Getting here and advice about your stay
All visitors must have a valid passport.
Between the 16th July 2015 and the 31st December 2017, Kazakhstan has established a visa-free regime for UK citizens on stays of up to 15 days. For longer stays while on business, a visa is required. For more detailed information visit: www.kazembassy.org.uk/en/pages/page/74
The Embassy of the Republic of Kazakhstan in London provides full information about the entry requirements for Kazakhstan, and about how to apply for a visa, should you require one:
Embassy of the Republic of Kazakhstan to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
125 Pall Mall
Tel: +44(0)207 925 1757
Fax: +44(0)207 930 8990
Visit the website at: www.kazembassy.org.uk/en
Although Astana and Almaty are generally safe, petty theft, robberies and car-jacking are not unknown. Visitors should be cautious and alert when travelling at night and it has been advised by the Embassy, that single travellers should not enter into a taxi unless it is occupied by two or more people. Talk to your hotel or travel host, as it may be possible to hire a car and driver for the duration of your visit.
Regulations dictate that foreigners are required to carry their passports with them at all times.
Before travelling to Kazakhstan, check the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) for the latest country information and up-to-date travel advice: www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/kazakhstan
Kazakhstan road infrastructure:
Flights to Kazakhstan
All Kazakh airlines except for Air Astana, Kazakhstan’s national airline, are restricted from operating services to the European Union (EU), due to compliance issues with internationally-accepted safety requirements. (Source – FCO Travel Advice)
It takes approximately 6 hours 20 minutes to fly directly from London to Astana. Air Astana operates regular flights from London to Astana (currently three times a week but will soon increase to five). There are also several internal flights operating daily between Astana and Almaty, also provided by Air Astana.
On arrival, keep all baggage tags after collecting your luggage, as they need to be shown before leaving the airport.
Business travellers wishing to fly directly to Atyrau from Europe can use the Air Astana services from Amsterdam and Istanbul, or Transaero from Moscow.
Please visit the Air Astana website for more information: www.airastana.com
Travelling from the airport
Meet and greet transport services can be arranged by many hotels, to provide transport from the airport.
There is competition between the official Kazakh taxis and civilian drivers who offer a private ‘street taxi’ service. Caution must be taken when using any form of taxi and it is important to negotiate and agree a price before beginning any journey, as taxi drivers will attempt to extract as much money as possible from foreigner visitors. Leaving a tip will not be expected and visitors should try to avoid payment with large denomination notes, as it is unlikely that the drivers will offer any change, whether able to or not.
Astana airport is approximately 16 km from the capital city itself. The number 10 bus service operates from the airport to the city centre; however, it may be more practical to take a taxi, which will take around 15 minutes. Astana is relatively small for a capital city and most car journeys can be made in around 10 or 15 minutes.
It is around 12 km from the city of Almaty to Almaty airport. Public transport is available from the airport; however in best practice, taking a taxi is advisable. The duration of the journey should be no longer than 30 minutes, however Almaty is renowned for its busy roads and traffic jams, so ensure that you allow ample time to reach your destination, especially when on a return journey to the airport.
From Atyrau airport to the city centre it is only a short journey.
Kazakhstan airport infrastructure:
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