While on the tour, you are expected – well rather required – to obey a set of simple but important tour rules. They relate to smoking, alcohol consumption, possessing things, food and drinks, do's and don'ts, etc. It's not like we want to make you uncomfortable. Ironclad safety of the zone visitors is always our primary goal. Please remember the Chernobyl tour is nothing like your regular river boat excursion. It is a really unique experience. The more carefully you follow the rules above, the safer you will be at the end of the day. So, thank you for your understanding and here you go:
You have to bring your passport / travel document / photo ID with you to the tour and have it on you for the entire duration of the tour .Otherwise you will not be permitted to enter the Chernobyl Zone. Make sure it is the same ID you have used for your tour booking purposes.
There is a dress code in effect designed with your safety in mind. The bottom line of it is that all the parts of your body have to be properly covered at all times. In other words, you have to wear pants (no shorts or skirts), a long-sleeve shirt/top (no short-sleeve shirt or tees), closed-type footwear (no sandals, flip-flops, etc), and a cap to cover your head. Failure to comply with this code will result in your non-admission to the tour.
Please be smart with the selection of your clothing and footwear. You should keep in mind that this tour is an outdoor activity happening on a pretty ragged terrain - stones, building debris, broken glass, etc.
Be especially thoughtful during the cold/wet part of the year (October through April). Snow (sometimes deep, sometimes slushy), cold and wind (sometimes bitter), and rain (sometimes freezing) will be your outdoor reality. Light running shoes will definitely not cut it. A pair of good WINTER BOOTS or at least heavy hiking footwear is rather a must! Dry spare footwear and pants might prove very useful too. Especially for those booked for 2- or more-day events.
Alcohol / Intoxication zero-tolerance
Those who have been drinking alcohol immediately before the tour or being under influence of other intoxication, will not be permitted on the tour. Consuming alcohol during the tour as well as bringing it into the Zone is prohibited.
Firearms, fireworks, explosives, or cold weapons are not permitted on the tour. Failure to comply may result in criminal prosecution according to the laws of Ukraine.
Visitors are not allowed to smoke tobacco (or anything else) in the open air.
Meals and water
Visitors are not allowed to have meals in the open air. You are not allowed to use or drink water from open water sources (lakes, wells, rivers, etc.)
Seeing is ok, touching is NOT ok
Touching of objects, structures, vegetation, or the ground is not permitted. Sitting on the ground is also not permitted.
Photography / Video
Taking pictures and shooting video IS permitted. However, you have to be very careful and avoid placing your photo/video equipment on the ground.
Taking items away from within the Zone is considered a serious violation of the tour regulations.
Your tour guide
At all times while within the Zone, you will be accompanied and guided by a certified tour guide who works for the Zone administration. It is essential that you strictly follow all the verbal instructions, recommendations, and suggestions.
Drinks and snacks
Feel free to bring your favorite snacks and non-alcoholic drinks with you - this stuff is allowed. We actually think that this is a very good idea. Lunch - for those who have this option included in their deal - is served rather late in the day (at around 2 pm or even 3 pm). So your snacks and drinks will help you reach this point comfortably, without being disturbed by those constant nagging hunger and thirst signals sent to your brain.
Also good to know:
Make sure you have a travel medical (emergency) insurance covering you for the entire duration of your trip to Ukraine. First of all, it’s just smart to have one when traveling - regardless of the country you are going to. Secondly, you can be asked to show a proof of insurance by the border officer at your port of entry to Ukraine or by the security/police officer at the Chernobyl zone entry check-point. You can present it in one of these forms: a wallet size insurance card, printed or electronic (on your smart phone) copy of the insurance agreement, email confirmation from your insurance company, etc - just be prepared to show something relevant on a request. If you already have an insurance policy, make sure, it will cover you specifically in Ukraine, a non EU-country.