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Moving to Prague: housing and visa questions

 
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azurariverja



Joined: 14 Feb 2012
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Fri Jan 12, 2018 6:24 pm    Post subject: Moving to Prague: housing and visa questions Reply with quote

Hello fellow ESL teachers,

My fiance and I (US citizens) have both just been offered jobs with James Cook Language school after interviewing over Skype. After doing some research, it seems like a well known and reputable school, so I'm feeling okay on the job front, but I have questions about visas and housing.

Question 1: Should we use an agent to help us obtain a visa?
I've been recommended to a visa agent to help get us through the entire visa process. The agent charges 7000 czk for their services. Is this a fair price? Is it possible to do it ourselves, without the agent, in order to save a little money? Neither of us speak Czech, so it might be worth the translation alone.

Question 2: What exactly do I need before going to the Czech Republic?
My understanding based on reading is that the only thing I need to bring with me is a document from my bank, for which I have the specifications. Should I also obtain the affidavit of clear criminal record before going to the CR, or is it easier to get it from the embassy there?

Question 3: Where should we live?
We are looking for housing together. We're willing to commute a bit for more space/lower cost. Which regions would be best? We'd also be happy to hear recommendation for how to find housing.

Thanks for your time!
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 11477
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Fri Jan 12, 2018 7:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Move to Prague ('your first friends') is a very helpful small company that can help with both visas and housing.
Even though I've been around for a long time and speak functional Czech, their assistance was quite useful to me (saved a lot of my time) when I relocated inside the city last year.
It would be tough to deal with either visas or housing as non-Czech speakers and newcomers to the region.

On commuting, any metro station neighborhood makes life easy, but nothing is really cheap (a LOT of people want to live in Prague) or spacious. You may be surprised at the size of standard apartments; most Europeans live in much less space than most Americans are used to.
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azurariverja



Joined: 14 Feb 2012
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Fri Jan 12, 2018 9:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the suggestion, I'll check them out. I figured it would be hard to navigate housing and visas without speaking the language.

Actually we were teaching and living in Tokyo before this so small living space is nothing new Wink Just wondering if some areas are cheaper than others. Thanks for your reply!
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Sigma



Joined: 07 Apr 2003
Posts: 121

PostPosted: Tue Jan 16, 2018 12:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I believe that the Czech Republic still requires nostrification of diplomas.

http://www.expatcare.cz/diploma-validation/

http://www.msmt.cz/areas-of-work/tertiary-education/recognition-of-foreign-higher-education-in-the-czech
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Sigma



Joined: 07 Apr 2003
Posts: 121

PostPosted: Tue Jan 16, 2018 12:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Also, as of May 2016, US citizens are required to pay into state health care if they are on a business license. I am not 100% sure of all the details, as it is a little complicated.

https://www.alexio.cz/health_insurance/czech_health_insurance_for_US_citizens.html
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azurariverja



Joined: 14 Feb 2012
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Tue Jan 16, 2018 8:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmm, I hadn't heard anything about the diploma. I will look into it as the employer did ask for a copy of my degree.

As for health care, I believe the visa agent I've been speaking with assists with health care enrollment. Guess that's another reason to go ahead and use the agent Smile

Thank you for the information!
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scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 15288

PostPosted: Fri Jan 19, 2018 12:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

NOSTRIFICATION

I have learned a new word today


https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/nostrification
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