Gateway to International Education


Official Name: 
Rzeczpospolita Polska
short form: Polska
Int'l long form: Republic of Poland
Int'l short form: Poland
ISO Country Codepl, POL 
Time Zone: Central European Time (CET)
Local Time = UTC +1h (in summer +2h)
Actual Time: Sun-Mar-11  10:36 
Country Calling Code: +48
Capital City: Warsaw (Warszawa; pop. 1.7 million)
Other Cities: Lodz (776 000), Krakow (758 000), Wroclaw (637 000), Poznan (573 000), Gdansk (460 000).
Type: Republic.
Constitution: approved by national referendum on 25 May 1997.
Location: Central Europe, east of Germany.
Area: 312,685 km² (120,727 sq. mi.)
Terrain: Flat plain, except mountains along southern border.
Climate: Temperate with both maritime and continental elements.
Nationality: Noun--Pole(s). Adjective--Polish.
Population: 38.5 million (2015)
Ethnic groups: Polish 98%, German, Ukrainian, Belorussian, Lithuanian.
Religions: Roman Catholic 90%, Eastern Orthodox, Uniate, Protestant, Judaism.
Languages: Polish.
Literacy: 99%.
Natural resources: Coal, copper, sulfur, natural gas, silver, lead, salt.
Agriculture products: Grains, hogs, dairy, potatoes, horticulture, sugar beets, oilseed.
Industries: Machine building, iron and steel, coal mining, chemicals, shipbuilding, food processing, glass, beverages, textiles.
Exports - commodities: machinery and transport equipment 37.8%, intermediate manufactured goods 23.7%, miscellaneous manufactured goods 17.1%, food and live animals 7.6%.
Exports partners: Germany 27.1%, UK6.8%, Czech Republic 6.6%, France5.5%, Italy 4.8%, Netherlands 4.4% (2015)
Imports - commodities: machinery and transport equipment 38%, intermediate manufactured goods 21%, chemicals 15%, minerals, fuels, lubricants, and related materials 9%.
Imports partners: Germany 27.6%,China 7.5%, Russia 7.2%, Netherlands 5.9%, Italy 5.2%, France 4.1% (2015)
Currency: Zloty (PLN) The Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) in Poland are divided into state (public) and private (non-public) institutions. There are two main categories of higher education institutions: university-type and non-university institutions. In the university-type HEIs, at least one unit is authorized to confer the academic degree of doctor (PhD), i.e. it offers at least one doctoral program. The Degrees and Titles Committee grants this authorization assessing i.a. unit research activities, achievements with regard to training of faculty staff, scientific achievements, research base, as well as the quality of education (a separate opinion of the Polish Accreditation Committee on the quality of education at the unit is required). Below, we present the list of public and university-type non-public HEIs.

Full-time studies (in the Polish language) at the state Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) are free for Polish students and foreigners who commence studies in Poland on terms applicable to Polish citizens (see: define your status).. These include citizens of the EU/EEA and students who hold the Polish Charter (Karta Polaka). All other foreigners are required to pay tuition fees that on average are the following:

  • EUR 2000 per year for first, second and long cycle studies,
  • EUR 3000 per year for doctoral, postgraduate and medical postgraduate internships as well as scientific, arts, specialist and post-doctoral internships,
  • EUR 3000 per year for vocational courses and apprenticeships,
  • EUR 2000 per year for an annual preparatory Polish language course to commence studies in Polish

Fees at public and non-public HEIs are established by the institution itself under the condition that they cannot be lower than the costs of education process. The tuition fees range from EUR 2000 to 6000 per year and depend on the institution and study program (for MBA programs: about EUR 8000-12,000 per year).

Please take note that actual fees and specific study conditions are described in the framework agreement between individual institutions or between the student and the given university.


If you are a citizen of an EU member state the only thing you need to have to enter Poland is a valid travel document or a document confirming identity and citizenship (i.e. your national ID). However, if you wish to travel abroad during your stay in Poland it is a good idea to have a passport with you, as it is necessary to visit some of Poland’s neighbours that don’t belong to the EU.

For a stay shorter than three months there are no formal requirements. Your studies will however take longer. For such a stay a registration of residence is necessary. You should register with Voivodship (Provincial) Office.


The two main documents you will to enter Poland if are not a EU citizen are a valid travel document (passport) and a visa (if required).


As a general rule you need a visa to enter Poland. There are, however, a number of countries that are free of this requirement. You can check if your country is on the list here:

Poland is a part of the Schengen zone, so you can apply for a Polish visa and travel all around Europe (excluding the United Kingdom, Ireland, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Romania, Croatia and states outside of the EU).

There are several types of visas to choose from:

  • “A” type – an airport transit Schengen visa, so it cannot be used by a student coming to Poland
  • “C” type – a short-term Schengen visa allowing the holder to stay in the Schengen territory for up to 90 days in 180 days period
  • “D” type – a long-term national visa issued for up to one year allowing travel around the Schengen area for up to 90 days in a 180 days period A visa can only be extended in exceptional situations. Should you need to stay in Poland longer than specified in your visa please do apply for the temporary residence permit (see below)

5 easy steps to get a visa

1) Find a Polish consulate that can process you application. You can use the MFA’s search engine

2) Read carefully ALL the information concerning visa application on the consulate’s website and follow ALL the instructions.

3) Set a visa appointment with the consulate. In most cases you will have to register through the website:

4) Prepare the necessary documents, including: application form, travel document (passport), biometric photo, health insurance, sufficient means to support yourself, documents confirming the purpose of your stay. The specifics of the required documentation may vary among consulates, so confirm them with the consulate’s website.

5) Submit all the documents including a printed and signed application form and the visa fee. Your visa application is complete. It will take up to 15 days for it to be reviewed


Who needs it?

Every Non-EU student needs it.

You should apply for a Temporary Residence Permit before your visa expires.

When you receive the permit you will be issued a Temporary Residence Card, an ID card that proves that you have a residence permit. Together with you travel document it allows you to cross the Polish border as many times as you wish. The first residence permit is issued for the period of 15 months. It can be renewed for periods of up to 3 years but for no longer than the remainder of your studies.

REMEMBER: You should apply for the Temporary Residence Card when you are legally staying in Poland, which means after you arrive, but before the expiry of your visa


You have to apply for a Temporary Residence Permit with the local Voivodship Office. You can find a complete list of offices here: : The documents you will need to legalise your stay include an application form, photos and documents proving your identity and citizenship, address, purpose of stay (a certificate from your school) health insurance and possession of sufficient funds. For detailed information check out the Voivodship Office’s website. The procedure costs 390 PLN in total.

Financial Information:

Studies: An applicant going for the purpose of studying to Poland and applying for 1 year national visa should prove the possession of 12 100 PLN (12*800+2500) or equivalent in other currencies (in addition to the university or college fee).

Useful links:

For Appointment booking;