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Bydgoszcz, Poland

Living in Poland

By Joshua Wood, LPC

Last updated on Feb 06, 2024

Summary: People generally describe life in Poland as vibrant, diverse, and full of opportunity. Expats love the low cost of living, the friendly people, the beautiful landscapes, and the rich cultural heritage. The average cost of living for an expat is around $1,500 per month, depending on the city and lifestyle. The population of Poland is estimated to be around 38 million people, and the largest cities are Warsaw (1.7 million), Krakow (770,000), and Lodz (700,000). The cons of living in Poland include the cold weather, the language barrier, and the lack of job opportunities for expats. Additionally, the cost of living can be higher in some cities, and the healthcare system is not as advanced as in other countries.

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What do I need to know about living in Poland?

When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Poland, they said:

"Before retiring in Poland, expats should familiarize themselves with the local language, as English is not widely spoken. It is also important to research the cost of living in the area they plan to retire in, as prices can vary significantly from city to city. Additionally, expats should research the healthcare system in Poland and make sure they have adequate health insurance coverage. Finally, expats should also research the tax laws in Poland to ensure they are compliant with all regulations," wrote one member in Poland.

"If you plan to settle here try to avoid expat populated areas (even thought it seems like a good plan to stick with people from your country only) as that will impede your assimilation with Poland and Polish culture. One can easily survive with English language only in all big cities and the general command of English is at ok-ish level for 40 yrs old and younger (the younger the generation the better their English) in the whole country. What is more - expect people to be interested in talking back to you in English as everybody tries to improve their language skills. Learn a few Polish words - that will open more doors to Polish hearts than the best English diplomacy. We know our language is deemed to be the most difficult to learn by non Slavic people so we appreciate all "Dzien dobry" from foreigners. And it is generally frowned upon if we learn that a given expat lives in Poland for a few years and still does not even try to speak Polish," remarked one expat who made the move to Poland.

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William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.
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About the Author

Joshua Wood Joshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.

Some of Joshua's articles include Pros and Cons of Living in Portugal, 10 Best Places to Live in Ireland and Pros and Cons of Living in Uruguay. Connect with Joshua on LinkedIn.

Bydgoszcz, Poland

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Get a quote for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
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Get a quote for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
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