Pros And Cons Of Moving To Poland – that will be the topic of today’s article.
Before introducing this article, if you are interested in our core services which are expat financial, insurance and mortgages, you can contact me here.
The best time to consider your financial situation is when you are moving to a new country.
Living in Poland as an expat can be a great adventure. While the country does have its challenges for both foreigners, and locals, choosing this place is one of the best options for expats. It’s a land steeped with rich history, electric architecture, wondrous natural sites, buzzing cities, and several attractions.
With over a thousand years of rich history, more and more people have turned Poland into their destination. In fact, it’s a perfect choice for foreigners looking for a mix of Eastern and Western Europe, moderate climate, a combination of castles, and a unique cultural tradition. Are you ready to explore?
Of course, Poland is more than just history. So, if you’re ready to explore, always know that Poland’s stock exchange is the largest in Eastern Europe. This is because; it generates billions of zloty spent on a solid educational system, universal healthcare facilities, transportation system, and more.
While Warsaw is the beating heart of Poland, the benefits of living in this country cannot be overemphasized. Besides, Warsaw is a modern European city with intense nightlife, Europe’s wildest river, thriving green spaces, and a city with a much higher percentage of English speakers than the rest of the countries in Europe.
In this article, we have compiled the concept of moving to Poland as a foreigner. Aside from this, you’ll understand the pros and cons of moving to Poland, finding accommodation in Poland, and many others, to mention a few. So, worry less, as we’ve got you covered about the reasons to move to Poland today.
Top 7 Tips to Travel to Poland as an Expat
How do I date a Poland girl? Do I need to take my shoes off when at a Polish host’s house? How do I greet a Polish? Well, if you’re unsure of the answers, it may need that you need some tips before relocating to the country. Without further ado, below are the seven tips for traveling to Poland as of today.
1. Tap Water Is Safe to Drink
In line with the European Union regulations, tap water in Poland is safe to drink compared to other Western countries. Similarly, asking for a glass of tap water in some Poland restaurants will earn you a weird glance from the waiter. This means; while an increasing number of venues are catching up to meet western standards, they will still accommodate your request.
2. Don’t Order Tea with Milk
While you’re entering this country for the first time, it’s quite okay not to order tea with milk unless you’re prepared to explain at length. This is because; Poles reserve milk for coffee, cereals, and White Russians, so trying to add some to your tea will be met with some questions and making fun of your actual place of birth.
3. It is Illegal to Drink in the Streets
You may have heard many legends about polish drinking culture. And this could lead you to believe that drinking in the streets is allowed. Well, you’re wrong! This is because; opening a beer in a park or any other public space in Poland is an offense, and if the police spot you, you’ll have to pay a fine.
4. Avoid Giving Even Number of Flowers
If this is your first time moving to Poland, we’d advise you not to give even a number of flowers as a gift. In fact, if you choose to surprise your polish date or host with a bouquet, always remember to buy an odd number of flowers. This is because; even numbers are reserved for funerals and would make for a highly uncomfortable first encounter.
5. Always Take Your Shoes Off
After you might have relocated to this country, be careful whenever you’re invited to a party. If you understand the rules, you’ll know that taking your shoes off when invited to a Pole’s house is crucial. Meanwhile, you can leave it unless they explicitly tell you that you can leave them on. With that being said, it’s advisable to bring socks without holes on your next trip to the country.
6. Don’t Come Empty-Handed in Poland
When you’re invited to a Polish house party, always bring something for everyone to share. Besides, chocolate, cake, or bottles of alcohol are all excellent choices for locals. Traditionally, guests should hand their gifts to the female head of the family. But with changing housing arrangements, this custom is no longer strictly followed in Poland.
7. Avoid Asking People Unnecessary Questions
While living in Poland, it would be better not to ask people how they’re doing unless you really want to find out. Don’t be surprised by this cultural shock because it’s common among Western cultures. The Polish language does not equivalent to Standard English, “how are you/fine, thank you” and many others. This is why when your Polish friends greet you in English, they pause and expect an honest answer.
Best Festivals That Showcase Poland History
Poland has a rich cultural heritage, as mentioned earlier. The country is very prosperous, and it’s situated in the Central European region. Since the country’s location is amidst several Latin European countries, they are pretty confluent with the Latin, Byzantine, and German cultures.
In addition, the rich cultural heritage of Poland is somewhat based on its history of over 1,000 years that includes insurrections, partitions, and the horrendous events of the Second World War. For instance, All Saint Day is a silent festival observed by the Polish population by visiting the cemeteries of all their friends and family members deceased in various historic tragedies.
But apart from the geographical and historical influence, there are tons of festivals in Poland. As an expat, you need to be aware of these Poland’s history and cultures. In this section, we have compiled ten best festivals for an expat to know in Poland. Without much talk, let’s walk you through the festivals.
New Year’s Eve Party in Poland
The New Year’s Eve celebration is carried out with a lot of excitement and enthusiasm worldwide. Similarly, in Poland too, people come together; organize exciting events, parties, and family gathering to celebrate this day. Also, the biggest open-air New Year’s Eve party in Poland is offered at the RynekGlowny arena of Krakow. This fantastic event culminates with a beautiful display of Lights and a Laser show at the night. It is always held on the 31st of December.
Easter Day Celebration
While Eater celebration is popular among the Christian religion, the festival in Poland is no exception. Moreover, Easter celebrations in Poland start about a week or ten days prior to Easter Sunday and end on Easter Monday. Also, this celebration is characterized by the preparation and buying of different kinds of handicrafts. The Easter celebrations always hold during April.
The Juwenalia is a term used in Poland to describe an annual holiday given to higher education students. This public holiday or celebration started in the 15th century in Krakow, and it’s celebrated every year before the student’s summer exams, either in May or early June. Also, they showcase this celebration in a standard format where the students appear in a colorful dress code parade at the beginning.
Baltic Days of Jewish Culture (Poland)
The Baltic days of Jewish culture began in June 1999, intending to promote the inculcation of Jewish values and preservation of Hebrew music, literature, and its poetry. Besides, it’s always a two days event that takes place in Gdansk where a number of different concerts, exhibitions, and Hebrew lessons, public meet and greet with Hebrew Authors, and many other cultural activities. This celebration always takes place during the first week of June.
Wianki Festival in Poland
The Wianki’s festival in Poland speaks more about the country’s cultural heritage and history. Aside from that, it traces their origin back to as early as the before Christ era. During this celebration, the rituals followed by ancient people in Wianki festivals included jumping over bonfires, fortune-telling, couples wandering together in the forest, and other exciting wonders to explore. Meanwhile, today’s manner of celebrating the Wianki includes musical concerts and cultural events.
Jewish Culture Festival in Poland
With about over 250 artists from Poland and from across the world, the Jewish cultural celebration is a lavish grand affair of musical and theatre genres. However, there are more than 200 events of Music and theatre organized at this festival every year to promote the Polish culture in grand style. This Jewish culture festival duration is up to ten days, and it’s popular among festivals in Poland.
Zielona Gora Wine Festival in Poland
The Zielona Gora Wine festival is related to the harvesting of Grapes from the local Vineyard. Not only that, but it also involves taking the grapes to breweries to produce wine. The first of its kind took place in October 1852, but nowadays, it takes place in the first or second week of September. And it’s always nine days celebration including folklore, street theatre, music concerts, and many others.
Pros and Cons of Moving to Poland
Moving to a new country is usually exciting, but you must know the benefits and the disadvantages of relocating to your choice of country. Moving to Poland is no doubt an incredible choice. Meanwhile, it might not be straightforward if you don’t have any connection to the country.
While a lot of people would tell you that Poland is distant, cold, excessively Catholic, conservative, poor, and rural country, some locals have revealed that Poland is even better than countries like the USA or EU. So, what do you think is the correct answer? Well, let’s find out to know more in this article.
Healthcare Cost in Poland
As of today’s digital world, Poland is considered relatively inexpensive when compared with other European countries. Aside from that, the average cost of goods, public transportation, renting an apartment, and having some drinks at any restaurant is considered cheaper than in western European countries.
According to the locals in Poland, the private healthcare system in Poland is considered to be affordable, even for foreigners moving to the country. The private hospitals are top-notch, and you can expect the highest caliber hospitals, equipment as educated medical professionals.
Getting Around in Poland
Getting around in Poland is relatively easy for expat compared to other European countries. If you’re an outdoor person, you would be able to participate in activities including mountains, kayaking, windsurfing, seaside biking, and many others, to mention a few. On the flip side, you can spend a lot of time indoors, as it is very cold outside in winter, and the days are somewhat shorter, as well.
Ideal Country for Expat
Several times, research and methodology have made it known that Poland is an ideal destination for expat. In fact, you can go anywhere in the country without a problem. And it’s effortless to travel inside Poland without spending a lot of money. Also, it’s full of history, and without a doubt the history of the country is fantastic.
Low Cost of Living
Expats have pointed that the low cost of living is one of the main advantages of living in the country as an expat. This factor, however, has been chosen by 70 percent of the respondents in the country. Besides, Poland is still perceived as a cheap country because the prices of many services and products are significantly lower than other part of Western Europe.
Also, the fact that foreigners are curious about Polish culture and want to get to know it is undoubtedly a delight because it enhances the understanding of the culture and promotes integration.
Employment Opportunities in Poland
One of the positive views of labour market in the eyes of foreigners is the employment opportunity in the country. As much as about 75 percent of the respondents point out the fact that working in Poland is an excellent opportunity to gain experience in an international environment, it’s the best destination as of today. Foreigners could have a high earning advantage, attractive working conditions, relocation packages, and many others, to mention a few.
Low Crime Rate
The criminality rate in Poland is considered generally low compared to the rest of Western Europe. Foreigners feel safe, day or night, and can walk freely around the cities without disturbance from the locals. This is why the low crime index of about 30.09 makes Poland an excellent destination for expats with families and friends. In addition, the country is barely facing any natural catastrophes like earthquakes, tornados, and many more.
Hospitality and Nature
Undoubtedly, Poles are very welcoming, friendly, and caring. In addition to this, the well-being of friends, guests, foreigners, and families is one of their main priorities. This means every person is always greeted gladly and has open arms. Also, you will feel at home and integrate quickly while you won’t be afraid of being left out. Moreover, you can go sightseeing and explore beautiful cities in the country.
While moving to this country for the first time, you should always prepare for the strict immigration rules and requirements. While Poland is a beautiful country with a very serene landscape, there are tons of immigration restrictions. With the COVID-19 pandemic, you should abide by the laws stated.
Expat moving to this country might experience an excessively complicated administrative procedure. Unlike other western countries, Poland has fantastic racism despite its friendly relationship with guests. So, if you’re coming to this country for the first time, be prepared for specific rules that could affect your stay if you’re not careful.
Getting a Visa for Poland
Getting a visa for Poland today is considered relatively straightforward. Moreover, nationals of the European Union (EU) and the European Free Trade Association, as well as the nationals of designated countries including Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and the U.S, are afforded visa-free entry to the country. And this visa lasts up to 90 days for business purposes or holidays.
On the flip side, travelers who do not fall into the above categories must apply for a Schengen visa to visit the country (Poland). At the same time, all travelers who do not fall in the above categories should get their valid passports for at least three months past the date of entry. Let’s quickly walk you through the Schengen visas for Poland, the residence permit, and others.
Schengen Visas Available for Poland
Those who apply for this kind of visa will need to gather the required documents, complete the visa application form, and submit them to the Polish consulate or embassy in their home country before they can travel. However, if you’re applying for a Schengen visa to travel to Poland, you should consider including a letter from your local employer stating the purpose of your visit.
In some cases, you may be asked to provide additional documents at the discretion of the Polish embassy or consulate. So, always know that it’s common for a person to be asked for proof of employment and residence in your home country to indicate that you’ll return home after the trip.
The residential permit for Poland is slated to last not more than 90 days for work, study, or family reasons. Also, applications for the residential land permit are meant to be made in the appropriate regional office where the expat intends to live in Poland. These kinds of visas are granted for a maximum of two years and can be subsequently renewed for a further two years.
Furthermore, expats moving to Poland may be asked to show proof of sufficient resources to support themselves financially while living in Poland and adequate health insurance for the duration of their stay. Meanwhile, once you’ve successfully submitted your residence permit application, you’ll receive a residence card that serves as a confirmation of your identity during your stay in Poland.
Poland pride itself on preserving its cultures and heritage. Aside from this fact mentioned, the country is steeped in history with a tricky language for foreigners to learn and some truly idyllic old towns. So, is there anything in Poland that expat doesn’t know? Well, find out here as we’ve unleashed some of the interesting facts about this great country.
Russian readers will cringe at the thought that vodka was invented in Russia but instead originated in Poland. To be sure, research made it known that the world’s first written mention of the drink and the word ‘vodka’ was in 1405 Poland. To add to that, spirits have been produced since the early middle ages.
Poland is known as the fourth-most forested country in Europe. With Bialowieza forest being the largest in the East of Poland is considered the home to Europe’s largest bison population.
Poland is known in the world as the largest exporter of amber. If you’re new to the word ‘Amber,’ you should understand that it’s a fossilized tree resin, valued as a gemstone used as a critical element in various types of jewelry items. Similarly, the variety of amber native to Poland is called Baltic amber which can be found on local beaches and seawater.
As of today’s digital world, this tradition still exists in Poland as they’re known among other European Union countries as the people that marry the youngest. Although marriage rates have decreased since the past decades, but the church has played a massive role in terms of shaping the beliefs and value system of the majority of Catholic living in Poland.
It’s only in Poland that you’ll see the name day celebration. This celebration, in many ways, has more significance to Polish residents than their actual birthdays. A good example is January 26th; the name Paulina and Wanda are acknowledged and celebrated.
Living in Poland can be a great adventure, but the country does have its advantages and disadvantages. Choosing to live in Poland is one of the best decisions, but it’s better to understand some of the concepts stated in this article. For more information, check here for relevant updates.