Our Czech office

Inter Relocation Group
IBS – International Business Support, spol.s r.o.
Malostranske namesti 37/23
118 00 Prague 1
Czech Republic (Group Member)

Jaromír Šantrůček – Partner, Business Development Director
Tel.: +420 222 591 334
Fax: +420 222 592 954
Email: [email protected]
Responsible for: Operations in Czech Republic

Czech Republic Relocation Guide

Government type: Parliamentary Democracy
Capital: Prague
Total Area: 78,867 sq km
Population: 10.5 million (September 2014 est.)
GDP Per Capita (PPP): $ 30,895 (2015 est.)

Official languages: Czech 94.9%, Slovak 2%, other 2.3%, unidentified 0.8% (2001 census)
Religions: Roman Catholic 10%, Protestant 1%, other 10%, unaffiliated 34% unspecified 45%, (2011 census)
Country code: +420
Currency: Czech Crown (Koruna)
Voltage: 230 V

Government type: Parliamentary Democracy
Capital: Prague
Total Area: 78,867 sq km
Population: 10.5 million (September 2014 est.)
GDP Per Capita (PPP): $ 30,895 (2015 est.)

Official languages: Czech 94.9%, Slovak 2%, other 2.3%, unidentified 0.8% (2001 census)
Religions: Roman Catholic 10%, Protestant 1%, other 10%, unaffiliated 34% unspecified 45%, (2011 census)
Country code: +420
Currency: Czech Crown (Koruna)
Voltage: 230 V

With a total area of almost 79,000 square kilometres, the Czech Republic is a medium-sized European country. Its size is comparable to Austria and Ireland and would fit inside France seven times. The Czech Republic makes up 2% of the European Union. The country comprises three historical lands – Bohemia, Moravia and Silesia. Bohemia is the largest, the area of Moravia is half the size of Bohemia, and the smallest land, Silesia, has an area of approximately 4,500 square kilometres.

The list of the largest cities of the Czech Republic opens with the capital city of Prague, which is followed by Plzeň, Brno, Liberec and Ostrava.

Prague’s first inhabitants arrived during the early Stone Age. The hills over the Vltava were first settled by members of an unknown tribe. Their descendants gradually settled the entire area around the Vltava meander, the shape of which – that of the letter P – symbolized the settlement’s future name. The foundation of Prague Castle, the building of the Christian Church of the Virgin Mary at its centre, and the promotion of the Castle as the chief seat of the Přemyslid dynasty gave the Prague settlements a new mission. Prague Castle became the heart of the Czech Principality; the rise of the Přemyslid princes to power, along with an advantageous position at a crossroads of trading paths over the river, made Prague the most important place in the country.

Prague became a city at the end of the 12th century. The Old Town of Prague came into existence in 1220 and joined with the Lesser Town at the end of the 13th century. At the beginning of the 14th century, another Prague town appeared: Hradčany (the Castle Quarter).

A period of great prosperity and growth came with the rule of Charles IV (1346-78), who made Prague the greatest centre of the European empire. After Rome, it was the second Christian metropolis in Europe. Charles IV built the stone Chares Bridge (1357), founded Charles University (1348) and, during the same year, established Prague’s New Town. After his death, his son Wenceslas IV took over and Prague becomes one of the most beautiful and splendid towns in the whole world, fully deserving of its epithet, “Rome of the North.” Its appearance did not change for another 200 years.

After an independent Czechoslovak state was established in autumn 1918, there were significant differences between the regions. Industry started to develop rapidly in Bohemia, manual work was replaced by machine production and new technologies. Probably the most important representative of this time was Tomáš Baťa, who managed to provide employment for tens of thousands of labourers. The Czechoslovak Republic’s economy underwent several waves of expansion and the textile, glass and shoe industries were among the most advanced in the world. The Czechoslovak armaments industry had no competition in Europe. The electricity and power industries began to develop along with the completion of electrification of the Czechoslovak Republic. In 1928 there were only 38,000 unemployed in the Czechoslovak Republic, which was not even 1% of the employable inhabitants.

After the Second World War the Czechoslovak economy was in excellent condition. Apart from several air strikes on the Pilsen Škoda factory it remained practically unaffected by the war. We had the capacity, technology and experts. Czechoslovakia was however forced to refuse the Marshall Plan, and Czechoslovak industry started to focus on the East and the era of socialist planning and five-year plans began. In spite of this, the term Bohemia Crystal was well-known throughout the world. The glass industry and the textile and chemicals industries remained first-class throughout the communist regime.

The “Velvet Revolution” took place in Czechoslovakia in November 1989. The leadership of the Communist party came to an end and Czechoslovakia set out in the direction of democracy and capitalism. Coupon privatisation took place at the beginning of the nineteen-nineties. This basically meant that every citizen in Czechoslovakia had the opportunity to purchase shares in any existing state company. 77% of all citizens of the Czechoslovak Republic took part in the first wave in 1992 and the privatised assets amounted to 679 billion crowns. This meant that practically the whole of industry fell into the hands of either minor shareholders or various funds. Many companies did not survive the subsequent 20 years and, for instance, the textile industry ceased completely to exist in the Czech Republic, with several exceptions.

At present a little over 3% of the inhabitants work in agriculture, 38% of people work in industry and most people are employed in services, approximately 59%. Apart from the power industry no other important company has remained in Czech hands. In spite of this the automotive industry, for example, is among the most developed in Europe.

The Czech Republic is investing more and more into the development of technologies. The world patent for the manufacture of nano-fibres, acquired by the Technical University in Liberec, is one example of this investment.

Situated at the crossroads of central Europe, the Czech Republic enjoys a prosperous and stable community that reveals a broad spectrum of cultural, religious and political influences. These influences have created a rich culture that has contributed to every aspect of modern day Czech life. One of the most underlying and inherent features of the Czech culture is their polite and humble approach to life. Czechs are both formal and indirect in their communication.

The family unit is the focal point of the Czech social structure and as such, family ties are much closer and more deeply rooted than in other countries. Despite being a hardworking nation, a Czech’s highest priority is essentially an obligation to the family.

Overall, the Czech Republic has a low tolerance for unstructured situations and as a result, Czechs are more likely to adhere to rules and regulations. In business situation this often means a more forward thinking and practical approach is taken.

In general, there is a good offer of properties in Prague and, depending on the specific requirements, it is usually possible to find between 6 and 12 properties that are available at any given time that could be of interest. In other cities in the Czech Republic, the rental housing market is less developed and it can be quite challenging to find suitable accommodation.

Rent prices in Prague are at an “international level”, in the Mercer’s 2014 Cost of Living overview, Prague takes the 92nd place (from 73rd place in 2013), ranking it among cities like Stuttgart and Washington.  Rent prices in Prague are at an “international level”, in the Mercer’s 2011 Cost of Living overview, Prague takes the 47th place (same as in 2010), ranking it among cities like Vienna, Stockholm, Helsinki and Amsterdam. Rent differs depending on the location (residential areas with many expatriates versus less popular areas but with possibility to find the same quality property for less money), quality of materials used, age, style, seasonal market fluctuations and finally also expectations of individual landlords. The real estate market in Prague is maturing but there is still a lack of common standards.

Houses in Prague are, in most cases offered unfurnished with rent payable in either in Czech Crowns or Euros. The most significant impact on the asking rent, apart from the location, is the number of bedrooms and overall size of the property. Rent is generally mentioned excluding utilities, some owners will accept to include an agreed upon amount in the rent for utility payments, but if the actual consumption is higher/lower than this amount, the balance will have to be settled. The costs for utilities (excluding telephone and Internet) for a house of about 200 sqm varies between €200,- and €300, mostly depending on the number of persons occupying the property.

The market is divided into properties available for long-term lease (more than a year) and short-term lease (less than a year), because the operational costs of short-term leases are significantly higher (e.g. real estate fees) for the owners, the rent for short term leases are typically 20 – 40 % higher than long term leases. It is usually possible to conclude a lease agreement for a longer period of time, and include a so-called diplomatic clause which allows for the termination of the lease with a period of notice of three months in case the person is relocated. A security deposit in the amount of one month’s rent (for furnished properties two months’ rent) is common and rent payments are usually required monthly or quarterly in advance.

Standard Tenancy: Minimum 12 months for long term leases.
Security Deposit: Yes, usually equivalent to 1 – 2 months rent
Holding Deposit: In most case not required to secure a property while negotiating the
lease and not advised.
Real Estate Commission: Commission is paid by the landlord and the tenant to the letting agent
Utilities: Tenants responsibility, not included within rent.

Most expatriates choose to get medical care through one of the international medical centres. The main reason for using an International medical centre is the language barrier as regular doctors seldom are able/willing to provide medical care in a foreign language.

The international medical centres can provide the first medical/dental care (e.g. general practitioner/dentist) but also employ specialist who can provide specific care. In case hospitalisation is required the medical centres have arrangements with one of the major Czech hospitals.

All international medical centres provide the possibility of direct billing to all major insurance companies. Further details can be found on the websites of following international medical centres below.

Canadian Medical Centre 

The choice for one of the international schools in Prague is often one of the most important decisions to be made and it affects many of the other items related to the relocation such as Home Search. In Prague, there is range of international schools to choose from. Other cities in the Czech Republic with international schools include Brno, Olomouc and Ostrava, but the offer is not really comparable to Prague.

A wealth of information can be found on the following websites of the major the international schools below.

International School Prague
The International School of Prague (IPS) was founded in 1948 by a group of British parents. Gradually, it expanded to meet the needs of all foreign children and came under the auspices of the Embassy of the United States of America. Since February of 1997 the school has been housed in its new campus located in the Nebusice district of Prague 6. The new facility has ample, purpose-built space for 750 students and is open to all students from the Prague community who will benefit from attending ISP. Due to its popularity the school is now having difficulty in accommodating all applications and it is actually quite difficult to get a place at the school. Students must either be fluent in the English language or willing to develop fluency through the school’s English as a Second Language program to gain admission to, or continue in, the school’s program of studies.

The school’s curriculum is standards-based and drawn from international models. It stresses the importance of educating the whole child and meeting the needs of the international student body. The language of instruction is English. In addition, the school offers the International Baccalaureate Diploma program to students in grades 11 and 12.

Prague British School Prague
The Prague British School is the new name for the British International School, Prague. The Prague British School builds on the 15 years of growth and development at BISP, in particular on the outstanding academic reputation of the school. PBS offers an education based on the English National Curriculum, to students from both the local and international communities in Prague. The Prague British School is fully accredited and over 600 pupils currently attend daily. an International Baccalaureate World School, is an independent English language day school, providing British education for children aged between 18 months and 18 years. Pupils up to Year 9 (aged 14) follow the National Curriculum for England. Pupils in Years 10 and 11 (aged 15 and 16) follow the International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE), governed by the University of Cambridge Board. This is followed by the International Baccalaureate Diploma (IB) in Years 12 and 13.

English International School Prague
The English International School, Prague is a fee paying co-educational day school teaching pupils from 18 months to 18 years using the National Curriculum of England. The new campus of The English International School, Prague opened in September 2007 with space for over 500 pupils boasting state-of-the-art facilities. In striving for excellence and education, we aim to provide a caring, stimulating and supportive environment where all pupils have the opportunity to take part and to achieve.

The English International School, Prague is part of Nord Anglia Education PLC, a world leader in education provision. Nord Anglia owns and operates schools around the world while the company also works in close partnership with central and local government.

The English International School, Prague (EISP) is a co-educational day-school for children aged from 18 months to 14 years from over 20 nationalities. It was established in 1995 by Nord Anglia Education plc Ltd. EISP has sister schools in Russia, Slovakia, Hungary, Poland, China and Vietnam.

The English International School is dedicated to providing a safe, stimulating and challenging environment to all pupils, regardless of gender, race, nationality or creed. Every child is enabled to develop their own special skills and talents and offer a broad and balanced curriculum based on the UK model, delivered in English and adapted to take cognisance of its international pupil body and its Czech setting. Children are encouraged to strive for excellence in their academic achievements and to become thoughtful, caring and articulate world citizens.

International Montessori School of Prague 
The International Montessori School of Prague (IMSP) was established as a private school in 2002. In September 2003 the school was moved to a much larger facility in the Hrudickova campus of Prague 4. The elementary program has an extended curriculum taught by specialized teachers in the fields of: drama, art, music, traditional Czech dance, physical education, Spanish and science. In 2005, one new toddler program and two primary programs have been added and the school expanded to two campuses: Forest (the original) and Park. The new campus is located in the Park Business Center in Chodov.

Riverside School
An international approach to education based on the British National Curriculum and other curricular models which are adapted to facilitate the child’s successful integration into Riverside School and on to their future schooling. Quality education in the English language for children aged 3-18. A service to the community, both local and international, in the context of a cross-cultural environment. Education based on a Christian world view which promotes Biblical Christianity as a way of life and a key to genuine enjoyment, security and fulfillment of life.

Park Lane International School

Established in 2006, Park Lane International School (Park Lane) in Prague offers a high quality education in English to children of all nationalities.
The school currently welcomes pupils from 3 till 15 and will eventually educate students up to 18 years of age. Park Lane is comprised of three main sites; a preschool in Prague 5, primary school in Prague 6 and senior school in Prague 1. The school teaches the National Curriculum of England throughout the primary stages, while in the secondary school 11-14 year-olds follow the Cambridge Secondary 1 Programme for English, Mathematics and Science. In September 2015, the school reached its full capacity of 400 pupils. In 2016, Park Lane’s first intake of secondary school pupils will begin the Cambridge IGCSE Programme. This will be followed by the two-year IB Diploma Programme from September 2018.
Deutsche Schule Prag
The French Lyceum

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