Ukrainians take to social media to offer free beds, so that fans don’t have to pay $5,500 per night.
Ordinary people in the Ukrainian capital Kiev are so outraged at the astronomical prices their city’s hotels are charging in late May, when Liverpool play Real Madrid in the hotly awaited Champions League final, that they have taken matters into their own hands.
Hotel rates have jumped by as much as 1,000% on and around May 26 as Kiev hotels cash in on the thousands of fans arriving to cheer on their teams, RFE/RL reports.
A local journalist, Yegor Gordeyev, reacted by offering his couch and three other spots in his apartment for free, to the first four people to show their passports and tickets.
A Norwegian is among the four lucky fans who have taken up the offer, bypassing the hotels’ horrific prices.
Gordeyev’s idea quickly became a social media trend and now countless other Ukrainians are also opening their doors for the occasion, offering free stays via the Facebook page “Kyiv FREE couch for football fans 26/05/18”.
$5,500 for a room
Around 70,000 fans are expected to arrive for the game in the Ukrainian city. A check of hotel rates made by RFE/RL revealed an economy double – without a window – at the three-star Lukyanovsky Hotel on the night of the match to be $3,799 on Booking.com. A double with a window was $5,508.
A week later, both types of room could be had for less than $50.
A double at the three-star Hotel Nivki on match night was listed at $1,898 on Hotels.com. The same room on any Saturday night in June was found to be just $27.
Gordeyev tells RFE/RL: “I was afraid that the fans would not come in the same numbers that they usually do for such events because fans, as a rule, can’t afford such expensive housing. Because of this, the overall impression of my city may deteriorate.”