Basics of Travel Safety to Ukraine
The Basics of Travel Safety
1: When traveling to foreign countries it is a good idea to check the State department to see if there are any travel warnings for the country or the area that you are visiting. There you will find travel warnings and travel alerts, and you can even register with the State department so they can assist if there are any issues or problems
2: Do not wear expensive watches or jewelry. You may even want to downgrade your cell phone and not carry laptops or other devices with you out in the open.
3: Do not flash large amounts of money, keep a low profile.
4: Do not get overly intoxicated. Intoxicated tourists make for easy targets.
5: Try to stay in groups or even pairs with people that you know as much as possible. It is much more difficult to rob or harm a group than an individual.
6: Only used trusted transportation such as marked taxies, or people that you know and trust.
7: Be careful speaking to strangers, especially about politics or other touchy subjects. If someone approaches you that you do not know and trys to get you to do something that involves you going somewhere with them or money, or anything that you are not comfortable with, just pretend like you do not understand them and walk away. Do not be shy about it, and if you feel threatened just start making noise and again walk away.
8: Act like you always know where you are and where you are going, even if you get lost. It can be intimidating to be lost in a foreign country, especially if you do not speak the language, but you do not want to appear like a lost tourist, so continue walking until you can get help from a store owner or police or someone that you can safely approach.
What will I get with my initial deposit?
Your deposit guarantees your place on the tour of your choice. If you forced to cancel for reasons beyond your control, all funds will be creditited toward another tour. The only exception is funds paid for non –refundable travel expenses.
How many pieces of luggage may I take and what size?
You may check one pieces of luggage free of charge. We recommend that your carry-on bag contain one full change of dress clothing, your necessary toiletries and your computer or valuable camera items.
. 62″ total dimensions ( L + W + H ) with a total weight of 50 lbs.
. 55″ total dimensions ( L + W + H ) with a total weight o f50 lbs.
. 45″ total dimensions ( L + W + H ) with a total weight of 10 lbs.
How much spending money will I need?
We have found that most of our clients are very comfortable with a budget of between $1000 and $1,500.00. Some spend more than that and some will spend less, it really depends on your taste. Our host cities are all fairly large with attractions and outlets for a variety of tastes and income levels.
Are there other costs?
Other than normal spending money there will be very little in the way of expenses you will need to worry about. Your package includes continued daily guidance and assistance from our staff. You may have a very special request or need that could incur an additional cost. However, few of our clients encounter a need for this. Relatively minor additional expenses could include special transportation, interpreter, or gift services..
What paperwork will I need to travel?
You will need a passport which you can obtain locally. If you already possess a passport please be sure there is at least 6 months remaining on it from when you plan to enter another country.
Do I need additional health insurance?
You should check with you health care insurer and ask if your current policy will cover you outside the US. If not, you may want to purchase a rider policy to cover any emergency medical situations, which may occur.
Should I bring photos?
It may be a good idea to bring along personal and regional photographs. Photographs of yourself, friends, family, pets, home, cars and your recreational activities will certainly allow any viewer to have a much fuller understanding of who you are and what your particular geographic location affords for those residents living in the area.
What type of clothing will I need?
Be yourself and dress comfortably during most of your trip. Summer attire may be jeans, shorts, and trousers. Of course in the winter months you will want to dress appropriately. An umbrella is always a good item to pack as well. If you attend the ballet or opera, you may want to wear something a little more formal.
My schedule won’t allow me to go for the full duration of the tour. Can I make special arrangements?
Yes! If you have decided that you would like to experience our tour we will work with you in any way that we can to make it happen for you. We believe that you will find the staff to be the most personable and hard working group available. We also act as the agent for many of our clients who wish to go to our host cities on their own making necessary arrangements, setting up meetings and often saving them money because of our travel agent status.
I do not live in the United States, however, I would still like to attend the tour, can I meet there?
Currently we only work with American citizens that live in the united states.
What can I bring with me?
You are allowed to bring basically anything you like for personal use except illegal drugs and weapons. Video equipment, cameras, radios, even lap-top computers are OK. You can bring up to 250 cigarettes, although you will find them to be a great bargain in Russia and the Ukraine. If something of yours is confiscated for any reason, you can ask for a receipt and you may be able to claim it on the way out.
What small gifts should I bring for the ladies?
Today you may purchase almost anything in our host cities that you could purchase in any other major city. Most of the women do not have the money to purchase the extras. Our advice might be to take advantage of any personal connections or good deals available to you. This keeps the cost down for you and makes a nice gift. For example: One client had a woman friend who was a model. This model gave him clothing outfits, which she received from modeling but never really wore herself. Another client had access to very nice costume jewelry, this was a big hit. I do not know a woman in the world who does not like good perfume. Most and Ukrainian women seem to like European dark chocolate. We might also suggest you look for something produced or manufactured in your particular area of the United States, which you are proud of or think may make a nice gift.
What can I leave with?
You can take anything bought from a Western-style shop or department store, but save your receipts. Since 1990 the removal from the country of certain quantities of consumer goods such as caviar, tea, fabrics, some clothing, carpets, leather, photo equipment, precious metals and stones has been restricted.
What about money?
Your tour leader will go over the local currency and the exchange rates with you. There are legal exchange offices practically everywhere, including hotels, restaurants, boutiques, street front stores etc… You will be asked to fill out a currency statement when you enter the country. This statement is designed to prevent people from taking out more money then they brought in.
What about credit cards?
Visa, MasterCard/Eurocard and American Express are all widely accepted. If you have your credit card and pin number you may obtain cash from the many ATM’s now easily accessible in most cities. ATM’s will allow withdrawal of anyplace from $100 to $300 per use depending on the machine.
Travelers’ Cheques are not advised for the Ukraine as some banks take as long as one hour to cash. Once you get outside of the major cities Travelers’ Cheques can be more difficult to cash. American Express is the most widely recognized brand. All in all it is a good idea to bring a combination of cash and credit cards.
Clients continually tell us that they have been warned to not use their credit cards in the Ukraine due to card theft. We feel this to be unfounded..
If you want an additional safety barrier between you and your main account then do a little preplanning and open a special account specifically for your trip Ukraine. Deposit a set amount of money in the account and notify the card issuer that you will be using the card from a foreign destination. This safety measure will prevent someone from accessing additional money you may have in your account .
How much are calls to the US from the hotel?
The rate per minute from the hotel to the US is approximately $5.99 or higher. The rates from the hotel to outlying areas are $ 2.99 per minute or higher, local calls from the hotel are about .15 or so per minute.. These rates are subject to change, thus we recommend checking with the hotel prior to making any long distance calls. Some hotels may block the use of AT&T calling cards from the rooms. We are unsure about the LCI or other long distance calling cards. We are of the impression that your long distance calling cards will work from the pay phones in the lobby. There is Direct Dialing to the rooms and with a call back card you can avoid expensive hotel long distance charges.
What about the electricity?
The electricity is 220 volts, 50 Hz AC. The sockets do require a Continental or European plug adapter with two round pins. American appliances need a 220V to 110V/100V converter.
Do they use the metric system?
Yes. The metric system is in use.