I could not find much info about this online when I was looking for it, and since I’ve posted my experience on a few forums I’ve gotten a lot of feedback and questions. So people need to know!
You can get a Russian tourist visa at the consulate in Seoul without being a Korean resident (I am just here on a tourist visa now). If you are a resident and have an ARC, the visa can be picked up later that day. If you are not a resident, you have to wait two weeks.
Check out their website here to get a map to the consulate. The map is a bit confusing (definitely not to scale) and there are tourist maps posted around the neighborhood which conflict with the map provided by the consulate, which makes it even more confusing! So… Take exit 10 from City Hall subway station and turn right at Paris Baguette Cafe. After you pass Seoul Art Museum there will be a little park area with exercise machines on your left. Go around the left side of the park and when you get to the back, turn right and the consulate is at the end of that alley.
There are also phone numbers (we didn’t call before but they do speak English) and email addresses (but don’t even try, they won’t reply) on the website. You can only apply for a visa on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays between 9:30am and 12:30pm.
There is no number or other organized waiting system. Just go to the main window and pray there’s not a travel agent with 200 passports to submit in front of you! (Grrrr.)
If you are an American citizen, you must submit:
-One visa application
-One passport photo
-A copy of your invitation from a Russian travel agency or hotel (we went through Lupine Travel for our Trans-Mongolian trip)
Update: Make sure you check your visa when you get it! Mine actually had a mistake on it (says I am male instead of female). Apparently mistakes are common and mine wasn’t a big deal. When I left the country the immigration official asked if I was a male and I said no! (See how to read your visa here.)
Another thing I was really confused about while visiting Russia was whether I had to register my stay/visa. I read/heard that I didn’t have to if I didn’t stay in any city for longer than seven days. But a lot of people recommended that I register in at least one city anyway. I didn’t, because I didn’t want to spend the money and no one asked me about it when I left the country. Whew! Also I was paranoid about police asking to check my passport or visa to try to fine me (I read about this online) but during our two weeks in Russia this never happened. So don’t worry; don’t be as paranoid as I was!