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Author Topic: Arriving at Minsk airport - transiting with Belavia - but arriving from Russia  (Read 119 times)

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Online msmoby

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Spent this afternoon trying to get a straight answer to a Q


I am flying with Belavia from Russia to the United Kingdom


Can one fly with Belavia ( National Airline of BY = Belarus ) from Moscow to the UK- via Minsk ?  As a normal transit passenger - this is ano brainier - but I am treated as a DOMESTIC passenger on the flight from Russia to Belarus..

The telephone number listed for the Visa officers at the Airport - no answer

Didn't bother emailing as I needed a prompt response - so rang Belavia in Minsk

She told me I could 'transit' - even thought I will arrive as a domestic passenger ( flights from RU-BY are considered domestic - no passport control leaving Russia ) I am on a ticket with an onward destitution - with the same airline.

So, it looks like I won't 'leave' Russia until I leave Belarus at the BY passport control .....  as they have a customs and immigration agreement

Anyone else done this, recently ?

Online msmoby

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Update:

No WRITTEN response from Minsk - just the verbal from Minsk's Belavia Office ...to arrive with my DME- Minsk Boarding card

I had to go to a special Belarus flights zone and my passport was stamped as having left Russia ... CLEARLY an 'intl flight .

Next stop Minsk ...


Offline Manny

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So what's the outcome? Any issues?


Offline sparky114

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to many changes for my liking  (:)
Today is only one day in a life of happiness

Mark

Online msmoby

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The outcome:

Russia checked me out - took my migration card - even though I was in a section for flights to Belarus ..

Arrived in Minsk as a Domestic passenger...walked through baggage control - as my luggage was checked through at Sochi ... and had been told to collect my final leg boarding card at check-in.. I 'arrived' in arrivals and could have just taken a taxi to Minsk..... I noted how laid back the airport was.

Went to check-in and was asked, "Where's your luggage?" and I responded " hopefully transiting" - showing her my leg 2 DME ( Moscow) to MSQ (Minsk) Boarding card..

There followed much typing and the computer said "yes"....  a new boarding card was issued and she transferred my baggage tag to the new boarding card and sent me to departures ....( please note I had checked-in via S7's site for all legs.)

Went through security ...  friendly ladies - and chose a passport queue where the passengers were smiling .... When it was my turn. I went forward to find a fresh faced male youth. I proffered my passport and boarding card - PLUS - the last leg's boarding card - as suggested by Belavia's agent over the phone - before I booked the flight ...

"Where's your migration card?" ... no smile .....  My heart sank, inwardly, but I maintained my resolve and did not any sign of panic /  weakening ... !!

"The Russian passport control took it from me - even though I exited via the designated Passport control for flights to your country" ..I spoke in English, thinking showing some Russian knowledge might just confuse things......

LONG pause......  I was quite happy to wait ... there were many other passengers transiting from Piter and other Russian airports behind me..

My passport was examined MUCH more thoroughly examined than ever before.. and phone calls .... and typing ...  and further flicking through my passport ...

Suddenly, I saw the stamp raised and realised this was the moment .... I was either through or being sent back ))) ...  It was the former ...  with a "have a pleasant flight" ..

I ended up being first non-CIS passport holder through and the following French ( Paris flight) and Brits all had had the same issues ... and pronounced, "NEVER again" ..

I met a really interesting Brit - who has a place in Crimea -  who also said he'd never transit via Minsk, again ....  I told him about the forum - as he is a bit of Putin fan  - met him at a Jazz festival at Feodosiya

I flew S7 from Sochi to DME and Belavia from DME and MSQ to Manchester...  the first plane was and ancient 737 and the latter a Brazilian narrow-bodied jet than was reminiscent of Concorde.

The sandwiches really WERE stale / dry  on the DME-MSQ flight, but I liked the staff and the food was slightly better to Manchester... though not in the Turkish Airways league


@Sparky....  1/ There are no direct flights to Sochi - bet there will be next year for the world cup )) and 2/ I booked one way and it was 600 quid until 5th September - £160 from Sochi to Heathrow... but I needed to get to MAN. earlier ... and the flight was ' only' £270

 



 






Online msmoby

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Re: Arriving at MSQ airport - transiting via RU - update
« Reply #5 on: September 27, 2017, 09:31:35 PM »
Lest anyone would wish to try what I did - a word of caution:

Something is defo going down re Belarus allowing the 5-day Visa and the 'risk' of a foreigner simply driving into Russia ...   

From the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office travel advisory site:

" If you’re travelling immediately from/to a Russian airport or entering Belarus at any other border point other than Minsk International Airport then this visa-free arrangement doesn’t apply and you’ll need a visa. "


 From the BL govt site:

"Type B visa ( Transit)
 

transit visa through the territory of Belarus (e.g. the UK — Belarus — Russia). Please note that entry to Belarus from one country and returning to the same country from Belarus without going to a third country is not a transit (e.g. the UK — Belarus — the UK).

The visa-free regime does not apply to people arriving to Belarus by plane from Russia and planning to go to the airports of Russia (these are internal flights with no border control)."

http://uk.mfa.gov.by/en/consular_issues/visas/