Tactics are successful

Belarus to issue free visas to tourists attending major sports events

By Victor Kiselev

Belarus to issue free visas to tourists attending major sports events


Vadim Karmazin, Director of Tourism Department at the Belarusian Sports and Tourism Ministry, reminds us that, this year, Belarus offered visa-free travel to tourists arriving for the Ice Hockey World Championship. Sporting fans only needed to present a match ticket to gain entry to Belarus.

“The move proved successful, so we have plans to issue free visas to fans coming to Belarus for international sports events. This will be done upon the petition of the Sports and Tourism Ministry and the National Olympic Committee. Sports fans travelling to Belarus will still need to obtain visas, but they will be free of charge. The mechanism will be discussed with the Foreign Ministry,” explains Mr. Karmazin.

The list of international sports events in question is being drafted by the Sports and Tourism Ministry and the National Olympic Committee.

As far as other major events are concerned, free visas for tourists are being considered on a case-by-case basis. Mr. Karmazin notes that free visas may be issued for attendance of the country’s biggest festivals. “I hope that the suggestion will be upheld and the country will become more attractive for tourists,” he adds. Free visas will encourage more people from neighbouring states to come to Belarus. “Usually, a decision on going on a trip is made within 4-5 days, so visa issue is of paramount importance,” asserts Mr. Karmazin.
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