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Belarus

Capital
Minsk
Time Zone
GMT + 2
Telephone Services
Country Code: 375
Outgoing Code: International calls go through the operator
Emergency Telephone Numbers
Police – 02, Ambulance – 03, Fire – 01
Tourist Information
Intourist, 219 Marsh Wall, Isle of Dogs, London E14 9FJ Tel: (020) 7538 8600 Fax: (020) 7538 5967.
Passport Information
Passport must be valid for 6 months after departure. Return Ticket required. Requirements may be subject to short term change. Contact embassy before departure.
Visa Information
Required by all except nationals of the CIS republics. Transit visas are required if crossing Belarus to reach Ukraine or the Baltic States but not if travelling to the Russian Federation.
Health Information
Other Health Risks: Poliomyelitis, Rabies.
Food & Drink
Water is considered drinkable, normal precautions should be observed with food.
Currency
Belarusian Rouble
Exchange: Should only take place at authorised bureaux and the transaction must be entered on the currency declaration form which will be issued on arrival. Amex and Visa are accepted in larger towns. Travellers cheques are not widely accepted but are preferable to cash. It is advisable to take hard currency as well.
ATM availability: 5 locations.
Cost of Living
An improving economy exists with cheap to moderately priced goods available.
Languages
Belarusian, but Russian is also spoken by 13% of the population.
Weather
Temperate continental climate.
Electricity
220 volts AC 50 Hz, adapters are recommended.
Post
At least 10 days. Larger hotels offer Poste Restante facilities.
Transport
RAIL: 5590km of rail track is in use. ROAD: Tourists can only drive on approved routes. Valid visa and passport, insurance certificate and customs form guaranteeing the visitor will not take the car out of the country, Intourist documentation with the approved route and accommodation to be used must be carried at all times. DOCUMENTATION: IDP is required.
Special Information
The people of Belarus offer a welcoming and friendly hospitality to visitors. It is advisable to take warm clothing in winter and waterproofs throughout the year. Avoid dairy produce and mushrooms, which can carry high levels of radiation. Theft is a problem so exercise caution in major cities.