Visa & Travel Guidance
For the visa purpose, all the selected participants will be given an Invitation Letter issued by a Ukrainian institution. With this invitation letter, participant is required to apply for Ukrainian visa from his/her respective country.
How to obtain Ukrainian visa?
Using Google search, you are advised to first verify with the Embassy of Ukraine in your respective country whether you need a visa to enter Ukraine or not. You may also visit the website of the Embassy of Ukraine in your country.
For example, in India, the Embassy of Ukraine has tie up with VFS Global for visa process. Please visit the link http://www.vfsglobal.com/ukraine/india/https://www.grassrootsglobal.net/mer2020/ to apply for visa. However, to know the visa fee and type of visa you would need to apply for can be known from this link https://india.mfa.gov.ua/en/consular-affairs/services/visas; https://india.mfa.gov.ua/en/consular-affairs/services/visas+at+the+Embassy .
In your country, if the Embassy of Ukraine is offering visa directly (not through VFS), you will be required to visit, read and apply on the website of Ukraine’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs https://mfa.gov.ua/en/consular-affairs/con/visa. You will be required to apply and pay the fee through online application at https://visa.mfa.gov.ua/.
Lastly, you are advised to keep the time cycle in mind. It is advised to initiate the visa process 3 months in advance. However, for a travel visa, it is advised to begin the process at least 2 months in advance from the date of travel to Ukraine. There are some advisories about the Visa on Arrival. But, we do not advise you to practice Visa on Arrival because it is risky and unpredictable. Better you get the visa before starting your international travel.
More up-to-date country-specific information and requirements may be available at Ukraine's Embassy website. You may find a list of embassies of Ukraine here, on official government MFA website: press 'Find an Embassy' and select your region and then country or visit MFA website, Visa requirements page.
Citizens of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova, and Uzbekistan can visit and stay in Ukraine indefinitely visa free. However, citizens of Moldova and Uzbekistan must hold proof of sufficient funds on arrival.
Citizens of all European Union memberstates, Albania, Andorra, Belarus, Brazil, Canada,Chile, Iceland, Israel(except those who travel with 'teudatmaavar'),Japan,Kazakhstan,Kyrgyzstan,Liechtenstein,Macedonia,Monaco,Mongolia,Montenegro,Norway,Panama,Paraguay,Russia,San Marino,St. Kitts and Nevis, South Korea, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Turkey, the United States/American Samoa and Vatican City can visit visa free for up to 90 days within a 180 day period. However, citizens of Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan must also have proof of sufficient funds when arriving in Ukraine. For citizens of Mongolia, the visa free only applies to service, tourist and private trips on conditions that documents certifying the purpose of the trip are provided.
Citizens of Argentina can visit visa free for up to 90 days within a 365 day period.
Citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brunei and Serbia can visit visa free for up to 30 days within a 60-day period.
Citizens of Hong Kong can visit visa free for up to 14 days.
Those holding a diplomatic or official/service passports of Albania, Cambodia, China, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Egypt, Iran, Kuwait, Laos, Morocco, North Korea, Peru, Qatar, Singapore, Thailand, Turkmenistan, Uruguay, Venezuela and Vietnam and only diplomatic passports of India and Mexico do not require a visa for Ukraine.
International Travel to Ukraine
The cheapest way to fly into Ukraine is through the Boryspil (KBP) or Zhuliany (IEV) International Airports, both near Kyiv. Other big cities with international airports and direct international flights include Lviv, Odesa, Kharkiv, Dnipro, Zaporizhia and others. However, you are advised to arrive either in Kyiv or Lviv, which are most appropriate international airports keeping in view your further journey to Ivano-Frankivsk.
The main international hubs for international flights are Amsterdam, Budapest, Frankfurt, London, Milan, Munich, Oslo, Prague, Rome, Vienna, Warsaw and Istanbul with several flights a day of Austrian AUA, CSA Czech Airlines, LOT, Lufthansa, Wizz Air, Alitalia, Air France, British Airways, KLM, Turkish, Norwegian; also Ukraine International, which code-shares on these routes with the respective carriers. Special offers on flights come and go, depending on the whim of the carrier. One of the cheapest airline, Ukrainian International, also flies directly to New Delhi, Beijing, Bangkok, Almaty, Colombo, Dubai, Cairo and other destinations in Asia. You may refer the UIA’s route map at https://www.flyuia.com/assets/img/map1.pdf
Low-cost airline Wizzair started operations from other countries and within Ukraine as well. There are two other low cost carrier serving Ukraine. One of them is AirBaltic, with flights routing through either Riga, Latvia, or Vilnius, Lithuania. And the second one is Pegasus with flights from Istanbul to Kharkiv, Lviv, Zaporizhzhia. Be advised that if you have a lot of baggage, Wizzair offers 30kg against the others 20kg allowances. Since May 2017, Ukrainian national carrier Ukrainian International Airlines has also launched some low-cost tickets (starting from EUR 8-10) to international and local destinations available for pre-order at least 6 months before the flight date.
There are several airlines which offer direct flights to cities like Dnipro (Lufthansa), Odesa (LOT, Austrian, CSA Czech Airlines), Kharkiv (Austrian Airlines, Flydubai, Airarabia, Pegasus) and Lviv (LOT, Austrian Airlines), but they are more expensive.
To fly inside Ukraine, the most common airline is Ukraine International Airlines. It is the unofficial national airline, and its routes cover all of Ukraine's major destinations. Planes used are newer Boeing 737 aircraft. Aerosvit also introduced flights within the country from its hub in Kyiv, mainly flying newer Boeing 737 and 767 aircraft.
There are daily direct overnight trains from Berlin, Vienna, Košice (change there for Prague),Warsaw, Belgrade, Bratislava, Budapest, Bucharest and Sofia to Lviv or Kyiv. When coming from Western Europe there will be a 2-3 hour wait at the border while the train's bogies are changed in order to adapt to a different rail gauge. It's generally quicker and cheaper to buy a ticket to the border and then change trains, rather than wait getting through train. Yet, there is a new daily train from Przemysl (Poland) that takes around 3 hours to get to Lviv. It departs at 14:26 and costs around 7 euro. Since there might be a lot of traffic at the border, it is a convenient way to travel from Poland. Alternatively, one can travel from eastern Hungary to Ukraine by a local train on a special track. This trip takes about 10 to 15 minutens and one pass customs after or before boarding the train (which saves a lot of time). Connections to Lviv and Kyiv are good and cheap.
When you arrive by plane or train in Kyiv or Lviv, you need to travel further to Ivano-Frankivsk. From Kyiv, normally a train takes about 9 hours, whereas from Lviv it is only 2.30 hour journey. For a foreigner, it is always better to travel by train to Ivano-Frankivsk either from Kyiv or Lviv.
In Ukraine, trains are operated by state-owned Ukrainian Railways. Tickets may be purchased online on http://booking.uz.gov.ua/en/. The website has English and mobile versions using VISA/MasterCard. E-tickets will be sent to your email. A customer service officer may be contacted by SKYPE (do not wait until adding you as friend, just send a message and wait for a reply). The website is designed mainly for the purchase of tickets between cities in different regions and also tickets for international trains departing from Ukraine. Baggage places or transportation of irregular objects/animals may also be included in the ticket price. ID document is required upon boarding. You do not have to print a ticket purchased online (however it's better), but you must have it at least on your smartphone. Tickets purchased online can be refunded.
Tickets for travel within region are also available but that will be just buying a segment ticket of inter-region train - they are more expensive and usually take more time. So to travel from City 1 of region A to City 2 of region A it is suggested to go to local train station to buy a ticket. While these tickets within same region may be available for purchase only in person (ID document is not required), the schedule is available online in English language here: http://uz.gov.ua/en/passengers/suburban_train_schedule/. Another way to find routes between two exact stations of all routes that go through the exact station: http://uz.gov.ua/en/passengers/timetable/
Many Ukrainian trains are quite old and slow compared to European standards (except, probably, Intercity+ trains which are available between major cities, such as Kyiv, Kharkiv, Lviv, Odesa, Dnipropetrovsk, etc.).
Generally, in Ukraine, for long distance the train is preferred over the bus because of their comfort and because often they are even cheaper and safe.
Travel by bus is not advisable for foreigners.
General guiding links: