It is really difficult to put a number on the total cost. If you luck out and find the right one the first time and only visit twice you could get away with 5 grand or so. In my case I have started the K-1 paperwork with the second lady I met and have visited Ukraine four times and I am into the process a little better than twenty grand and that includes lost revenue from my business while I am gone. There will be costs incured after she arrives here that you would probably not incure if you were to meet and marry an American woman.
Ditto to what Bill says. I have made a few more trips than Bill and without even considering lost income I stopped counting long ago when I hit 10 grand. Cost of the "paperwork" is really negligible. Many of us (at least for me) have not used an attorney and there have been no problems. Certainly the major cost is travel and lost time from work. Airfare, hotel, meals for multiple trips and paying the same for her interview at the embassy and ultimate trip to you are the big expenses. As Bill says, IF you are REALLY lucky to find the right one the first time..... and it is not too often that one is that lucky.
I had just recently posted this in another thread so I've re-printed it below since this thread is more appropriate anyway. This is an estimated cost of what I spent in TWO YEARS establishing my wife (now ex-wife) in the USA. I had put forward the idea that buying a flat "in-country" and spending an extended peiod of time getting to know prospective ladies may have some merit. Remember, this doesn't count all the money I spent running all-over the FSU, although it shouldn't, I had a blast:)
Again, here are the estimated costs over a TWO YEAR period:
5K just to get her over here (rough estimate). A conservative, low figure which includes the fiance visa related paperwork, sending her to Warsaw for five days for the Embassy interview, (she had problems with something and had to stay longer than anticipated) and spending money for her six months waiting period. Also had a nightmare with subsequent paperwork because of INS mailing errors which added several hundered. Includes plane ticket here.
8k for her used car.
3K for insurance, driving lessons, gas. Advice, buy the maximum coverage if you have a Ukrainian wife, never let her drive while you're in your car if you have any kind of heart condition. If you don't have a heart condition, you will after being in the passenger seat by the time you go six blocks. Liability Insurance is not one area you want to cut corners on if you've got a newly licensed Ukrainian woman behind the wheel.
6K for both our wedding rings (5.4K for hers plus 0.6K for mine)
6K for travel expense, includes honeymoon and vacations. (a low estimate)
7K for extra food and dining out.
4K for Medical Insurance, Blue Cross and deductibles for check-ups.
4K for Dental Work. Ukrainian dentists don't have a clue and she needed a lot of work plus some oral surgery.
5K for clothing, cosmetics, and spending money.
1K for Modeling photos / Model Print Card
1K to send back to her family.
1K for Health club membership.
1.8K for the Pre-Nup
3K for the divorce
2.2K sent to her while visiting family
Now this comes to over 50K and is by no means complete. I haven't included miscellaneous entertainment such as movies, sporting events, etc. Nor have I included a huge figure for letting her decorate and furnish our house the way she wanted.
The price tag would be a little higher, fortunately she worked some low wage, entry level jobs. It was our agreement that she would use this money to send back to her family, de-fray some of her gas money, help pay part of the enormous monthly cosmetic expenses, and of course pay for her disco/party addiction.
On the plus side, American men will find that being married to a woman with no income is a god-send when it comes to filing a joint tax return. It was raining money in tax refunds for me:) So this went a long way toward off-setting some of the expense.
Now, at the time when I met my wife in May of 2001 I could have bought a newly renovated, beautiful flat right on Dierebsaskaya in Odessa for 50K-60K I could have spent a couple years living there getting to know a potential future spouse better. If I went to sell now, I could probably have tripled my money. Just something to think about.
Great post Buffed !! May i ask, and i don't mean to be so personal. But what was the problems in yalls marriage? You seemed to offer her the moons and the stars. How was it living with her? I am very curious? All foreign women claim is they wont to be in love, you certainly offered her that and alot more. How could this lady not be happy ?
Thanks, I try to keep my sense of humor although I might just be punch-drunk:) You are exactly correct about the importance of having the right attitude in this pursuit.
Let me first state that my ex-wife and I are still on good terms and talk occasionally. She's re-marrried to a Russian/Ukrainian man and living back in Ukraine. Let me pound on one of the basic misconceptions for a moment. Good-looking women are not "desparate to get out of the FSU." Ultimately, getting homesick is a big problem. She began to miss her family as well as the lifestyle.
We should have spent more time together which is one reason why I am planning on spending several months in the Ukraine and possibly Russia starting in April. I spent a lot of time in Sevastopol last year with American, British and Canadian men who had bought flats or long-term leases. I think these guys are on to something that we should all be giving more serious thought.
hey maybe you are the one that hit the 350 million powerball yesterday. not all of us can just say hey, lets go over to fsu for half a year and find a woman. I dont know about any of you but I have a company to run and many responsibilities here at home. Just buying a flat and hi-tailing it over to Ukraine or Russia for even a month is not an option. Serious thought? Ya I gave it a serious thought for about 2 seconds before reality came crashing down, no offense
If I had to do it all over again I would do it the same exact way that worked for me the first time.
New guys take note: There is NO set way or master plan that will work for you. There is only ONE way and then its up to you. The One way is get on a plane and go. From there your on your own. Hint: Use your judgement. If you don't have any you are definitly in the wrong place.
Agreed, it is very difficult to swing an extended trip. Actually, almost anyone who really wants to take a lot of time off can do it. IT JUST DEPENDS ON HOW BAD YOU REALLY WANT IT. I'm incredibly stubborn and ambitious, I threw everything I had in life into making it a reality.
One reason I could afford the trip / marriage is sitting in my driveway. It's called a 1995 Toyota Tacoma with 171,000 miles on it. That's the two nice cars most people would have bought in that time period. I haven't often been mistaken as wealthy:)
I also have a small busines which I worked ten hours a day (often more), usually seven days a week for months on end at a time, year after year. I worked like a maniac just to be able to hire someone temporarily for six weeks a year so I could take-off. After years of relentless effort, scrimping and saving, I've finally reached the point where I can afford to hire an employee to run the business so I can be gone for several months.
Like everything else in life, few worthwhile things come easy.
Buffed, I agree with you 100% I would even say that nothing in life that is worthwhile comes easy. It has to be nice to have someone you can trust to run things like that, I'm jealous =). My brother and father knows my business pretty good but I really would not feel right not knowing exactly whats going on. Too many things involved in my business, I have to be on top of things
Skiired wrote: >"It has to be nice to have someone you can trust to run things like that, I'm jealous"<
I was in the Crimea last summer/fall on what was supposed to be my trip of a lifetime until everything blew-up in my face. I was in Sevastopol / Bella Clava having a great time (although, no thanks to any of the women I met there!) It was early September and I was eight weeks into what was supposed to have been a three month trip in the Ukraine with a couple week side trip to Sochi thrown in. Then I was to be heading off to Thailand and Vietnam for a two months before heading home in December.
Eight weeks into my trip I lost contact with the manager. I'd hired and trained to run my biz about six weeks before I left. While I was in the Crimea I checked my biz email every day by logging into a SPAM filter. I could see orders and emails piling-up Dailey after Labor Day weekend. I couldn't contact him for days, finally after two weeks I got a brief email from him saying: "orders were two weeks behind, he had been on a drinking binge and needed to go get sober." That was the last I ever heard from the loser.
In a panic, I had to spend $850 catch an emergency flight back from Simferopol Airport to Kiev and then on to the states. I worked non-stop for days with little or no sleep to ship a near three week backlog of orders just to stabilize things and save a business I'd spent my life building. I was able to hire a new manager a couple weeks after I returned and I've been training him since. I "think" he's going to be reliable...knock-on wood.
I just sent my passport in today to get a Russian Visa. I plan on trying to reverse the trip back. This time going to Thailand in late March before heading on to Russia, then staying in Ukraine for most of the summer. Fortunately I had the fore-sight to buy plane tickets which were somewhat flexible last summer so I hope to apply the remaining credit from the 3K they cost.