Background Note: Ukraine
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was the center of the first eastern Slavic state, Kyivan Rus,
which during the 10th and 11th centuries was the largest and most
powerful state in Europe. Weakened by internecine quarrels and
Mongol invasions, Kyivan Rus was incorporated into the Grand Duchy
of Lithuania and eventually into the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.
The cultural and religious legacy of Kyivan Rus laid the foundation
for Ukrainian nationalism through subsequent centuries. A new
Ukrainian state, the Cossack Hetmanate, was established during
the mid-17th century after an uprising against the Poles. Despite
continuous Muscovite pressure, the Hetmanate managed to remain
autonomous for well over 100 years. During the latter part of
the 18th century, most Ukrainian ethnographic territory was absorbed
by the Russian Empire. Following the collapse of czarist Russia
in 1917, Ukraine was able to bring about a short-lived period
of independence (1917-20), but was reconquered and forced to endure
a brutal Soviet rule that engineered two artificial famines (1921-22
and 1932-33) in which over 8 million died. In World War II, German
and Soviet armies were responsible for some 7 to 8 million more
deaths. Although final independence for Ukraine was achieved in
1991 with the dissolution of the USSR, democracy remained elusive
as the legacy of state control and endemic corruption stalled
efforts at economic reform, privatization, and civil liberties.
A peaceful mass protest "Orange Revolution" in the closing months
of 2004 forced the authorities to overturn a rigged presidential
election and to allow a new internationally monitored vote that
swept into power a reformist slate under Viktor YUSHCHENKO. Subsequent
internal squabbles in the YUSHCHENKO camp allowed his rival Viktor
YANUKOVYCH to stage a comeback in parliamentary elections and
become prime minister in August of 2006. An early legislative
election, brought on by a political crisis in the spring of 2007,
saw Yuliya TYMOSHENKO, as head of an "Orange" coalition, installed
as a new prime minister in December 2007.
DESCRIPTION: Ukraine is undergoing profound political
and economic change as it moves from its Soviet past toward a
market economy, multi-party democracy, and integration into Euro-Atlantic
and other international institutions. In recent years, the
availability of goods and services has increased along with increased
rates of growth in Ukraine's economy, and facilities for travelers
have improved somewhat. Nonetheless, the availability of
travel and tourist services remains uneven throughout the country,
and Ukraine still lacks the abundance of many of the goods and
services taken for granted in other countries. Read the
Department of State Background Notes on Ukraine
for additional information.
REQUIREMENT: Depending on the length and purpose of travel,
U.S. citizens may or may not be required to get a Ukrainian visa
prior to arriving in Ukraine. A passport valid for six months
beyond the planned date of travel is required. According
to Ukrainian Presidential Decree #1008, dated June 30, 2005, U.S.
citizens are exempt from the requirement to have a Ukrainian visa
as long as the duration of their stay in Ukraine does not exceed
90 days and the purpose of their travel is tourism, private travel,
or business. U.S. citizens whose planned stay in Ukraine exceeds
90 days must have visas authorizing their entry into Ukraine.
If the purpose of their visit is other than tourism, private travel,
or business, an appropriate visa must be obtained. U.S. citizens
may apply for all types of visas through Ukrainian Embassies and
Consulates overseas. A list of required documents for the visa
application will be determined based on the purpose and length
of travel on a case-by-case basis. Contact details for Ukrainian
Embassies and Consulates are available on the Ministry of Foreign
Affairs of Ukraine web site at http://www.mfa.gov.ua/mfa/en/305.htm.
Visas may be obtained from the Consular Office of the Embassy
of Ukraine in Washington, DC or from Ukrainian Consulates General
in New York, Chicago, or San Francisco. For additional information
about Ukrainian visas and related policy, please contact the nearest
Ukrainian Embassy or Consulate.
3350 M Street NW
Washington, DC 20007
Tel: (202) 333-0606
Fax: (202) 333-0817
Web site: http://www.mfa.gov.ua/usa/en/
General of Ukraine in New York
240 East 49th Street
New York, NY 10017
Tel: (212) 371-5690
Fax: (212) 371-5547
Web site: http://www.ukrconsul.org/
General of Ukraine in San Francisco
530 Bush Street, Suite 402
San Francisco, CA 94108
Tel: (415) 398-0240
Fax: (415) 398-5039
Web site: http://www.ukrainesf.com/
General of Ukraine in Chicago
10 East Huron St.
Chicago, IL 60611
Tel: (312) 642 4388
Fax: (312) 642 4385
Web site: http://www.ukrchicago.com/
of Ukraine does not issue visas at the point of entry into Ukraine.
Individuals whose purpose of travel requires them to have a visa
must obtain the correct Ukrainian visa prior to arrival; otherwise
they will be denied entry into Ukraine and will have to return
to the United States or travel to another country to obtain a
your visa carefully upon receipt and pay careful attention to
validity dates. Each traveler is responsible for understanding
the type of visa issued and the provisions of that visa.
Frequently, American citizens are refused entry into Ukraine because
they believed that they possessed a multiple entry visa, while
in fact their visa was only valid for a single entry; Americans
occasionally try to reenter Ukraine after using their single-entry
visa, believing they have unlimited travel for six months.
In some cases, Americans attempt to enter Ukraine before their
visa becomes valid. This is a common mistake, since in Ukraine
the date is written day-month-year, not month-day-year.
Thus, a visa issued on 01/05/07 is valid from May 1, 2007 and
NOT from January 5, 2007. Such travelers can be detained
at the port of entry, refused admission and sent back to the country
from which they traveled. The U.S. Embassy in Kyiv is unable
to assist travelers in these situations.
entering or staying in Ukraine must be registered with Ukrainian
authorities. American Citizens traveling to or staying in Ukraine
are reminded that recent changes to Ukrainian immigration law
change the registration procedures for short-term stays; registration
for short-term visits of up to 90 days is completed at the border
by the customs offices. Such registration is valid for 90
days out of each period of 180 days; the calculation of the 90-day
period begins from the date of first entry into Ukrainian territory.
for both short- and long-term visits to Ukraine, with or without
a visa, is completed at the port of entry into Ukraine.
Future extensions for stays exceeding 90 days are completed through
the Ukrainian Ministry of Internal Affairs™ Office of Citizenship,
Immigration and Registration (OVIR). Most cities have several
OVIR offices. Extensions are not automatic, however, and
are valid only for continued presence in the country. It
is not possible to depart Ukraine and return on the extension,
nor can an adjustment to visa status be made from within Ukraine.
Applications for extension of registration should be submitted
at least three days before the current registration expires.
who intend to visit Russia from Ukraine must also have a valid
Russian visa. The Consular Section of the Russian Embassy
in Ukraine is located at Prospekt Kutuzova 8, tel.: (380-44) 284-6816,
fax 284-7936, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org,
Ukraine should note that Ukrainian law requires all visitors to
obtain mandatory health insurance. For more information
see the section on Medical Insurance below.
Embassy of Ukraines web site at http://www.mfa.gov.ua/usa/en/1609.htm
for the most current visa information. Also, see the Ukrainian
Ministry of Foreign Affairs™ web site at http://www.mfa.gov.ua/usa/en or http://www.ukraineinfo.org/.
about dual nationality
or the prevention of international
child abduction can be found on our web site. For further
information about customs regulations, please read our Customs Information
sheet and visit the Ukrainian State Customs Service web site at
TRAVEL AND BUSINESS
INFORMATION" The U.S. Department of State's Consular
Information Program advises Americans traveling and residing abroad
through Country Specific Information, Travel Alerts, and Travel
Warnings. Country Specific Information exists
for all countries and includes information on entry and exit requirements,
currency regulations, health conditions, safety and security,
crime, political disturbances, and the addresses of the U.S. embassies
and consulates abroad. Travel Alerts are issued
to disseminate information quickly about terrorist threats and
other relatively short-term conditions overseas that pose significant
risks to the security of American travelers. Travel Warnings
are issued when the State Department recommends that Americans
avoid travel to a certain country because the situation is dangerous
For the latest security information,
Americans living and traveling abroad should regularly monitor
the Department's Bureau of Consular Affairs Internet web site
where the current Worldwide
Alerts, and Travel
Warnings can be found. Consular
Affairs Publications, which contain information on obtaining
passports and planning a safe trip abroad, are also available
For additional information on international travel, see http://www.usa.gov/Citizen/Topics/Travel/International.shtml.
The Department of State encourages
all U.S citizens traveling or residing abroad to register
via the State
Department's travel registration website or at the nearest
U.S. embassy or consulate abroad. Registration will make your
presence and whereabouts known in case it is necessary to contact
you in an emergency and will enable you to receive up-to-date
information on security conditions.
Emergency information concerning
Americans traveling abroad may be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747
toll free in the U.S. and Canada or the regular toll line 1-202-501-4444
for callers outside the U.S. and Canada.
The National Passport Information
Center (NPIC) is the U.S. Department of State's single, centralized
public contact center for U.S. passport information. Telephone:
1-877-4USA-PPT (1-877-487-2778). Customer service representatives
and operators for TDD/TTY are available Monday-Friday, 7:00 a.m.
to 12:00 midnight, Eastern Time, excluding federal holidays.
Travelers can check the latest health
information with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
in Atlanta, Georgia. A hotline at 877-FYI-TRIP (877-394-8747)
and a web site at http://wwwn.cdc.gov/travel/default.aspx
give the most recent health advisories, immunization recommendations
or requirements, and advice on food and drinking water safety
for regions and countries. A booklet entitled "Health Information
for International Travel" (HHS publication number CDC-95-8280)
is available from the U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington,
DC 20402, tel. (202) 512-1800.
AND SECURITY: Ukraine is largely free of significant
civil unrest or any organized anti-American domestic political
movements. However, occasionally mass demonstrations occur
in larger cities, such as Kyiv, and are usually sponsored by individual
political forces.While the majority of these protests are small
and peaceful, it is best to avoid such gatherings.
have been recurrent incidents of racially-motivated violence;
groups of â€śskinheadsâ€ť and neo-Nazis target people of Asian,
African, or other non-European descent, as well as religious minorities,
in Kyiv and throughout Ukraine (see the section on Crime below).
For the latest
security information, Americans traveling abroad should regularly
monitor the Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs™ web
site at http://travel.state.gov/
where the current Travel Warnings
and Travel Alerts, including the Worldwide Caution,
can be found.
information on safety and security can also be obtained by calling
1-888-407-4747 toll free in the U.S., or for callers outside the
U.S. and Canada, a regular toll-line at 1-202-501-4444.
These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern
Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
of State urges American citizens to take responsibility for their
own personal security while traveling overseas. For general
information about appropriate measures travelers can take to protect
themselves in an overseas environment, see the Department of State™s
pamphlet A Safe Trip
Ukraine is undergoing a significant economic, political, and social
transformation, and income disparities have grown sharply.
As a result, foreign visitors may be perceived as wealthy targets
for criminals. Americans often stand out in Ukraine, and
are therefore more likely to be targeted than in Western European
countries, where incomes are higher and Americans may blend in
crime ranges from various scams, simple pickpocketing, purse snatching
and theft of personal items from parked cars, to mugging, armed
robbery or the drugging of unsuspecting victims at nightspots
and bars (where they are then robbed). Cases of assaults
in apartment building corridors, elevators and stairwells, as
well as armed break-ins and crimes involving small caliber firearms
have also been reported. Please see the Embassy™s web site
for additional security information for Americans at http://kyiv.usembassy.gov/amcit_security_eng.html.
reported scam in Kyiv is The Wallet Scam which involves a person
dropping a wallet or a packet of money near a potential victim.
After the victim picks up the wallet and attempts to return it
to the individual who it belongs to, the perpetrator then claims
that the wallet is missing money which the victim stole.
The perpetrator either threatens to call the police if the victim
does not pay, or asks the victim to show his or her wallet to
the perpetrator to ensure that the victim did not take any money.
When the victim produces his or her wallet, the perpetrator grabs
the money and flees. Another variant involves a second person
who claims to be a police officer who is of course involved in
the crime who approaches the victim after the wallet has been
picked-up. This second person also asks to see the wallet,
grabbing the money and fleeing or, through sleight-of-hand, stealing
the victim™s money.
travelers do not encounter problems with crime in Ukraine, there
has been an increase in the number of hate crimes directed at
ethnic and religious minorities. Many of these incidents are conducted
by â€śskinheadsâ€ť or neo-Nazis in Kyiv, but similar crimes have
also been reported throughout the country. In Kyiv these incidents
have occurred without provocation in prominent downtown areas
commonly frequented by tourists. While the majority of people
targeted have been of Asian, African, or other non-European descent,
all travelers should exercise caution. In addition to incidents
of assault, persons of African or Asian heritage may be subject
to various types of harassment, such as being stopped on the street
by both civilians and law enforcement officials. Individuals belonging
to religious minorities have also been harassed and assaulted
in Kyiv and throughout Ukraine.
and ATM fraud is widespread. Ukraine operates as a cash
economy, and money scams are common. The MEbassy strongly
recommends that visitors and permanent residents of Ukraine refrain
from using credit cards or ATM cards except at major international
of apartments and vehicles represent a significant threat to long-term
residents. Although few cars are actually stolen, primarily
because of increased use of alarm systems and security wheel locks,
vehicular break-ins and vehicular vandalism are common.
reliable tourist and travel services for foreign victims of crime.
Transferring funds from the United States, replacing stolen traveler™s
checks or airline tickets, or canceling credit cards can be difficult
and time consuming. There are few safe low-cost lodgings,
such as youth hostels. Public facilities in Ukraine are
generally not equipped to accommodate persons with physical disabilities.
Over the past
several years, the Embassy has received a number of reports of
harassment and intimidation directed against foreign businesspersons
and interests. While these reports have become much less
frequent in recent years, they have not ended entirely.
Reported incidents range from physical threats (possibly motivated
by rival commercial interests tied to organized crime), to local
government entities engaging in such practices as arbitrary termination
or amendment of business licenses, dilution of corporate stock
to diminish U.S. investor interest, delays of payment or delivery
of goods, and arbitrary â€śinspectionsâ€ť by tax, safety or other
officials that appear designed to harm the business rather than
a genuine attempt at good governance. American business entities
are encouraged to read the Corruption, Money Laundering and Organized
Crime section of the 2007 Crime Report for Ukraine at http://kyiv.usembassy.gov/amcit_crimereport_eng.html.
American businesses and other private sector organizations are
also encouraged to read the most recent Overseas Security Advisory
Council (OSAC) Annual Crime and Safety Report for Ukraine at https://www.osac.gov/Regions/country.cfm?country=42.
is also becoming more common in Ukraine. Internet scams
appear to be on the rise. The Embassy suggests refraining
from wiring money unless the recipient is well-known and the purpose
of business is clear. American citizens have reported transferring
money to Ukraine to pay for goods purchased from residents of
Ukraine via online auction sites, but never receiving the goods
in return. The Embassy regularly receives complaints from
Americans regarding scams involving marriage and dating services.
Numerous Americans have lost money to agencies and individuals
that claimed they could arrange for student or fiancĂ©e visas
to the U.S. Additional information is available on our web
site in a document titled â€śMarriage Brokersâ€ť at http://kyiv.usembassy.gov/amcit_marriage_eng.html
and on the Department of Stateâ€™s web site under Ukraine: Internet
and Other Fraud Schemes.
As in many
countries around the world, counterfeit and pirated goods are
widely available in Ukraine. Transactions involving such
products may be illegal under local law. In addition, bringing
them back to the United States may result in forfeitures and/or
fines. More information on this serious problem is available
FOR VICTIMS OF CRIME: The loss or theft abroad of a
U.S. passport should be reported immediately to the local police
and the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. If you are the
victim of a crime while overseas, in addition to reporting to
local police, please contact the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate
for assistance. The Embassy/Consulate staff can, for example,
assist individuals in finding appropriate medical care, contacting
family members or friends and explaining how funds could be transferred.
Although the investigation and prosecution of the crime is solely
the responsibility of local authorities, consular officers can
help victims to understand the local criminal justice process
and to provide a list of local attorneys who have informed the
Embassy that they are willing to take foreign clients.
FACILITIES AND HEALTH INFORMATION: In December 2005,
Ukraine reported the first cases of H5N1 (avian influenza, "avian
flu," "bird flu," or "chicken flu") among birds in Crimea.
Further outbreaks followed in 2006. On January 18, 2008,
another outbreak of the H5N1 avian influenza virus was detected
at a poultry farm in the Krasnogvardiyskyi Rayon in Crimea. There
are no registered human cases of H5N1 in Ukraine. For detailed
information on H5N1, please review the Avian Influenza Fact Sheet.
The U.S. Embassy
maintains a list of hospitals and clinics with some English-speaking
staff. Many facilities have only limited English speakers.
There are no hospitals in Ukraine that provide a level of medical
care equal to that found in American hospitals, or which accept
American health insurance plans for payment (see the section on
Medical Insurance below). Some facilities are adequate for
basic services, and basic medical supplies are available.
However, travelers requiring prescription medicine should bring
their own. Elderly travelers and those with existing health
problems may be at risk due to inadequate medical facilities.
When a patient is hospitalized, the patient, relative, or acquaintance
must supply bandages, medication, and food. The Embassy
recommends that ill or infirm persons not travel to Ukraine.
The Embassy also recommends that travelers obtain private medical
evacuation insurance prior to traveling to Ukraine.
remains the best way to secure western medical care. This
option, however, is very expensive and could take several hours
or more to arrange. Travelers may wish to purchase medical
evacuation insurance prior to travel, or have access to substantial
lines of credit to cover the cost of medical evacuation.
The Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy has information on various
air ambulance companies that perform medical evacuations to Europe
or to the U.S. Serious medical problems requiring hospitalization
and/or medical evacuation to other European countries can cost
from $25,000 to $50,000, and to the U.S. as much as $70,000 or
more. More information can be found on the U.S. Embassy's
web site in the document â€śMedical Services in Kyivâ at http://usembassy.kiev.ua/amcit_medical_serv_eng.html.
that while the Embassy can help American travelers and their families
make to contact with a medical evacuation service, the U.S. Government
cannot pay for medical evacuation. Travelers should make
sure they have medical evacuation insurance, which is available
from many private companies, or have funds available for evacuation,
should the need arise.
on vaccinations and other health precautions, such as safe food
and water precautions and insect bite protection, may be obtained
from the Centers for Disease Control and Preventionâ€™s hotline
for international travelers at 1-877-FYI-TRIP (1-877-394-8747)
or via the CDCâ€™s web site, http://wwwn.cdc.gov/travel/default.aspx.
Tuberculosis is an increasingly serious health concern in Ukraine.
For further information, please consult the CDC™s Travel Notice
on TB at http://wwwn.cdc.gov/travel/yellowBookCh4-TB.aspx.
For information about outbreaks of infectious diseases abroad
consult the World Health Organization™s (WHO) web site at http://www.who.int/en. Further health information
for travelers is available at http://www.who.int/ith/en.
AND NUCLEAR SAFETY: In 1986, the Chernobyl incident
resulted in the largest short-term, accidental release of radioactive
materials to the atmosphere ever recorded. The highest areas
of radioactive ground contamination occurred within thirty kilometers
of the Chernobyl nuclear power station. The city of Kyiv
was not badly affected because of the wind direction, but it was
not completely spared. The last operating reactor at the
Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant site closed officially on December
15, 2000. All identified stabilization measures on the existing
sarcophagus are complete, and preparatory work to start construction
of the new shelter is nearing completion. The contract for the
new Chernobyl shelter was awarded in September 2007 and its construction
is projected to be completed in 2012.
government has an effective program of monitoring fresh foods
and meats sold in local markets. However, street purchase
of produce should be avoided. Wild berries, mushrooms, and
wild fowl and game should also be avoided, as these have been
found to retain higher than average levels of radiation.
Background levels of radiation are monitored regularly by the
Embassy and, to date, have not exceeded the level found on the
Eastern seaboard of the United States. If external radiation levels
are high enough to require evacuation, the U.S. Embassy will notify
the American community through the Embassy warden e-mail and text
INSURANCE: The Department of State strongly urges Americans
to consult with their medical insurance company prior to traveling
abroad to confirm whether their policy applies overseas and whether
it will cover emergency expenses such as a medical evacuation.
Please see our information on medical insurance
parliament passed a law in 1997 requiring all visitors to Ukraine
to obtain mandatory health insurance. According to Ukrainian authorities,
the cost of a visitorâ€™s medical insurance depends on the anticipated
length of the visitorâ€™s stay in Ukraine. The cost of the
insurance is approximately 25 cents per day (more for short stays).
This required insurance can be purchased after arrival and covers
only the costs of basic medical care inside Ukraine; it does not
cover medical evacuation. Failure to purchase mandatory
health insurance often results in refusal of treatment at Ukrainian
public hospitals and clinics. Private clinics do not require
Ukrainian public health insurance, but can be as expensive as
similar clinics in the United States and may require payment in
advance. More information can be found online in Ukrainian
at http://www.pro100.com.ua/, or by calling
+38 (044) 206 2885 from abroad or 8-800-500-1080 from within Ukraine.
SAFETY AND ROAD CONDITIONS: While traveling in a foreign
country, U.S. citizens may encounter road conditions that differ
significantly from those in the United States. The information
below concerning Ukraine is provided for general reference only,
and may not be totally accurate in a particular location or circumstance.
roads in Ukraine outside major urban areas are in poor condition
and are poorly lit. Visitors should drive defensively at
all times, since local drivers often disregard traffic rules.
Drivers are often poorly trained or drive without valid driver's
licenses. Drivers can also be very aggressive, and normally
do not respect the rights of pedestrians, even at clearly marked
pedestrian crossings. Pedestrians should also be aware of
cars driving or attempting to park on sidewalks. Many cars
do not meet the safety standards common in America.
Due to heavy
traffic and congested roads, vehicle accidents are a common occurrence
in larger Ukrainian cities, especially in Kyiv. In Ukraine, it
is mandatory for motorists involved in vehicle accidents not to
remove the vehicle from the site of the accident, unless it presents
a clear safety concern. Local police must be notified and will
report to the scene to conduct an investigation. Drivers should
be prepared to wait until the police arrive and complete their
report. Due to traffic and slow response, it may take up to several
hours for police to arrive. When police arrive, they will ascertain
responsibility, take the driversâ€™ personal information, and
file a report of the accident.
travel at night and during the winter can be particularly dangerous.
The Embassy strongly recommends that visitors and permanent residents
of Ukraine refrain from driving their private vehicles after dark
outside major cities. However, major roads are drivable
during daylight hours. Roadside services such as gas stations
and repair facilities are becoming more common, particularly on
the main national and regional overland highways and in large
and mid-size cities.
such services are far from American standards, and travelers should
plan accordingly. There have been isolated reports of carjackings
of western-made or foreign-registered cars. There has also
been an increase in the number of documented reports of criminal
acts (primarily theft) occurring on trains and other modes of
SAFETY OVERSIGHT: The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration
(FAA) has assessed the Government of Ukraine™s Civil Aviation
Authority as not being in compliance with International Civil
Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards for the
oversight of Ukraine™s air carrier operations. For more
information, travelers may visit the FAA™s web site at http://www.faa.gov/safety/programs_initiatives/oversight/iasa.
CIRCUMSTANCES: Ukraine does not recognize dual nationality.
American citizens entering Ukraine with a Ukrainian passport will
be treated as Ukrainian citizens by the local authorities.
This may include being required to perform mandatory military
service. Also, Ukrainians who have immigrated to the U.S.
without obtaining the proper exit visa from Ukrainian authorities
may be subject to civil or criminal penalties, and will be required
to obtain an exit visa before returning to the U.S. For
additional information, see the Consular Affairs web site at http://travel.state.gov/index.html
for our Dual Nationality flyer.
a cash economy. Traveler™s checks and credit cards are gaining
wider acceptance in larger cities. Even in Kyiv, however,
acceptance of credit cards is not nearly as widespread as in the
U.S. or in Western Europe. Expect credit card use to be
limited to major hotels, upscale restaurants, international airlines,
and the rapidly growing, but still select number of up-market
U.S. dollars into the national Ukrainian currency, hryvnya, is
simple and unproblematic, as licensed exchange booths are widespread,
and exchange rates are normally clearly advertised. Currency
exchange is only legal at such licensed exchange booths, banks,
and currency exchange desks at hotels; anyone caught dealing on
the black market can expect to be detained by the local militia.
many banks and licensed currency exchange booths located in major
cities. ATMs (a.k.a. bankomats) are becoming more common
throughout Ukraine, particularly in Kyiv and in other larger cities.
In smaller cities and towns, ATMs are still virtually non-existent.
Most ATMs disperse cash only in the local currency, hryvnya. The
difficulties of a currency shortage can be avoided by coming to
Ukraine with a sufficient supply of hard currency to cover necessary
obligations during travel. Funds may be transferred by wire,
advances may be drawn on credit cards, and traveler™s checks may
be cashed at many locations. Again, the Embassy emphasizes
that the incidence of credit card and ATM bankcard fraud is high,
and strongly recommends that visitors and permanent residents
of Ukraine refrain from using local ATMs.
prohibit sending cash, traveler™s checks, personal checks, credit
cards, passports, or other forms of identification through the
international mail system, as well as via courier mail (FedEx,
DHL, etc.). Customs authorities regularly confiscate these
items as contraband. Ukrainian customs authorities may also
enforce strict regulations concerning temporary importation into
or export from Ukraine of items such as firearms, antiquities,
currency, etc. It is advisable to contact the Embassy of
Ukraine in Washington, or one of Ukraine's consulates in the United
States for specific information regarding customs requirements.
As in many countries around the world, counterfeit and pirated
goods are widely available. Transactions involving such
products are illegal and bringing them back to the United States
may result in forfeitures and/or fines.
law requires that travelers declare all cash and jewelry, regardless
of value, upon entering Ukraine. Travelers should fill out
a customs declaration and ask customs officials to stamp it.
According to Ukrainian law, foreign citizens may bring up to $15,000
in cash, or up to $30,000 in traveler™s checks, into Ukraine without
a special license. A traveler must declare the imported
currency. If customs officials determine that a traveler
entering or exiting the country is carrying undeclared currency,
they can and often do confiscate the undeclared funds. When
leaving the country, foreign travelers are only allowed to take
out a maximum of $3,000 in cash, or as much cash as they declared
upon their entry into Ukraine. If a traveler wants to take
out more than $3,000, the traveler must have a customs declaration
proving that he or she in fact brought the corresponding sum of
money into the country.
desiring to bring more than $15,000 into Ukraine must obtain a
special license AFTER entering the country. Details for
obtaining this license are available on the Embassy's web site
in the document â€śUkrainian Customs: Procedures for Transporting
Currencies, Monetary Instruments, or Precious Metalsâ€ť at http://kyiv.usembassy.gov/amcit_travel_ukrcustoms_eng.html.
Ukraine has strict limitations for the export of antiques and
other goods and artifacts deemed to be of particularly important
historical or cultural value. This includes any items produced
a developing democratic nation undergoing significant political,
economic, and governmental reform. This includes reform
of police and emergency services. Visitors should be aware
that although Ukrainian police and emergency services have made
much progress, they still generally remain below Western European
and U.S. standards in terms of training, responsiveness, and effectiveness.
American citizens have reported waiting hours for Ukrainian police
and ambulance services to respond to calls for emergency assistance.
Although this may generally be atypical, it does nevertheless
It is advisable
to contact the Embassy of Ukraine in Washington, or one of Ukraine's
consulates in the United States, for specific information regarding
customs requirements. Please see our information on Customs
PENALTIES: While in a foreign country, a U.S. citizen
is subject to that country's laws and regulations, which sometimes
differ significantly from those in the United States and may not
afford the protections available to the individual under U.S.
law. Penalties for breaking the law can be more severe than
in the United States for similar offenses. Persons violating
Ukraine™s laws, even unknowingly, may be expelled, arrested or
imprisoned. Penalties for possession, use, or trafficking
in illegal drugs in Ukraine are severe, and convicted offenders
can expect long jail sentences and heavy fines. Engaging
in sexual conduct with children or using or disseminating child
pornography in a foreign country is a crime, prosecutable in the
United States. Please see our information on Criminal Penalties.
ISSUES: For information, see our Office of Children™s
Issues web pages on intercountry
adoption and international
parental child abduction.
/ EMBASSY LOCATION: Americans living or traveling in
Ukraine are encouraged to register with the nearest U.S. Embassy
or Consulate through the State Department™s travel
registration web site and to obtain updated information on
travel and security within Ukraine. Americans withoutInternet
access may register directly with the nearest U.S. Embassy or
Consulate. By registering, American citizens make it easier
for the Embassy or Consulate to contact them in case of emergency.
Section of the U.S. Embassy is located at #6 Mykoly Pymonenka
St., 01901 Kyiv, Ukraine. Telephone: (38-044) 490-4422, fax 486-3393.
The American Citizen Services unit is located at the same address
and can be reached at (38-044) 490-4445 The Embassy is located
at #10 Yuriy Kotsyubynsky St. 01901 Kyiv, Ukraine. Tel.: (38-044)
CIA World Factbook