Moving to Bulgaria: first steps

A move to Bulgaria can be an attractive option for expats on several accounts. Surprise yourself and find out more about this beautiful country, its culture and people, as well as the necessary entry requirements and permits for a move to Bulgaria in our blog!

The Land and Its People

Bulgaria is a country in Southeast Europe. It is bordered by Romania to the north, Serbia and North Macedonia to the west, Greece and Turkey to the south, and the Black Sea to the east. The capital and largest city is Sofia; other major cities are Plovdiv, Varna and Burgas. With a territory of 110,994 square kilometres (42,855 sq mi), Bulgaria is Europe's 16th-largest country.

The Climate in Bulgaria

Considering how small it is, Bulgaria has a climate that is very variable, something expatriates often don’t expect. The country lies between the strongly contrasting continental and Mediterranean climates. The strong continental influence produces plentiful snowfall during winter, while the Mediterranean influence produces hot and dry weather during the summer. On average, the north of Bulgaria is one degree cooler and receives more than 7 inches more rain than southern Bulgaria. In summer, temperatures in the south often exceed 30°C (86°F) but remain cooler by the coast.

Economic reasons for moving to Bulgaria

 Bulgaria is a great upcoming country with a good economic market. For the last 10 years the Bulgarian economy is growing and Bulgaria is considered as one of the most exciting investment locations in Europe. Since joining the EU in 2007, Bulgaria only requires work permits for non EU citizens.

While the monthly minimum wage is one of the lowest recorded in Europe, Bulgaria is still a great country for expats. The fact that Bulgaria is also one of the cheapest countries in Europe and both international and Bulgarian based companies offer good working circumstances and employment rights makes this country very attractive. It's also interesting for digital nomads who can easily live on a budget in this fantastic country.

Visas for Bulgaria

EU citizens may reside in the Republic of Bulgaria with a valid identity card or passport within three months of entering the country and must apply for a long-term residence permit. EU citizens and their family members who have been legally resident in the Republic of Bulgaria for five years on the basis of a continuous long-term residence permit can obtain a permanent residence certificate. A foreigner may enter Bulgaria if he or she holds a regular foreign travel document or another equivalent document, as well as a visa if required. Work permits aren't required for citizens of any EU/EAA country or Switzerland and their families. To look for work in Bulgaria, all they have to do is register as a jobseeker at a local Employment Office. The following documents are required:

  • passport or identity card;

  • proof of a Bulgarian address, as well as;

  • a residence permits, for long-term or permanent Bulgarian residence.

Work permits are issued for a fixed period of time, typically one year. They normally only apply to one specific job and employer. In some cases, they can be renewed for a further three years. Once a work permit is issued, this provides a basis for the Bulgarian Consular to issue a visa, valid for the same amount of time. 

Are you thinking about moving to Bulgaria?

Keep calm and ask Miss Legal Bulgaria!


 

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