we are planning a Cyclingtour from Lithuania to the Ukraine, crossing Belarus.
At the moment we try to figure out how to get a Visa for Belarus, if an invitation is needed and how are cycling-experiences from other cyclists. So if you have any advices or hint for us, please write us! We are thankful for everything ;)
Looking forward to a lot of answers!
Thanks and best from sunny germany
Jule, Flo and Vanessa
I was just checking this up the other day. bad news I am afraid - as far as I understood the belarus tourist website, you need to obtain your visa in advance in your HOME COUNTRY, cost between 40 - 80 US dollars. At the moment you CANNOT get your visa on the border.
If you dont mind going a bit around head from Lithuania into Poland and then onto Ukraine. Cycled in Poland last summer and its very nice country to cycle with quite a few campgrounds and many lovely Wolne Pokoke ( guesthouses ) or Agroturistika ( B and B ) where a double room can cost as little as €14 to 20 per couple.
Maybe you can get some advice from people who might have have gone thru belarus recently.
If by chance you are from a couple of Former Yugoslavia countires then you can travel visa free.
Heard many good things about travel in Ukraine but have not been myself
thanks for your answer. We haven't started our trip jet, so we are in our home-country - chance for visa is there in generally.
And we really would like to go through Belarus...
We will see :)
Thanks and best
hi, thats good news then. You shudnt have any trouble getting visa then, good luck with your trip and welcome in finland someday,
jim and terhi fullwood.
Hi there, I was just checking out this topic for myself. This is an interesting link: http://www.lonelyplanet.com/thorntree/thread.jspa?threadID=1916192.
I have also hosted a couple of cyclists that had no problem with obtaining the visa. You can't get the visa on the border except for a transit visa on the train.
Just to share my experience for those who are wanting to do this, I'm now in Vilnius and just picked up my Belarussian visa.
1. There are 2 types of short-term visas - Private and Tourist. Tourist is the typical one which involves booking hotels and gets expensive. I went with the private option which involved finding someone on Warmshowers in Belarus and him giving me his address and details so I could use him as my inviter. It's much cheaper.
2. Cost-wise, for most people it's 60 euros for 1 week processing or 120 for 48 hours (although I got it next day). You also need to add the price of insurance for your time in the country on top of that as it is a government requirement. There are places in front of the consulate that sell it.
3. Apply at the consulate, not the embassy. They're near each other.
4. Consulate starts to see people at 8:30am. I turned up at 8:35 and was 27th in line (they have a ticketing system at least so you don't have to actually stand in a line) and it took about 2 hours for me to be seen. I think if I'd got there around 8 it would have been a lot faster.
5. I tried to ask for 4 weeks but was told that it just wasn't going to happen and I couldn't ask for more than 10 days. Thankfully they told me this when they looked at my application form so it was just a bit of white-out and it was fixed.
6. My regular passport photos weren't acceptable. They want ones that are basically just your head and no shoulders unlike the ones I needed to apply for the Russian visa. Thankfully there was a place across the street who gave me 6 photos for €3.
7. I didn't mention my bicycle and said I was entering by train. This was just from paranoia about getting rejected. I don't know if it was valid but I wanted my visa and I've heard people speaking about how mentioning bicycles on visa applications isn't always smart.
Think that's everything. Feel free to message me on the site if you've got any questions.