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Kyivstar Ukraine with Roaming optionEdit

Verified in 2016 in UK, Ireland, Germany, Czech Rep., Norway, Macedonia, Kosovo, Serbia, Albania, Finland, Montenegro, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Romania, Moldova, Bulgaria, Russia, Poland, Brazil. In 2017: Cambodia, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia.

Kyivstar Ukraine gives out roaming data on a daily basis in all European countries and some countries beyond. Per day 35-60 UAH (€ 1.25-2.14) are charged in 100 MB increments up to max. of 2 GB based on Kiev time (UTC+3).

In this article all prices quoted in local currency Ukranian Hryvnia (UAH) are converted into Euro (EUR, €) for a better comparison. This exchange rate has proved to be extremely volatile. The conversions are made based on a cross rate of 28:1 (UAH:EUR) effective on average in 2016 so far. Better check a currency converter like xe.comor use an exchange rate app for the most up-to-date exchange rate.

Network Edit

Sim card

Kyivstar (Київстар)

Issuing country Edit

Ukraine

NumberEdit

  • +380 67 ### ## ##

Roaming optionEdit

Usual roaming option. Doesn't need to be enabled.

Validity and ratesEdit

Map small-0

[super size map]

In all green countries of the map: Albania, Armenia, Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus (Rep.), Czech Rep., France, Georgia, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Malta, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Tajikistan, Turkey, United Kingdom, Uzbekistan
  • 100 MB per day: UAH 35 = € 1.25
In all red countries of the map: Australia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Cambodia, Canada, China, Denmark, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, Hong Kong, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Israel, Korea (South), Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Malaysia, Moldova, Norway, Qatar, Philippines, Saudi-Arabia, Serbia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, US (incl. Hawaii, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Isl.), UAE
  • 100 MB per day: UAH 60 = € 2.14

A day is based on Ukrainian time (UTC +3) from midnight to midnight. You can check the exact system time by *106#. The unused quota of the package will be lost at midnight.

You can purchase up to 20 times a 100 MB bundle per day (equal to 2.0 GB).

Take care, that in other countries marked in grey on the map, roaming might still be possible, but at much higher rates of UAH 122-307 per MB = € 4.36-10.96. These rates apply to maritime services on ships too.

You may check roaming rates on their website. You will get an SMS with the specific rates each time you connect in a new country.

Call and SMS rates Edit

Their rates for calls and SMS are not so good. An outgoing call is charged at UAH 30 (€ 1.07) per minute in the green zone and UAH 30-50 (€ 1.07-2.14) in the red zone. Some countries can't be dialled by IDD calls. For incoming calls UAH 30 (€ 1.07) per 15 minute bundle in the green zone and UAH 30-50 (€ 1.07-2.14) in the red zone are charged. All SMS are at UAH 8 (€ 0.29). They sell packages for SMS and minutes, but these are only valid outgoing to the Ukraine.

SMS language Edit

To change language of information SMS go to My Kyivstar, log in, click to Services, find "Manage language and code of the information" and click to configure, you will see your settings. Click to "Configure service parameters", select LATIN and English, click confirm. SMS language will be changed within 24 hours.

Checking roaming consumption Edit

You can check anytime allowance in packages by *106*1*2#, online in My Kyivstar or by app. You will receive information SMS each time you reach 70% consumption of the 100 MB bundle .

Roaming networksEdit

Roaming is on 2G and 3G networks only, no 4G/LTE. You can select most networks offered locally.

Speeds Edit

Data are unthrottled in full 2G and 3G speed available, but not 4G/LTE. The download and upload speeds are similar to other roaming plans depending on location up to some Mbps. As all data are routed through an Ukrainian server, latency is somewhat higher resulting in longer ping times (of around 100-200 ms) and thus some connections feel slower, what is typical for roaming SIM cards.

Availability of SIM cardEdit

This Kyivstar SIM is an Ukrainian-issued SIM card. Kyivstar only sells it in Ukraine in their stores and doesn't send it abroad. But online vendors distribute them worldwide on eBay or other platforms, which is legal in Ukraine. Offline and online triple cut SIM cards are given out in mini, micro and nano size.

In Ukraine:Edit

Sold in Kyivstar stores (locator only available in Ukranian) for around UAH 25 without credit preloaded.

Outside of Ukraine:Edit

Online vendors charge around € 5 for the SIM and another € 5 for activation, shipping and handling. It will be delivered worldwide to your postal address already activated with roaming enabled. Just look around on eBay (using a worldwide search) and other platforms for any 'Kyivstar Ukraine SIM'.

ActivationEdit

Kyivstar

All SIM cards need to be activated by the vendor in Ukraine as they need to connect to their home network first. International roaming should be enabled automatically too. SIM cards from Ukraine are not registered. If you buy on ebay, just ask seller to activate it for you.

Starting up Edit

You'll receive the SIM in their card holder, probably taken out before for activation. On the holder you find your phone number (+380 67 ### ## ##) and PIN / PUK numbers. Sometimes leaflets and sleeves in Ukrainian only are added and possibly with some translated information by the vendor.

After purchase the SIM plan can be activated, an Ukrainian number attached to it and roaming enabled. Take your phone, put in the SIM, enter PIN and it should connect to Kyivstar network or one of its roaming partners in a few minutes to text you messages.

APN settingsEdit

  • general APN: www.ab.kyivstar.net
  • alternate APNs: www.djuice.com.ua /or/ internet.beeline.ua

Base plansEdit

To use this SIM card mainly outside of Ukraine, you can select any plan without subscription fee like "Favourite Countries". Just use Kyivstar app or go to My Kyivstar and click to "change plan" after log on.

Managing the SIM Edit

using your personal account website Edit

Kyivstar has a personal account in English for this SIM card too. It's called My Kyivstar in English.

First you need to register giving your phone number and get a password by free SMS sent to your number. Every time you logon to your account, Kyivstar sends you a message to your phone to prevent misuse.

In your self-care unit, you can see general balance and remaining packet allowances, set options like roaming and check tariffs and consumption. It also links to their top-up site. An advantage of this account is, that it can be (mostly) set to English.

using the "My Kyivstar" mobile applicationEdit

Kyivstar logo

Alternatively, you can download their My Kyivstar mobile application for Android in Google Play Market and for iOS in the iTunes store without geo-restriction. This can also be set to English. Thus you can manage the same tasks as on your account.

Checking balance Edit

Dial free USSD code *111# and press "call" button to check actual account balance. To find your phone number dial *161#.

Top-upsEdit

From outside of UkraineEdit

Kyivstar accepts all major foreign credit and debit cards like Visa and Mastercard (with 3D Secure code or "Verified by Visa" feature) on their website without any surcharges. This menu can be switched to English. Minimum top-up value is UAH 50 (€ 1.79).  

You need to be aware of their rather unusual fraud prevention system for recharges. Before you can top-up, you will need to register your credit card. They charge you UAH 1 (€ 0.03) for sending you a code in the comments line of this test transaction. Then you're supposed to enter this code mentioned in the transaction comment to the top-up form on their website. To avoid delays when registering a new credit card to top-up, try to pick a debit or credit card with real-time billing like debit cards or virtual credit cards. If you don't want to undergo this verification scheme for any reason, you can use 3rd-party-agencies instead, that will add a surcharge to your amount for their service.  

Remember that your bank may charge a small currency conversion fee for paying in UAH, if your payment system is set to a different currency.

It may take a few minutes until the transaction is processed and the amount debited. Check actual balance by dialing *111#.

In Ukraine:Edit

Within the country you can go to many supermarkets, kiosks, service stations, newspaper stands and get a Kyivstar voucher with a PIN. This must be entered in your phone like this: *123*<voucher code># and <call>. These scratch cards work from abroad too.

Transfer money to another account Edit

You can transfer money from one to another mobile account of Kyivstar called top-up mobile accounts of their relatives or friends. Follow these steps: enter *124*YYY*380ХХХХХХХХХ#, YYY being the amount of money in UAH that you want to transfer, ХХХХХХХХХ being a phone number of the subscriber you want the money transferred to. You will receive a USSD-answer with the subscriber’s phone number, transfer amount and the money transfer verification code. Example: "Vy perekazuete YYY grn abonentu 380XXXXXXXXX. Dlia pidtverdzhennia perekazu naberit’ *125#. Vartist’ perekazu — 3.00grn." To confirm money transfer, check phone number and amount you wish to transfer. If everything is correct, enter *125# to confirm your transfer. The fee for each transaction is UAH 2.

ExpiryEdit

SIM card and account balance remains active for 365 days starting from the moment of:

  • initial SIM card activation,
  • any activity: outgoing SMS or MMS, mobile internet session, any successful incoming or outgoing call,
  • or an account replenishment for any sum by any means.

So 1 outgoing SMS per year is enough to keep the SIM card and your funds alive. To check your validity period dial *114#.

Restrictions and limitationsEdit

  • in order to activate a 100 MB data bundle, you need to have the double balance on your account. e.g. to activate a UAH 35 bundle, you need to have at least a balance of UAH 70.
  • Kyivstar doesn't restrict roaming in their T&Cs in any way. Tethering and VoIP are allowed.
  • a maximum of 20 data packages of 100 MB (= 2.0 GB) can be bought per day.
  • as a consequence of a longer latency, some communications like VoIP and replies from websites may feel a bit delayed, but data traffic is unthrottled in 2G and 3G.
  • note, that users have reported temporary issues with roaming in Iceland.
  • rates for calls and texts are not so good. Better use it for data-only.
  • consider that while it's cool and cheap for you to use this SIM on roaming in some countries, calling an Ukrainian SIM can be very expensive for the caller, as Ukraine is not a member of the EU/EEA and these foreign call rates are highly unregulated.
  • have in mind that Kyivstar Ukraine can raise prices at any time, though this offer is not advertised as a promotion and has been running since 2015.
  • exchange rate fluctuations and currency conversion fees can add to your total expenses.
  • for top-ups be prepared that they use a rather unusual way to verify your credit card: to register your card, you will have to enter a code that is sent to you in a test transaction.

SupportEdit

Be aware when buying a SIM card from Ukraine, you can't expect support or consumer protection like you are used to in the EU or US.

  • by phone: you might try +380 67 0000 466, but English speakers are not always available

  • through Viber (text and voice): +380670000466

  • online chat on their website in English: http://business.kyivstar.ua/en/kr-620/mm/

Alternative offer: Lifecell Edit

Lifecell

In February 2017 Lifecell in Ukraine, one of Kyivstar's competitors in the country, released an offer even beating Kyivstar's low rates. They sell 100 MB for the rest of the day at UAH 30 for roaming in most EU countries and beyond.

  • in Turkey: UAH 15 for 50 MB
  • in all EU countries except Belgium, Luxembourg and Italy plus Armenia, Belarus, Canada, Georgia, Israel, Kazakhstan, Kyrgystan, Montenegro, Russia, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan: UAH 30 for 100 MB
  • in Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Brazil, China, Egypt, India, Macedonia, Malaysia, Moldova, Pakistan, Serbia, Switzerland, Thailand and the remaining EU countries: UAH 55 for 100 MB

Packages are in 50 or 100 MB increments and vaild for the rest of the day in Ukrainian time. You don't need to activate them as it seems. For more info check here or in our Ukraine chapter.

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