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I am soon travelling to Ukraine by car and will be entering from Slovakia or Hungary. I have read many stories about the notoriously long waiting times at the Ukrainian land borders. Waiting times of several hours are allegedly nothing unusual.

I know that Ukrainian Customs operate a website, which lists current waiting times at all border crossings, e.g. for entry from Slovakia or Hungary. Do anyone have any experience regarding the reliability of this information? Just while writing this question, the estimated waiting time at the border crossing from Ubl'a to Malyi Bereznyi changed from 5 hours to 1 minute.

I had also expected that trip planners, which in general take account for current traffic when calculating travel times, also considered waiting times at the border, but that does not seem to work for at least Google Maps, HERE WeGo or Bing Maps. According to the Ukrainian Customs website, the waiting time at the border crossing from Beregsurány to Luzhanka is currently about 1:30h. All of the three mentioned trip planners indicate heavy traffic at the border, but estimate the trip between the two villages to take less than 10 minutes.

Since I am going by car, I would rather put up with a detour via a different border crossing, if it can save me a lot of time at the border. The most convenient options would be to cross either from Záhony to Chop or from Vyšné Nemecké to Uzhorod and the posted waiting times for these crossings are rarely more than 15 minutes. If someone has any experience from there, they can perhaps confirm if that is realistic?

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    In case you're crossing from Hungary, I'd suggest comparing with the information provided by the Hungarian Police for the same crossings, seen on the bottom right of this page. – molnarm Jul 29 at 9:11
  • @molnarm Thanks for the suggestion. I search for such a page, but couldn't find one. According to the Hungarian police, the current waiting time at the crossing from Záhony to Chop is 2 hours, while the Ukrainian website says 0:00. I don't know which information is wrong, but they can't be both correct. – Tor-Einar Jarnbjo Jul 29 at 10:10
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After actually crossing the border yesterday, I can now answer myself.

With a posted waiting time of only 3 minutes, we decided to use the border crossing from Vyšné Nemecké to Uzhhorod. There were only about 20 cars in front of us when we arrived at the exit checkpoint at the Slovakian side of the border, but almost no progress. We soon realized that there was a backlog from the later Ukrainian entry checkpoint preventing the Slovaks from dispatching the cars faster.

In total, it took us more than 2.5 hours to pass the border. The Slovak exit control was quite painless, but at the Ukrainian checkpoint, hell and chaos ruled. I have never in my life experienced a less effective border check. 6-7 cars were at last allowed to proceed to the actual control area. There were no information posted anywhere in any other language but Ukrainian, but all the other passengers exited from their cars and started running around. We realized that instead of the border officers going to the cars, we had to go to them. A customs officer wanted to know if we were bringing pistols, cocaine or heroine, then there was one counter for immigration check and a second counter for vehicle clearance where stamps were moved around with heroic tranquility.

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