Researcher from a third country
If you are coming from a non-EU/EEA country to do research in the Czech Republic, please select your length of stay below for the relevant advice and instructions. A third-country national is a citizen of a state that is not member of the EU nor a citizen of Iceland, Lichtenstein, Norway or Switzerland.
Citizens of some non-EU/EEA countries are allowed to come to the Czech Republic for up to 3 months without a visa. Those countries are listed on this page.
Citizens of all other non-EU/EEA countries will require a short-term Schengen visa for a stay of up to 90 days. This visa authorises you to stay in the Czech Republic (and all other Schengen States) for the period of time specified in the visa, however not for more than three months during any half-year from the date on which you first enter a Schengen country, as designated by the stamp placed in their travel document. Schengen visas are issued by the diplomatic missions of the Schengen States, and applications are standardly processed within 7-15 days of submission (in some cases 30 days and in exceptional cases up to 60 days). You should apply for the visa from your country of residence, via the embassy of the Czech Republic or any other Schengen State.
For verification legitimacy of residence according to rule 90/180 you can use use the tool, which was created by EU Commission, and it is available on Calculator of travel days remaining under a Schengen short-stay visa.
All nationals of third countries (visa-free or with a short-term visa) are obliged to report their presence in the Czech Republic to the appropriate Foreign Police Department, within 3 working days of their entry to the Czech Republic. If you are staying in a hotel, hostel, student residence or similar, they will do this for you. If you are staying in private accommodation you will need to do so yourself.
In order to stay in the Czech Republic for more than 3 months, all third-country nationals are required to obtain either a long-term residence permit or a long-stay visa. Although these terms refer to different procedures, they both serve a very similar purpose and you may hear both referred to as "visa".
If you are coming to the Czech Republic to carry out scientfic or academic research, we recommend applying for the long-term residence permit for the purpose of scientific research ("scientific permit"). This is a special residence permit for researchers who have a Hosting Agreement with a research organization in the Czech Republic, for a period exceeding 3 months. This has a number of advantages over a standard visa, and a visa is not required in addition. The application is processed faster than other visas, within 60 days.
The Scientific Permit Package facilitates the admission of researchers from non-European countries (third-country nationals) to Europe for the purpose of research. Legally, the Scientific Permit Package consists of an EU Directive 2005/71/EC and two recommendations 2005/762/EC and 2005/761/EC.
The Scientific Permit is available for researchers working in public research organisations, not for students. A researcher for this purpose is defined as a third-country national holding an appropriate higher education qualification, who is selected by a research organisation to carry out a research project for which such a qualification is normally required.
The advantages of the Scientific Permit include:
- A shorter processing period than for other types of visa/residence permit (60 days)
- No need for a separate work permit
- Hands-on advice and assistance from EURAXESS throughout the immigration process
- No obligation to submit an accommodation contract before arrival in the Czech Republic
- Further assistance from EURAXESS if your family members wish to come to the Czech Republic too.
Before applying for a Scientific Permit you must have an agreement with your hosting organisation in the Czech Republic (the institute for which you will be doing research while you are here), and you should also contact the EURAXESS centre in the region of the Czech Republic where you will be living and working.
You must apply for the Scientific Permit in person at the nearest diplomatic mission of the Czech Republic abroad (please inform EURAXESS about the date of your appointment). All documents submitted with your application (see list below) must be in Czech, with official translation if the original was not in Czech.
Once your application has been approved, you must collect your entry visa ("D/VR") at the embassy, and can then travel to the Czech Republic. Please inform EURAXESS of your arrival date before you travel, so that when you arrive we can help you to obtain your residence card within the required time period (N.B. there is a collection fee for this of 2500 CZK). With this residence card and your passport, you can also travel to other Schengen countries, and can spend up to 3 months during any 6 month period in another Schengen state.
You will need to submit the following documents with your application:
- Hosting Agreement (45 KB) (the original, issued by a public approved research organisation) hosting agreement (45 KB)
- Written confirmation from your host organisation (the original) written confirmation (15.76 KB)
- Travel health insurance - basic medical insurance; recommended insurance companies are: VZP, Slavia, Maxima, Uniqua, Victoria - Volksbanken
- Criminal records check from your country of origin and from any other states where you have been resident for over 6 months during the last 3 years
- A completed application form (green)
- Travel document (passport)
- 2 photographs
- Upon request a medical report.
Every change (of address, passport, marital status, employer, etc.) must be reported to the Ministry of the Interior.
If you move house you must notify the ministry of your new address within 30 days, and you will be issued with a new residence card (the fee for this is 1000 CZK). For this you will need to take the following documents to the ministry:
- Form for change of address (available at the Ministry office or at a EURAXESS Service Centre);
- Original of new rental contract or confirmation of accommodation with your landlord's signature certified by a notary;
- Travel document (passport).
If you lose your residence card
You must report a lost residence card, firstly to the Police (at your nearest State Police station), and then to the Ministry of the Interior within 3 working days. The charge for a replacement card is 4000 CZK.
Extending your residence permit
120 days before your permit expires, if you intend to stay longer in the Czech Republic (and are continuing to do research) then you should apply to extend your Scientific Permit. For this you will need to bring the following documents to the Ministry of the Interior (it is a good idea to visit EURAXESS for assistance first):
- Hosting Agreement (original)
- Written confirmation from the host organisation (original)
- Travel document (passport)
- 1 photograph
- A completed application form (green)
- Accommodation contract (original contract or confirmation of accommodation with your landlord's signature certified by a notary).
If you intend to extend your stay in the Czech Republic but for a different purpose (you will no longer be carrying out research for a public research institution) then you will need a different type of residence permit. Please contact your nearest EURAXESS centre for more information.