How to register your residency in Krakow (zameldowanie)

Many foreigners don’t know this, but anyone staying in Poland for an extended period of time is technically required to register in the city they’re staying in. Fortunately it’s free and relatively easy. Here’s what you need to know:

Who needs to register?

Anyone who is planning to stay in Krakow for more than 14 days. The law “requires” non-EU citizens to get zameldowanie within 4 days after they move into a new flat, or 30 days for EU/EEA citizens. However, currently there’s no penalty for not following this. It’s still a good idea, though, for several reasons…

Why should I bother?

  • It can help you with many other official tasks: such as starting a business, getting a PESEL number, voting, or even becoming a citizen someday!
  • You can get some discounts and other perks the city.
  • It’s the law. You don’t want to break the law, do you?
  • But really, having an accurate population count helps city planners make urban and financial decisions about the city’s future.

What do I need?

If you’re planning to stay indefinitely, fill out a permanent residence registration form.

If you know you’re going to return to your home country, fill out a temporary residence registration form.

Then you need to prepare some documents.

  • If you own property, bring proof like a contract, a mortgage document, or a deed.
  • If you’re renting, the property owner has to sign your application, and you should bring a contract that’s valid for at least three months after the date of your application.

EU/EEA citizens:

  • A valid document that proves your identity and citizenship (such as your passport)

Relatives of EU/EEA citizens:

  • A valid document that proves your identity and citizenship (such as your passport)
  • A similar ID of your family member/some proof that you’re related

Non-EU/EEA citizens:

  • A valid document that proves your identity and citizenship (such as your passport)
  • Some permit to stay in Poland or the EU, like karta pobytu, and EU residency card, or a proof of refugee status… or a stamp from the Małopolska Foreigner’s Office showing that you are awaiting a decision on this

Where do I submit the application?

Applications are submitted to a city office called Referat Ewidencji Ludności i Dowodów Osobistych. There are several locations depending on what district you live in.

If you don’t know what district you live in, you can search here. Enter “Krakow” in the “Miejscowość” box and your street address in the “Ulica” box, then look for “Dzielnica” (District).

Your district corresponds to a number:

  • Stare Miasto (I)
  • Grzegórzki (II)
  • Prądnik Czerwony (III)
  • Prądnik Biały (IV)
  • Krowodrza (V)
  • Bronowice (VI)
  • Zwierzyniec (VII)
  • Dębniki (VIII)
  • Łagiewniki-Borek Fałęcki (IX)
  • Swoszowice (X)
  • Podgórze Duchackie (XI)
  • Bieżanów-Prokocim (XII)
  • Podgórze (XIII)
  • Czyżyny (XIV)
  • Mistrzejowice (XV)
  • Bieńczyce (XVI)
  • Wzgórza Krzesławickie (XVII)
  • Nowa Huta (XVIII)

So, which Referat Ewidencji Ludności i Dowodów Osobistych should you go to?

If you did everything right, they should be able to give you zameldowanie immediately. Congratulations! You’re officially a Cracovian!

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