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This is Kyiv: Top Travel Tips For Your Time At Eurovision 2017 Written by on April 30, 2017 | 1 Comment

For those of us heading to Kyiv over the next couple of weeks, Alison Wren has whittled everything down into a top 42 things to know list before you arrive in Ukraine!

  • The Skybus is perfectly fine for getting into town from the airport, and costs 80 UAH. Buses are just outside departure on the right as you exit.
  • When you get dropped off from the station, walk through the huge imposing railway station to get into town. The metro station is also through the other side of the station on the left hand side as you exit.
  • The area opposite the train station has a plethora of chain restaurants, both international and Ukrainian, that will get you filled up fast if you want to eat before you continue travelling
  • Getting the Skybus back works the same way as taking it from the airport, leaving from the same drop off point on the road in-between the train station and KFC
  • Of course, taxis are more reliable pre-booked, but if you land and are lost then you can do it in person without any problem, just use pen and paper to agree a price first.
  • If in doubt, ask your hotel or restaurant or Ukrainian person to order a taxi for you.
  • The metro is fantastic. Be prepared though to stand up and occasionally be squished, especially when travelling to the shows.
  • There is wifi in many of the subway stations in town.
  • To buy a metro ticket, give cash to the person in the booth at the entrance to each station. One ride = 4 UAH
  • Use the little plastic token you have in the barrier and then go through the gate. There is no need to buzz out of the system once you are in.
  • If you have 20 UAH notes, keep them. You can then use the orange automated machines to get 5 tokens at once. Keep them safe!

Drop-off point for the Skybus, go through the station building to get to the Metro.

  • Kyiv is a hilly city, be prepared and wear sensible shoes!
  • The weather forecast is currently looking pretty good, remember to pack summer clothes and plenty of suncream!
  • There is a beach one stop away from arena at the leisure area Hidropark, bring your swimwear!
  • An unlocked phone would be recommended to keep in touch easily, SIM cards can be bought cheaply at the airport.
  • There are public toilets, but not necessarily always toilet paper. Keep some just in case.
  • Free toilets can generally be found in shopping centres, but expect to pay 4 UAH on the main streets
  • Some toilets are squat toilets, but there are now very rare.
  • The Novus supermarket by the shopping centre has free toilets and free Wifi
  • The recommendation from the security team at the arena is to have passport identification at all time. Work out which safe place is the passport place and stick to it.

  • Eat like a king in Kyiv because where else can you!
  • Business lunch menus should cost about 100 UAH which is extremely good value
  • Many Ukrainian resutaurants have joined a scheme to promote themselves during the Eurovision fortnight
  • At the arena station, leave by the far entrance and you will emerge in-front of a Domino’s Pizza, McDonald’s and McFoxy for familiar fast food options
  • There are 24 hour restaurants on the main Khreskasndad street
  • Water needs to be bought from supermarkets or stalls as tap water is not recommended to drink.
  • Look for “негаз” on the bottle for still water.
  • The supermarket by the arena has a canteen, bar and 50% off the salad bar at 21:00.
  • Cashiers will often ask you if you have small change, try your best to use small notes and coins for transactions.
Ukrainian coins

Keep hold of your small change for the Metro and toilet trips.

  • Remember Kyiv is a capital city in Europe. As safe or as dangerous as any other.
  • Underpasses are the best way to cross many of the roads. They may look daunting but are frequently used and not a problem.
  • Cars will often be turning right at the same time as pedestrians are crossing. They will stop for you, don’t get freaked out by them.
  • Know how to get the flashlight working on your phone, it can be dark in random locations of the city, especially in the areas around EuroClub.
  • A little Cyrillic you can get a lot of information from written Ukrainian. Why not try learning the letter sounds to help you decode signs. Or brush up on your key phrases to help make friends.
  • ATMs have been perfectly fine to use in our experience, but there have been skimming problems in the past. Check ATMs carefully (most machines will prompt you to do this).
  • The Russian/Ukraine conflict is still very real. It’s not a subject to bring up in everyday conversation.

The Ukrainian alphabet.

  • Buy a EuroClub Access Pass now if you want to go to the official party location.
  • Remember Eurovision village will have its own schedule (still coming soon) with many performances and live screenings.
  • The advice from the security team is to bring a passport to the live shows for identification checks.
  • They also recommend arriving two hours before each show to make sure you are through the security checks in time.
  • Getting home from the arena might be tricky as the Metro should be closed by that point if a normal schedule. Keep eyes and ears open for public transport options, and have a plan to get home from the show before you leave.
  • Remember the usual rules about flags and signs. We assume they are unchanged from previous years.

The main words you might see are:

Метро – Metro
Ресторан – Restaurant
Меню – Menu
води  -Water
пива – Beer
Туалет – Toilet
ВХІД – Entrance
ВИХІД – Exit
Жіночий – Women
Чоловічий – Men

Above all stay healthy, sample the amazing food and drink Kyiv has to offer and enjoy Eurovision.

About The Author: Alison Wren

Alison is passionate about the Eurovision Song Contest and has travelled now to three ESCs, three JESCs and her National Final appearances are in double figures. She loves travelling and has been to almost every country in Europe (under ten to go!). For ESC Insight Alison works as our travel guide writer, giving all the hints and tips to Eurovision fans as they arrive in different cities each year.

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One response to “This is Kyiv: Top Travel Tips For Your Time At Eurovision 2017”

  1. Denys says:

    The translation in examples is unfortunately mixed up:

    ВХІД – Entrance
    ВИХІД – Exit

    But I hope such kind of text would be translated into English on place 😉

    Good luck! 🙂

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