TRAVEL TIPS

VISAS

Travel to Ukraine has become easier than ever. US and Canadian citizens in most cases no longer need a Visa, however, some counties and trip purposes still warrant a visa requirement.

PASSING THROUGH CUSTOMS

It is not advisable to bring expensive gifts into Ukraine.  If you bring jewelry or another type of an expensive gift you may be asked to pay a customs duty which in some cases equates to the price of the gift.  We recommend these purchases be made in Ukraine, particularly Kiev, where these items are likely to be less expensive.   Legally, you are allowed to bring up to $10,000 in cash and up to $50,000 in checks.  If your cash amount exceeds $1,000 you will need to declare it at the customs.  Keep in mind that you are allowed to take up to $1,000 when leaving Ukraine, however, if the amount declared upon entrance exceeds that of $1,000 you will be able to leave with any amount lesser amount of what was declared upon entry. 

TAXIS

Taxi is comparatively cheap for Russian speaking passengers in Kiev (predominate language in Eastern portion of Ukraine). Taxi fees are usually negotiated with the driver ahead of time. Gypsy cabs are readily available everywhere by simply extending out your hand.  Kiev gypsy cabs are less expensive but are not recommended for non-russian speakers.  If you wish to use a gypsy cab make sure there is nobody else inside but the driver and negotiate the price before you get inside. 

MEDICAL CARE

Remember to bring any medications to Kiev Ukraine you may need.  While prescriptions are not needed to purchase medications in Kiev – their selection is limited.  Check with your health insurer before you depart to ascertain your coverage in the event of emergency. Many insurance providers offer specialized riders which can cover emergency evacuation.
Below please find a few centrally located Kiev Pharmacies:

WATER

Water quality varies widely in Kiev Ukraine. Your best bet is to drink only bottled water.  Also try to avoid putting ice in your drinks.

SAFETY

While petty thieves are common in Kiev as in the rest of Ukraine, however it is still generally safer here than in most American cities. Violent crime in Kiev is seldom.  Most crimes in Kiev involves pettiness such as pick-pocketing and money scams.  Precautions include not flaunting valuables while on Kiev streets, watching your pockets in crowded places or walking alone at night through city streets or parks.

INTERNET

Kiev as the rest of Ukraine has plenty of cyber cafes to provide Internet connection at $1-$2 per hour.  If you bring a laptop into Ukraine you will need to purchase prepaid time cards for Ukranian Internet access. These cards indicate login, password, connection set-up details and phone numbers for dial-up access. Internet cards can be purchased at any Kiev computer shop and most news-stalls.

TIPPING

Tipping is, as in the rest of Ukraine is expected at most Kiev restaurants. Tip 10-15% depending on service.

ELECTRICITY

Electricity throughout Ukraine is 220 volt/50 Hr. The plug is the two-pin thin European standard. Be sure to bring your own converter as most stores in Kiev do not carry them.

CURRENCY

Prices in Kiev Ukraine are generally quoted in Hrivnia - the local currency, however, dollars are occasionally excepted and used for pricing. Currency in Kiev and the rest of Ukraine can be freely converted at banks, hotels or kiosks specifically for tourists.

TELEPHONES

Mobile phones are an essential accessory in Ukraine, especially charismatic Kiev.  There are numerous mobile service providers in Kiev Ukraine, with Kyivstar and MTS being the most popular.

HOW TO CALL KIEV UKRAINE FROM ABROAD:

Dial international access code of your country (011 for US), then dial 38 (international code of Ukraine) + city code + city number. Kiev Ukraine city number is 482, although remember, this code is not required for dialing Kiev mobile phones.

HOW TO CALL ABROAD FROM KIEV UKRAINE:

Dial Kiev intercity access code (8), then dial 10 (international access code) + country code + city number including area code if needed.

TO CALL WITHIN OTHER CITIES OF UKRAINE FROM KIEV:

Dial 8 (intercity access code), then dial area code (380) and the phone number.  The area code and the local number is always a 10 digit combination except for the calls within a region where you are located.

WORKING HOURS

In Kiev Ukraine, state and public offices are open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, with a lunch hour from 1p.m. as a general rule. Majority of Kiev stores are opened from 10a.m. to 7p.m. and are closed on Sundays. A lunch hour is usually either from 1 to 2p.m. or from 2 to 3p.m.
As for Kiev's food stores, many of them work 24 hours 7 days a week, a few - from 8a.m. to 8p.m. Usual work time for cafes and restaurants in Kiev is from 10-12 a.m or until last customer leaves.
Most banks are open to public from 9a.m. to 3p.m with a lunch hour from 1 to 2 p.m. and are closed on Saturday, Sunday.

BANKS

ATM machines can be found all over Kiev Ukraine. Below please find a listing of Kiev's major Banks.

UKRAINIAN HOLIDAYS

  • January 1 - New Year
  • January 7 - Christmas
  • March 8 - Women’s Day
  • May 1, 2 - Labor Day
  • May 5 - Easter
  • May 9 - Victory Day
  • June 23 - Whitsunday
  • June 28 – Constitution Day
  • August 24 – Independence Day
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    Testimonials

    "With "Luxury Kiev", this was one of the best tours I have taken to Eastern Europe yet."
    Paul Bemis, PhD, JD, Chairman, CEO - 8 Sep 2010

     

    "I want to say, I had "Luxury Kiev" take care of all my travel needs to Ukraine. The tour was great and everything was done very professionally."
    Joseph Rabe - 23 Feb 2011

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