Freaking Out About Moving......

Discussion in 'Expat Life' started by kmilosovich, Aug 19, 2004.

  1. kmilosovich

    kmilosovich Member

    I am moving to prague for the next year to teach english and basically I am freaking out bc I don't really know what to bring with me! If anyone can help with packing adivce that would be great.

    Also, what type of cell phone should I get once I am there?

    Should I open a bank account?

    Will I need a second job?

    I hear that American get taken advantage of when apartment hunting......How and where should I try to find an apartment??

    Any good health insurance companies??

    How easy is it to get mail and packages??

    Can you easily get digital pictures printed and if so where???

    Should I bring a laptop??

  2. Halef

    Halef Well-Known Member

    Anything able to work with GSM at 900 / 1800 MHz.

    That would be good, but not necessary. It depends on how you will get your salary. Do not expect cheques.

    The basic criteria for this are your salary and your rent. If the difference is more than, say, 5000 CZK per month, you should be able to live without second job.

    It would be best to use local contacts, if you have any, or use some reliable estate agency.

    I am not sure if you need one, but this should be little problem. They are quite similar, one gives you free vitamins, another one pays for your contraception... The insurance is payed by your employer, you just have to let him know which company it is.

    I do not expect any problems - once you have an address, the Czech post works quite reliably. Do not expect speed, though, oversees letters can take a week or more.

    Any photo shop.

    If you wish... No ideas why you should not. Just buy the proper electricity plug / adapter.
  3. kmilosovich

    kmilosovich Member

    THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THE HELP. I already feel so much better. One quick question on the cell phone....will I be able to use it throughout Europe or just in prague?
  4. Halef

    Halef Well-Known Member

    Europe, Africa, maybe Asia... Not USA, the frequency is different there, I think 1900 MHz or so (some phones support it, these are called "triband").

    For using abroad you have to activate a so called "roaming" service. If you are going to travel a lot, T-mobile might be a good choice. The company runs a cell network in several European countries, so the calls from those countries are cheaper.
  5. Irish_student

    Irish_student Active Member

    these days, most european mobile phone companies have integrated networks, so you probably won't need to set up roaming...however, if you are using a czech phone in a foreign country, for example france, the call costs are much, much would also be billed for any calls or SMS messages you received, as well as sent...this is definitely true for irish phones anyway, as i was able to bring my phone with me to Spain, England, France and Belgium and it worked perfectly, so there's no reason why it shouldn't be the same for czech phones...
  6. Karel

    Karel Well-Known Member

    I know of an EFL teacher who after a few years of teaching in Moravia ended up as a teacher trainer in Prague and was pulling in 1 000 USD a month. (If you want his email, PM me). If you were making this much I don`t think you`d have to have another job. But I think it`ll take a while till you reach this sum on a monthly basis, so by the time you could enrich yourself by tutoring. 150-250CZK an hour. It`s pretty much up to you how much you charge.

    Apart from camera shops, some drugstores provide such services too, and are even cheaper. There`s also an option of sending your photos to the largest photo laboratory in the CR through the net. They`ll send you your photographs by post. Here`s the link (only in Czech)
  7. Orange_Band

    Orange_Band New Member

    A little comment on the Czech postal system. It's not the US Postal Service. It is not unusual for a package to arrive having been opened by the postal workers and you find that things are missing. I had this happen on a number of occasions during the two years I was teaching in Prague. Usually, things arrived intact, but be aware that theft does occur on occasion. Make sure anything sent to you is insured, and make sure anything you send is insured.
  8. Karel

    Karel Well-Known Member

    You can also use the services of DHL or UPS.

    I agree with Orange Band that there`s a certain risk involved when sending a parcel, but the Czech post faces a tough competion and their services have improved hugely. In the old days, when every single postcard was sorted out by hand, it was normal for your above-average postcard not to arrive at all.

    Sending a parcel from the CR:
    If you want to ensure your parcel, you have to write a detailed description of the contents and every single item to be ensured must be checked with a customs officer. At least, that is my last experience from more than a year ago. I could NOT get it ensured without a customs approval/estimate? (I really don`t know what they were supposed to do with my parcel). So, in order to distract some thieving Czech post officers` attention, I wrote under the column of the contents, Socks, old books etc. and have always had my parcels delivered unpacked. Fortunately. Whenever I sent a parcel from abroad I tried to make it as ordinary-looking as possible as well. No one wants your used underwear, do they? Always got it, too.

    If you were to choose between DHL or UPS, I`d recommend DHL, though I`ve never sent anything wth UPS internationally. I did it only within the US, always got it, but sometimes late.

    Here`s the Czech post`s site:

  9. Frank_pivo_4

    Frank_pivo_4 Well-Known Member

  10. Emperor

    Emperor Member

    If you get yourself a Tri-Band GSM phone it will work all over Europe and with some providers in Canada and the US. I know in Canda only Rogers and Fido are GSM and the rest use CDMA. Also, since in Czech the dialer payes for the phone call, can recieve phone calls for free, that includes international, so if you want anyone international to call you, just send them a text message, this was my favorite way to getting a hold of people. When I was in Czech last, (last fall) I shoped around and found T-Mobile to be the best choice, like Halef recomended. Also their international calling is good to, if you use the VOIP of course. I still have a valid phone number with them here (in Canada :) ) just need someone to buy me some minutes, heh.
  11. Emperor

    Emperor Member

    The company I work for ships A LOT of stuff to Europe, and we mostly use UPS over DHL, with DHL we found there were a lot more problems with taxes, strange charges, custom fees and so on, and none of these issues ever happened with UPS. My recomendation is UPS for North America to Europe and DHL in Europe and to North America.

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