Ok, here is some further stuff about that taxi/train/Kiev thing. This has been causing me some grief.
In the end I found 2 people. JMO hooked me up with one then I found the other through the web. They are both a ripoff one worse than the other. The first is Arktur Travel, that is who I shall give the job to. They want $38 for the taxi to and from Borispol. Then $50 for the 1st class train ticket one way.
I already know that the real price for the ticket is more like $35 round trip but what can you do?
Then I found another guy who actually had a very good website I recommend taking a look
Unfortuately he is a thief. He wanted $35 for the taxi each way but a whopping $85 for a one way ticket to Kherson. We had words and I blocked his email address. I told him I already had been quoted $50 and he said that was impossible.
I quoted you 1st class there is no way someone can get you that round trip for $35 1st class with out scamming you. I can get you 2nd class $35.00 By rules you need a passport to get the tickets I have permission to not have to show passports when getting tickets for abroard clients in advance. Thats fine if you want to buy it your self and show your passport that day and take the chance there is tickets when you arrive at the train station thats fine with me GOOD LUCK!
I am making only a wee bet of profit on all of my quotes. If you want to reconsider let me know.
He is full of sh**. He is not the only one who can get tickets in advance WITHOUT a passport being shown. He is merely an opportunistic thief. The $35 was told to me by my driver in Kherson and he was absolutely adamant about it. $35 round trip to Kiev from Kherson.
So Deanno and Maxi it is possible to get your ticket in advance (barring any surprises:)) without a passport and I shall get my lady to buy the return ticket in Kherson the day before I leave. I shall post exactly how that goes and how much it costs. I bet it is about $20. I do not mind these guys making a profit but $85 is ridiculous. I object to being stereotyped as a dumb American who will pay anything that is asked. Faxed a letter to the other agent today. I hope it is ok because I don't want to try this by myself. Still, if I go again in March it is bound to get easier.
Isn't it :((?? :))
Well, if I read your thread correctly the price Arktur is charging for the taxi round trip (You wrote to and from Boryspil)for $38 is a good price. It is usually $20 one way. The $50 one way first class ticket to Kherson seems very high but your paying for the advanced ticket purchase so without any connections I guess you have to eat the cost. I paid $10 one way second class Kiev to Kharkov. What you are going to need for the future Izi is a good interpreter or contact in Kiev who can help you with your travels to these small village towns. Maybe try some of the marriage agencies in Kiev. Maybe they offer this service too! Then when you meet the girl or guy who takes care of you there get there personal contact information and hire them on the side. Create your network! you will need it if you continue to travel to Ukraine. I would have offered you my interpreter in Kiev but she has no contacts to buy train tickets in advance. Good luck!
No that is $38 EACH way!! That is about the going rate for a taxi to the train station for an ignorant foreigner who doesn't speak Russian. It is far too much of course but I am not going to fight the taxi drivers and then try to negotiate a ticket at the other end. It is still quite a deal for me if I pull it off. I can live with $126. Not $155 for the same thing. Also this woman has the driver meet you through the gauntlet of people right where you enter the main airport rather than by the info desk. He will have a sign. I also haver another iron in the fire that I am waiting for a reply from. Whoever is cheapest gets it :))
I want to travel 1st class Deano. It is bad enough that I have to go overnight on a train, but 2nd class with 4 people jammed into the same space worries me a bit.
I am hoping that this is not going to be turning into a lifetime habit of bouncing between South Florida and Kherson and I know that Elena doesn't want that either.
I would say that come March I shall make a 3rd trip and that will be my last excursion to Kherson unaccompanied if you see what I mean. That 3rd trip will be Miami to Prague/Frankfurt/Budapest/wherever then a connecting flight to Odessa and then the Death Car 2000 road trip to Kherson.
From that point on I am thinking that any further trips to Kherson will be with a certain lady I know who speaks fluent Russian and is tall enough to intimidate most taxi drivers and ticket clerks.
So with that famous battlecry "remember Ekaterinburg" I am going to sally forth (or even fifth) and give this a shot:)) Wish me luck!!
Finally I have this down. I phoned Kiev very early this morning and straightend everything out.
It is tricky booking a return ticket. They sell out especially if you are traveling on a Friday also it turns out that there is a lot of business travel in November.
Apparently it is mating season for businessmen!!
So I got her to get me a round trip ticket for $100 then another $74 for the return taxi trip. Now I am very sore in the sitting down area.
I woke up at 4 am this morning in a cold sweat scared stiff about how I would actually find the correct train, carriage and compartment. I had a vison of making a mistake and ending up in Vladivostock!!
I had it all explained to me and I must say she made it all sound extremely easy.
Apparently there is a electronic screen as in the airport, in English and Russian, saying which platform I shall need. The carriage and compartment are marked on the ticket and the steward/stewardess will escort me to my compartment.
So it is a done deal. Tim H will be organizing my funeral and all are welcome to attend. According to him I am a dead man already.
Thanx for your wishs to me and Lena (I sitting in Auckland airport terminal waiting now - 53 minutes left) !!!
Yes - the kiev Train Station is easy. VERY busy though - so do not panic when the Taxi drive plays dodgems and then pulls up outside - there will appear to be 1 million people hanging around.
The screen is inside and yea the cariages are all marked.