Ukraine was our home for two weeks. We used this time up in the most efficient way, and did not skimp on anything – we usually ate lunches in bars, men tasted different wines every day, and I was stuffing myself with lots of chocolate. The average cost of this trip per person was little more than 1300 PLN.
The biggest expense was the flight ticket to Kiev, but this could have been avoided if we had begun to plan our trip earlier than two months before the deadline. Airplane flight cost us 250 PLN per person. Train ride would cost us probably 50 PLN per person, and we would not have to use the accommodation at the Paradise hotel (25 PLN per person), which would have make the cost of the whole fall below 1100 PLN!
As shown in the diagram below, the most expensive areas were transportation and food.
How to save money?
I would recommend avoiding plane flights. It’s quick and easy, but very expensive. It is much more cost effective to sleep on the night train, as one can also save on accommodation.
It is best to buy at local retailers and during the day. It is possible to find a convenience store opened at night, but cheap is only the alcohol. All food has so exorbitant prices that the mere sight of it makes you less hungry. Examples? Kilogram of bananas – 20 PLN, a pack of puffed rice – 12 PLN, peanuts in chocolate – 18.5 PLN.
Without any problems, one can let go lunches in bars, if they want to save money. Eating in bars cost us about 200 PLN per person. Dinner can be prepared where you rent a place to stay. Places where we slept always had more or less equipped kitchen, so one can deal with cooking themselves.
Also alcohol, although cheap, consumed some of our cash resources. Similarly, instead of chocolate it is better to buy some cookies – chocolate in the ordinary Ukrainian shop costs the same as in Poland (about 4 PLN), and the cookies are less expensive (12 PLN per kilo).
If one would like to save money on accommodation, they can sleep in a tent or use Couchsurfing. Moreover, Couchsurfing has many other pluses: making new friends, get to know the local life, eating something homemade (and so – authentic!), get a bath, and make some laundry.
Our doge companion from Koktebel
Several interesting thongs at the end
While being on the Ukrainian land I was marveled by the beautiful, fluffy hair of Ukrainian women. Unfortunately, my enthusiasm wanished when I started to notice that in almost every town there is a wig shop… Maybe their hair is not so natural at all?
Speaking of beauty, I have not seen anyone who would wear braces on their teeth. Even in large cities such as Lviv, Kyiv, and Sevastopol. In addition, my teeth with braces drew attention of locals. I assume that such extravagance is not fashionable among residents of Ukraine.
I sometimes have strange food cravings. One of those instances took place in Koktebel, where I dreamed of milk kissel*. It turned out that there was no such invention in the shop. What’s more, the shop assistant did not understand our concept of pudding. We tried to explain to her that it is something like jelly or kissel, but made with milk. Then she showed us soluble cocoa. Unfortunately, we have not reached an agreement on this issue 😉
Delicious products of babushkas from the train station
I hope you were enjoying reading the reports from Ukraine. I was enjoying writing it for you, and I’m glad that I could share with you my experiences and photographs, which are far from perfection. Although this is the end of the Ukrainian travel, I’m sure that I will write about this country again, but in slightly different circumstances.
In the meantime, I invite you to a new series of travel reports. This time we’ll go back to my first trip, totally random and unplanned. That one, during which I gained my first experiences, and at the same time my childhood dream came true. Believe me, dreams do come true! 😀
* For those who are not familiar with the invention of kissel – please check Wikipedia