Hiring a Visa Person

I can’t recommend this enough if you don’t speak Czech. The process is long, complex, and having a professional who has established connections and relationships with the people who work at the multiple government agencies is incredibly valuable.

There are a range of available services out there, for people in all kinds of legal circumstances (EU, Non-EU, those looking to teach or do other kinds of work, families vs singles, etc). There isn’t an established title for these services, but I’ve heard them referred to as “visa assistance service”, “visa facilitator”, “visa consultant”, and most commonly, the vague yet accurate “visa person.” A few companies I found doing a little digging: CZ Visa, Visa Services, Move to Prague – but there are many more. Do some research, explore your options. Prices range from 5000-7500 crowns for full visa and Zivno assistance, the most commonly sought service. Ideally, you want someone who gives you fast responses to message and questions and is flexible about meeting places and times. Usually these prices do not include the fees for the visa/zivno themselves, but be sure to ask.

My visa person was Jitka Peterkova, aka Visa Guru. She taught the “survival Czech” lessons at the school where I got my TEFL certificate and when I heard she offered visa consulting services, I signed up. I have no reservation in recommending Jitka and Visa Guru, as she was incredibly helpful to me throughout my entire process. She always answered messages promptly, throughly, and went above and beyond as a consultant.

All that said, however, be aware that by choosing to hire someone to assist you in this process, you are placing a great deal of trust in them and their professionalism. Your stay in the country depends on this paper work, so make sure you read reviews or get recommendations from someone  first. (You don’t want to end up like the woman in this story!)

Forgoing an Visa Person

It’s certainly possible to do the process without hired help – if you speak Czech. My Serbian flatmate decided to forgo the extra expense and do all his paperwork himself, and has been navigating through the process successfully on his own – using his proficiency with the Czech language to assist him.

If you don’t speak Czech, I really don’t know if it’s possible without at least some assistance from a Czech speaker. All of the paperwork is in Czech, and Czech bureaucrats do not have a reputation of being the most helpful people out there. If you don’t have a Czech friend or family member willing to assist and translate for you, you’re most likely going to need to pay for a translator. I reckon it’s simpler and worth the extra expense to hire a consultant, and get all your questions answered and help with every step, rather than just paying piecemeal for translation services.

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6 thoughts on “Hiring a Visa Person

  1. pickledwings March 20, 2016 / 7:34 pm

    It’s good to see you’re getting settled into life in the Czech Republic.

    You’re lucky to arrive here at a time when visa services for foreigners are much less sketchy and more above board than they used to be.

    I hope it all goes smoothly for you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Elliott Bell March 20, 2016 / 7:42 pm

      Thanks! I’ve actually already got both my visa and zivno, so all is well that ends well 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • pickledwings March 20, 2016 / 7:45 pm

        What are the visa an Zivno processess like these days, out of curiosity?

        Like

      • Elliott Bell March 20, 2016 / 8:02 pm

        Well that’s not a loaded question! Over the next couple weeks I plan to write all about it 🙂 But I don’t even know how to sum it up for a comment, other than, it’s complicated 😛

        Liked by 1 person

      • pickledwings March 20, 2016 / 8:17 pm

        I’ll look forward to your posts on the subject. 🙂

        Like

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