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My Opinion About Poland After 2 Years


Maximus2023 5 | 16
20 Dec 2022 #1
I am from Nevada, USA. I just wanted to share my honest opinion about Poland and Polish people in general. I must say that overall, after 2 years of living in Poland and several prior visits since 2017, my experience has been positive as a temporary resident American. Trying to get a temporary residency permit wasn't trouble-free with all the back-and-forth documentation, but I must say that each time, immigration officials were helpful and some went out of the way to assist me. One even said, hey, if by any chance you are not approved, which is unlikely, you can always stay 90 days, leave to a non-Schengen country and come right back for another 90 days, doing this the rest of your life.

I am a single white man, middle-aged and I found Polish ladies, in general, to be really nice. I never felt any prejudice except some people still have stereotypical information about Americans: dumb, fat, think Polish girls are easy to get, think America is the best, etc. But, that's a minority of misinformed people and sadly many Americans are ignorant and live up to stereotypes. Since I am part Italian by ancestry, I feel part European as well, at least Italy is where my bloodline comes from.

On any typical day, Polish people I meet will talk to me in Polish first. I have never seen Polish men jealous of me dating Polish ladies and I never got strange looks, even when dating women half my age. I find Polish ladies to be intelligent, well-educated, and traditional about family values and I get the impression that most after 25-30 want to marry and have a family.

There is a huge somewhat hidden LBGT population in Warsaw. I have also found that acceptance into Polish families can be challenging, especially from parents and relatives who prefer their beautiful ladies marry Polish, but while that may be the case, I never felt rejected or unwanted when attending family gatherings and wanted. Other than the language barrier, I felt comfortable and some people attempted to talk to me in English. If you dress and behave nicely, it seems Polish people give you the respect you deserve. Act like a jerk, holier-than-thou and you are ignored, but that applies anywhere.

Food is good in Poland. Customer service is 10x better than in the USA and I appreciate the fact that most of the time, employers hire competent staff who do not seem to have bad attitudes towards customers, compared to things back home. I would rate Poland's customer service as the best I have experienced in my life. Polish employers also pay great attention to detail and to the image of their business. Only once did I find a rude young female employee who lacked a bit of IQ, but even then, she was nothing compared to the crap I experienced in the USA.

Drivers are rushed, rarely give you a break when you turn your left/right signal, and act like they own the lane they are in. I find male drivers to be the worst in terms of selfishness in traffic. But. nothing compares to the road rage and rudeness you would find in most parts of the USA. I do not notice much flirting from men to women and vice-versa, maybe that's reserved for bars and clubs which I only frequented a bit in Krakow.

Speaking of Krakow, some of the most beautiful ladies are there, yet, I think that's because Krakow has a large student population between 18-25 and at this age, women tend to be beautiful just about everywhere. On a side note, I do not think Polish ladies age very well. A quick look at dating apps shows that after 40, the looks seem to change dramatically but again, I think that's worse in the USA.

I think that Poles take great care of their cities and towns. I find Poland to be a far safer place to live than the USA. I am sure it is much easier to manage 40 million people than 340 million. Plus, the benefit of no guns. I have never seen a serious homelessness problem in Poland. A few drunks here and there whom the Policja take care of unceremoniously. Speaking of Police, never had any problems even when I got pulled over for no reason once. Checked my docs, and let me go fast without any issues. They seem to be doing their job. I don't suggest an attitude with them though.

Rideshares have been great and relatively inexpensive but I bought a car and after calculations, it is cheaper for me to drive than do rideshare. Buying a car in Poland is pretty easy if you know what you are looking for. I did it all in English. Only had a bit of a problem with documentation where the dealer had wrong information that made me go back and forth to Registration at least 6 times. If you don't pay an agency to register your car, be prepared for lines and several hours of waiting. Be sure to have all the documents ready and accurate. For any minor discrepancy, you will have to go back another time.

Zabka's are everywhere.

Auto-service can be challenging but I found a good auto-mechanic that speaks some English. The auto insurance system in Poland is great. You can buy a car with insurance valid for several months, transferred to you from the previous owner. Not too bad. But I suspect full coverage is another matter. I have not had any issues with theft or vandalism. Rent can be cheap in Warsaw and Krakow but you get what you pay for. I made the mistake of renting on the cheap, about $600 per month with all bills, only to end up with noisy neighbors, a terrible parking situation, barking dogs everywhere, and drunks would pee in the elevator. You really get what you pay for. If you can afford 4000-6000 zloty in rent, you may end up in a much better setting.

Speaking of rent, you rarely find a landlord or agency that will give you a 30-day walk-out notice. In most cases, in my experience, if you break your contract, the owner will pin you to pay up the months left on the agreement unless you find a replacement. Beware. Also, in my opinion, most agencies are useless. You pay the first month, the deposit, plus the agency fee which can be a full month's rent. In most cases, they show you the flat, sign the agreement and you never see your agent again. They rarely follow up to see if you are happy, have any problems, and disappear once they get paid. Seems like the easiest money you can make, usually several thousand zlotys for little work. Again, my experience. Good luck getting 100% deposit back. There is always a reason why you can't get a full deposit.

Internet is usually very good in Poland, i.e., UPC and Orange. No complaints. I use the 1GIG fiber but only get about 600-800 with a direct wire connection. Wifi runs about 300-400, sometimes much less, but adequate. Supermarkets are fine. Shopping malls are modern and clean. Nice people, nice families, nice children, and even the teens are so well-behaved by comparison. Intelligence is praised in Poland, not stupidity and ignorance. I like that. If you earn in dollars or euros, Poland can be very attractive. I see more fancy cars in Poland than in the USA.

I see better-dressed men and women as well. I do not see very many obese people. Poland seems like a great place to retire and if you learn Polish, more power to you. It's not easy, especially if you are older. Also, most poles under the age of 35 seem to know some level of English. Poles don't generally seem to be as smiley as Americans and I have been told that smiling can come across as being fake but I am not sure that walking around not smiling or talking to any strangers deserves any special merits either.

Poles seem to be very family-oriented but I find that some kids are a lot more spoiled and whiny and I don't see too much incentive in motivating kids to become independent. Mothers and daughters seem a lot closer in Poland. Many Polish women have complained about Polish men and Polish men being Mamas' boys or wanting a wife to be like their Moms. Not sure how true this is. Also, single mothers have a bad reputation and find it really difficult to marry or date genuine partners. I have been told that Polish men can have all the sex they want and need but expect the women to be virgins to marry them. I can't say anything about the health care system as I have not had any need to use it yet, but I suspect private health care is better.

All in all, I highly recommend Poland as one of the gems in Europe. I consider Poland my second home and intend to stay, with the occasional trips to visit family and friends. I think Polish people and the country are amazing, with fewer challenges and headaches when compared to what I experienced in the USA. Again, these are my personal observations and I don't mean to offend anyone. Most things have been very positive.
jon357 74 | 22,673
20 Dec 2022 #2
A fair assessment, however you're far more positive about the levels of customer service than I'd be.

About rent, the median salary in Warsaw is about 4000 zl so a rent of 4000/6000 zl would get somewhere very good indeed, especially out of the city centre.

The information about the 90 days then coming back into Schengen is wrong though. Americans can stay in the Schengen Area for a maximum of 90 days within a 180 day period. The days of a 'visa run' across the border and coming back a day after are long gone.
PolAmKrakow 3 | 825
20 Dec 2022 #3
@jon357
The visa runs are still a thing, and Polish border patrol does not care. Wisely I might add because those Americans are bringing USD into the country and that is always a good thing. I made trips every 90 days to Ukraine before I got settled in and never had a problem.
jon357 74 | 22,673
20 Dec 2022 #4
Is it not 90 days out of every 180?

That's the situation as far as I know for UK and US citizens and the US State Department website says the following:

"Spend three months in the Schengen area during any six-month period, you must wait another three months from the last date of departure from the Schengen area before you can apply to enter the Schengen area again without a visa."

travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/international-travel/before-you-go/travelers-with-special-considerations/schengen.html

Of course it all changes next year when the ETIAS system comes in to force. It may be delayed however it's currently expected to start in Noivember 2023.
OP Maximus2023 5 | 16
4 Jan 2023 #5
Poland has a unilateral agreement with the USA for U.S. citizens only. So, basically, whether there is temp or permanent residency in process, U.S. citizens can come and go without any restriction but that applies to Poland ONLY, not the entire Schengen Zone. For example, if you do not have a stamp on your passport and you have been hanging around Poland for 2 years, upon entering or exiting Germany, they can fine you or even ban you from re-entering Schengen. You have to show that you have a pending Polish residency process to justify your overstay. Poland has an excellent relationship with the USA as an ally and U.S. citizens are not to be bothered unless they are breaking the law. Any police officer, immigration official, or border guard will verify this. Also, the U.S. has a rotating military force of over 10,000 soldiers in Poland plus military bases. Right now the U.S. is critical for both Poland and Ukraine for protection against Russia. Making life hard for visiting U.S. citizens would be bad relations. Even more so in Ukraine where the U.S. has donated over 45 billion dollars plus weapons, and Zelensky spoke before Congress. Sorry to go on a tangent but the U.S. is favored by Poland an Ukraine. Getting on U.S. citizens' case for staying more than 90 days is just not going to happen. By the way, I got this information directly from a border guard at the airport. Case in point, one time a U.S. citizen was stopped by undercover cops due to mistaken identity, the moment he disclosed he was an American, the cops apologized profusely and left him alone, not even asking to see his passport. Took his word for it. There are very strong tie between the Polish government and authorities and the U.S. especially now with the war going on next door.
Cargo pants 3 | 1,490
4 Jan 2023 #6
@Maximus2023,You are 100% correct.Even the Polish consulate had that mentioned on there page so people wont call them and ask.You have to remember that it is only for American citizens and not for Brits.
jon357 74 | 22,673
5 Jan 2023 #7
Case in point, one time a U.S. citizen was stopped by undercover cops due to mistaken identity

the moment he disclosed he was an American, the cops apologized profusely and left him alone, not even asking to see his passport

That is simply untrue.

Poland has a unilateral agreement with the USA for U.S. citizens only

Sources?
amiga500 4 | 1,511
5 Jan 2023 #8
You have to remember that it is only for American citizens and not for Brits.

This is outrageous! Brits and Aussies should be included inthe special treatment!
Cargo pants 3 | 1,490
5 Jan 2023 #9
This is outrageous! Brits and Aussies

Aussies and Kiwis YES and should be ,but Brits,NEVER going to happen.You should see how they behave in foreign countriesThese guys have a bad reputation lol you can see here on this forums history.

he disclosed he was an American, the cops apologized profusely and left him alone, not even asking to see his passport

It is very possible and lately there is a documented case about the Cali guy "Jon Minadeo Jr",he was left alone with a slap on the wrist ...

dailymail.co.uk/news/article-11185103/California-neo-Nazi-arrested-Poland-outside-Auschwitz-sign-reading-suck-6-million-d-cks.html

He was not even charged for the racial abuse he did to the US army soldier and a Indian origin man in Warsaw.In fact he also posted those videos on youtube.I bet he would be locked up if he was in States or any other country.In Poland the matter was hushed up cuz he had that blue passport.
amiga500 4 | 1,511
5 Jan 2023 #10
In Poland the matter was hushed up cuz he had that blue passport.

You think the same thing is happening with stzelecz? disturbing if true.
Cargo pants 3 | 1,490
5 Jan 2023 #11
I doubt that,he is totally a different breed.I think the crowd he mingles with either are addicts or petty criminals so maybe they dont report him or he is simply lucky.I am sure the law enforcement in Poland knows about his past but it cant be used against him what he did in a foreign country where he was punished and deported.I am sure his luck will eventually run out or maybe he just vents out his frustrations on the forum and in real he is behaving,but whatever Child molesters should be locked up for life in solitary and lately he claimed to be using meth which will certainly/eventually get him off the streets for a long time.
jon357 74 | 22,673
5 Jan 2023 #12
stzelecz

APolish citzen, and not a citizen of about other country.

No Schengen member state has any side deals with foreign countries about via free travel or residency though, however good their relations with them may otherwise be

And of course after the ETIAS system comes in next year, the electronic visa waivers will be dealt with centrally in Brussels.

It will be difficult for people who've served more than six months in prison to enter Europe.

Brits and Aussies should be included inthe special treatment

They are, however as with yanks, it's informal.
amiga500 4 | 1,511
6 Jan 2023 #13
They are, however as with yanks, it's informal.

Is it though, you were not aware of it, and maybe it really is only something they allow to the yanks wearing a suit.
jon357 74 | 22,673
6 Jan 2023 #14
Is it though,

I heard about it a couple of decades ago and have actually seen it in action. A troll who used to post crank theories here about Wałęsa still being the lawful President of Poland and about a conspiracy to deny PolAms their 'right' to citizenship used to work for me and during that time committed a serious crime. Rather than try him in a court, they just told him to get the hell out of Poland and Schengen and never come back.

It doesn't affect visas or Schengen though; the posts (by the same poster using two user names) about visa runs is simply wrong.

they allow to the yanks

There are actually very few in Poland. A handful. Most of the Merkins there are actually there as Polish citizens and that is how they are treated.
pawian 224 | 24,473
6 Jan 2023 #15
I find Polish ladies to be intelligent, well-educated, and traditional about family values

Yes, more educated than their male "equivalents" in Poland. It creates problems when females look for partners at the same level.

I find Poland to be a far safer place to live than the USA.

That`s obvious - access to guns is strictly limited here. So we don`t have mass shootings in educational facilities or supermarkets like in the US.
Alien 20 | 5,244
8 Jan 2023 #16
It creates problems when females look for partners at the same level.

To imitate Novi I would say- females create problems when they look for partners at the same level.
pawian 224 | 24,473
8 Jan 2023 #17
To imitate Novi

Why should you imitate him???

females create problems when they

Wrong language! You should say: females come across/run into problems.
johnny reb 50 | 7,187
8 Jan 2023 #18
Why should you imitate him?

He is the leading authority on the subject here on the P.F.

You should say: females come across/run into problems.

No, that is what you say with your projection.
Don't tell us what we should say by speaking for us.
We say that women create a lot of their own problems whether you agree or not.
pawian 224 | 24,473
8 Jan 2023 #19
We say that women create a lot of their own problems

Yes, you will say whatever as long as it is against women. :):)
johnny reb 50 | 7,187
8 Jan 2023 #20
Why would you imply such a lie ?
It is you who hides behind women's skirts.
Baiting me with your diminishing lies just so you have someone to argue with again ?
One of these days you will come out from under the skirt and realize just how resilient women are.
They can even speak for themselves. Simple
Do you really think you are making points with anyone when you play their lord & savior ?
Bang your feminist pots and pans as loud as you want but you fool no one.
pawian 224 | 24,473
8 Jan 2023 #21
It is you who hides behind women's skirts.

If I was hiding, I wouldn`t openly discuss my opinions. While I do. Your logic is failing you. Do you see it???

realize just how resilient women are.

Yes, they are but they need to be made aware of it in order to stand up and finish off the toxic male domination at last.

Bang your feminist pots and pans

You can be sure about it. :):)
johnny reb 50 | 7,187
8 Jan 2023 #22
and finish off the toxic male domination at last.

This is where you have some screws loose.
It's the women that have many more rights than men do.
You must live in a third world country to think otherwise.
pawian 224 | 24,473
8 Jan 2023 #23
You must live in a third world country to think otherwise.

Yes, under PiS, ideologically, it is. You hit the nail.
Miloslaw 20 | 4,801
8 Jan 2023 #24
Yes, under PiS, ideologically, it is

Poland is not a third world country.....you just hate right wingers so much that you almost wish it was true!
You really are truly pathetic....if you love socialism so much, why not move to a socialist country?
pawian 224 | 24,473
8 Jan 2023 #25
.if you love socialism

The problem is that I don`t like it, that is why I am against PiS who are doing their best to introduce it here. So simple.
johnny reb 50 | 7,187
9 Jan 2023 #26
The problem is that I don`t like it,

I agree that you don't like it...........You Love IT ! HA !
PiS is not introducing Socialism, it's the Marxist like you that have that agenda.
My gosh, just listen to your communist views here.
pawian 224 | 24,473
11 Jan 2023 #27
PiS is not introducing Socialism,

Actually, they do. :):):) You never lived in Poland, so you know nothing of it. E.g, communists harassed LGBT and PiS fully copies those dirty traditions.

Now when I told you about it you will start loving communists. hahahaha
Novichok 3 | 7,870
12 Jan 2023 #28
What Poland needs is the first woman who will not insist on always having the last word.
Cargo pants 3 | 1,490
12 Jan 2023 #29
lol NO such woman born yet in Poland.
Lyzko 42 | 9,490
12 Jan 2023 #30
Poles on the whole do seem to enjoy one upping the other, I must admit.


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