Azerbaijan visa - where to get it now
Replies: 30 - Last Post: Aug 5, 2012 2:43 PM Last Post By: regancannon
Sep 11, 2011 11:41 AM
Sep 13, 2011 8:27 AM
May 14, 2012 6:35 AM
Just posted my question on another forum before i found this. Was searching for a agency who provides LOI at decent rate. I would accept the $60 but just learned from this website, i foudn that embassy in Prague where i live doesn't accept LOI w/o MFA approval (the only embassy in Europe to do so crazy).
Then i found out that you can get visa at the Azerbaijan consulate in Batumi? I have USA passport. Did anyone do it recently in 2012? From this thread, it's really assuring that there is no hassle. I think I will try this route.
Too much work provide exact date, booking accommodation, get LOI, arrange visa at my embassy, plus too much money spent.
May 16, 2012 11:32 AM
Just had a similar pleasant experience in Batumi and it was easy as cake with no letter of invitation.
May 16, 2012 11:52 AM
many thanks for your update. I will forget about getting it in Prague now. Have no response after emailing the AZ consulate, couldn't get to them by phone. Walked to the consulate (lucky i live near by), but nobody answered the phone. Wonder if there is anyone working there at all.
How long do you have to wait for the visa in Batumi? i hope not more than a couple of days 'cause I wish not to spend too much time at the beach.
May 19, 2012 11:34 AM
May 19, 2012 12:53 PM
21I'm an American citizen and my boyfriend is French. We applied on Wednesday and received the visas on Friday. Just two passport pictures, a photocopy of the info page, and a completed application gets you the visa. Oh, and be sure not to have an Armenian stamp... Still a touchy subject.
The cost depends on the nationality. I paid 250 GEL, he paid 150 GEL.
May 26, 2012 3:20 AM
22"Oh, and be sure not to have an Armenian stamp... Still a touchy subject."
Did the consul specifically mention this? I've never heard of it being a problem to visit Azerbaijan with an Armenian visa/stamp in your passport. I thought it's only a problem if you have a visa for Nagorno-Karabakh.
For the person who asked about Eurovision...if you had a ticket for the event of were taking part in it somehow you get a visa on arrival for 60 Euro but only in the airport in Baku. If you add up the costs of the visa, plane ticket, and ticket to Eurovision, it's easier to go to Batumi.
Jun 12, 2012 5:43 AM
Jun 12, 2012 7:16 AM
24Visa process at the Azerbaijan consulate in Batumi
Below information is valid as of June 2012. Double check before you go because visa to Azerbaijan seems to change at different location.
Address: 14 Dumbazde, Batumi
At Evropas Moedani, next to the Iran embassy, facing the lady statue.
Working hours: Mon-Fri 10-11 to 15 (probably). Visa issues are handled from 1 or 2 (probably). Reason for lots of 'probably' because when I asked the guy at the embassy for working hours, he shrugged and said 'maybe 10 or 11' '3'. So you got the idea.
Phone: I asked but the guy didn't want to give it out just saying 'nah not a problem, just come.'
What do you need?
2 passport photos
2 application forms
1 copy of your passport (You don't need to leave your passport at the consulate, which is great because then you're free to travel to other places while watiting for the visa)
You can save time if you fill the form at home (download from AZ embassy site) and just hand everything to them
If you forget to make copy of your passport, the copy shop is just right by the corner.
You don't need to leave the passport at the embassy (which required by many other embassies), so you're free to travel around Georgia though you can still travel w/o the passport.
They probably will ask you where do you go next? If you plan to go to Armenia, don't say it. I don't know what happen if you do though, you might end up explaining a lot.
Process time is 3 business days. For example: you apply on Monday, get it on Thursday, Tuesday -> Friday, Wed->Monday next week, so better come on Monday or Tuesday.
Either by cash in Georgian currency or you take the receipt and pay it at a bank. In case you don't have enough money and don't want to fork out so much cash.
Pros: Painless process to do it in Batumi and cheaper w/o the need for an invitation, in some cases need to be approved by the MFA which can cost up to $200 and takes up to 2 months.
Batumi is a nice little town, and if you like the seaside, you can spend 4 relaxing days while waiting for the visa.
Cons: Batumi is on the opposite direction to Azerbaijan, unless you come from Turkey, this is the place to go. Otherwise if you are from Tbilisli, you need to take a 6 to 8 hour bus or train to get there. (Recommend to take the overnight sleeper train, same price but more comfortable). There is no shorter and faster way to get to Azerbaijan, thus you need to go back to Tbilisi to head on to AZ. Though there are things to do around Batumi, but the more interesting part of Georgia lies in the North and North-East.
Jun 19, 2012 10:17 PM
25One thing that can be a thorn in the side with batumi, is that the guy will only issue a visa if your are travelling to Azerbaijan in the next two weeks. We entered from Turkey, and had 5 weeks planned for Georgia and Armenia so he would not give us a visa. I got the impression he was a little flexible, so maybe you could push to 3 weeks in advance. On the other hand you could just lie and say you are going there in 2 weeks, exact entry date is not mentioned on the visa, it is simply valid for entry up to one month after issue.
One option he presented was to leave the forms with him, posted dated for 3 weeks time, he would process in 3 weeks, and after we could come back to batumi and pick it up on the spot.
In the end we decided returning to batumi would be too much hassle, two days lost to travel etc, so we ended up paying x-tours in tbilisi to do our visa there.
Jun 19, 2012 10:23 PM
i tried to arrange for the visa in Tbilisi but didn't know which agency which would do it, thus i had to go to Batumi. do you have the site for x-tour?
I need to confirm that exact date of entry wasn't PRINTED on the visa but WRITTEN by the guy once he issues it to you. (didn't know about the 2 week restriction).
Jul 21, 2012 10:28 AM
Also see my warning re dates, it seems valid to is the date you must exit by, not the date you must enter before.
As they also seem to make valid from the issue date, it means you have 30 days from issue of the visa to exit the country.
XTours had indicated valid from and valid to are the dates for entry, and then you get 30 days to exit. THIS IS NOT THE CASE. Cost us 600 euro fine.
Jul 29, 2012 6:11 PM
28I can second Danthep's point. Take care with dates, no matter what the Consul says.
We met a conscientious traveller in Batumi last October (2011) who had asked the same question at the Batumi embassy. He proceeded to get all of the arriving AZ VISA hunters to ask the same question to verify.
Everyone was given the incorrect answer, by the Consul himself, that it was valid for entry up to the date then your validity starts.
We luckily had no problem (quick in, quick out), but the conscientious traveller, after a month jaunt around Georgia, was turned away at the Azeri border. His only choice was back to Batumi for a second VISA, I suppose that's not quite as bad as the €300 fine, but frustrating none the less.
Aug 5, 2012 2:41 PM
29Hmm, that's interesting news to hear.
I also just had a great experience getting my AZ visa in Batumi. Went on Friday knowing that it would take three business days to process everything, but the guy (whose name I asked, repeated in my head a million times but have nevertheless forgotten) told me to come by on Monday and it'd be ready. Not only that, but when I went on Monday he was just leaving for a coffee break and asked me to join him. Turned into a two hour chat about travel and AZ/Armenian relations with him and two other AZ consul folks. He bought me my coffee and scrawled up my visa without a breath of a hassle--if all visas were like this, the terms "bureaucracy" and "red tape" would cease to exist.
That said, he made it quite clear to me--and I double-checked--that my 30 day period of validity starts on the date written down on the stamp (the date you tell him you'll be entering the country upon), not the date on which he placed the stamp in my passport. If that is actually false, it's definitely an important thing to be remarked upon on the forum. Are we absolutely certain that the official stance is "you have 30 days to enter AND leave the country from the date of visa issue" and not "you have 30 days to enter AND leave the country from the 'valid from' date"? Because I'm not sure what the point of a "valid from" section is, otherwise. Food for thought?
At least the visa is a cinch to get! Up to 285 GEL for a US citizen though. Yikes.
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