Visas

Photo: Dennis Keen

Over 60 nationalities can visit Kyrgyzstan without a visa. This includes many European and former Soviet countries, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Singapore, Korea, the UAE, Qatar, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia.

While many other nationalities are eligible to receive a visa on arrival at the airport in Bishkek, some require a visa in advance.

Wikipedia has a helpful page listing the visa policy for different nationalities. If you are in doubt, you should check with the Kyrgyz embassy in your own country.

If you need a visa in advance, the IAF or our Kyrgyz hosts can provide a supporting letter for your visa application. You can request this when you register, or email info@iaf.org.

When booking flights with one or more connections, please check whether you need a transit visa.

Please also note that if you plan to arrive by land via Almaty in Kazakhstan, you might need a Kazakh transit visa.

Getting there

Bishkek’s Manas International Airport is the main hub for daily flights with Turkish Airlines, Pegasus, flydubai, Ukrainian International Airlines and Aeroflot.

Free shuttle buses will be available on Friday 1st, Saturday 2nd, and Sunday 3rd September providing transfer from Manas Airport to Cholpon-Ata, which is about three to four hours’ drive. Transfers back to the airport will be available for those leaving on Thursday 7th, Friday 8th and Saturday 9th September.

To ensure a place on a shuttle bus, please tell us your flight details as soon as you know them, and no later than 1st August (when registration closes). You can do this during registration, or email info@iaf.org.

If you plan to arrive outside the dates above, you can hire a private taxi to Cholpon-Ata for around 3,000 som, approximately $45 or €40, at Manas Airport.

Accommodation and food

Accommodation with full board will be reserved for all registered delegates and guests, in the shared Keisar holiday villas in Cholpon-Ata (Caesar – link in Russian).

There are room options for a range of budgets, from shared 5-bed dorms to en-suite double rooms, with payment due at Keisar. Most meals will be served in Keisar’s own restaurant.

We are in the process of agreeing the exact rates, and will be able to confirm prices in June or July. In general, prices in Kyrgyzstan will seem relatively low for the majority of delegates, and this includes accommodation and food.

All registered attendees will be contacted in July/August regarding room allocation.

Weather and clothing

September is a beautiful month in Kyrgyzstan, with daytime temperatures averaging around 25°C, making it perfect for swimming in Issyk-Kul. Bring your swimming costume.

When packing, bear in mind that the meeting and most activities will be held on a high plateau in the mountains, and in September nighttime temperatures can drop to 13°C. Bring clothes for warm and cool weather.

Money

Currency exchanges and ATMs are available in Cholpon-Ata and throughout the country.

The cost of living in Kyrgyzstan is low in comparison with many countries, and most necessary things, such as medicines, can be purchased locally.

Market stalls will be laden with tasty produce and beautifully crafted clothes and souvenirs, and bargaining is part of the experience. So when you see something you like, put on a smile and start haggling!

Next steps

Register Cholpon-Ata Programme Saker Conference