One of the most visited places outside Krakow is “Wieliczka” salt mine. In 1978 the mine was placed on the original UNESCO list of the World Heritage Sites. It has a very long history – being built in the 13th century, it produced salt until 2007 – making it one of the oldest salt mines in operation in Europe. On this tour, you will go underground and explore the saline chambers. There are few routes divided into special main themes e.g. Mysteries of the Wieliczka Mine, “God Bless” Pilgrims’ and challenging Miners’ Route.
Wieliczka salt mine is a breath-taking experience for everyone. You should note it down on your list “Must do” in Poland!


1 April – 31 October: 7.30am – 7.30 pm
2 November – 31 March: 8 am – 5 pm
It is a good idea to always check whether Wieliczka is open or not as it sometimes closes for a variety of reasons.

How to get there:

  • By train – from the Main Railway Station in Krakow to the Rynek Kopalnia train station;
  • By bus – number 304 departs from mall Galeria Krakowska at the stop called Wieliczka Koplania Soli;
  • By minivan – departing from Main Railway Station in Krakow. Your stop is called Wieliczka Rynek.

Polish tour – regular 52zl per person, discount* 38zl per person
Foreign tour – regular 75zl per person, discount* 60zl per person

Poland in the last few years has become an interesting touristic destination not only for stag and hen parties but also for families and people looking for something else than a standard Mediterranean coastal experience. According to the Mondial Assistance research, 74% of Poles choose a holiday in Poland. And they are not wrong. With relatively low prices of food, drinks and entertainment Poland has something for everyone. But what is the real cost of spending your holidays in Poland? That, of course, depends on the exact location and your need for luxury. 

Cost of holiday accommodation depending on the region 

Baltic sea holiday cost 

Baltic Sea is the perfect holiday spot for family and couples.

Baltic Sea is by far the favourite domestic destination of Polish people. Hotels get booked early and despite unpredictable weather (you can have the most beautiful, hot and sunny two weeks of your life or the most miserable never-ending days of rain) the seaside is always full. The price of a standard hotel in Ustka, if booked for a week costs around 300 PLN per day per person (£60 / 65 Euro). In Mielno (one of the most popular seaside towns) a night can cost you even 500PLN in the high season. However, if you decide to go before school holidays (for example early June or September) you are looking at paying 50% less for the same accommodation. 

Cost of holidays in the Polish mountains

Tatras are one of the biggest tourist attractions in Poland. You can choose to stay in traditional mountain houses and rent the whole little house for yourself and your family from 1500 PLN per week.

They are a few different mountain ranges in Poland so you have a lot to choose from. In Tatras, you are looking at around 450 to 500 PLN per room for a hotel in Zakopane. However, there are many very attractive packages that can give you a much nicer experience for the same money. Make sure that you check out SPA hotels in the region as the same money can buy you not only a stay but also breakfast and additional treatments. 

In Karkonosze and Beskid Sadecki accommodation is more scare so the prices are on average about 10% more expensive than in Tatras (of course there are exceptions to this rule and you may be lucky). One night stay costs on average 550 – 600 PLN. 

Cost of holiday in Mazury, Polish Lake District 

Finally, if you are planning to visit Mazury a very nice hotel may cost you even 600 PLN. There are much cheaper options, for example, organic farms offer stays from 400 PLN in the high season. You may also consider renting a sailing boat and sleeping there or going back to nature and camping in the forest.  

The Lake District in Poland can be quite expensive in high season but prices drop over 50% outside the summer holidays.

Cost of city breaks in Poland

It’s very easy to find accommodation in every Polish city, town and even village. Price, of course, depends on the level of offered luxury, but hostels start from 35 – 50 PLN, cheap hotels can be booked for as little as 100 PLN and a high-end hotel may cost you anything between 200 and 300 PLN. Of course, five stars hotels will be much more expensive.  

Food cost

Irrespectively from the place you are going to spend your holiday you also need to calculate the cost of food. Thankfully eating out in Poland is very reasonably priced so a budget between 100 to 150 PLN per person should be more than sufficient (obviously if you choose to eat in more expensive restaurants your daily budget will have to accommodate for that too). It is definitely possible to spend less on food and drink but you may need to get cleaver about your choices and rather than picking up a restaurant located at the heart of the market square look at more hidden dinners. 

Polish food is definitely one of the best parts of the holiday in Poland.

What is the cost of a week holiday in Poland? 

As always everything depends on your choice, but let’s take averages into consideration. 

A low budget holiday in Poland should be possible for 1000 PLN assuming that you would stay in hostels and choose to eat in cheap dinners. 

A mid-range holiday experience will cost you probably more than 2500 PLN per person in high season. A nice hotel and really good food and plenty of drinks can be expected for this amount. 

Finally, a luxurious one week holiday in high season will come up to 5000 PLN but you can expect excellent accommodation, either in four or five-star hotel or SPA hotel and eating in the best restaurants. 

Knowing how much money roughly you may need leaves you only with a decision about where to spend your next holiday in Poland. You may want to check out the exceptional places in Poland section on our website or alternatively the city guides if you are thinking of a Polish city getaway. And if you an explorer you should definitely read about places in Poland that you have never heard about.

Mazury, Poland’s largest Lake District covers over 2000 lakes connected with each other through small streams and rivers. This magnificent region is often referred to as the land of thousand lakes stretches over 200 miles and is currently regarded as one of the favourite tourist destinations in Poland. It’s the perfect holiday spot for people looking for outdoor activities or people who are seeking to be close to nature, crave some tranquillity and need a break from busy city life. 

Mazury is often called the land of thousand lakes

Mazury is home to several resort towns and organic farms that offer accommodation. Alternatively, you may decide to stay on a sailing ship or go to basics and camp in the forest. Either way is great to explore the Great Masurian Lake District.  

Best time of the year to visit Mazury 

Every time of the year is good to visit Mazury but of course, everything depends on what you are looking for. Summer is obviously the busiest time of the year to visit Polish Lake District as lots of people want to spend their summer holidays by the lakes, either sailing or sunbathing, swimming and relaxing. However, if you still want to enjoy warm weather but avoid the hustle and bustle of the summer period then you should book your stay around September when there are fewer visitors around. 

Spring and autumn are great if you like to hike or you are looking for a relaxing break from your daily life. Additionally, autumn offers the opportunity to experience wild mushroom hunting which is one of the most favourite Polish activities. 

Finally, winter can be also wonderful if spent in Mazury. Of course, the majority of people would choose mountains (Tatras or Bieszczady) but this is a great opportunity to be alone and pay a bargain for accommodation. 

How to get to Mazury

Mazury can be easily reached from anywhere in Poland

The Great Masurian Lake District is located in the northeastern part of the country and is three hours drive from Warsaw. If passing through Warsaw, the best way to get to Mazury is by train. However, you can get there by bus, car and plane as there are scheduled flights from the capital to Olsztyn-Mazury Airport. In addition, during the summer peak period, there are plenty of various flight connections that make the area more accessible to tourists. Some airlines like Wizzair and Ryanair offer affordable flights. Do check out this website for up to date public transport details and connections from major Polish cities to Mazury.  

Places to Stay in Mazury

Mazury has several accommodation options which range from luxurious hotels to affordable B&Bs. If you are looking for a luxurious place to stay, you could try one of the boutique hotels like Gallery 69, Hotel Mikolajki and Masuria Arte. If you are more of a green, nature-focused person, you could stay in one of the beautiful organic farms. Kwasne Jabiko and Siedlisko Bianki are two farms that offer an exciting agritourism experience with organic food and a friendly atmosphere. Spa resorts like Przystan Hotel and Spa as well as the Glendoria are popular spas that offer a very relaxing stay in Mazury. Finally, if you want to be more independent and looking for accommodation for bigger number of people you can choose to rent Airbnb. 

What to do in Mazury – outdoors activity guide 

Sailing is one of the biggest attractions in Mazury

Polish Lake District is heaven for anyone looking for outdoor activities. Of course, the main attraction of the region is water sports – sailing, canoeing, water skiing and swimming but there is so much more that you can do in Mazury. The region is home to many species of plants, birds and animals (lookout for rare Mute Swans in Luknajno!) that are unique to the Lake District so hiking is highly advisable. Another option is to rent a bike and explore forests surrounding the lakes. Both hiking and biking are great if you want to visit some exciting sightseeing sides – old castles and historical buildings hidden in different parts of the region.

Finally, finishing and mushroom hunting are a very popular choice of spending relaxing time surrounded by nature and tranquillity. 

Places and towns to visit in Mazury

On top of all the outdoors activities, Mazury is also home to some enhancing little towns and villages. Miklajki is a sailing village that is filled with souvenir shops, restaurants and bars. This location is regarded as ‘a must visit’ by many tourists. Another good option is Mragowo which is one of the most beautiful towns in the area. Finally also worth visiting are Reszel castle, as well as the Rezerwat Zakret. 

Irrespectively of your choice, Mazury is definitely worth visiting and exploring, especially in warm months. 

Finding the perfect Christmas gift can be challenging but buying a splendid Christmas gift related to Poland is even harder. Lots of people are looking for traditional Polish Christmas gifts or presents somehow relevant in the context of Poland. To help you with your present hunt we’ve curated a list of Christmas presents that anyone who likes Poland, is Polish or perhaps is yet to learn about Poland will appreciate.

Traditional Polish Christmas gifts

Polish food gifts

The most important topic around Christmas is food and what better way to start out Christmas shopping list than with Polish food must-haves. Food heritage is very strong in Poland and it’s a part of the Polish identity. If you live in Poland, getting the items from the list will be easy, you just need to go to your local shop or worst case scenario, to a bigger supermarket. If you are living abroad, you may be lucky and have a Polish shop (‘Polski schlep’) in your neighbourhood. For all of you who are not in this fortunate situation, we got you covered. You can buy all the product featured in this list online to get it delivered to your doorstep. Or even better, try to make some of it yourself to share with your family and friends. Merry Christmas.

Polish sweets

Sweets are the obvious choice when it comes to Christmas gifts. They are the perfect company to other presents or a great gift on its own, especially for someone with a smaller budget or as a gift for Secret Santa. You can also make it yourself, for example, classic Polish gingerbreads are always a good idea. Here are a few Polish classics that can’t go wrong.


Tik Taki

Ptasie Mleczko

Polish savoury treats

If you want to get a present for someone who doesn’t like sweets (I know, crazy!) you can always opt for some other Polish specialities like wild mushrooms, honey, traditional Polish cheese (called ‘oscypek’) or sausages and good quality Polish meats. The trick here is that the majority of fresh produce is only available in shops and not online. We included some specialities available online if you don’t have access to a’Polski sklep’.

Polish wild Mushrooms


Unpasteurized Polish Honey

Polish vodka

No matter who or where you are, you can’t have a Christmas without the delicious taste of true Polish Vodka. Their are a lot of associations to make with Polish culture but Vodka would be a very far up the list. In case you can’t source your favourite one locally, we got you covered. Order them here online.


Black Zubrowka

Heizelnut Vodka

Cherry Vodka

Polish books

If you want to get a gift that is not going to be consumed within a few days or weeks, books are usually a great idea. Here are a few examples of Polish books, with topics ranging from culinary to travel and general novels. Great books with a collection of beautiful photos from Poland are a magnificent idea for you to show your friends the real Poland with its beautiful cities, divers countrysides and grand mountain area. Finally, the fiction books showcase some of the most famous Polish books that also became appreciated outside Poland.

Polish cookbooks

Polska: New Polish Cooking

Modern Polish Recipes

Old Polish Traditions

Famous Polish fiction and nonfiction books


by Stanisław Lem


by Olga Tokarczuk

The Soccer War

by Ryszard Kapuscinski

Prints and pictures of Poland

Gorgeous Polish photos and prints that compliment your interior and are that real eye-catcher and great conversation starter. Is there anything better than a beautiful picture of Poland?


Christmas Presents for pierogi lovers

There are people out there that truly love pierogi, probably you know one or two of them yourself. The good news is that it’s easy to get them an awesome present. There are plenty of useful and funny pierogi gadgets out there. (The bad news is that they will want to eat or steal your pierogi from you, so be careful).

Pierogi mould

Love Pierogi Glass Coaster

Pierogi: More Than a Book


Polish Christmas present for a football fan

It’s often hard to buy a present for a guy but if they like football here are some ideas for Christmas gifts.


Funny Polish Christmas gift ideas

If you are buying a present for someone with a sense of humour, why not get something funny? One of the famous Polish quirks is to always offer a pair of slippers to a guest so if you know someone who does this, a brand new pair of slippers could be a great gift idea. Another funny present could be a one of these silly t-shirt.


Other ideas for Polish Christmas presents

If you don’t like any of the previous Christmas gift ideas this is your last chance.

The masterpiece of Chopin


Travel guide

Record player

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Moving to a new country or city pretty much always means finding a new place to live. If you decided to relocate to Poland you should start thinking and actively looking for your accommodation in Poland sooner rather than later and leaving it to the last minute. It’s not easy to find something suitable that will meet your expectations, especially if you don’t speak Polish. This article will help you with the process of finding and renting a flat (or a room). We will cover information about different accommodation types, average rent prices in different cities and provide you with some tips that will make the task of finding your home in Poland much easier.

Prices of renting accommodation in different cities in Poland

With no doubt the cost of accommodation in Poland is lower than in France, Spain, Great Britain or Germany, however, in the last few years rent prices have been rising and are expected to continue to grow. Of course the monthly rent depends on many factors: location, type of accommodation, number of rooms and standard of the property to name just few. The most expensive properties are located in Warsaw, Wroclaw and Krakow, while in Lodz, Poznan and Gdansk flats can be rented cheaper.

The below infographic prepared by Pepe Housing shows average accommodation prices in different Polish cities. Price brackets depend on the size and location of the property. For example, newly refurbished room in the city center of Warsaw will be more expensive than a standard looking room located 20 minutes from the heart of the city.
average flat and room prices in different Polish cities

Types of accommodation in Poland

Public and private dormitories in Poland

If you are a student, one of the best options for you may be staying in a public or private dormitory. This is the cheapest option, however the number of available places is usually limited and very often the standard is low or mediocre when it comes to public dormitories provided by universities. In larger Polish cities you can find private dormitories, but there are not many of them and sometimes prices can be almost as high as for a room in a private apartment. The best thing about dormitories is that you get to meet lots of people and you get to experience a real student life.

Shared accommodation in Poland

Sharing a flat with other people is common in Poland and most students or young professionals choose to flat share at least until they are able to afford to live alone or to buy a flat. As always, prices depend on the size, standard and location of the flat. The properties in Poland are usually furnished so there is no need to organise multiple trips to Ikea if you’re fine with the offered standard.

Private flats

If you can afford to rent a flat by yourself then probably this is your preferred option. Be careful with the flat ads. In Poland living rooms are counted as ‘rooms’ opposite to for example the UK where one bed flat means one bedroom AND a living room. You can find flats that are fully furnished (which is the most common) and flats that are pretty much empty except the kitchen and bathroom appliances. It’s not common to negotiate the price, but you can always try your luck.

Things to avoid and pay attention to when you are looking for a flat in Poland

Poland is no different to other countries when it comes to finding and renting accommodation. There are a few important things you should pay attention to and if you are careful you shouldn’t have any problems with renting and even more importantly leaving your accommodation. The below infographic presents five important rules that you should follow to rent a flat safely.

In addition to the advices above, remember to always use common sense when choosing a flat and carefully read the rental agreement.

Where to find accommodation offers

There are some services in Poland where you can find offers of flats and room for rent.

Pepe Housing – Pepe Housing is a marketplace that connects landlords with international students or working professionals from abroad. On the website you will find hundreds of verified offers with pictures, videos or 3D walks. If you are coming for only a few months this is a great place to look for accommodation as landlords agree to rent for shorter periods of time. The reservation and payment process is done online and is fully secure. Poland Unraveled is the partner of the Pepe Housing, so you are welcome to use UNRAV10 promo code to receive 10% off your booking fee. You can apply your code during the reservation process.

OLX, Gumtree, Gratka – on these websites you will find large numbers of offers from landlords and real estate agencies. A potential obstacle for people who do not speak Polish yet is to communicate with landlords as many of them have difficulties communicating in English. Another potential obstacle can be rental period – most of the landlords agree to rent the property only for 10-12 months, so if you are coming to study in Poland for one semester, it may be difficult to convince the owner to sign a contract for a short period.

University page – if you are a student it may be a good idea to check your university website as most of the universities share information about accommodation and allow people to post flat and room rental offers directly on their forums. Also information about public dormitories should be available there.

Renting a flat in Poland when your are an expat or a student

If you are a person from abroad and you are looking for accommodation in Poland, you may find some difficulties like language barrier or reluctance of landlords to rent for shorter periods of time. As it is very important where you are going to live, we advice you to start your research before your arrival to Poland. The sooner you start looking for a flat, the greater the chance that you will find an offer that meets your expectations.

Studying in Poland as a foreign student has a lot of benefits, including giving you the right to work. Foreign students, both EU and non-EU, can work in Poland without any necessary bureaucratic procedures. However, as always, there are certain things that you need to be aware of to not lose your rights. The best practices, if followed, will maximise your chance of finding a good job that will make you happy and provides you with some additional budget necessary to enjoy Poland to the fullest.

Foreign students don’t need a working permit

Let’s start with the most important topic – you do not need to apply for a working permit, even if you are a non-EU citizen (if you need more reassurance here is the legal stand of the Polish government regarding people who do not need a working permit). As always there is a catch – to not need a working permit you need to hold a valid residence permit given you on the basis of your studies in Poland and to apply for it you can’t be working. In simple words, don’t sign any employment contract before your resident permit is finalised otherwise you can’t apply for it. If you have a job you will need to apply for the residence permit through your work and this path is much more complicated.

It’s important to know that you can legally have a full-time job while studying. Of course, it may be too much, but it’s up to you, there is no maximum limit of hours that you can work a week.

Your working rights after graduation

One of the greatest things about graduating in Poland is that you don’t need to apply for a working permit to work in Poland. You can stay in Poland and keep working as long as you wish.

Types of jobs that are best suited for foreign students

There is a high probability that you don’t speak Polish. It’s not the end of the world, but it also means that a lot of jobs may be not available to you. However, you can change this disadvantage into your strength. There are plenty of jobs best suited to native speakers. Here are some ideas:

  • Native speaker – you can earn a lot of money by teaching kids and adults your native tongue, English, Spanish and German are the most popular, but in bigger cities, you will find people keen to learn Chinese, Japanese and Dutch
  • call centres – your language skills will be loved in any call centre
  • IT jobs – your ability to speak Polish will probably not matter, it’s important that you can code and communicate in English
  • Hospitality – in big cities like Warsaw or Krakow English may be enough to get you a job in hospitality
  • Part time jobs managed by work agencies – this type of work usually request some kind of physical work, but you probably won’t need Polish for it. Sometimes you can land an exciting and fun job, think – Christmas elf and decorating Christmas trees in the supermarkets

Is it easy to find a job in Poland as a student?

The simple answer is that it depends. If you live in a big city it’s quite easy to find something suitable. In some of the metropolis, the unemployment rate is around 2-3% so the outlooks are very positive. However, if you are in a smaller place your options may be limited. Stay positive and keep applying.

Additional resources

Before you say yes to your first job in Poland learn about different types of employment contracts and check out current salaries in Poland to know what to expect.

Christmas in Poland

If you’re reading this content that means that you’re, either preparing yourself for the upcoming Christmas season and you don’t want to get surprised by Polish celebrations, or you’re just using your mobile phone in the middle of the Christmas dinner because you saw so many “weird” things and you were asked so many different questions, that Poland Unraveled is your last hope. Don’t worry, either way, we’ve got your back. This guide has all the essential information you need to indulge and fully appreciate the Polish Christmas culture (and if you are interested in Christmas food, you can read our Polish Christmas dinner and dishes guide).

Polish Christmas traditions – the handy guide to indulge in Polish Christmas live

Religious aspect of Christmas in Poland

As you might know, Poland is a very religious country. Many traditions and customs originate from Christianity. Although there are some traditions that developed just in Poland and have nothing to do with religion.

Christmas Holidays commemorate the birth of Jesus Christ. The night before is called ‘Wigilia’ and the three week period prior to the Christmas celebrations is called Advent. The main part of Wigilia is a solemn, family supper, which starts right after the appearance of the first star in the sky. It is the symbol of the Bethlehem Star and the rumour is that this particular star was shown to the three kings by God to guide them to the stable where Christ was born.

Traditional aspect of Christmas in Poland

In a Polish home, the whole family is involved in preparation for Christmas. We cook, clean houses, buy gifts and decorate the Christmas tree, always with the whole family involved. At the beginning of December, shops and streets are starting to shine and Christmas Carols and songs fill every room. The most recognisable and probably the most hated Christmas song in Poland is Last Christmas…It’s not because it’s not catchy or not appropriate, but imagine yourself sitting around listening to the same single song over and over and over (radio stations are to blame!).

Christmas Holidays start on the 24th of December. Once the first star is in the sky and all Christmas dishes are cooked, the family gathers around the table and the celebrations begin. There is a wide variety of Polish Christmas Eve traditions and they really depend on the region of Poland. The most common and popular of Christmas traditions are laid out below:

Sharing Christmas wafer – usually takes place before the main supper. During this moment, family members wish all the best to each other. Even if they don’t like each other. Honestly.

Serving twelve dishes (referring to the twelve apostles) – well, the truth is that Christmas is really about food and eating delicious dishes. In reference to the twelve apostles, there should be twelve dishes present at the Polish Christmas dinner table. What can you find there? Herring in cream and oil, cabbage with peas, carp (probably the most popular fish in Poland to be served during Christmas and, what’s interesting, is not really eaten any other day of the year ), dumplings (pierogi!), borscht with…pierogi and much more (pierogi for example)! The meal traditionally doesn’t contain any meat dishes except fish. Every dish should be at least tried as it brings good luck for the upcoming 12 months of the new year. So prepare yourself for a massive feast and probably trying something you had never eaten before.

Preparing an extra seat for the unexpected guest – in case a homeless person or a traveller from far, far away comes to your home during Christmas Eve, an extra seat and cutlery are prepared in case such a person comes, they can join the hosts and celebrate the holidays.

Fasting – well…it’s not only about meat. If you ask us, from what we know, the food in Polish kitchens that day is so good that people who really don’t eat before the main supper are heroes. It’s hard, you know…

Hay on the table – nowadays, it’s a very rare tradition. But some people put hay on the table and cover it under the tablecloth. It probably has something to do with the fact that Jesus Christ was born on the hay in the stable.

Giving gifts – we give gifts to each other right after Christmas supper. For the youngest, this is the most exciting part of Christmas. But not only for them! All of us like to receive gifts, including the Poland Unraveled team….just saying… If you are looking for a Polish Christmas gift idea have a look at our curated list.

The midnight mass – at midnight between the 24th and 25th of December, Midnight Mass takes place. Midnight Mass commemorates the expectation and prayer of shepherds on their way to Bethlehem. This is one of the most important Polish traditions.

After Christmas Eve

If you think that the celebration and the food itself ends after Christmas Eve you are wrong. It’s just the beginning. The 25th of December is the day of Christ’s birth. Polish families go to church, everybody sings carols, enjoys themselves, and of course wine and dine the whole day. As well as this, the next day is the time that family members visit each other and very often people have to eat a couple of dinners before they get back home.

The last day of Christmas is the 26th of December. In Poland, we call it just ‘the second day of holidays’. This day commemorates the first martyr who was fighting for the Christians faith, named Saint Szczepan. All the people who are still alive after consuming such an amount of food (yes, we eat lots of food during Christmas…) go for a long walk with the family to have some fresh air and enjoy their company.

Well, that’s basically it. Although the religious aspect of Christmas, the 25th of December is the most important day of the holiday season, the truth is that it’s the Christmas Eve that has the largest number of traditions and customs. Also, for many families, it’s the most important time to meet and spend time together. We hope you now know a little bit more about this time of year in Poland and you are able to enjoy it as much as we do!

Merry Christmas! (Wesołych Świąt!)

It’s no secret that living in Poland is much cheaper compared to other European countries. Affordable prices of food, rent and entertainment are usually one of the main reasons why people choose Poland to be their home. At the same time, if you are thinking of moving to Poland you should take into consideration that you may earn considerably less than you used to. To make this decision easier for you, we’ve put together a list of standard expenses making up the cost of living in Poland in 2018.

2020 cost of living Pocket guide

You can check the up to date exchange rates for Polish zloty here.

Cost of accommodation in Poland

Warsaw is by far the most expensive city when it comes to renting a flat. The average cost of a medium size flat in the capital can reach even as high as 2800 PLN per month. A bit cheaper flats can be rented in Wroclaw (2260 PLN a month) and Gdansk (1995 PLN a month). The cheapest large city in Poland is Bydgoszcz with rents as low as 1267 PLN a month for a medium size flat.

City Flat size Average monthly rent
Bydgoszcz 0-38 m2 996 PLN
38-60 m2 1267 PLN
60-90 m2 1713 PLN
Gdansk 0-38 m2 1353 PLN
38-60 m2 1995 PLN
60-90 m2 2590 PLN
Katowice 0-38 m2 1279 PLN
38-60 m2 1769 PLN
60-90 m2 2399 PLN
Krakow 0-38 m2 1445 PLN
38-60 m2 1877 PLN
60-90 m2 2585 PLN
Lublin 0-38 m2 1306 PLN
38-60 m2 1688 PLN
60-90 m2 2205 PLN
Lodz 0-38 m2 1203 PLN
38-60 m2 1645 PLN
60-90 m2 2581 PLN
Poznan 0-38 m2 1159 PLN
38-60 m2 1636 PLN
60-90 m2 2201 PLN
Szczecin 0-38 m2 1186 PLN
38-60 m2 1552 PLN
60-90 m2 2014 PLN
Warsaw 0-38 m2 1984 PLN
38-60 m2 2799 PLN
60-90 m2 4015 PLN
Wroclaw 0-38 m2 1477 PLN
38-60 m2 2260 PLN
60-90 m2 2921 PLN

On top of your rent you need to add a monthly cost of utilities. On average, bills for electricity, heating, water and garbage for a medium size flat are costing 620 PLN. Of course this price will depend on the city you live in, local council tax and your utilities usage. Internet is another additional cost you should think of which adds to another 45 PLN to your expenses.

Utilities (Monthly) Average monthly cost Range
Basic (Electricity, Heating, Water, Garbage) for 85m2 Apartment 620 PLN 400-850 PLN
Internet (10 Mbps, Unlimited Data, Cable/ADSL) 45 PLN 30-60 PLN

Cost of food

Food in Poland is fairly cheap, especially compared to countries like the UK or France. Compared to these countries, food prices in Poland are on average around 50% lower. Prices of some products may surprise as cheese for example is really expensive in comparison to meat which price is among the lowest in the whole European Union.

Product Average cost Range
Milk (regular), (1 liter) 2.37 PLN 2-3 PLN
Loaf of Fresh White Bread (500g) 2.72 PLN 2-3 PLN
Rice (white), (1kg) 3.17 PLN 2-5 PLN
Eggs (12) 7.08 PLN 4.80-8.40 PLN
Local Cheese (1kg) 21.87 PLN 18-30 PLN
Chicken Breasts (Boneless, Skinless), (1kg) 15 PLN 13-18 PLN
Beef Round (1kg) (or Equivalent Back Leg Red Meat) 31 PLN 22-40 PLN
Apples (1kg) 3 PLN 2-4 PLN
Banana (1kg) 4.28 PLN 3.50-5 PLN
Oranges (1kg) 4.50 PLN 4-6 PLN
Tomato (1kg) 5.16 PLN 4-8 PLN
Potato (1kg) 1.65 PLN 1-2.50 PLN
Onion (1kg) 2 PLN 1-3 PLN
Lettuce (1 head) 2.80 PLN 2-4 PLN
Water (1.5 liter bottle) 1.79 PLN 1.50-3 PLN
Bottle of Wine (Mid-Range) 20 PLN 15-30 PLN
Domestic Beer (0.5 liter bottle) 2.99 PLN 2.50-4.00 PLN
Imported Beer (0.33 liter bottle) 4.00 PLN 3-6 PLN

Cost of transport

Transportation Average cost Range
One-way Ticket (Local Transport) 3.40 PLN 3-4.40 PLN
Monthly Pass (Regular Price) 100 PLN 89-100 PLN
Taxi Start (Normal Tariff) 6.50 PLN 5-8 PLN
Taxi 1km (Normal Tariff) 2.40 PLN 2.00-2.80 PLN
Gasoline (1 liter) 4.60 PLN 4.30-5 PLN

Cost of eating out in Poland

Eating and drinking Average cost Range
Meal, Inexpensive Restaurant 20 PLN 15-30 PLN
Meal for 2 People, Mid-range Restaurant, Three-course 100 PLN 70-120 PLN
McMeal at McDonalds (or Equivalent Combo Meal) 17 PLN 15-20 PLN
Cappuccino (regular) 7.40 PLN 6-10 PLN
Domestic Beer (0.5 liter draught) in a pub 7 PLN 4-10 PLN

Cost of going out and entertainment in Poland

Activity Average cost Range
Concerts & music gigs 30 PLN 10-50 PLN
Cinema ticket 20 PLN 18-35 PLN
Theater ticket 70 PLN 50-200 PLN
Club entry 15 PLN 10-30 PLN

Above data is based on over 28,164 entries.

The most affordable and most expensive cities in Poland

Similarly to any other country, Poland has its cheap and expensive regions. Choosing one city over another will have a significant impact on your salary, monthly spendings and possible savings. Here is the list of the main Polish cities ranked from the most affordable to the most expensive place to live (taking into consideration rent cost, bills and public transport costs):

#1 Bialystok
#2 Torun
#3 Bydgoszcz
#4 Szczecin
#5 Lodz
#6 Poznan
#7 Gdansk
#8 Wroclaw
#9 Krakow
#10 Warsaw

Avarage salary in Poland

In 2018 the average salary in Poland is heading towards 4900 PLN a month, which is around 3530 PLN after tax (shy of 830 Euro). Of course, income depends on many factors like industry, city, skills and education of the candidate, to name just a few. Here is the full report on average salaries in Poland.

You can check the up to date exchange rates for Polish zloty here.

Do you want more?

Check out 7 the best cities to live and work in Poland.

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Every year more and more expats decide to look for a job and pursue their career in Poland. Reasons for it vary but certain is that the unemployment rate is low, the average salary in Poland is increasing and the cost of living stays fairly low. However, obtaining the necessary work permissions for non-EU citizens can be quite a complicated and tricky process. There are a few different ways of obtaining a work permit and on top of that, there are alternative paths you can take in order to work in Poland legally (e.g. obtaining temporary residence and work permit together). In this article, we will go through all the legalities, documents, application process and difference between alternative methods of obtaining your work permit in Poland.

Do I need a work permit to legally work in Poland?

Let’s start with the most fundamental question. Do you need a work permit? Poland is part of the European Union, therefore, citizens of EEA countries (EU + Norway, Liechtenstein, Iceland and Switzerland) can work in Poland without any special permits and bureaucratic hassle. If you are a lucky citizen of one of these countries you can finish reading here and start looking for a job or start thinking about establishing your own business in Poland.

If you are a citizen of Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, Russia or Ukraine you don’t need to apply for a work permit if you are intending to work in Poland for no longer than 6 months per year (please note that your employer needs to fulfil some legal obligations like registering in a local labour office the fact that you are hired as a seasonal worker).

Finally, if you are a citizen of any other country you will need to apply for a visa (or residence permit) and work permit in order to work legally in Poland. As always, there are a few exceptions to this rule. In the following cases a work permit is not required:

  1. You already have a document allowing you to work legally in Poland, e.g.
  • When you have a permit to settle in Poland
  • When you hold a permit for a long-term resident of the European Communities
  • When you are the spouse or a former spouse of a Polish citizen, provided that they have a residence permit for Polish territory.
  • When you have a valid Polish Card

2. You are in Poland because of education

  • When you study in Poland (read more about working rights of foreign students in Poland here)
  • When you have a permit for temporary residence in the territory of Poland, granted in relation to the conduct of research in Poland, on the basis of an agreement with the Polish scientific institution
  • When you participate in cultural or educational exchange programs, humanitarian aid programs or developmental or summer work programs for students approved by the government

3. Other cases

  • When you have a refugee status granted in Poland
  • When you have been granted residence permit for humanitarian reasons
  • When you have been granted subsidiary protection in Poland
  • When you are holding a permit for a tolerated stay in Poland
  • When you are benefiting from temporary protection in Poland

You can see a more detailed list of cases when a work permit is not required on the government website here.

Please note that if you are staying in Poland because of temporary protection or humanitarian reasons you can’t legally work in Poland.

Work permit in Poland

Obtaining a work permit in Poland can be a tricky thing but before we get to it, let’s clarify a couple of topics. To legally work in Poland you need to not only have a work permit but also legalise your stay. These are two different legal matters and should not be confused. By obtaining a visa or a residence permit you can legally stay in Poland, but it doesn’t mean you can work.

To legally work in Poland you need a work permit and this document can only be granted based on a request from your future employer. In other words, you can’t apply for a work permit yourself. This is the most tricky part of the process as you need to first find a job and an employer who is willing to hire you.

Work permit application process

Let’s assume that you have found an employer who is willing to hire you and your stay is legalised (based on either a visa that you obtained or a residence permit). In order to get a work permit, your future employer needs to fill out a work permit application that includes the name of the company that is hiring you and your future job title within this company. This has huge implications as your work permit is only valid for the given company and position. If you decide to leave your company you lose your work permit and similarly, if you want to get a new job your new employer will have to go through the process of applying for a new work permit for you.

There are six different types of work permits:
A – when a person is employed in a company based in Poland
B – when a person performs a function in a management board or acts as a general partner or a proxy
C – when a person is working for a non-Polish employer but is delegated for more than 30 days to a branch or facility located in Poland
D – when a person is working for a non-Polish employer and is delegated to Poland for the purpose of executing a service, e.g. export service
E – when a person is working for a non-Polish employer and is delegated to Poland for a time longer than 3 months within the next 6 months for a purpose other than those previously stated
S – seasonal work permit that got introduced on the 1st of January 2018. Seasonal work permit is issued by Staroste upon a request from an employer. Please note that after the 1sth of January 2018 seasonal work will be permitted only on the basis of a seasonal work permit.

Work permits are issued by a local “voivode” (government head of the land) and it’s issued for the time of the stay required to undertake the work which is specified in your employer’s declaration. For the work permit to be valid you need to sign an employment contract with the employer who applied for your permit.

Your employer is legally obliged to:

  • Provide the employment contract in writing
  • Provide you with a translation of the employment contract in a language that you understand
  • Check validity and make a copy of your residence permit or visa
  • Notify social security and health insurance institutions within 7 days after the employment contract is signed (that gives you the right to free healthcare, sickness leave and other social benefits)

How much does a work permit application cost?

As your future employer is applying for the work permit for you, there are no additional fees that you have to pay. However, you will have to pay for the visa or residence permit application if you don’t have it.

Work permit considerations

To summarise, the work permit allows you to legally work in Poland if:

  • you have legalised your stay (you have a valid visa or residence permit)
  • your employer obtained a work permit for you
  • you perform work defined in your work permit
  • you have signed an appropriate contract with your employer

You can only work for the employer indicated in your permit and the process heavily depends on your future employer. However, there is another way that may be more beneficial for you – the temporary residence and work permit that can be applied for at the same time.

Temporary residence and work permit – alternative to the work permit route

Earlier we made a distinction between legalising your stay and being able to work legally in Poland. In other words, you first have to apply for a residence permit or visa and then find an employer who is willing to hire you and apply for the work permit for you. However, there is another way – you could apply for a temporary residence and work permit at the same time so you kill to birds with one stone. Going down this path means that you are in control of your application process and don’t have to rely on the employer.

Similarly to the work permit process, you need to find an employer who is willing to hire you. They will need to prove that hiring you is justified and based on the labour market test (in other words, they need to show that there are no unemployed Polish citizens who can perform your future role). The result of the labour market test need to be attached to your application. Additionally, your future employer needs to sign a preliminary employment contract with you.

Here you can find all the necessary documentation needed to apply for the temporary residence and work permit. You can download a temporary residence application here.

How long is the temporary dence and work permit residence valid for?

Your temporary residence and work permit can be valid up to 3 years, but the validity depends on the employment contract itself. If your employer decides to employ you for one year, then your residence and work permits are valid for that time. In case you decide to get a new job you will have to go through the whole process again.

How much does temporary residence and work permit application cost?

To apply for the temporary residence and work permit when you are going to be hired as an employee you will need to pay 440 PLN for the stamp duty and an additional 50 PLN for the residence card. If you are going to manage a Ltd company, a joint-stock company or manage shares or stocks (that don’t belong to you) you will have to pay 340 PLN stamp duty and additional 50 PLN for the residence card.

Final tips

Irrespectively of the path you decide to take (applying for a work permit or a temporary residence and a work permit), there are certain do’s and don’ts that you should follow to make sure you don’t get yourself in trouble. Especially:

  • Never give anyone your passport or identity card.
  • Make sure you receive a copy of your work permit (or in case of seasonal work the certificate of entry of an application into the seasonal work register), this is your legal right and it’s important you keep these documents safe.
  • If you are sorting out your work permit remotely you can check the details of your future employer online and make sure they are legit. You can do it online via the official government website if you know the REGON number of the company (this is the national business registry number) or on the National Court Register website if you don’t.
  • f you are using a work agency check them online, look for reviews and make sure other expats are happy with them.

If you require any further legal advise for your work permit / VISA application you can contact us via our legal advise form.

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In Poland, like in many other countries, we celebrate St. Andrew’s Day. It does have a slightly different meaning to us, as it took on a part of ancient Polish traditions and customs. The origin of Adrzejki, which is what we call it, is pagan but we applied a Catholic name to be more acceptable for Catholic society. For newcomers, this occasion is a great opportunity to experience ancient Polish customs and to fill up with good food and drinks. But before the fun starts it is always a good idea to know what to expect.

St. Andrew’s Day Polish way

Like with all Polish celebrations, there is a feast, and it works exactly the same as any other feast in Poland: there is loads of food and drinks (and more). Because this is the last day before lent (Christmas lent, not the Easter one!), people eat and drink as much as they can. As well, this is the last day to have a party. During the weekend that’s the closest to 29th of November, nearly every club organises a party. Andrzejkowe party is different from the ones you’ve got used to. You will not only dance or drink, but you will also have your future foretold (yes you didn’t read wrong).

In the past, the celebration was treated very seriously. It was one of those days when people could see the future (they didn’t have horoscopes in magazines as we do, so they had to find a different way to predict it). On the 29th of November, in the middle of the night, the saint’s duty was to help young girls find out who their husbands would be. It was quite useful – girls didn’t waste their time with Maciek when they knew that their prince charming’s name was Marek. Boys used to have their own predict-my-future-wife day, on the 24th of November (it was St. Katherine who helped them), however, men were more aware of what kind of girl they liked, so this tradition didn’t survive and now we use Andrzejki for both genders.

A quick guide to Polish Andrzejki future predicting customs

A good fortune telling must happen in a group of friends. But be careful! If you are a girl you have to meet with just your girlfriends and men – with male friends. Why? If your girlfriend finds out that she won’t be your future wife it may cause a slight problem.

Predictions of the future using wax – the most well-known divination technique based on pouring wax. You have to melt the wax and then pour into cold water. It is not so easy, because the wax must go through the hole in a key. In the end, you take the wax figure (or something you just created) and look at the shadow of it, as it is a prophecy for the next year.

What is next year going to bring? Just look at the shadow of your wax figure and you will know the future.

Shoe race – everyone in the group takes off their shoes. Your next task is to go to the furthest wall from the door and start putting one shoe in front of the other, one at the time in the direction of the door. The first shoe that crosses the doorstep belongs to the person that will soon change his/her marital status.

Picking (literally) the name of your future husband or wife – take a sheet of paper and write as many names of the opposite gender as you can (the paper very often is shaped like a heart). Then turn it back to your friends and let them put a pin into the back of the paper. The name which is the closest to the pin is your future husband or wife’s name (in some Polish regions you put the pin in the paper yourself).

We hope you will enjoy Andrzejki and that this day will bring you loads of fun and maybe, who knows, some insight into the future.