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Fundacja Rozwoju Systemu Edukacji
Aleje Jerozolimskie 142A
02-305 Warszawa

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Living in Poland

Cost of living

Depending on your life-style and habits you have different needs. Below you will find a list of sample prices of goods and services available in . Please note that most of the prices are minimum prices.

Name Price
milk (1l) 2.6 zł
pasta (0,5 kg) 4 zł
yoghurt 1.5 zł
apples (1 kg) 3 zł
mineral water (1,5 l) 2.5 zł
chocolate 4 zł
tea 2-10 zł
beer (0,5 l) 3-10 zł
coffee 5-10 zł
chips 4 zł
bread 2 zł
cinema ticket 15-20 zł
butter 4 zł
theatre ticket 30-200 zł
ham (1 kg) 25 zł
haircut 20-80 zł
cheese (1 kg) 25 zł

The price of a room at student's house varies from 300 to 600 PLN per month upwards.

Money and banking

Polish currency is New Polish złoty (PLN or ).

1 złoty equals 100 groszy (gr). There are 5 notes: 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 zł. There are 9 coins:: 1, 2, 10, 20 & 50 groszy, and also 1, 2, & 5 złotych.

Currency exchange: If you wish to exchange euro (or other currency) into PLN you have at your disposal exchange desks at border crossings, airports, railway stations, travel offices, hotels and special exchange counters called kantors. Traveller's check can be exchanged at every bank, but not at private exchange counters. No commission fee is charged at kantors. Cash machines are very common.

There are many banks in Poland. They are usually open Monday through Friday, You can open an account in Poland (usually only passport is needed) or get money directly from the account in your home country through a cash machine. If you decide to open a bank account in and you do not speak Polish, we would advise you to ask a Polish colleague to accompany you. Credit cards are in common use in big cities. You can pay by card in shops, restaurants, pubs...

If you lose your card in Poland, you should immediately contact POLCARD in (phone: 022/ 515.31.50 - 24 hours a day). If that fails however, you should contact your credit card supplier.

Public transport

Every city has its own network of public transport. Tickets are available at kiosks and in some cities from drivers. Usually you also need a ticket for your luggage. Tickets must be punched just after you get on a bus or tram. A valid ISIC card entitles you to reduced-price tickets (up to the age of 26). For details you should consult regulations on fares issued by a given city. Depending on the city, buses and trams operate form , there are also night lines operating between and However, whenever you travel late at night we would advise you to take a taxi. Usually is it cheaper if you order a taxi by phone.

In Warsaw one reduced price ticket costs 1.40 zl, full price - 2.80. However if you know you will be using using the pubic transport many times within the day or weekend you can buy more economical tickets, valid for a given period of time, eg.: 24 hours, 3 days, 30 days, etc.


Generally, shops are open 10-18 hours, Monday to Friday. Supermarkets are open seven days a week, often till late. There are also shops open 24 hours a day. Grocery shops open at and close at Local markets are popular places where you can buy food, vegetables and fruit of good quality.

Public holidays

Name Date
New Year's Day 1st January
Easter Sunday and Monday in March/ April
Labour Day 1st May
Constitution Day 3st May
Corpus Christi Thursday in May/ June
Feast of Assumption Day 15th August
All Saints' Day 1st November
Independence Day 11th November
Christmas 25th - 26th December

Making phone calls

When you want to make a phone call you have to buy a magnetic telephone card (tokens are rare). The cards are of 25, 50 or 100 units (cost respectively ...) and are available at newspaper stands and post offices. Before using the card you have to break one corner away. Public phone boxes are located at many places - train stations, post-offices, universities, in the street.

In Poland there are four GSM operators: Era, Idea, Plus and Play.

Emergency telephones:

  • Police: 997
  • Fire brigade: 998
  • Ambulance: 999
  • calling from mobile dial: 112

Post offices

Post offices (Poczta or Poczta Polska) are located throughout cites, often with branches at main railway stations. Post offices are usually open five days a week from to Post-boxes are green (for local mail) and red (for any other destination in Poland and abroad). For domestic letters and postcards (up to 20g) you pay 1.20 PLN.

Internet Cafes

Every university has access to the Internet. Therefore, there should be no problem if you want to surf in the web. You can also visit commercial Internet cafes, they are rather common especially in big cities.

Eating out

Cities have a wide range of restaurants, bars, pubs, and fast foods, from inexpensive to exclusive ones. Some restaurants specialise in national cuisine - Polish, Italian, French, Chinese and so on. Vegetarians will find good restaurants as well. Cafes, apart from tea and coffee, offer cakes and other sweet desserts.

Last update: 2012-02-10