Hitchhiking in Belarus. Thumbs up!

Belarus and hitchhiking
Nowadays hitchhiking has become not only the way of travelling for many people but also the way of life. There are special communities in the Internet that unite ardent hitchhikers all over the world. Hitchhiking is also known as thumbing due to the fact that one should use a particular gesture in order to stop a car and ask a stranger for a ride – one is stretching his or her hand with a thump being raised up. There are various approaches towards this cheap or even mostly free way of travelling in different countries. For example, In Cuba, picking up hitchhikers is mandatory by government vehicles, if passenger space is available. In Italy, for instance, hitchhiking on the highway is forbidden and there are “NO AUTOSTOP” signs on the roads. And what about Belarus?

Hitchhiking here is absolutely legal and quite safe. It is not a common way of travelling among the Belarusians but it is not extraordinary and it is rather popular among young people. As experience hitchhikers admit you won’t be waiting for a car to pick you up for too long. The average waiting time is about 20 minutes as Hitchwiki suggests. Belarusian people are hospitable, and if they let you in, you will be surely welcome. There are only about fifteen main roads in Belarus, so it is quite hard to get lost, especially if you have a map.

Hitch-hiking is a good idea if you want get closer to the culture, it is a nice opportunity to talk to a native of the country, though one must be prepared for the fact that most Belarusians speak only Russian and you must be very lucky if the driver speaks good English. If not, you will probably have a chance to listen to authentic Russian chanson music that most drivers, especially truck drivers, adore and listen to on their way. Hitchhiking in Belarus? A good idea! “Thumbs up!” as they say.

     Important hitchhike issues
The best way to think about your life is to set on the road. When hitchhiking in Belarus quiet reflection is guaranteed: even flat landscape gets you in the right frame of mind – you thoughts become smooth and clear. Belarus is known for its exceptional nature and traveling here by car gives you a chance to enjoy all its treasures. But before hitting the road it is better to learn some details about hitchhiking in Belarus so that the road does not “hit” you instead:

  1. The road service in Belarus is not so much developed; there are not many restaurants or motels on the road. So get prepared and maybe make some sandwiches for your trip. You will find a vast number of restaurants only on the main roads like E30/M1. But on the way there are usually a lot of small towns and villages, where in the shops you can find anything what you need. Moreover it is 2-3 times cheaper than in a café. 
  2. Another important thing that one must take into account when hitchhiking in Belarus is that when travelling at night or after sunset one must have a special flicker (a light-returning element). It is absolutely a must if you don’t want to have some trouble with the local police. The penalty for not having a flicker on you is about 10 euro while the flicker itself costs about one euro and can be bought in any shop.
  3. Just before you enter Belarus you will receive so-called “migration card”: do not throw it away because if you are stopped by the police you will definitely be asked to show it alongside with your visa. 
  4. When travelling through Belarus, be careful not to cross the Russian border: there is no official border between Belarus and Russia, but it is not a good idea to cross the border without the right visa! 
  5. Finally, don’t forget about the registration if you are going to stay for more than 5 working days INSIDE BELARUS.

We recommend you to take all the rules above into account so that you could feel free and secure when hitchhiking in Belarus. 

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