Help outfit Michael, Sarah, and John

Monday, September 22, 2008

$1300 later...

we have our plane tickets to Ukraine! I hear that Ukraine is lovely this time of year...

So I'm trying to get EVERYTHING ready for this trip and to mentally prepare myself for the costs that we will incur once in the country. Please advise me on how much you spent, what you spent it on, how much money you took, and if it was enough/too much. Any advice on good souvenirs is also welcomed.

11 comments:

MamaPoRuski said...

We took $8K in cash which lasted us the eight weeks for food, lodging, travel, VISA, Medical exams, and "incidentals". We did the free or really cheap site seeing and bought our souvenirs at the 4 story department store (Can't remember the name) two blocks south from Independence square on Kreshatuk in Kyiv as they were all in one shop, had visible prices, spoke English and were cheaper than on the streets...It was where we found batteries for our digital camera as well. We also took a typed cyrillic shopping list we used to point to what we needed, some of the shops are behind windows and you must order what you need from the person there instead of being able to pick it up.

MamaPoRuski said...

Oh! Forgot to mention what we did bring home...I got hubby a little wooden symbol of power (spiky mallet thing), Pysanky eggs, and a wedding towel for Z for when he is older. Postcards were hard to find but we did find them and mailed them to our friends as the majority of our souvenirs.

Winnie said...

We took 15K, that paid our faciltator fees, orphanage donation, lodging, food, travel and all. I came home with $100 in my pocket. I wasn't too worried as my MIL brought more money when she came to help me home but I never touched it. I did put plane tickets on a credit card though.

You got a pretty good deal on the plane tickets. I hope you have good terms with changing them etc since sometimes the date you get home is tricky.

Remember new money!! Tell your bank they should be able to order it for you. Adoption is the only legal reason you can do this.

You have my e-mail if you need anything
Winnie

Tami said...

I don't remember exactly how much we took, but I do remember we kept a pretty tight reign on spending, just because you can never tell when an 'expediting fee' may be required.
We did most of our souvenier shopping in Kiev (although I did do a little bit in Odessa). There is a row of shops near the SDA. Also another bunch of them in Independence Square. We found a little shop just down Krashadick (sp?) street near the TGIFridays where we purchased some ceramic bowls and other nicer items for family members.

Courtney said...

We actually didn't pick up any souvenirs when we did our adoption. We had been to Ukraine for a visit a few years earlier and had bought some souvenirs then, so we didn't buy any this time around. Our facilitator did give us a couple of newspapers from the days around our court date, so that we would have the "history" of what was happening in Ukraine when the boys joined our family.

Kerry Shealy said...

I'm so excited for you! I can't wait to see pictures of you with Nick, and the special baby girl!
Kerry RR

schoolmother said...

Wow! Tickets make traveling seem so official.
Joy,RR

Julie said...

YAY! Plane tickets!!

I'm stalking your blog and comments for all the info I can get related to traveling/etc. I hope you don't mind!

Kevin and Tammy said...

We took 10k. We came home with 2k. We also were there for three and not just one. We did fairly well. That paid VISA and medicals and donation to the orphaages and all our living expenses and some souvenirs. Remember to take your comfort foods.

... said...

We took our money for our facilitator & orphanage donation and an additional $6,500 and came home with roughly 3,500. We paid for our lodging (10 days in region), groceries (although we did use the credit card 2 times), taxi or driver services, train tickets for us and our translator (1st class cabins), medical exam, shopping, and consulate fees...I believe the money you spend is dictated by the area you are in, walking instead of taxi, cooking in vs. eating out, and the number of gifts you purchase while in country. We were lucky we had friends to stay with who live in Kiev (2 days before our SDA appt and 3 nights after I brought Ella back to Kiev). Total time in country was 27 days. Our plane tickets cost the same as yours with flexible return and no difference in seat prices or change fees.

I am looking forward to following your journey!

Blaine said...

It does not matter how much you take, you'll spend it all! Somehow they KNOW how much you have :-) They love to spend the American's money!

Be sure to take a money belt and keep the cash secure.