Guidelines for Servas Travellers in Belarus

When travelling please take into consideration: 

1     If you have difficulty in arranging a visit, contact one of the coordinators, who may be able to give you other host names to try.

2     Do not ask to stay for only one night or for longer than two nights, unless your host suggests this. A stay of one night does not allow enough time for hosts and you to get to know each other. 

3     Respect the advance notice requested by hosts. Do not ask for hospitality at the last minute.

4     When contacting hosts in advance:

By e-mail  - select a small number of hosts in any one location and be specific on the dates you want to stay. Attach your Letter of Introduction.

 - general requests to long lists of hosts are not appreciated.

 - confirm acceptance of offers of accommodation and let other hosts know if you will not be staying with them. 

5     Do not turn up on the door step unannounced. Even with “No Prior Notice Required”,  you are expected to contact them first.

6     Confirm arrangements a few days before arrival. Please phone hosts only between 7:30 am and 9:00 pm. 

7     Try to visit hosts in the country and remote areas. Some seldom receive visitors and anxiously await you !

8     Hosts may be able to collect you from train or bus station, but do not expect them to do so. 

9     If you cannot visit as planned,  please let the host know.

10   Show your original stamped Letter of Introduction on arrival - show the original even if you have sent a copy; please do not wait to be asked for it. 

11   If you want to use the telephone, please ask first.  If you make a toll call, find out the cost of the call and reimburse your host.

12   It can be helpful to carry sheets or a sleeping bag.  If you do, offer to use them. 

13   Spend time with your hosts and be prepared to talk about your country. We have much to share with one another.

14   Do not expect your hosts to drive you around. 

15   Do not ask your hosts for money, borrowing any or any exchange of it unless it was suggested by the host.

16   Ask about household routines and try to fit in with them. Offer to help in the house -cooking, washing dishes, gardening, etc.  When travelling as a family, please  consider bringing some food in to help with a meal or by any food in the near shop. 

17   If you have any major difficulties or problems, contact a Regional Coordinator or the National Secretary.

18   After your visit, send a letter, postcard or email to your hosts.  They are interested in you and like to know that you have arrived safely at your next stop. 

At the end of your trip, please: 

19   Send a travel report to your own National Secretary giving details of your visits.

20   Remain active as a Servas member by contacting the National Secretary in your own country.

21   Go to your local Servas meetings, meet with other travellers and hosts and ask for newsletters to be sent to you. 

22  Return all hard copy Host Lists.

 Please remember:  Host Lists are confidential and remain the property of Servas.


Responsibilities of Servas Hosts

Servas Hosts are expected:

1     Provide up-to-date information for inclusion in the next Servas Belarus Host List.  Advise your Regional Coordinator of any change of address or phone number,  or other details.

2     Respond promptly to travellers' requests for accommodation. 

3     Remember that you are not obliged to accept all requests from travellers - saying “No” is OK.

4     On the arrival of a traveller, verify that a Servas valid Letter of Introduction is being carried.  If it is not, or is not current, endorsed and stamped,  consider seriously not accepting the traveller.  The immediate decision with this is yours  –  but report the situation to your National Secretary as soon as possible. 

5     Belarus hosts travelling in Belarus do not need a Letter of Introduction.

6     it's recommended to maintain a Visitors' Book of Servas Travellers in which names and addresses of travellers are recorded, along with dates of visits. 

7     Advise your National Secretary of any difficult or unsatisfactory travellers, giving full details,  so that reports may be furnished to:

- Servas in the traveller's own country,

- other Belarus hosts to forewarn them of such visitors.

8     Provide accommodation for two nights stay. 

9     Hosts do not have to arrange transport for travellers to or from the host's home,  but may assist if they choose.

10   Talk over with your visitors your plans and expectations for their visit, in particular the routine of the household and arrangements around meals.   Be specific to avoid misunderstandings. 

11   Assist travellers with advice on further travel, where to go, how to get there, shopping, laundry, tourist, cultural matters, etc.

12   Spend time with travellers to discuss matters of common interest, to build up better understanding of racial and national differences,  and thus promote the Servas aim of world peace. 

13   If circumstances change and you are unable to host a traveller, try to contact them and/or try to find an alternative host.  Try to do your best to make some arrangement for travellers, and to make them feel welcome.