HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » The DU Lounge (Forum) » Has anybody here ever vis...
Introducing Discussionist: A new forum by the creators of DU

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 02:13 PM

Has anybody here ever visited or lived in Ukraine?

If so, could you give me some insight on what it's like? How safe is it there?

I have a GF who lives in Poltava, Ukraine, and we have been emailing and video chatting since June. She says she really wants to see me this February. But my parents and my big sister have all been paranoid about me flying over there, considering that it would be my first time flying on my own (in addition to flying abroad) and they told me that Ukraine isn't a fully stable country. And they also said I could have problems asking for things because not many people there know English.

23 replies, 1444 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 23 replies Author Time Post
Reply Has anybody here ever visited or lived in Ukraine? (Original post)
Jamaal510 Nov 2012 OP
HopeHoops Nov 2012 #1
Jamaal510 Nov 2012 #14
HopeHoops Nov 2012 #18
bif Nov 2012 #2
Jamaal510 Nov 2012 #15
Kali Nov 2012 #3
OriginalGeek Nov 2012 #4
RebelOne Nov 2012 #5
bif Nov 2012 #6
Lydia Leftcoast Nov 2012 #7
Tobin S. Nov 2012 #8
grasswire Nov 2012 #9
Jamaal510 Nov 2012 #16
slutticus Nov 2012 #10
ashling Nov 2012 #11
Manifestor_of_Light Nov 2012 #12
loli phabay Nov 2012 #13
Jamaal510 Nov 2012 #17
loli phabay Nov 2012 #21
bif Nov 2012 #19
JoeyT Nov 2012 #20
bif Nov 2012 #22
HeiressofBickworth Nov 2012 #23

Response to Jamaal510 (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 02:24 PM

1. You'll need a money belt - here's a good source...

 

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to HopeHoops (Reply #1)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 02:46 PM

14. I didn't even know that money belts exist.

It actually sounds like an interesting idea to wear one of those...

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Jamaal510 (Reply #14)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 03:32 PM

18. They also make neck wallets. My daughter used both in Budapest.

 

The neck one is easier when you're going through airports. The belt is better for keeping your stash of cash.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Jamaal510 (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 02:59 PM

2. I was there this spring

It's pretty safe. Bring cash and exchange it at the airport. There isn't a lot of crime. We were told not to use the ATM's because there's a scam where they supposedly can use your ID to withdraw money from your account. They speak some English in the big cities. But try to learn a few words in Russian like please, thank you, good morning, etc. They speak Russian in the eastern part of the country and Ukrainian in the western part.

We had a wonderful time. Very friendly people. If you have any other questions, ask away!

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to bif (Reply #2)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 02:48 PM

15. Russian in East, Ukrainian in West. Got it.

And I'll be sure to stay away from the ATM machines as much as possible.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Jamaal510 (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 03:16 PM

3. go

never listen to nay-sayers when it comes to travel and that means the State Department too - do NOT read their warnings, or you will be wanting to live in a bunker. Especially if you have contacts where you are going. Go. Have a fabulous time, learn something about the world beyond the US.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Jamaal510 (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 03:25 PM

4. My mom went a couple times, 8 or 10 years ago.

she was part of a youth ministry and went to Ukraine with her group to spread the word. I don't know how big her group was but it mostly consisted of little old church ladies and she had a wonderful time.

She said the borscht there was way better than the cans of it here. She doesn't speak a word of Russian or Ukrainian unless borscht is one of those. I believe they had English speaking guides from over there.

I think she was mostly in Kiev.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Jamaal510 (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 03:46 PM

5. Did you meet your GF online?

I had a neighbor who was from Ukraine. And he warned another friend of mine who met a woman online from Ukraine. She wanted to come to the US and my neighbor warned my friend about women from Ukraine who want to come here. Well, my friend did not heed the warning and got the woman here on a fiance visa. They married and she left him after 6 months.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to RebelOne (Reply #5)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 04:55 PM

6. That said...

Ukraine has about the most beautiful women in the world.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to RebelOne (Reply #5)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 06:21 PM

7. I agree with the warning

There are a lot of gold diggers on the female side of the equation, and that holds for "marriage minded pen pals" in any poor country.

There are a lot of guys on the male side of the equation who are too conservative/crude/abusive/self-centered/socially awkward/self-pitying to form relationships with an American woman.

Has she been interested mostly in your job, house, and car? Then don't bother going over there. Let her find some other sucker.

Or do you feel an emotional bond? That this is the only woman who has ever really understood you? Well, then, maybe you should take a chance, but...

A female friend of mine got scammed by a male gold digger she met on Facebook. They seemed to have an emotional bond, at least until he started asking her for money for things that he should have been able to afford himself if his cover story was true.

A male friend of mine got sucked into a relationship with the Psycho Shrew-to-End-All-Psycho-Shrews via Facebook. She came to visit once and persuaded him to move across the country to live with her. Once he did, the Shrew Claws and Teeth came out.

If you're corresponding with Ukrainian women just because you are having trouble forming relationships here, ask a platonic female friend to evaluate you in terms of physical and emotional attractiveness. By physical attractiveness, I'm not talking about your natural looks but how you present yourself. By emotional attractiveness, I'm talking about whether you're boring to talk to, self-pitying, insecure, attracted to the wrong women. All these things are fixable--if you want to change.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Lydia Leftcoast (Reply #7)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 07:16 PM

8. You said it better than I could

But I had the same idea. Some people have successful relationships going this route. I know of one. But going to another country to try to connect with someone in the hopes that he or she will be a good mate sounds pretty risky to me.

I had trouble meeting women due to awkward social skills when trying to approach them. I joined a free online dating site and started talking to women that way because I felt more secure doing so. These were women who lived close by. I would talk to them online and when I managed to get a date with someone I would feel more comfortable about meeting her.

I went through 7 candidates before finding the right one. You have to learn how to handle rejection if you are going to date. But I did find the right woman and now I'm married to her. I'd suggest going the route I did to any guy who has trouble approaching women.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Jamaal510 (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 09:06 PM

9. my then 18-year-old nephew went there by himself two years ago

He didn't know anyone. He didn't speak the language. It was his gap year between high school and college. He went in February -- it's very cold there! And he did hostels, and stayed in Ukraine and Russia for a couple of weeks on his own, and then hiked across Eastern Europe. He never was robbed or attacked, although a man offered sex one night when he slept in a city park (in the snow!) He was gone for ten weeks, by himself. He lost his passport in Poland, and had a mess of trouble about that.

He had previously traveled with his mother in Hungary and Romania, though, and lived in Romania for a summer. Now? He is spending this school year in St. Petersburg, attending university there.

As for you: are you sure this GF is genuine? There are a lot of sneaky scams out of Eastern Europe. Corruption is everywhere. American young people sometimes get drugged in clubs, and sometimes are sold into the sex trade. Theft is very common. Taxi scams are common. Your parents are right to be somewhat concerned, although you don't say how old you are.

Why doesn't this girl come to America for a visit?

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to grasswire (Reply #9)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 02:56 PM

16. I'm 22

and it might have been safer had I asked her to see if she could come out here instead. But I really wanted to travel abroad anyway...

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Jamaal510 (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 09:40 PM

10. Ukraine?

The Ukraine is weak. It's feeble. I think it's time to put the hurt on the ukraine.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Jamaal510 (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 10:12 PM

11. My daughter wants to go to Kiev to teach English

She is brushing up on her Russian. She has a friend who lives in Crimea on the Black Sea, in Sebastapol (I think)

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Jamaal510 (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 11:27 PM

12. This is something I have noticed. I am NOT saying it applies to you.

I have noticed a few American men who are quite politically conservative, and think American women are too independent and educated. They want a female who will wait on them and cook for them.

One of my sister's ex-husbands was very conservative and quite anti-social. He would not carry on a conversation with me. I called him "Grunt" because that's about all he did when he wasn't grumbling at my sister. He told her, "We're gonna live off what you make at your job and put mine in the bank." They both had full time jobs.

He could not stand smart women. One time I went to his house when my sister was married to him. Our female friend came over who was an attorney and a graduate of Rice University.

We sat at the kitchen table and talked.

He sat in the den and pouted, and refused to even greet her. He later married a small Oriental woman. I do not know if she was a mail order bride, but considering his hatred of women in general, I would not be surprised. He was quite emotionally abusive to my sister. When she died he was all broken up and blubbering about how she was a wonderful person.
But he was mean to her.

Second example:I know a guy who is rich, extremely conservative, works in the oilfield business, and does not want to pay a single penny in taxes and has shell corporations, highly questionable writeoffs and assorted accounting tricks he uses. He has a trophy wife from Russia.
I was told by the man's daughter that he spends $250K a year on her so she can be one of the "ladies who lunch" with their particular ethnic group and wear expensive clothes to show off.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Jamaal510 (Original post)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 08:43 AM

13. okay i hate to ask this but its important your ethnicity will make a difference

 

Unless you are of european heritage ie slavic or northern euro then you may have issues with a lot of ukranians. There are serious numbers of neo nazis who are not exactly non violent. Added to the fact that you dont speak the language you could find yourself in real trouble.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to loli phabay (Reply #13)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 03:04 PM

17. Thanks for the warning.

I only plan on staying for one weekend, though, so hopefully nothing big will go down.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Jamaal510 (Reply #17)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 05:26 PM

21. just be aware and one weekend might be long enough especially if theres a football game on

 

Locally. The casuals firm over there are worse than the SS.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Jamaal510 (Original post)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 03:41 PM

19. Also, learn the Cyrillic alphabet

Very important. Kiev has a few signs using the western alphabet. But it's pretty rare anywhere else.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Jamaal510 (Original post)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 04:22 PM

20. I've visited en route to somewhere else.

I was in Kharkiv (I think I spelled that right) for two days. Your parents and your sister are probably worrying needlessly: It didn't seem any more dangerous than Birmingham or Mobile. You might want to learn some common words/phrases before you go, though.

Edited to add: Seconding HopeHoops suggestion for a money-belt. Pickpockets are a problem in almost any major city if you're a tourist.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Jamaal510 (Original post)

Sat Nov 24, 2012, 06:36 PM

22. Example of Cyrillic...

You'll see signs that'll say PECTOPAHT. It's pronounced Restaurant! It's not really that hard to learn.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Jamaal510 (Original post)

Sun Nov 25, 2012, 01:35 AM

23. Before you go

please research "romance scam". See if any of the tips on identifying romance scams applies to your email friend. Also, there are websites (sorry I don't have a link) that you can upload your picture of "her" and check against other known scammers. They frequently use hacked pictures from the internet to represent themselves. This is a fairly common internet scam. Going in person may be a trap designed to rob you and perhaps put your safety in jeopardy. For more information check www.419eater.com.

Your GF may be on the up and up, but if you value your safety and the contents of your bank account, please go the extra step to check it out. She just might be a 300 lb man sitting in an internet cafe and maybe not even in Ukraine.

Best wishes.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread