can you advise me?

Hi there,

I am new here and am planning on moving to Lviv, Ukraine in May of this year to homeschool my granddaughter.  I called the Ukraine embassy in DC a couple of times on info for long term visa requirements, and I don't meet the criteria it seems, he said to find a charity to work for, volunteer for in Ukraine and they need to send me a letter of invite which I then give to embassy...easier said than done, so far no luck....does anyone offer a suggestion on how I can do this.... I want to live there permanently and retire....of course, I am willing to do charity work,

thank you, Carrey

Hi Carrey
You seem to have a bit of a unique situation. Firstly there are only a few grounds that you can get residency, unless you are a multi million air or a diplomat.
1. To work on invite of work.
2. To work for the church or a charity, on invite.
3. To join husband or family member.
So looking at situation you probably could do 3. as if the child is your blood relative, and i assume your son married a Ukrainian woman, then you would be able to do three. Even if there parents are divorced you still may have grounds, if the child is a blood relative. The cost for you to do this is almost nothing, about $100. You would need to obtain what is called a Visa D. This visa you would apply under reunification of a family member. If granted. You then travel to Lviv, but you need to do a few things before you travel/
You need an address in Lviv that is permanent or owned buy a family member as you will need to register at that address. (you don't need to live there just register there). You need passport translated and Notarised into Ukrainian. You need health insurance (Buy one in USA to cover Embassy interview and documentation) on issue of  Visa D cancel it and buy in the Ukraine for under $20.
There will be a few more bits and bobs you will need like birth cert etc which all need translating and Notarised.
First thing to do is try the Embassy Visa D application.
But before you do any of that, come for a holiday, and visit the Ovir in Lviv who will give you what you need for application.
Also being single give you a few extra problems as getting permanent residency may take longer than two years.
Hope it helps

martin (in Odessa)

PS. dont use an agency unless you have cash to throw away, agency's are 30 times more expensive than doing it your self.

thanks Martin, good points there

Hi, in case you decided to use the legal agency, I've heard positive reviews about this company in Lviv:

thanks, does anyone know if i can buy a step down transformer in ukraine? i can get one here but they are heavy to take,

thanks, Carrey

Hi there
I assume your bringing old stuff from USA that is 110v. in short yes. from

Hi Martin, once again, thank you!!

Hi Martin,

I finally arrived in Lviv last week and boy was that rough, we took a train here from London and we did find a great apartment here in the center which is lively to say the least!

It is gorgeous here and kind of inexpensive if you shop around a little, avoid the tourist area etc

we do need to learn Ukrainian though, and some waiters do know English, the younger crowd, lol

All in all, I am very happy to retire here!!


Hi Carrey

glad you are here, dont forget if your going to stay long term you need to apply for Visas etc. If you over stay and are found out, you will get a ban under the new regulations. I also agree you will need to learn Ukrainian , even more so in Lviv. For myself both Russian and Ukrainian is ok here.

Hi Martin,

First of all thanks for all the info you provide to expats
Or foreigner which are of great help to many who are planning g to come to Ukraine.

My name is kashif saleem and i am from pakistan as I am also planning to come to Ukraine in 2 to 3 months time by registering and opening a firm 2nd work permit
3rd Temporary residence.

I am married and have 3 kids and I am planning before I call them here I should spend some time and get use to the environment and culture and than accordingly will call upon them here.

Would like to ask you is it OK to move in Ukraine and get settle with family and what about business are tehre opportunities for us and also about job is it easily available need your advice and help. As I want my children to study here along with me so how much should I expect my budget could go around.

Hi kashif

There are many things  too do before you move here. I will try and list in order for you.
Opening a business.
In order for you too open a business here you need .
A good business plan, translated into Ukrainian.
You need too rent a premis.
you need a Ukrainian manager or business partner.
Be able too show finance to start a business.
register to obtain tax liability code.
Have a visa D to enable you too obtain residency card.
All in all it sounds hard but its not, so longs as you have a good business idea and the funds then you are on your way to being a business owner. You may ask why you need a manager or business partner, thats easy . its the rules. They can make them accountable for any untoward matters.
The way to do it is visit Ukraine first. get too know your intended location. Ie city Odessa, Kiev , Lviv. or other. This link will give you the cost of visas … ance.html.
Problems you may face .Language, customs (local) Transport.
Thats quiet easy, once you have a business up and running, you can request a visa for them, only as temporary visa. to renew each year is very easy . After i think its 5 years you apply for Permanent residency. All documents must be notarised into Ukrainian, marred cert, birth cert, police check, medical check, financial check etc etc..
There are loads of schools and Universities, fees are cheap and some state schools are free, but your children will need too speak Ukrainian or Russian.
Normal job opportunitys. Yes there are jobs, but. and its a big BUT. in order to get temporary residency under the job route, you need a skill that a firm requires , in order for them to give you a letter of job opportunity. So if your Electrician, engineer, scientist, dentist, doctor. Pilot. computer wiz kid, your in.
Or a fully qualified English teacher. But if your a pizza flipper or handyman. dont think about a job, you will not get a visa. I am not sure how much you understand about Ukraine, but here is a little help.
Weather like Europe winter very cold and a lot of snow, can rain any time. Apartments are costly to buy $100,000 plus House $150,000 plus. Rent from $300 a month Ukrainian is preferred Language but they may speak some Russian. Apartments outside city $60,000 average.
Weather much like Europe, little more rain in this area but very beautiful city. Ukrainian language only really, some people have a bit of a fit sometimes to other languages. Cost of apartments and property 20% cheaper . Example My friend bought a 5 bedroom house outside Lviv three weeks ago for $120,000 with some land.
Odessa (Odesa)
Weather 4 months cold (Nov to Feb) then warm to hot not much rain, and we have the sea, and beaches. Very cosmopolitan area. Language mainly Russian, but slowly moving to Ukrainian. Confuses me to hell, but my wife sorts that out for me :). You can get a very nice apartment for under $80,000.
Its possible to buy house outside under $50,000. and in most of the Ukraine you look at a village and its possible to buy very large house for under $25,000. Example I am selling house outside Odessa about 40 minutes drive 100 x 150 meters of land with 6 rooms very large house liveable know and its for sale for $10,000. And its been for sale for over a year. There is loads of choice if you are prepared to do a little travel. Oh Odessa has sun sun sun for the rest of the year, so far i have had rain for 5 hours a few weeks ago. Kiev is rivers , trees, Lviv is trees hills and a mountain or two , Odessa is few trees, flat, beaches and the black sea.

i hope that helps you a little bit. feel free to ask , if i know i will be happy to explain.


Martin (Odessa) or Odesa as they know like to spell it

Hi Martin,
Thanks a lot for providing me with such a great explanation of almost everything highly appreciated.

Secondly regarding business setup and work permit as well as temporary residency I have one of my freind living there in. Kyiv he is going to complete whole my process which according to him will take around 25 to 30 days. Once all documents get ready he will send me here in pakistan vis courier service and once I get it I will apply from here D visa.

After getting that hopefully will fly for Ukraine only myself first and before I start my own business I wamt to do a job 1st for couple of months just to get use to the environment and culture. Secondly I am already learning some Russian almost learned 70 words and hopefully will learn some more before I travel to Ukraine.

I will definitely like to meet you once I reach there. To take some advice or suggestion if required. As you are living tehre since long so your advice and guidance will be the key I guess.

Hi there
Regarding working, unless your friend can give you work, it may be best too keep away from the work bit, and concentrate on setting your business up. as too the time scale i am not sure 100% as i didn't go down that route. but what i do know is in order to set up a business you need a visa D, and within 30 days you need to register your business and register your documents and register your address in the Ukraine.
If i was you, i would do it this way.

Travel to Ukraine for 50 days. in this time sort your documents out (much cheaper to do here) have a look around, look for business opportunities etc etc. You can get an EVISA it costs $52.50 usd. will last for 1 year and you can come and go as you wish and stay up too three months at one time.

Then after your visit you can apply for a visa D and do the above quiet easy. You may have heard that money talks as there is a lot of corruption, may be a few years ago but that is not the way know, its all electronic tracking, pay in special places, and smile you will be on cctv.
providing all goes well and you get your Visa D you must within 30 days on arrival register at the nearest ovir, with all documents and permanent address with permission to register at this address, if you buy a place, your registration is your place you bought. You are permitted to buy property but not land, only Ukrainian citizens can buy land.
If you visit Odessa ( 12 hours on a train from Kiev) i will be happy to meet you.Hope this helps


Hi Martin,

Once again thanks a lot for the info which you provided to me which is very useful will definitely look into it and will decide accordingly and yes once I reach there in Ukraine Kyiv I am be in touch with you and hopefully will meet you too at odessa.
Best Regards,
Kashif saleem

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