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St. Petersburg to Introduce Quick Marriage Registration for Foreigners

8. June 2011 by Christy 0 Comments

In an attempt to attract more visitors, St. Petersburg officials will soon allow foreign lovebirds to register a marriage within 72 hours, a process that normally takes at least a month.


“Marriage registration completely corresponds to the image of our city,” said Sergei Korneyev, head of the Russia Travel Industry Union. “St. Petersburg has the romantic brand of White Nights with the raised bridges, and couples kissing and walking along the embankments of the Neva. So it seems a very logical idea.”


Registering a marriage in Russia typically takes at least one month, though couples are often forced to wait two or even three months when registry offices are swamped with applications. Unfortunately, Russian citizens are not allowed to take advantage of St. Petersburg’s 72-hour marriage registration.


The rapid marriage registration measure is just one provision in St. Petersburg’s tourist development program. The five-year program approved by City Hall also includes more aggressive advertisement of the city, tax-free shopping, and possible visa-free air and rail travel for foreigners. The initiative is expected to boost the number of tourists in St. Petersburg by about 3 million, to over 8 million people annually, a spokesman for City Hall told AFP.


While Russian women are unable to take advantage of St. Petersburg's new provision, perhaps women from Ukraine or other Eastern European countries can marry their Western beaus more quickly?