I've been contacted by constituents worried about the current situation in Ukraine and the impact this is have on family and friends in the country. I've put together this quick guide providing updated information for British nationals in the country and what assistance is available.
The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office advises against all travel to Ukraine. British nationals in Ukraine should leave now whilst commercial means remain available. The Government continues to monitor the availability of flights to ensure there are means for British nationals to return safely home.
The Embassy currently remains open but will be unable to provide in-person consular assistance. We are also opening an office in Lviv, which can issue documentation and provide consular assistance.
In the event of an invasion, our ability to provide any consular assistance will be severely affected. British nationals should not expect consular support in-country or help with evacuation in these circumstances. However, we will continue to provide 24/7 support remotely. If any British nationals require consular assistance they should call the FCDO on: +44 (0)1908 516666 or +380 44 4903660. Our travel advice is kept under constant review and includes information on overland travel and crossing the Ukraine border. British nationals in Ukraine should sign-up for travel advice email alerts: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/ukraine/email-signup.
Visa and Emergency Travel Documents
The Home Office has made changes to the Family Migration route, waiving the application fee for immediate family members of British nationals who are normally resident in Ukraine. The Home Office has also temporarily relaxed the eligibility criteria for a minimum income and English-language skills. The exemption applies to spouses, civil or unmarried partners, and children under the age of 18 whose parent is not British. If your friend is eligible under this scheme, they are advised to 0300 303 2785 for assistance before making an application.
British nationals who choose to remain in Ukraine
British nationals who choose to remain in Ukraine If British nationals choose to remain in Ukraine, they should remain vigilant, keep their departure plans under constant review and ensure their travel documents are up to date. They should monitor the media and travel advice regularly, subscribe to email and read our advice on how to deal with a crisis overseas. British nationals still in Ukraine should register their presence: https://www.register.service.csd.fcdo.gov.uk/ukraine-20220121/register-your-presence-in-ukraine-withfcdo. This will allow the FCDO to provide the latest information. They should also continue to read and follow FCDO Travel Advice.
Assistance for Ukrainian Nationals.
Whilst the situation in Ukraine remains unclear, understandably the Government continues to monitor developments closely whilst diplomatic efforts to resolve the situation continue. As a result, the Government hasn’t announced any special arrangements, as of yet, for Ukrainian nationals to obtain visas for entry to the United Kingdom. The British Embassy in Kyiv continues to process visa applications in the normal manner, but with a large increase in applications, there are significant delays in processing.