The benefits of Cyprus passport

My trip to Russia was the first real test of Cyprus passport. I wondered how would it work out altogether…

At Larnaca’s passport control I showed my ticket and Russian passport first. The ticket was to my Russia passport, so that I could avoid getting visa to Russia. But my Russian passport in virgin clear – I got it here, in Cyprus, and it has no arrival or departure marks. Officer checked my passport, flipped through its pages, and than checked it in the computer. Obviously, it wasn’t there. He asked me, if I have my old passport with me. I replied negative. He looked puzzled.

I then said that I have Cyprus passport as well. Right at that moment his face lit with delight. He said something like “Why didn’t you mention that earlier, my friend?”. He took my Cyprus passport, run it through the computer and I was ready to go. No stamps or anything. He asked me if I wanted my Russian passport stamped with departure, and I said that I do. That was it.

I didn’t show my Cyprus passport upon the arrival to Russia as it wasn’t needed. Leaving from Russia though, I was asked about my visa by the airlines reprepsentative. I showed my Cyprus passport and that was enough.

When we arrived to Cyprus, everyone hurried to ‘All passports’ queue. Our flight came from Samara, and there were no Cypriots or EU citizens onboard. Except for me, of course. I took Cyprus passport out of the bag, joined it together with Olga’s Russian passport and Maxim’s birth certificate and went to the EU queue. Customers officer stamped Olga’s passport and we were through. The first and the only. That was SWEET!

The rest of the people saw that this queue worked also and rushed to join us, but they were all ordered back to the ‘All passports’ queue, unless they had EU or Cyprus passport. I still remember those envy looks behind my back…

But life is fair – we all had to wait together for one hour for our luggage to appear on the luggage belt. So, I got no practical benefit this time. Still, I’m glad I’ve tried it in and out.

4 thoughts on “The benefits of Cyprus passport”

  1. Hiya Leonid,

    You were wrong to assume that you need a visa to enter Russia with a Cypriot passport in the first place. It is not required unless something has changed since the last time I was there.

    I made the eternal mistake of flying to Kazakhstan in ’96 via Moscow with my British passport. Although transit time would have been only 2 hours, I was told that because I needed to go from one Sheremetyevo airport to the other, that I would be entering Russia.

    They wanted me to pay a $170 fine to go whereas I only had $120 on me at the time. Result, arrested for 3 days and confined in some basement. Slept on a freezing cold, marble floor.

    Oh, and did I mention that nobody spoke a single word of english, or at least didn’t want to. The fact that I had a proper visa for Kazakhstan didn’t count for $ht either.

    Experiences with my Cypriot passport (aquired shortly after) have been mixed. The quality of the new passports leave a lot to be desired.

    In Germany, we felt like criminals when the microscopes came out. On the other hand, although I’m british, I can “now” get into the UK faster with my Cypriot passport.

    Welcome home!

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