Guiri Guest: Arian Alexander Danilovic
I moved to Prague four years ago after an exciting string of job assignments taking me to Russia, S. Korea, Canada, Kazakhstan and the USA. Having grown up in a number of cities across North America, I was looking forward to settling down in a city, getting to know it and become a part of it. It’s become clear that Prague was the right choice for me and I look forward to sharing my experiences with you.
If you have read my previous post about the Non-EU citizen process for obtaining a visa, you will know that it’s not a walk in the park. Luckily, for citizens of the 27 countries within the EU, the process is very straightforward and relatively painless. As an EU citizen, you are allowed to reside and work in the Czech Republic on an indefinite basis, with or without employment. Quite simply, your primary responsibility is to go to the Foreigner’s Police Department (Newly the Ministry of Interior) and register yourself in the Czech Republic. To do that, you will need an address in the Czech Republic (Signed and notarized by your landlord / owner of the flat) and proof of Health Insurance from your home country.
As of January 2011, there were many changes concerning the legislation and overall organization. In general, it has become much harder for non-EU citizens to reside and live in the Czech Republic; The process of issuing foreigners resident visas has been taken over by the Ministry of the Interior and the Police Department only has a supporting role; Offices / locations have been re-organized and assigned based on your residence in Prague. However, the process itself and supporting documentation itself has not changed fundamentally.
The location I visited is located at Koněvova 188/32 in Prague 3, Žižkov (Responsible for Prague 1,3,6,7,8,9). The trick here is that there are two entrances, one for EU citizens and permanent residents and one for first time applicants from non-EU countries. As you approach the building, you will likely see an unimaginably long line of people outside who are waiting under the supervision of some police. Luckily, if you are an EU citizen or permanent resident, this line is not for you. Be very happy.
Interestingly, the entrance is titled ‘Služební Vchod’ which translates into English as ‘Official Entrance.’ Don’t worry about that, trust the little EU flags and follow the signs. Once you enter the main room there is a ticket dispensing machine that will provide you a number. Lines here are always reasonable and the staff is polite and helpful (so long as you are also polite). You should be able to complete your registration within one hour.
Please remember that anytime you have a status change – marriage, change of address, etc., be sure to let the ministry know ASAP.
The following two links are both official and very helpful in terms of getting the latest information:
- General updated information: http://www.mvcr.cz/mvcren/article/changes-in-conditions-for-the-entry-and-stay-on-the-territory-of-the-czech-republic-under-preparation-for-2011.aspx
- Office locations: http://www.mvcr.cz/mvcren/article/prague.aspx
Information for Non-EU citizens here.