number of documents, which are required for the application. You must contact Visa Center for this list.
– Private visitors are those who travel to visit relatives. Private visa applicants must possess an official private invitation letter issued by FMS (Ministry of Immigration).

#7. Category and type of visa.
You may leave this blank.

#8. Number of entries.
Depending on how many times you intend to enter Russia, select one of the boxes (single, double or multi)

#9. Date of entry in Russia.
Indicate the first possible day of entry into Russia. Please, note that it is not obligatory to enter Russia exactly on the indicated date. You may enter Russia later (but not earlier) as the visa is issued for the period of time between the date indicated in #9 and the date indicated in #10.

#10. Date of departure from Russia.
Indicate date of departure. Note that Russian visa will have its validity ending at this date and you are not allowed to stay in Russia after the date indicated in #10. Date of departure from Russia. Indicate the date in accordance with the following format: dd/mm/yy.

For tourist visas:
Departure date may not be any later than 30 calendar days after the date indicated in #9

For business, work, study visas:
Exit date must be as per the letter of invitation. If your letter of invitation is processed by Visa Center, please leave this field blank

#11. Passport No.
Indicate passport number, including all letters and digits.
Issued by
Indicate the name of the Authority that issued you the passport
Date of issue
Indicate the date of issue of your passport in accordance with the following format: dd/mm/yy.
Valid until
Indicate the date of expiry of your passport in accordance with the following format: dd/mm/yy.

#12. Type of passport.
Indicate the type of passport that you are applying with for Russian visa. In greatest majority of cases you should choose “tourist”. If you are applying with Travel Document, choose “other” and indicate “Travel Document” right after.

#13. Russian institution or organization to be visited?
If you apply with Visa Center, and Visa Center is providing you with visa support (invitation letters, vouchers, etc), then leave this space blank. Otherwise put here the name of the organization that has provided you with visa support. (If you are unsure, leave blank)

For tourist visa please indicate the name and reference number of the host tourist company. For business visa – name of the host organization and its city. For private visa – last, first and middle name as well as the home address of your host in Russia (in English).

#14. Itinerary
Indicate here the cities in Russia that you plan to visit during your trip

#15. Do you have medical insurance valid in Russia?
If you do not have one, leave the space blank and select “no” box. If you have the insurance then select “yes” box and provide the name of the insurance company and policy number. Insurance is recommended but not mandatory for USA & Canadian citizens.

#16. Who will pay for your trip to and stay in Russia?
Indicate who is paying for your trip.

#17. Marital status.
Select one of the boxes that corresponds to you current marital situation.

#18. Spouse’s full name.
Indicate your spouse full name. Indicate maiden name of the spouse (if applicable) in case when you are divorced or separated.

#19. Spouse’s date of birth.
Indicate your spouse’s date of birth in accordance with the following format: dd/mm/yy.

#20. Spouse’s place of birth.
Indicate your spouse’s place of birth (city name, country name).

#21. Your father’s full name.
Indicate your father’s full name.

#22. Your mother’s full name.
Indicate your mother’s full name.

#23. Have you ever been issued a Russian visa?
Indicate the year(s) and the place(s) of issue of your previous Russian visa(s).

#24. Has your passport ever been lost or stolen?
select one of the boxes that corresponds to your situation.

#25. List all countries you have visited in the last ten years and indicate the year of visit.
Make a list that looks like, Country name – Year of visit.

#26. List all countries which have ever issued you a passport.
Indicate what countries you have passports from.

#27. List your last two places of work, excluding the current one.
For 1 and 2.
Indicate the name of the company.
Indicate the address of the company.
Your position.
Indicate the position you occupied while in the company.
Phone number.
Indicate the phone number of the company.
Your chief’s surname.
Indicate the name of your supervisor at the company.
Dates of joining – dismissal.
Indicate month and year for the start and end of your employment with the company in accordance with the following format: mm/yy.
#28. List all educational institutions you ever attended, except high schools.
For 1 and 2.
Indicate the name of the educational institution.
Course of study.
Indicate your major.
Address and phone number.
Indicate the address and phone number of the educational institution.
Dates of admission and graduation.
Indicate the month/year of admission and month/year of graduation in accordance with the following format: mm/yy.

#29. List all professional, civil and charity organizations which you are/were member of or cooperate/cooperated with.
List the names of organizations that you belong to (i.e. Rotary club, ASCE, UNISON, etc)

#30. Do you have any specialized skills, training or experience related to fire-arms and explosives or to nuclear matters, biological or chemical substance? If yes, please specify.
If you have the above mentioned skills/training list the details, otherwise indicate “N/A”

#31. Have you ever performed a military service? If yes, indicate the country, branch of service, rank, military occupation and dates of service.
If you served in the military, provide the details as requested, otherwise indicate “N/A”

#32. Have you ever been involved in the armed conflicts, either as a member of the military service or a victim? If yes, please specify.
Indicate the details of your involvement in the military conflicts, wars, etc., if applicable.

#33. Important! Each applicant must read and give answers to the following questions.
Have you ever been arrested or convicted for any offense?

Select “no” box if this does not apply to you. Otherwise, select “yes” box and provide the details as requested.

Have you ever been afflicted with a communicable disease of public health significance or a dangerous physical or mental disorder? Have you ever been a drug abuser or an addict?
Select the box that applicable to your case.

Have you ever been refused a Russian visa?
Select “no” box if this does not apply to you. Otherwise, select “yes” box and provide the details as requested.

Has your Russian visa ever been canceled?
Select “no” box if this does not apply to you. Otherwise, select “yes” box and provide the details as requested.

Have you ever tried to obtain or assisted others to obtain a Russian visa or enter Russia by providing misleading or false information?
Select the box that applicable to your case.

Have you ever overstayed your Russian visa or stayed unlawfully in Russia?
select “no” box if this does not apply to you. Otherwise, select “yes” box and provide the details as requested.

Have you ever been deported from Russia?
Select “no” box if this does not apply to you. Otherwise, select “yes” box and provide the details as requested.

#34. Name, address and phone number of a person or hotel in Russia that you plan to stay with.
Indicate the contact information of your place of residence in Russia. If you applied for your invitation/visa support with Visa Center you may leave this space blank.

#35. Has this application been completed personally by you? If no, indicate the person completing this information in item 36.
Select the box that applicable to your case.

#36. Application completed:
If you selected “no” box, indicate the following details about the person who has assisted you: last and first name, his/her’s contact address and relationship to you.

#37. Other names ever used.
Indicate any names that you have ever used. For example, maiden name.

#38. Your permanent address, phone and fax number, E-mail.
Indicate your residential address, phone. You may indicate fax and/or email.

#39. Place of birth.
Indicate city and country of birth as indicated in your passport.

#40. Place of work or study, present position.
Indicate the name of your employer, their full address, contact phone number. As well as indicate your position.

#41.Are any of your relatives staying in Russia now?
If yes, then indicate details: full name, relationship, date of birth, permanent address in Russia.

Visa Application locations may be found at:

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