Visiting Belarus without visas
Citizens of many countries, who generally need a visa to visit Belarus, have an opportunity to enter the country under a simplified procedure today. Such trips have become possible thanks to the recently introduced visa-free travel regulations in Belarus.
Thirty-day visa-free travel to Belarus
Foreign nationals may visit any place in Belarus within 30 days of their visa-free stay. However, they must arrive and leave the country only through Minsk National Airport. The visa-free entry rules do not extend to any other international border checkpoints or airports of the country.
Belarus’ visa-free travel rules for foreign visitors do not apply to people flying to Belarus from or to Russia (these flights are considered internal and are not subject to border control).
Visa-free entry does not apply to foreigners coming to Belarus to work, do business, or study, if the period of activity exceeds 30 days.
To enter Belarus for 30 days visa-free foreign nationals must have the following documents:
a valid passport or another substituting document for traveling abroad;
financial means (at least two base amounts* denominated in dollars or Belarusian rubles for each day of stay, or 50 base amounts if the period of stay is 30 days);
*since 1 January 2019 one base amount is Br25.5
medical travel insurance valid across Belarus with a minimum medical coverage of €10,000;
Citizens of Vietnam, Haiti, Gambia, India, Lebanon, Namibia, Samoa must also have a valid multi-visa to the EU states or the Schengen Area with a stamp confirming the entry to their territory and plane tickets confirming the departure from Minsk National Airport within 30 days after the date of the entry.
Attention! 30-day visa-free stay in Belarus starts on the date the passport is stamped. If you arrive late in the evening and go through customs clearance before 24.00, this will be considered your first day of the visa-free stay.
Foreign citizens who plan to spend more than five business days in Belarus must register with the police indicating the address they are staying. If foreign visitors stay in a hotel, hostel, health resort or another facility of collective accommodation, the management of the above-mentioned facilities shall be responsible for the registration with the police.
Since 2 January 2019 foreign nationals and stateless persons who are temporarily staying in Belarus will be able to get registered on the website portal.gov.by without having to visit a local police office. This service is free of charge and will be available to foreigners who arrived in Belarus through checkpoints on the Belarusian border. To find out the details, please, click here.
Ten-day visa-free regime to visit two tourist zones of Belarus
Citizens of a number of countries can visit Belarus visa-free for 10 days. Foreign visitors can enter the country through two regional airports and through crossing points on the land border (with Lithuania and Poland). However, the ten-day visa-free stay is limited to two tourism and recreation zones that include Belarus’ popular attractions and biggest cities in the west of the country. These are:
Tourism and Recreation Zone Brest (it includes the city of Brest, Brest District, Zhabinka District, Kamenets District and Pruzhany District of Brest Oblast and Svisloch District of Grodno Oblast);
The Augustow Canal Park (the city of Grodno and Grodno District are also included in the zone).
In line with the president’s decree, citizens of more than 70 countries, including Latvia’s non-citizens and stateless persons permanently living in Estonia, will be able to stay in Belarus up to 10 days without visas.
An exhaustive list of states, citizens of which are eligible for the 10-day visa-free regime is available here.
The rules of entry on the 10-day visa-free program are different from the 30-day visa-free option available to travelers arriving to Minsk by air.
To be able to visit one of the two visa-free destinations, a foreign national must present the following documents:
Valid passport or an equivalent identity document;
Travel medical insurance with the minimum coverage of €10,000. The travel insurance must be valid in Belarus;
Migration card (issued upon arrival);
Document allowing foreign nationals (individuals or groups of tourists) to visit the Tourism and Recreation Zone Brest and the Augustow Canal Park. It can be obtained while purchasing a tour from a certified tour operator that has the right to organize visa-free travels to Belarus. This means that a tourist needs to approach an official travel agency beforehand (not later than 48 hours before the trip), make a travel plan, pay for the chosen services (be it an individual plan or an all-inclusive tour), and pick up the document that will be subsequently presented at a checkpoint.
To find out the details and choose a travel agency, please, click the links below:
Tourists can enter the visa-free areas in Belarus via 12 international border checkpoints.
Tourism and Recreation Zone Brest:
automobile checkpoints Brest (Terespol), Domachevo (Slawatycze), Peschatka (Polowce);
small border traffic checkpoint Pererov (Bialowieza);
railway border checkpoint Brest (Terespol);
Brest Airport border checkpoint.
Augustow Canal Park:
automobile checkpoints Bruzgi (Kuznica Bialostocka), Privalka (Raigardas);
small border traffic checkpoints Lesnaya (Rudawka), Privalka (Svendubre);
railway border checkpoint Grodno (Kuznica Bialostocka);
Grodno Airport border checkpoint.
NOTE! Foreign visitors who enter a visa-free travel area must register with the local police department within five days. As a rule, hotels, farm tourism estates, and health resorts where tourists stay take care of that. Self-employed businessmen who rent apartments to foreigners do that, too.
Foreign visitors are required to have money in foreign currency or Belarusian rubles to the tune of at least two base amounts* per day of stay.
*The base amount stands at Br25.5 as of 1 January 2019
There are no checkpoints or any fences at the borders of the visa-free travel areas inside Belarus. There can be warning signs. But visitors are forbidden to break the rules of stay as part of the ten-day visa-free travel program and go outside the visa-free areas. Otherwise, violators will be punished in line with Belarusian laws (a warning, a fine, deportation).
In order to visit both visa-free travel areas in Belarus – Brest and Augustow Canal (Grodno) – tourists must leave the country, buy a new travel package, and enter the country once again in order to reach the other visa-free travel area.
On 7 August 2019 Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko signed decree No.300 “On establishing a visa-free procedure for the entry and exit of foreign citizens”, which will replace decree No.462 of 26 December 2017. The document provides for merging the two existing separate visa-free travel areas into one area named Brest-Grodno and extending the visa-free stay period up to 15 days. The 15-day visa-free travel option will become available after November 10, 2019. Detailed information about new conditions for visiting Belarus without visas is available here.