By Residence Angels
Relocation Company in Poland

Moving to Poland from US

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Who can move to Poland from US?

US citizens are permitted to stay in Poland and other Schengen area countries for a maximum of 90 days within any period of 180 days without a visa. Travel to Poland can be undertaken using only an American passport. Americans do not need tourist visas for Poland. However, for stays exceeding 90 days, it is necessary to obtain a national type D visa through the Polish Embassy.

Citizens of non-EU countries are allowed to enter Poland without a visa, provided their passports qualify for this exemption. The following countries' citizens, for example, are eligible for visa-free entry into Poland:
If you are a citizen of country which is not on that list, you have to apply fo visa in the embassy of Poland in US.

How to Immigrate to Poland from USA?

Upon arriving in Poland from the US and intending to stay beyond the 90-day visa-free allowance, securing a temporary residence permit is essential. This permit must align with your specific reason for staying, such as employment, business activities, academic pursuits, family ties, or other temporary grounds. For US citizens considering a move to Poland, acquiring this permit is a vital part of the process.

Although US citizens are received favorably in Poland, they are governed by the same immigration regulations that apply to non-EU nationals. Consequently, for stays exceeding 90 days, Americans are required to undergo the standard procedure for obtaining the necessary residence permit, just like citizens from other non-EU countries. To ensure adherence to Polish immigration rules, it's advisable to initiate this process well before the 90-day limit expires.
Follow our calendar to book a consultation with our Immigration Specialist: (CALENDLY)

Residence Permit Process

As you prepare for your stay in Poland, it's crucial to start gathering all required documents well ahead of time. This is particularly important because certain documents, such as a letter from a university dean or a tax statement from the tax office, may require additional time to acquire. The specific documents needed can vary based on the nature of your residence permit application and the city where you're applying in Poland.

You can find a comprehensive list of these required documents on the website of the local immigration office. It's vital to consult this list to make sure you're collecting all the paperwork necessary for your particular situation and in accordance with the city-specific requirements where you will be applying.

For tailored assistance and to get a precise list of documents for your specific case, we invite you to collaborate with us. Feel free to contact our sales manager at the provided number for detailed guidance and support as you navigate the process of obtaining your residence permit in Poland.

1. Registration of Appointment for residence permit application

It's advisable to schedule an appointment prior to beginning the document collection process. This strategy ensures you allocate sufficient time to compile all required documents. The interval between booking the appointment and the actual appointment date usually spans from 1 to 4 months. For instance, in Warsaw, the waiting period is typically 10 to 45 days, in Szczecin about 30 days, and in Poznań, it ranges from 14 to 30 days. However, certain Immigration Offices, like those in Katowice or Opole, operate differently by not offering appointment registration. In these locations, individuals must send their documents via post and then await an invitation for an appointment. It's important to note that once you've applied for a residence permit, your stay in Poland is considered legal from that moment onwards.

2. Submission of residence permit application

Once you've gathered all required documents, it's recommended to submit the full set on your scheduled appointment date. Relying on the inspector to point out any missing documents is not advisable, as they might unintentionally miss notifying you about certain requirements. The onus of making sure your application for a residence permit is complete and correct lies entirely on you. Being meticulous and proactive in handling your application is key to preventing any delays or issues during the process.

3. Police and Border Guard verification

Authorities are tasked with verifying the authenticity of your stay in Poland. This involves checks on your living arrangements and workplace. The police may visit your registered address to confirm that you are residing there. Additionally, the Border Police are responsible for ensuring that your workplace adheres to the regulations for legal employment. These checks are part of the standard procedure to ensure that all residency and employment conditions are being met according to Polish law.

4. Acceleration of procedure

Accelerating the process of your residence permit application may appear to be a routine option, but it is indeed possible under specific conditions. To achieve this, your application needs to be comprehensive and flawless, satisfying all the requisite criteria. Additionally, it's important to provide a compelling justification for why your application deserves expedited processing compared to the multitude of others. Our office is equipped to aid you in crafting persuasive motivational letters and in keeping track of the status of your application, ensuring it progresses efficiently.

Documentation to travel to Poland as an American

As a U.S. passport holder entering Poland, you are required to present the following documents:
  1. A Valid U.S. Passport: This passport should have been issued within the last ten years. It must be valid for at least three months beyond your planned departure from Poland and contain at least two blank pages.
  2. Proof of Return Ticket: You need to provide evidence of your travel itinerary, including dates of entry and planned departure from Poland.
  3. Proof of Purpose of Entry: Documents that clearly indicate the reason for your travel to Poland, such as business, tourism, study, or visiting friends and family.
  4. Proof of Accommodation: Evidence of where you will stay in Poland, which can be a hotel or apartment booking, or an invitation letter if you are staying with friends or relatives.
  5. Proof of Sufficient Financial Means: Documentation proving that you have adequate funds to support yourself during your stay in Poland. This could include bank statements or a letter from a sponsor.
  6. Travel Insurance for Poland: A travel medical insurance policy covering a minimum of €30,000 (approximately $33,000 as of December 2023) for any medical emergencies or accidents in Poland.
  7. ETIAS Authorization (Starting from 2025): This is an electronic travel authorization required for visa-exempt non-EU travelers entering the Schengen Area, including Poland. It will become a requirement starting in 2025.
Ensure you have these documents prepared and readily available to present upon your arrival in Poland to comply with the entry requirements.

How to work in Poland as an American?

American citizens living in Poland are under the same regulations as most other non-EU nationals. Should an American desire to work in Poland and not qualify for work permit exemptions (like students, graduates, or those with permanent residency in Poland), they need to secure a work permit. In this case, it's the employer's responsibility to approach the Immigration Office and provide all the required documentation for the American employee. Generally, the process of obtaining a work permit in Poland may take as long as three months.

Moving to Poland with Polish spouse

If you're married to a Polish citizen and have lived continuously in Poland for a minimum of two years under a temporary residence permit due to your marriage, and it's been more than three years since you were married, you should think about applying for a permanent residence permit. It's important to be aware of this before arriving in Poland, as the count towards the required residence period begins from your first day of entry. Therefore, when you relocate to Poland with your spouse, it's advisable to apply for a Temporary Residence Permit as soon as you arrive. This early application is crucial for starting the process of establishing your eligibility for eventual permanent residency.

Moving to Poland from US PROS and CONS

Moving to Poland as an American: REDDIT SAYS

Mark's story:
Wrocław is an incredible city, full of energy and a friendly, relaxed vibe, particularly popular among business professionals and the younger, university-going crowd.
Given its status as a well-developed urban area, Wrocław boasts various running groups, from local community clubs to international brands like Adidas Runners or New Balance Run Club. It also offers universities for seniors, providing numerous activities and educational opportunities. Thus, socializing and making friends here should be fairly easy, though the language might be a hurdle. The older population primarily speaks German or Russian. Living in Wrocław is definitely more affordable compared to California, though much depends on one’s financial reserves. Direct family members can apply for essential paperwork, simplifying processes for non-EU nationals like Americans, especially for stays exceeding 90 days. They can also independently contribute to social security, particularly the health sector. However, they might not be eligible for benefits such as a retirement pension.
Overall, Wrocław offers a vibrant and welcoming environment for all ages, balancing its business-centric ethos with a rich array of social and educational opportunities.
Kevin's story:
Moving to a new place like Poland is a challenging experience filled with numerous adjustments, but settling in a city like Wrocław should be quite manageable. Making Polish friends might take some time, but there's a diverse community of Anglophone migrants, expats, and others who may not speak English as their first language. Your friends will likely become adept at communicating with a wide range of people, which is quite an exciting skill to develop. Engaging in activities like hiking or joining running groups can also be great ways to connect with others.
I recommend they start learning Polish, even at a slow pace. Regular language classes, perhaps once or twice a week, could be very beneficial. There might be classes available at a university in Wrocław. Polish, like other Slavic languages, is challenging but certainly learnable. Mastering the basics can boost their confidence, and Polish people generally appreciate the effort put into learning their language. While my experience in Kraków won't be exactly like theirs, I made some of my friends – an Iranian woman, a Hungarian Erasmus student, an Indian grad student, and a Ukrainian woman – through various encounters and a Polish language class at the Jagiellonian University.
Though I've only visited Wrocław briefly, I found it absolutely beautiful and would consider moving there myself. I know a few people who studied there, and I'm even contemplating it for my PhD. For context, I'm a 48-year-old U.S. master's student who moved to Kraków a year ago on a spontaneous opportunity. I'm currently completing my degree mostly online. It's been the best decision I've ever made. I'd certainly encourage them to go for it!