As someone who made a name for himself by trying to break myths about Russia, I have a lot of questions about what it takes to move here. Be careful: nothing below is a reason to give up on your Russian dream, but moving here is very difficult and well worth knowing the truth before starting!
You must be married to immigrate.
Every region in Russia has a small share of immigration. The last time I checked in, Titanic, with a population of 16 million, allows 5,000 people a year to immigrate without marrying a Russian citizen. Besides a significant contribution to the Russian economy or being a close friend of the president, there is no way around this quota, which is immediately populated a few days after the New Year (when the quota is renewed).
Marrying a Russian citizen guarantees you the ability (note that I have said opportunity, as in luck) to apply for a temporary residence permit. The government wants people who immigrate here to have a family and have children – which is what I agree with, but if you are already married to a citizen of your country or happy with the celibacy, well … no!
The Russians always tell me that you can pay 5,000 euros for a modern lawyer to buy your place in immigration quotas. That may be true, but I haven’t seen him work for someone I know.
Once you are here and married, you must act quickly.
You need a residence permit to live in Russia, and this means that you will probably get married here with a tourist visa that does not last long, so instead of going on honeymoon, you should immediately take a romantic vacation to the immigration center (s) in your area to start the bureaucracy, because time passes quickly, And the migration process may take (and may take) months.
You cannot live with tourist visas in Russia.
Getting a tourist visa prevents you from working in Russia, even if people tell you otherwise. Also, it does not last long, and in the meantime, you have to leave the country for a while before you can return. When you move to Russia, you can continuously renew tourist visas, jump on the border, and back without any problem. Those days are long gone.
You cannot work in Russia without a residence permit.
Hiring a foreign employee is complicated and very expensive. Upon arriving in Moscow, you may find someone willing to hire you, but they cannot do it because it is too bureaucratic. Once you get your residency, you can start looking for a job. Sure, you can work illegally by teaching English or anything, but this risk is for you.
Visiting Russia is easy; immigration is not!
There is an old Russian expression that says, “You were born where you wanted,” which means that you were born in China, Africa, Canada, or anywhere for some reason, and you have to stay there. Once the immigration process begins, you will see that the spirit of the law reflects the spirit of this expression.
Russia issues tourist visas such as candy. All you have to do is fill in some forms carelessly, pay the fees, take your photo, and go on a country tour for about a month. The immigration registration process has nothing to do with it.