Generally, there are six types of Russian visas:
- a tourist visa,
- a business visa,
- a student visa,
- a personal (private) visa,
- a transit visa,
- a short 72-hour visa.
Each visa type corresponds to the purpose of your visit.
However, many people come for a short business trip with tourist visas, or to visit their friends with business visas. So, when choosing the type of visa, the only consideration should be — price / speed of processing / period of stay / the number of entries, and not the formal name of the visa.
Generally, the best options in terms of price, processing speed and flexibility are tourist and business visas. It's better to get a tourist visa if you plan to stay in Russia no longer than one month, and need a single- or a double-entry only. It's better to get a business visa if you plan to stay in Russia longer than 1 month and / or need a multiple-entry visa.
It is easier to obtain a tourist visa, because a business visa costs more, and takes longer to process, although it may save you time and money if you are going to visit Russia several times during 1 year.