With less than a month to the 2nd European Games, it’s high time to start planning your trip to Minsk. One of the most important things to consider is Belarus visa requirements – or, for many lucky travelers, the visa-free entry to the country.
Do I need a visa to go to Belarus? What are the conditions of visa-free travel during the 2019 European Games? What transport do I take and how long can I stay? Is it allowed to travel from Minsk to Moscow and back during the Games?
BelarusFeed asked the trickiest of those questions to the officials – and here’s the full guide on visa-free travel to Belarus during Minsk 2019.
Let’s start from the basics.
30 days for 74 countries
The visa-free entry and stay in Belarus during the 2nd European Games is available for the guests from 74 states (par 1.2) from 10 June through 10 July. These are basically the same states that fall under the regular 30-days visa-free program. What’s different then?
So, if your country is in the list, no need to have a Belarus visa – all you will need is a ticket, a passport, medical insurance of €10,000 and financial means of €25 per each day of your stay.
Besides, the citizens of 24 more countries (par 4) that had waived visas with Belarus can visit without a ticket during the European Games by land or air, excluding the Belarusian-Russian border.
Visa-free transit to European Games from Russia
A big number of sports fans are expected to attend Minsk 2019 via Russia, so the two countries have agreed on visa-free transit. Russia has ratified the document allowing visa-free entry with a ticket to the European Games in Minsk in February.
Just listen to this – foreigners traveling to the Games in Minsk can enter, exit, stay in and transit (see FAQs below!) through Russia from 10 June to 10 July 2019 without applying for a Russian visa! They must have a valid ID and the original paper or electronic ticket.
Also, check out the international road and rail routes for crossing the land border between Russia and Belarus (par 6).
4 vital visa-free rules to mind at 2nd European Games
Okay, now be attentive – you might get in trouble if you violate any of the rules below.
- Visa-free program of the European Games in Minsk applies from 10 June through 10 July. It means that you should enter and leave Belarus in the given period; and cannot enter before 10 June or after 10 July; cannot leave after 10 July under the given visa-free program. If you leave after 10 July, regular Belarus visa or visa-free requirements will apply.
- One ticket to the European Games only grants one entrance. You can not enter or leave Belarus several times with the same ticket. If you plan to make trips to other countries and come back while the 2019 Games in Minsk are running, you will have to present a new ticket every time you enter Belarus.
- Keep the ticket till the end of your stay and present it at the border when leaving Belarus.
- If you plan to transit through Russia during the 2nd European Games, you must register your ticket here.
Got more questions? Go through these FAQs
If you’re reading this, you probably still have questions. Well, you aren’t the only traveler to have them – check the answers of the border authorities to the trickiest questions on travel rules during the 2nd European Games in Minsk.
I don’t live in Belarus. How do I buy and get a ticket/Fan ID to the European Games?
There are no Fan IDs at the European Games in Minsk, only entry tickets to the events. A ticket to the European Games events is one of the three documents – in addition to a passport and insurance – that grants visa-free entry to Belarus.
Tickets to the 2nd European Games can be purchased from anywhere at the official website Minsk 2019. Please, print them out.
I have a ticket for the Games but I want to come before 10 June. Can I enter by any border?
The visa-free program of the European Games starts from 10 June. Before that date, Belarus visa rules and border crossing rules apply.
Can I enter and exit Belarus several times from 10 June to 10 July with the same ticket?
One ticket = one entry. You can not use the same ticket for several trips.
Can I travel between Minsk and cities in the neighboring countries from 10 June to 10 July?
No, you can only leave once. If you want to enter again, you will need a new ticket to the Games.
Can I enter Belarus, then travel to Russia, and come back from 10 June to 10 July?
Not. You can leave Belarus for Russia only once. It will not be possible to re-enter Belarus from Russia unless you have a ticket to the Games that you have not used previously used for visa-free entry to Belarus.
Can I enter Belarus, then travel to Russia, and come back after 10 July?
No, the visa-free entry with a ticket to the European Games is allowed in the period from 10 June through 10 July.
I have heard that the visa-free entry is valid for 30 days. If I enter Belarus on 20 June, can I stay till 20 July? Will I be allowed to leave via any border?
The visa-free program of the European Games is valid from 10 June through 10 July. It means you must leave Belarus before or on 10 July – in that case you can use any border crossing.
If you stay in Belarus after 10 July, you come from the country in the visa-free list for Belarus and your stay does not exceed 30 days, you must leave via the National Airport Minsk.
I have a ticket to the closing ceremony of the European Games on 30 June. Can I use it to enter Belarus on 30 May?
No, you can’t. The visa-free program of the European Games starts on 10 June.
Can I leave Belarus after the Games closing ceremony (after 30 June) to, say, Kyiv, then come back to Minsk before 10 July and eventually leave to a third country?
No, you can’t. You can enter and leave Belarus only one time. You must enter before or on the day of the event you have a ticket for. The days after the end of the European Games (after 30 June) are intended for exit only.
Do I need to keep the ticket until the end of my stay?
Yes, please, keep the ticket and show it at the border when leaving Belarus. If you plan to transit via Russia, you must register the ticket here.
BelarusFeed thanks the press team of the 2nd European Games in Minsk for cooperation on this article.