Covid-19: Updates On Traveling to Ukraine: Who can enter and the rules apply

Ukraine started welcoming foreigners arriving by land and air since June 15, three months after imposing travel restrictions to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus.

But while most land borders are open for people arriving by cars, trains or on foot, air travel is limited to a handful of airports.

There are two main conditions for travelers:

  • all foreigners arriving in Ukraine must have medical insurance that covers COVID-19 treatment in case they contract the virus;
  • people arriving from countries with a high number of cases (listed below) have to undergo controlled observation or self-isolation for 14 days upon arrival.

Borders and airports

Ukraine reopened all border checkpoints with European Union countries and Moldova on June 21, while some of them have already been restored back in May.

As for Belarus and Russia, Ukraine restored only 10 border checkpoints with these countries this week.

Starting June 10, Ukraine also reopened two checkpoints with the Russian-occupied territories of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts. On June 15, Ukraine reopened all three checkpoints with the Crimea peninsula occupied by Russia since 2014.

All available border checkpoints can be viewed on the interactive map by Ukraine’s State Border Guard Service.

The map also shows that checkpoints in all of Ukrainian airports are functioning as well. However, only a handful of airports have scheduled flights despite that international air travel has been allowed since June 15.

Most of the arriving and departing flights go through Kyiv Boryspil International Airport, Ukraine’s main airport. Air traffic is far from what it used to be, though: Only about a dozen international flights are scheduled for arrival on Monday, June 22. They will be arriving from Amsterdam, Berlin, Delhi, Frankfurt, Helsinki, Minsk, Prague, Tel Aviv and Southend.

Other airports have very few flights. While Kyiv Sikorsky International Airport (Zhuliany) lists 30 arriving international flights for June 22, many of them have been canceled. But flights from Budapest, Cologne, Copenhagen, Dortmund, Hamburg, Leipzig, Luton, Memmingen, Minsk, Tallinn are on track.

Lviv International Airport also lists most international arriving flights for June 22 as canceled, except those from Dortmund and Katowice. Kharkiv International Airports has flights from Budapest and Minsk. Odessa International Airport also has arriving flights from Budapest and Minsk on June 22.

Observation

Generally speaking, Ukraine has opened its borders for citizens of all countries. However, all people coming from the lists of countries where the epidemiological situation is worse than in Ukraine have to undergo controlled observation or self-isolation for 14 days upon the arrival.

Every three days, border guards receive an updated “red list” of such countries from Ukraine’s Health Ministry. The red list includes countries where there are 40 or more COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people, meaning more than it is in Ukraine, according to the ministry.

The latest red list, or list of countries whose citizens have to self-isolate for 14 days after arriving in Ukraine, can be found here.

As of June 17, the red list has 48 countries, including: the United States, Russia, Belarus, France, Italy, Bahrain, Peru, French Guiana, Belgium, Oman,, Sao Tome and Principe, Kuwait, Brazil, San Marino, Panama, Singapore, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Bolivia, Chile, Portugal, Gabon, Djibouti, North Macedonia, Moldova, Ecuador, Cayman Islands, Mayotte, Honduras, Dominican Republic, Equatorial Guinea, Canada, Cabo Verde, Maldives, Liechtenstein, Guinea-Bissau, Colombia, South Africa, Afghanistan, Argentina, Guatemala, Azerbaijan, Pakistan, Israel, Central African Republic, Qatar and Armenia,

According to the State Border Service of Ukraine, the citizens of these countries will have to undergo self-isolation at home or observation in a government-selected facility upon arriving in Ukraine. Travelers who choose to self-isolate at home will have to install the state-developed app called Diy Vdoma (Apple App Store linkGoogle Play link), which monitors people’s location using their smartphones.

Having a document certifying that the traveler recently had a negative COVID-19 test result will not wave the 14-day isolation rule.

All other countries are on the “green” list. Travelers arriving from those countries won’t have to be isolated upon arriving in Ukraine. They will still need to have medical insurance that covers their treatment if they get infected. The green list countries include Germany, Poland, Egypt, India, Greece, Turkey, Austria, and others. The full list is available here (as of June 17).

If travelers who come from the “red list” countries have documents that prove they have been in a “green” country during the last 14 days, the border service will consider letting them in without self-isolation, according to the Health Ministry.

Insurance

All foreigners who wish to come to Ukraine have to have medical insurance that would cover COVID-19 treatment in case they contract the virus.

“Why this is important: because according to our law and program of medical guarantees, the state covers only the treatment of citizens of Ukraine and refugees who are in the territory of Ukraine,” Health Minister Maksym Stepanov said in a press briefing on June 20.

This means that all non-citizens, foreigners and refugees arriving to Ukraine should have such medical insurance, Stepanov said.

Airport rules

On June 12, Boryspil Airport published a list of new COVID-19 related rules that passengers must follow upon departure or arrival. All travelers will be restricted to Terminal D.

Preparing for traveling:

  • Cancel your trip if your body temperature is above 38 degrees Celsius or if you are experiencing fever, cough, shortness of breath or a loss of taste and smell;
  • You must fill out a survey about the state of your health if requested to do so by the airline;
  • Ensure that you have a sufficient amount of medical masks for the trip (one per 2-3 hours), gloves, and sanitizer (less than 100 millilitres);
  • Have all your documents at hand and check the requirements of your destination country;
  • Plan your trip to the airport in advance and ensure you arrive 3 hours before your expected departure time.

Departure:

  • Be aware that only passengers who have tickets and wear medical masks can enter Terminal D (the main international terminal). Others will be restricted from entering. The only exceptions will apply to people accompanying a disabled person or child who will be flying without their parents or guardians;
  • Go through body temperature screening at the terminal entrance. If your body temperature is 38 degrees Celsius or higher, or if you have visible symptoms like fever, coughing or shortness of breath, you may be prevented from entering the terminal or plane;
  • Follow all signs, including social distancing directions. Wear medical masks and use sanitizers;
  • You may be asked to take off your medical mask for a short time at the passport checkpoint;
  • If you have questions, visit the information desk.

Arrival:

  • Follow directions on social distancing, wear a medical mask and use sanitizer;
  • You may be asked to take off your medical mask for a short time at the passport checkpoint;
  • Download and install the state-made tracking application Diy Vdoma. This application is mandatory for people required to self-isolate upon arrival to Ukraine;
  • Limit your contact with other people while at the airport;
  • Pick up your baggage and leave the terminal quickly.
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