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How long can you feasibly live in Europe / Eastern Europe?

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How long can you feasibly live in Europe / Eastern Europe?

Postby PandaMan » Sat Oct 18, 2014 6:13 pm

Well, I'm being lazy, because a few Google searches could probably give me answer, but here we go:

How long could I feasibly live / stay there on a basic tourist visa?

I know for Schengen countries it's one month or three months, I can't remember. I don't think you can leave for a day and come back, either. It's three months within a year period, right?

As for Eastern European countries, I imagine it's less stringent.

I know you need a return flight.

My plan would be to live there, rent a cheap room somewhere on a month to month basis, and make a go of it for a year, possibly moving from country to country.

I don't need to get work, but I'd probably poke around looking for something, maybe they have use for someone who speaks English.
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Re: How long can you feasibly live in Europe / Eastern Europ

Postby gsjackson » Sat Oct 18, 2014 7:45 pm

I'm just finishing up what you're contemplating doing. It's 90 days in a Schengen Zone country with a US passport, then you have to leave for 90 days before being able to come back and get another 90 days. Total allowed is 180 days in a year. It's the same in all eastern European countries that I know of, such as Ukraine, Bosnia and Serbia.

There may, however, be a way to stay in the Schengen Zone indefinitely. A couple of people discussed this on Roosh, and backed it up with statutory references, so it may be legit. Poland has a separate agreement with the U.S, that supersedes Schengen Zone arrangements. So, if you fly initially into Poland, then leave Poland for a non-Schengen country, even just for one day, and then return to Poland, you will get a new 90-day stamp. From Poland you can travel anywhere in the Schengen Zone without your passport being checked, but if they do check for some reason your Poland stamp should clear you. You can just say you're living in Poland, and visiting the other country.

I haven't tried this personally, but I did ask a passport control officer at the Warsaw airport if he was familiar with the US-Poland special arrangement, and he said he was, though it wasn't entirely clear that he interpreted it the same way I do.

I've flown into Poland twice on LOT Polish Airlines, and there's been no requirement of a return ticket. The second time I had a one-way ticket, but nobody asked either time. I've flown into Germany on a one-way ticket from the UK, and no one asked about it. I did fly to Belgium from the US on a ticket with the return for six months later, and the airline asked about it in the US, but were satisfied by my explanation that my employer intended to apply for a visa extension.

You can probably pick up private lessons teaching English, though this isn't strictly legal unless you have a self-employment visa. Getting such a visa isn't hard to do in at least two countries -- Germany and the Czech Republic -- especially if you can show you've got some money stashed away and won't be a financial burden. The other key requirement is buying health insurance up front for the length of time you want the visa to be for, but it is much less expensive than in the US. In your age group, I'm guessing the premium wouldn't come to much more than $600-800 a year, maybe less.
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Re: How long can you feasibly live in Europe / Eastern Europ

Postby PandaMan » Sat Oct 18, 2014 8:35 pm

gsjackson wrote:I'm just finishing up what you're contemplating doing. It's 90 days in a Schengen Zone country with a US passport, then you have to leave for 90 days before being able to come back and get another 90 days. Total allowed is 180 days in a year. It's the same in all eastern European countries that I know of, such as Ukraine, Bosnia and Serbia.

There may, however, be a way to stay in the Schengen Zone indefinitely. A couple of people discussed this on Roosh, and backed it up with statutory references, so it may be legit. Poland has a separate agreement with the U.S, that supersedes Schengen Zone arrangements. So, if you fly initially into Poland, then leave Poland for a non-Schengen country, even just for one day, and then return to Poland, you will get a new 90-day stamp. From Poland you can travel anywhere in the Schengen Zone without your passport being checked, but if they do check for some reason your Poland stamp should clear you. You can just say you're living in Poland, and visiting the other country.

I haven't tried this personally, but I did ask a passport control officer at the Warsaw airport if he was familiar with the US-Poland special arrangement, and he said he was, though it wasn't entirely clear that he interpreted it the same way I do.

I've flown into Poland twice on LOT Polish Airlines, and there's been no requirement of a return ticket. The second time I had a one-way ticket, but nobody asked either time. I've flown into Germany on a one-way ticket from the UK, and no one asked about it. I did fly to Belgium from the US on a ticket with the return for six months later, and the airline asked about it in the US, but were satisfied by my explanation that my employer intended to apply for a visa extension.

You can probably pick up private lessons teaching English, though this isn't strictly legal unless you have a self-employment visa. Getting such a visa isn't hard to do in at least two countries -- Germany and the Czech Republic -- especially if you can show you've got some money stashed away and won't be a financial burden. The other key requirement is buying health insurance up front for the length of time you want the visa to be for, but it is much less expensive than in the US. In your age group, I'm guessing the premium wouldn't come to much more than $600-800 a year, maybe less.


This is very helpful. I also think there's a similar trick involving Ireland, Northern Ireland and Britain, in terms of moving around between each and managing to get away with staying there forever, though I forget the exact procedure.

I'll have over $100,000 in cash, so I imagine this will look favorable to any country. I have years of experience living super-cheap in the US so imagine those skills will come in handy there. I have online income, thankfully, though there's always that risk it could dry up (but there's risk you can lose your job, too!). I think with a year there I'd manage to find some kind of stable part-time work to ensure long-term survival in case things fell apart otherwise.

Another question: what about European banks? I heard Moldova had high interest bearing accounts for savings. Ukraine as well.
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Re: How long can you feasibly live in Europe / Eastern Europ

Postby xiongmao » Mon Oct 20, 2014 9:04 pm

Lots of foreigners hang out in London but they normally share rooms or live in less desirable areas (or both). But if you can get a work permit there are more jobs here than anywhere else in Europe. There's effectively negative unemployment where I live.

UK banks give 1% of less on your savings but I'm averaging about 6% by taking on more risk. Moldova is money laundering central, be careful there.
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Re: How long can you feasibly live in Europe / Eastern Europ

Postby gsjackson » Tue Oct 21, 2014 10:26 am

Be careful in Ukraine also, obviously, as it is currently a failed state with no obvious future. I believe Contrarian Expatriate has invested in some of the high yield CD's offered by banks there, and I'm wondering how that is going now. And of course, be careful in eastern Ukraine generally, as there is still shooting going on, despite the cease-fire. Even in Kiev, the Nazis would like to start something again, so WYA.

One tip if you're going to be traveling around Europe: Take only one checked bag. Second checked bags are almost always quite expensive flying within Europe -- usually around $100. I sent a lot of stuff home, ditched the second bag, and saved around $600. And if you're traveling by train it's going to be a huge hassle lugging two bags (and a carry-on) around those cramped spaces.
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