Transportation in Kiev. Taxi, metro, trolleys, buses, trains
Taxis can be ordered by dialing 0-58. However, private cars and
taxis swarm the city streets, so getting a ride is not a problem.
To hail a car, simply put out your hand to flag down a ride, and
a car will stop. Private cars (locals who have cars and on occasion
act as a taxi) cost significantly less than taxis. Be wary of getting
into a private car with more than one person already inside. Although
this is the most common way of getting a ride (besides public transportation),
one should be cautious and careful. Most drivers do not follow many
traffic laws and usually do not speak English. Negotiate and agree
on a price beforehand.
Kiev boasts a very common, safe and inexpensive metro system.
Tokens may be purchased at any metro station. One token costs 50
kopecks (around 10 cents), and monthly passes cost 25 hryvnya. One
token allows transfer from line to line.
Trolleys and Buses
Trolleys and buses tend to be crammed with people but are a good
and cheap way to travel around Kiev. Tickets can be purchased at
bus stops or from a trolley/bus operator. If the ticket is not punched
while in transit and a person is caught, the fine is about 20 hryvnya.
Kiev is connected to European and Asian cities by an extensive
network of railways. The capitals only station is located
in the center of the city, next to the Vokzalna metro station (tel:
223-1111). The ticket office for rail travel is located at 38/40
Tarasa Shevchenka Blvd. (tel: 050).
Train travel is the least expensive and most convenient way to
reach just about any city! Prices are higher for foreigners, and
the rate usually includes a per-ticket commission.
Trains run everyday to Moscow, Budapest, Odesa, Lviv and St. Petersburg.
There are three comfort classes for long-distance train travel:
luxury-soft with two pullout beds for more space, coupe-soft with
four beds, and platskart-with six beds per compartment. However,
electric commuter trains, called elektropotyahy or elektrychky,
are usually only outfitted with hard wooden benches and no amenities.
They are generally very crowded, especially on the weekends and
in the summer, when people travel to their summer homes.
For more comfort and privacy, it is recommended to buy out all
of the tickets for a compartment. This is a good idea for women
and anyone traveling alone who does not feel safe sharing a compartment
with other people.
It is always a good idea to bring a personal supply of toilet
paper, soap, food and drink. Also, in order to secure baggage, a
simple bike lock can insure against theft, and a bungee cord can
be used to keep the door closed. It is suggested to bring a travel
belt to keep valuables and money close to oneself.