a VirtualTourist member from Nebraska
i am an american female and would like to visit new friends i have met on line and visit rostov-na-donu city . what do i need to do this ? and by the way you have a beautiful city.
this will be my first time to visit and need to know what i need to do and i need to have . you are very nice and concerate to let me know. thank you
Don't bother involving your friends to get you an invitation as they would have to spend hours/days in offices to get it. Go for a tourist visa with an online invitation/voucher. I have done this before without any problems.
I can recommend the website waytorussia.com for more details on the visa application process and you can order your invitation there. Also they have a very specific forum for visa questions. It's entirely doable and I suggest you start by reading everything there and then you will know exactly what step to take. Just leave yourself plenty of time for the whole (costly) process.
Totally agree with Sonja: all what you need is money, patience and some knowledge in Russian language (at leas alphabet). As I guess winter is not so good time for travel to Rostov it would be reasonable to arrange the trip for spring, so you'll have plenty time to organize everything. In addition to waytorussia, you can read some useful threads in Russia's forum at LonelyPlanet (Thorntree forums): Ruth (aka Everbrite) always tries to refresh useful information concerning travels to Russia)) Normally, we don't have any "early booking" discounts at hotels-tickets etc, so no need to book anything far in advance) Good luck!