Moving to Slovakia: Things You Should Know to Streamline Your Move
If you are looking for a new life experience accomplished by delightful contrasts, Slovakia is a unique destination to consider!
Even in such a small space, there is a wealth of things to discover, from historical sites and natural wonders to vibrant folk culture and cutting-edge entertainment in bustling cities.
So, are you among those people who desire to start a new adventure in their life by moving to Slovakia? Then, experts at IMovingTo will guide you through all the obstacles associated with your relocation to the new country.
Things You Should Know About Slovakian Culture
Slovakia’s culture has been influenced by a variety of folk customs due to its position in Central Europe. Slovakia, which is deeply rooted in folk culture, has a long history of folk music and folk dancing. The strongly embedded folk traditions are a vital source of national pride and identity.
Due to the abundance of outdoor recreation prospects in Slovakia, a significant number of individuals are also quite active and athletic, dedicating their weekends to hiking, rock climbing, kayaking, or skiing.
The Slovaks are sentimental people. They feel the emotions associated with their happiness, accomplishments, disappointments, and sadness. They are truthful, cordial, extroverted, enthusiastic, and warm-hearted.
It is their tenacity and dependability that ultimately differentiate them from their neighboring countries. They can thoroughly comprehend the delights and concerns of their visitors and interact with them on a conscious level.
How Expensive Is Slovakia to Live In?
In comparison to Western European nations like Germany, France, the Netherlands, and Switzerland, Slovakia’s daily living expenses remain reasonable. If you work remotely in Slovakia, you can live quite comfortably, but if you make the average Slovak salary, you may have to adjust to the locals’ modest way of life.
Without housing, the anticipated monthly expenses for a single individual are $582. Slovakia has an average 43.36% cheaper cost of living than the USA. Local goods are generally inexpensive, while export products are sometimes out of reach for those on the minimum wage because of their generally higher prices.
Anticipated prices related to the general aspects of living in Slovakia are the following:
- One-bedroom apartment in the city center: $496.63
- One-bedroom apartment outside of the city center: $394.51
- Basic bills for a small apartment: $180.74
- Monthly transport pass: $24.47
- Three-course meal for a couple in a mid-range restaurant: $31.32
Visa Types & Requirements to Move to Slovakia
If they intend to spend longer than 90 days in Slovakia, citizens of the EU should apply for a residence permit. The Foreign Police Department is where you can accomplish this. You will be issued a permanent residence permit that is eligible for 5 years after your application has been processed.
There is no formal list of the documents that need to be presented, although most expats advise carrying the following papers:
- An identification document with a photo
- A copy of the employment agreement
- A copy of the rental agreement
- Form of application
- A passport photo
- Non-EU citizens might further be required to provide affirmation of visa
While non-EU citizens should apply for all three, EU citizens simply require a residence permit and don’t need a work permit or visa. Please keep in mind that a work visa does not serve as a substitute for a work permit; to be able to gain employment after arriving in Slovakia, you will still need to obtain a work permit.
Consult the embassy in your home country to learn more about the visa application procedure and the required documentation. The process differs based on where you are presently located and/or from where you obtained your visa.
Career Opportunities for Expats in Slovakia
Slovakia’s labor market is dynamic, and it’s not difficult to obtain work in major cities like Bratislava. The city of Bratislava is proud of its low unemployment rate, and many expats have reported having pleasant experiences there. These aspects make it a great setting for finding employment and gaining international experience.
Slovakia has a thriving industrial sector that has long been recognized. International companies like T-Mobile and Orange have also set up headquarters in Slovakia, as have well-known telecommunications companies like IBM and Lenovo.
Keep in mind that most of the international communication in Bratislava is in English. However, due to Slovakia’s geographical proximity to Austria and Germany, German is also often used in business.
Here are the most frequently used job platforms in Slovakia:
Furthermore, you can take advantage of Internationals Bratislava, a volunteer initiative serving expats that offers career advice, and a list of jobs in Slovakia that are not in Slovene.
How to Obtain a Work Permit?
EU citizens may work legally in Slovakia without submitting a work permit application. However, they should register with specific authorities within the first week of employment.
The Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs and the Ministry of Labor, Social Affairs, and Family both provide work permits and residency permits to non-EU nationals.
Before applying for a residence permit, you should submit a work permit application, and you will need to show proof of employment when applying for the residence permit. After submitting your application, it may take up to 1 month before you receive your permit.
Healthcare System & Health Insurance
All citizens and residents of Slovakia have access to a free healthcare system. Depending on their income, citizens will contribute to their health insurance coverage. The Slovakian health insurance policies are also available to expatriates, remote workers, and citizens of other EU nations as long as they pay into the national insurance system.
The level of medical care, facilities, and equipment fall short of that of other European nations. As a result, some expats may decide to receive medical care in Vienna.
It is recommended to obtain a comprehensive international health insurance plan that covers airlifting and evacuation abroad in a medical emergency. Cigna Global and Allianz International provide some of the best foreign insurance plans, and both public and private hospitals in Slovakia usually accept their policies.
How to Move Your Household Goods in Slovakia?
Moving abroad to Slovakia can cost anywhere between $2,000 and $12,000 depending on several variables, including the length of the relocation, the distance traveled, the route taken, and the kind of transportation used. When relocating to Slovakia, there are specific taxes and fees that need to be paid, and you may face a fine if you don’t follow the rules.
You should present customs with your passport, a customs declaration, and a letter of employment. You should also submit a detailed inventory with a list of monetary values, your signature, and the date. It may be necessary to write this inventory in both Slovak and English.
How do Expats Manage their Finances in Slovakia?
Slovakia has a great variety of banks, all of which provide customers with competitive services and offers, ranging from current and savings accounts to business accounts and online banking. Most banks in the nation are owned internationally and have many branches with English-speaking employees.
In Slovakia, a few well-known banks are:
- Slovenska Sporitelna
- Tatra Bank
- VUB Bank
As long as you have access to all relevant paperwork, the entire process of opening a bank account as a non-resident is quite simple in Slovenia if you provide:
- A current passport
- A national ID
- Proof of address
- Proof of residency
Limits may differ when it comes to cash withdrawals depending on whether your home bank has previously set one. When you withdraw money abroad, your existing withdrawal limits will still be in effect. If you don’t have a set withdrawal quota, though, the ATM provider’s policies will receive priority.
Best Places to Live in Slovakia
Bratislava is the cultural center of Slovakia and the residence of many different nationalities. It is the most urbanized city in Slovakia and has vibrant industrial and commercial advancement. There are many interesting historical sites to roam about and investigate in the old town, which has a charming appearance.
Kosice has an extremely diverse population in terms of culture. In 2013, it was named the cultural capital of Europe. Kosice is the oldest and second-largest city in Slovakia and the main industrial hub and administrative center of eastern Slovakia. As a result, both residents and expats will have no trouble obtaining employment.
For eastern Slovakia, Presov serves as a key regional administrative center. In Presov, there are a lot of castles, swimming pools, and other tourist attractions. The older section features a variety of contemporary architecture. It still has the opal and salt mines that made it famous in the past.
Many expats are inspired by the Trencin Castle and the general historical significance of the city. Baroque-style churches and structures are everywhere in the city’s traditional square. Local boutiques, art galleries, and craft stores can also be found here. The rich social life and local history of Trencin are fascinating.
Pros & Cons of Moving to Slovakia
Great location within Europe
The strategic location of Slovakia is the country’s greatest asset. Great European capitals are nearby if you enjoy traveling, including Prague, Budapest, and Vienna, which are all within 4 hours by rail, 3 hours by bus, and 1 hour by train, respectively. You can arrange the ideal weekend plans to explore each of them.
You can take pleasure in a little of everything in Slovakia. For those who truly appreciate nature, the wonderful Slovak countryside offers mountains for hiking, clean air, a wide variety of caves, and several campgrounds. Slovakia has a lot of lakes, so summertime lake swimming is quite popular here.
You’ll adore exploring Slovakia’s regional cuisine, especially if you love meat and dairy. Various traditional delicacies are worth trying, and the local poultry and cheeses are excellent.
Drinks from Slovakia deserve to be mentioned separately. There are further local non-alcoholic drinks to discover. The wines, beers, and spirits, however, are the most fascinating.
Weather with no middle ground
There are just 2 seasons in Slovakia: summer and winter. It can be difficult to handle the winter when the temperature can fall to 15 below zero, and the summer, when it can rise to 40 degrees Celsius. There sometimes seems to be no middle ground as the cold sets in quickly once the summer ends.
The unfamiliar rhythm of life
You should adapt to unfamiliar customs and a new schedule if you are from a European nation like Greece or Italy. The kitchens of the vast majority of restaurants are already closed by 10 o’clock. Moreover, you have to run all of your chores in the morning since many stores close at about 6 p.m.
As you can see, Slovakia is a nation of contrasts since everything from urban settlements to pristine surroundings changes swiftly directly in front of your eyes.
Take advantage of the international relocation services provided by IMovingTo and enjoy the unique atmosphere as well as the natural beauty Slovakia has to offer!