During the European Games 2019 you don't need a Belarusian visa just a ticket for any event. Don't forget to register it here. Otherwise, a Belarusian visa is required and you can only enter by air.
My own experience covers the first case (visa-free scheme during the European Games). I flew to Minsk from Zhukovsky airport in Moscow. The Belavia staff wasn't immediately aware of the exact rules but after checking the Travel Information Manual and a few phone calls they let me board with my ticket (and without a visa).
There was passport control before departure and I got a Russian exit stamp. In Minsk, I just walked out of the airport without any checks. On leaving Belarus at Minsk airport I showed my passport and the ticket for the European Games and got an exit stamp. They also stamped and kept my Russian immigration card.
Before embarking on the trip, I did some research which might be helpful:
I contacted the Belarusian embassy in Jakarta:
"Is it possible to travel from Moscow to Minsk by plane and which visa
do I need?" Visa of Belarus and visa of Russia. In case you transit in
Moscow for Belarus you may not require visa of Russian Federation
(please check transfer airport rules). If you stay in Belarus up to 2
days you may ask for Belarus transit visa, details are below.
"Is it possible to travel from Moscow to Minsk by land transport (bus,
train) and which visa do I need?" Train – yes. Car and bus – no.
You may check updated rules of crossing border from Russia to Belarus
directly with the consular section of the Embassy of Australia in
According to Belarus visa rules you may enter and exit Belarus at any
According to Russian visa rules Russia-Belarus border has additional
control for foreign citizens.
An interesting detail is the following paragraph:
Taking practice into account there are no problems for traveling from
Russia to Belarus with international train after entering Russia via
international checkpoint of the Russian Federation. Problems arise
when foreign citizens try to cross border of the Russian Federation
from Belarus by land coach (car, bus, train). Russian border guards in
these cases deny exiting Russia and sent to Russia– Latvia border.
Nevertheless, it is suggested to check this with Consular section of
the Embassy of Russian Federation when submitting documents for
I then contacted the Australian embassy in Moscow:
We recommend that you refer to the Entry and Exit section of the
travel advisory on Belarus published on Smartraveller website, which
Visa-free entry (into Belarus) doesn't apply to travellers arriving from, or travelling to, Russia. If you're travelling to Belarus
through Russia, you'll need to get a Russian transit visa in addition
to your visa for Belarus. For information on Russian visas, contact
the nearest Embassy of Russia.
Foreigners aren't permitted to cross the land border between Belarus and Russia. Don't enter or exit Belarus by the land border with
Russia. Travel between Belarus and Russia by air. Contact the Ministry
of Foreign Affairs of Belarus and the Embassy of Russia for up-to-date
This is the most up to date official advice provided by Russian
authorities, and there has been no changes to date.
Both also pointed me to the visa-free regime during the European Games in Minsk. With some restrictions, this allows transiting to and from Russia not just by air but also by land transport. Information is available on the homepage of the European Games as well as on the official government web page. Some useful FAQs are also available on BelarusFeed:
- Visa-free entry into and exit from Belarus at all border points (air and road), temporary stay on the territory of Belarus and transit
through Russia shall be provided:
1.1. from 20 May to 10 July 2019 for all participants of the Games, WADA officials, foreign anti-doping experts, foreign volunteers,
artists and performers, administrative and technical staff involved in
the preparation and staging of the Games [...];
1.2. from 10 June to 10 July 2019 for foreign tourists who are citizens of the states listed in the Appendix to the Order of the
President of the Republic of Belarus No. 8 d/d 9 January 2017 "On
Visa-Free Entry and Exit for Foreign Citizens" [this is a list of 74
countries including Austria]
Crossing the land border of Russia and Belarus in both directions is
possible on the following international road and rail routes.
International Road Routes Redki – Krasnaya Gorka (M-1 Minsk – Moscow)
Ezerishche – Nevel (M-8/E 95 (border of Russia (Ezerishche) – Vitebsk
– Gomel – border of Ukraine (New Huta) / P-23 Kiev – St. Petersburg)
Selishche – Novozybkov (M-1 (border of Russia (Selishche) – Gomel –
Kobrin) / A-240 Gomel – Bryansk)
International Railway Routes Ezerishche – Nevel (Vitebsk – Pskov)
Osinovka – Krasnoe (Minsk – Smolensk) Region Zakopytye – Zlynka (Gomel
From the ticketing team of the European Games, I got this information when asking about Russian exit stamps when crossing by train:
As far as we informed the whole procedure at all borders including the
stamps at the passports will be implemented during the visa-free
period from 10th of June till 10th July.