The Czech Republic – Immigration Update – July 2020
The Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a new regulation impacting on Czech immigration procedures and entry of foreign nationals to the Czech Republic. The regulation was issued on 30th June 2020 and it is effective from 1st July 2020, respectively from 13th July 2020.
Travelling within the EU
States of European Union (including Serbia and the UK; excluding Sweden) allow traveling to EU citizens without any limits. Therefore, it is currently possible to travel freely without any specific purpose and tourist and business trips are allowed again. COVID tests or specific certificates are not required anymore, however, it is advisable to check the particular country’s or also airline’s restriction before each trip as conditions may change due to ever changing pandemic situation of each country.
A good source of initial information can be found on continuously updated travel information guide of the Czech Ministry of Foreign affairs available here.
Czech visa procedure
As a Czech visa application can be submitted at a Czech Embassy abroad, the visa procedures are influenced by place of filing the visa application and the situation at the respective Embassy of the Czech Republic.
There are 3 groups of embassies:
Embassies already accepting all kinds of applications: Czech Embassy in Brussels (Belgium), Sofia (Bulgaria), Zagreb (Croatia), Dublin (Ireland), Berlin (Germany), Warsaw (Poland), Vienna (Austria), Bucharest (Romania), Bratislava (Slovakia), Belgrade (Serbia) and London (the UK).
An appointment must be scheduled in advance.
Embassies accepting some types applications: The majority of Czech embassies remain to be closed for regular applications and only applications for specific purposes are being accepted – e.g. Employee/Blue Card applications included in government programs for economic migration, Family visa applications, Student or Seasonal Worker visas. If the applicant is not in the specific category, he cannot apply at this embassy.
These embassies also issue already approved visas.
An appointment must be scheduled in advance. The appointments are provided within the specific governmental programs.
List of partially opened embassies is available here.
Closed Embassies: There are still some embassies which remain to be closed, and therefore are not accepting any applications nor issuing visas approved but not collected before the closure.
The list of closed embassies is available here.
New after-arrival requirements
Starting from 1st July 2020, third-country nationals do not need to prove RT-PCR test for SARS CoV-2 (hereinafter “Covid test”) when entering the Czech Republic. However, they should:
Announce the arrival to the Regional Hygiene Station as soon as possible;
Provide a Czech Covid test to the respective Regional Hygiene Station within 72 hours from arrival OR self-quarantine at home the first 14 days after arrival.
Until the above-mentioned steps is completed, it is not possible to register the stay at the Czech Immigration Authority and start work/economic/student activities in the Czech Republic.
This requirement is not applicable for non-EU nationals arriving from countries on a “green” list - as of 8th July 2020: Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Serbia, South Korea and Thailand).
All third-country nationals still need to have a purpose (economic, study, etc.) for arrival to the Czech Republic. A tourist trips, in particular based on non-visa regime, is not possible yet. The sole exemption is Serbia and Montenegro.
New requirement for economic type of residence permit applications (e.g. Employee/Blue Card applications)
Starting from 13th July 2020, all applications for Employee and Blue Card must be supported by a statement of the employer which declares that:
Employer secures accommodation for the employee during the entire period of stay in the Czech Republic, including the place of quarantine (if needed).
Employer secures medical care during the entire period of stay in the Czech Republic, including coverage of this care if it is not covered by insurance.
Employer secures repatriation to employee’s homeland in the case the employee will lose his job.
The signed statement, available for download on the web pages of the Czech Immigration Authority, must be presented at the Czech Embassy when collecting an entry visa at the latest. A scanned copy of the statement is sufficient.
This document will be required for pending applications after 13th July 2020 as well.