Useful information for tourists

Money

The Ukrainian hryvnia is divided into 100 kopecks. Coins come in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 25 and 50 kopecks, plus one hryvnia. Notes come in 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500 hryvnia. In some places (like souvenir shops, markets), people quote prices in dollars or euros instead of hryvnia. Don't be confused, it's just a habit.

Costs

A basic meal in an average restaurant in the capital can cost 100UAH to 200UAH ($12 to $25) per person. If you choose cafeteria-style eateries or spend more time in the countryside, meals can set you back as little as 30UAH ($4).

Public transportation (buses, trolleybuses, trams, metro) have various prices from 2UAH to 3UAH (25c to 40c).

Taxi drivers will usually escalate their prices when they hear your accent, so be prepared to haggle. Make sure you agree on a certain price before you take a cab, since going by the meter usually doubles the price normally charged for a certain destination.

ATMs and Cash

Cash machines (ATMs) can be found in the hotel lobby and all around Kiev. ‘Bankomats’, as ATMs are known locally, are also found in major airport terminals, central post offices as well as on the street. At Boryspil Airport there are several in the arrivals hall. Cirrus, Plus, Visa, MasterCard/EuroCard and other global networks are all recognised.

The best way to manage your money in Ukraine is to simply take it out of your account in hryvnia. Your own bank is likely to charge you a small commission for taking out foreign currency; check on this issue before leaving home. Some ATMs also distribute US dollars. In this case you can exchange them in one of the currency exchange offices. When taking dollars and euros for your trip make sure the banknotes are not old and have no rips or tears. Such bills are not accepted in the banks of Ukraine.

Exchange offices

Most hotels have exchange offices onsite and there are numerous exchange kiosks scattered along main streets. Various large shops have their own exchange offices, as do department stores and railway stations.

Visas

For stays of up to 90 days, citizens of the EU, Switzerland, Canada, the USA, Iceland, Japan, and Norway do not need a visa, nor do those of Andorra, Liechtenstein, Monaco, San Marino and the Vatican, plus the Balkan and CIS nations. However, if arriving for the purpose of employment, study or permanent residency, visas will be required even for these nationalities. Other nationalities always need visas, as well as those visitors intending to stay in Ukraine for more than 90 days. Visas are available from your local embassy. See the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine (www.mfa.gov.ua) for a complete list of embassies and contact details. There are several types of visas, including business, tourist, private, with single, double and multiple entries available. Letters of invitation are technically needed for all visas, although this is more of a formality these days. Single- and double-entry visas can be obtained for one to six months.

We are ideally located for business or leisure travelers.