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How To Get a Work Visa to Teach English in the Czech Republic

Learn about the the process of obtaining a work visa in the Czech Republic, covering key requirements, applications, and necessary documentation.

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Apart from exquisite architecture and great beer, one of the benefits for many Americans and other non-Europeans teaching English in the Czech Republic is that it is possible to get a visa and teach legally.  Such is not typically the case in some other popular European nations like Italy and Spain, where thousands of English teachers work on tourist visas.  Below is a run-down on how Americans and others can get work visas to teach English in the Czech Republic.

Note: International TEFL Academy constantly monitors visa requirements for English-teaching job markets all over the globe, but requirements and processes for obtaining visas can and do change frequently.  Please contact the consulate or embassy for the Czech Republic in your country to receive the most updated information about visas and work permits in that country. 

How Do You Get a Visa to Work in the Czech Republic?

Can I Get a Work Visa to Teach English in the Czech Republic?

Yes, you can get a work visa to teach English in the Czech Republic. The process is often in-country, starting with a tourist visa of up to 90 days. Upon arrival, you can apply for a work visa, allowing you to legally teach English in the country.

For a list of countries whose citizens can enter the Czech Republic without processing a tourist visa in advance, please visit the Czech Foreign Ministry's website.

Go Further: What is a visa and do I need a visa to teach English abroad?

Now that you know how to obtain a work visa for the Czech Republic, let's look into the types of visas you can obtain to teach English in this country.


Types of Visas That Will Allow a Teacher to Work in the Czech Republic:

There are three ways that a non-European citizen can teach English in the Czech Republic:

  • A "Zivno" Business Visa (Trade License)
  • A Standard Work Visa
  • Working Under the Table (No Visa)

Let's take an in-depth look into the different options a teacher can choose when hoping to work in this amazing country.


1. Zivno Business Visa (Trade License)

Technically known as Zivnostensky List (Zivno), this is the work visa most commonly used by Americans and other non-E.U. citizens teaching English in the Czech Republic. You will apply for it directly from the government and it will allow you to work legally at any school in the Czech Republic that will hire you. Typically, to receive this type of visa, the teacher will need to work with a Relocation Service or Visa Help Service in the CR; paperwork and applications can be obtained from government Zivnostensky offices. Visa assistance services can cost up to 1,000 euros for the teacher.

Documents Required to Obtain a Zivno Work Visa

  • Housing contract to prove residency.
  • Proof of health insurance for one year. It is possible to purchase a plan known as Complex Insurance in the Czech Republic for approximately $800.00/year. The plan provides basic health, dental, and vision insurance.
  • Bank or Credit Card statement proving access to at least $8,000 USD, including an original bank statement on bank letterhead. Although this may appear to be a high threshold, there are many ways around this. Most teachers will “borrow” the money from parents or friends, print the bank statement, and then return the money to the lender.
  • Criminal Check Affidavit from your Embassy in Prague. Contact your national embassy or consulate in the Czech Republic to learn how to obtain this document.
  • 24 hours of English teaching and 11 hours of extra-curricular activities per week
  • Forms – Typical paperwork that needs to be filled out in the Czech Republic and can obtained from Zivnostensky offices and visa assistance companies.
  • Teachers may get to work in a wide range of locations around the country

Note: Most of these requirements can be taken care of in the Czech Republic. Teachers can apply for this visa and jobs while they are still on a tourist visa. It usually takes 2 – 3 months to get the visa back. If a tourist visa expires while waiting on Zivno, the teacher is still technically in the country legally because it is “in progress.” 

ITA student Meghan Newnham - teaching English in the Czech Republic'Before I moved to Prague, I was able to get a bank letter from my U.S. bank, but the rest of the process must be done once you arrive in the Czech Republic. Some steps can be completed here while the actual application must be done at a Czech Embassy in a foreign city. I had to apply for my visa in Berlin, Germany, but other options include Vienna, Austria and Belgrade, Serbia.'

- ITA grad Meghan's experience with Zivno

TEFL Prague Czech Republic

2. Standard Work Visa

This type of visa is less common because it requires extensive paperwork and financial expense for schools to sponsor it for teachers.

If a school hires you and agrees to sponsor a standard work visa, expect to spend approximately 100 euros. You will also be required to provide an original Diploma that has been apostilled (an apostille is a special international notarization). Your diploma also needs to be translated into Czech. The translation can be completed in the Czech Republic, but it is recommended that you complete this in your home country before departure. 

3. Working Under the Table Without a Work Visa

There are schools that will hire teachers who want to work “under the table” who don’t want to go through the process of obtaining a legal visa. It is uncommon for English teachers to be kicked out of the country unless they are causing a problem or engaging in some sort of criminal conduct. Also, schools are more willing to hire teachers with a Zivno or a standard work visa.

Learn More: What is Teaching English Under the Table Without a Work Visa?


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