Ukraine, public transport.

Ukraine, public transport.Most Ukrainians don’t have cars and use public transport to get around: buses, trams, and “marshrutka” (these have a certain route but only take a small number of passengers and use mini-bus vehicles). Public transport in Ukraine is cheap and affordable, but it’s definitely less comfortable than getting around in your own car.

5 things that annoy Ukrainians in public transport

Walking around the city is healthy and you pay nothing, but you cannot get around fast. Having your own car is convenient but expensive. Public transport seems to be able to solve all those problems because it’s both cheap and fast. But there are some issues that make travelling by bus or tram rather uncomfortable, Ukrainians complain.

This is what locals dislike about using public transport, according to

1. Odors

According to the survey conducted among citizens of Kyiv, 75% of respondents said there’s nothing worse than people exuding foul smells. It’s extremely unpleasant to stand in a bus near someone who didn’t brush teeth in the morning or thinks that showering is optional, especially in summer.

“I hate even thinking about travelling by bus when it’s extremely hot outside. I can’t stand the dripping sweat and smell of people around me,” one of the respondents said.

2. Pensioners

One of the most irritating things in public transport is pensioners, namely, their desire to get somewhere during the rush hour. Ukrainians follow the rule of offering seats to older people, women with children or pregnant ladies, as well as disabled passengers, which means a healthy young adult in a crowded tram is unlikely to be able to sit down, no matter how far he has to travel for work. As an older person walks in, one has to get up and offer the seat to the elder. Moreover, transport is free for pensioners, so the working people have to pay for the elders to travel in comfort.

“It takes 50 minutes to get to the office and my back is killing me if I spend almost an hour in the uncomfortable position [in the mini-bus]. Moreover, I am obliged to give up my seat to some old woman. Why can’t they just use trams?”

“It makes me angry that we work in order to make the transportation free for the pensioners and inconvenient for us”.

3. Other passengers

People are creating problems for themselves standing in the bus with a backpack on, stepping on the feet of others and never apologizing for that. Obviously, this makes people angry and ruins the mood at the beginning of the working day.

“There’s always a person who likes talking on the phone very loudly. He or she is discussing personal problems and the whole bus is annoyed with it”.

4. Poor service

Buses running late or stopping at every stop for a few minutes, delaying the arrival, is another frequent complaint.

Passengers want buses to come often and run on time, but this is not what they are getting.

“Nothing’s changed! The fees are on the European level but the service reminds me of the USSR period”.

5. Drivers

The very people who are taking passengers around aren’t always very polite. Bus drivers are often grumpy and rude, passengers complain. The driver can insult someone and never apologize.

“They’re keeping the bus at the stop for 10 minutes! They want more passengers to get in, so the driver gets more money. But what about the people who are in a hurry?”.

“Buses stop far behind the designated area, because the bus stop is blocked by another bus. Even when you kindly ask the driver to get further, he’s likely to answer you in an offensive manner.”

So, these are the things that annoy passengers of public transport in Ukraine the most.

Video: Buses in Kiev

See what public transport in Kiev looks like. The yellow buses and trolleybuses are transporting passengers.

How much does a trip by public transport cost in Kiev?

Prices for trips by public transport are extremely cheap in Ukraine.

In the capital city of Kiev passengers pay for 1 trip:

  • Tram, bus, trolleybus, funicular: 4 hryvnia (USD 0.15).
  • Subway: 5 hryvnia ($0.19).

But that’s only until July 14, 2018. From that date the cost of one ride will double: 8 hryvnia ($0.30) for any trip by public transport.

It may seem cheap for you, but the difference in price for Ukrainians is quite significant. Remember, the average wage in Ukraine is only around US$323, and the majority of employees earn even less (because the official statistics doesn’t take in consideration wages of workers in small businesses employing less than 10 people).

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I understand that the price of buses must increase, but then in the logical, the salary of Ukrainians must be increased in relation.


Christian, wages in Ukraine did increase substantially in the last years. Check Ukrstat. The minimum monthly wage had been raised from $50 in 2015 to $140 in 2018. Public transport is still ridiculously cheap in Ukraine.


This video is soo fine. The transport vehicles looks like in good condition, as the traffic itself. 🙂 My experience with the “marshrutka” at past summer: After send the taxi drivers to find some other bird, my back not plumy choose the minibus (for less than 1% price of the taxi offers). Well the “bus” actually was a strange type, and looked like a wreck which wasn’t seen any technical examination in the past 30 years (or ever). I get into chat with a Hungarian guy who also go to Uzhgorod (working abroad, and does home visit for some day)… Read more »

Paul Rose
Paul Rose

All the bus rides I’ve had in Eastern Europe were full of nice people. They are hot and crowded but they’re cheap. One thing that might interest American men is that absolutely gorgeous women think nothing of full bodily contact. They don’t even put effort into avoiding it. What I mean is, I avoid contact as a curtesy but women do not. This is not a bad thing, ha. On another side note, the worst thing was, as your standing, chest to chest, shoulder to shoulder, your head is above the windows so you can’t see when you arrive at… Read more »