Credit Cards in Poland

Credit Cards in Poland

Poland has continued to receive more foreigners since it joined the EU. As An expat in the country, you can expect to experience a lot of adventure. The adventure may range from great cuisine, attractive sights, great culture and chances of mingling with the ever beautiful Polish girls. Did I also mention the  soaring mountains that are perfect for hikes and the picture-perfect coastline? All these are just some of the many things that anyone coming to Poland can sample. You will also feel at home in this country thanks to its relatively low cost of living.

One extra thing about Poland  that is worth anyone’s attention is that unlike Scandinavian countries that race towards cashless systems, it still proudly embraces cash. You will without a doubt get so many stores downtown that accept cash payments. But even so, we can’t just ignore that the country is digitizing and people continually trust cashless transactions. So, this is where the talk of credit cards in Poland becomes a necessity for the reason that it allows borrowers to spend their borrowing without anybody knowing it is a credit anyway. 

Even though borrowing and credit seeking is not anything new, people always have this tendency to feel shy when everyone around has to know they are actually broke and has to call someone to authorize a payment. This is what having a credit card in Poland really takes away from you. Anyone who has been in such bad situations in life can relate how embarrassing it may be to call a friend or family to transfer money to their accounts because the card doesn’t have enough funds. 

Getting started with credit cards in Poland

Any traveller will bear out the fact that having a credit card is a good thing to avoid having to exchange money or struggle with shortfalls in a budget. So it’s important to know a few things about how credit cards work in the country to help manage your finances. Credit cards have continued to become a convenient payment method in most countries today. Poland is not any different. Using your credit card in Poland is as safe as it gets. Most businesses allow credit card payments through VISA and MasterCard are the most popular. Some businesses also accept Amex cards. 

Using a Credit Card in Poland

If you have read anything about Polish banking then you can acknowledge that it has come a long way. Back in the 1990s, it was a monopolized and inefficient system. Fast forward to today and you will find different local and international banking options in the country.  So, it would help to shop around and find one that best suits your needs. 

Credit Cards in Poland

Credit cards are common in most parts of Poland especially in places that are considered tourist attractions. However, you should carry cash just in case you come across a vendor that doesn’t accept credit cards. In Poland it’s advisable to use a credit card as much as possible to avoid carrying large amounts of cash. 

Getting a Credit Card in Poland 

Most banks in Poland offer their customers credit cards as an additional product. Whenever a user needs to sign a contract such as a mortgage, the bank will usually require them to have a credit card. However, before you sign a contract, you should read all the terms and conditions to avoid any monthly charges on your credit card. 

 Note that most banks set monthly charges based on a given minimum value of transactions made using a credit card every month. Ask your provider how much you should pay to get a card. With some providers, you can negotiate and get it for free. I should remind you that credit cards are money in plastic form. So use your card with moderation. 

Another important aspect of getting a credit card in Poland is security. While considering credit cards to choose, you should also check its security features. There have been cases where fraudsters copy credit card numbers or credit cards. With a copy, charges can be added to your card without your consent. 

So, ensure that your bank offers a credit card that comes with alerts whenever the card is used. This is important because it means that you can block or cancel a stolen card. Most banks will send you a new card as soon as the issue is sorted. 

Requirements for getting a Credit Card in Poland

Even as an expat or a long term resident of Poland, you will still need a credit card in Poland. For instance whenever you need to buy a ticket online. Besides, credit card payments are safer for online shopping and for buying tourist services. The good news is that you can still apply for a credit card in Poland even as a foreigner. Assuming you have used up your credit card limits, it is also a possibility that you may take a payday loan and direct it to be paid out to your credit card. Just like that, you continue using the card as if it was loaded by your own money and not a second level of borrowing.

Your credit card use should remain convenient as long as you stay disciplined. Be sure to keep track of your spending and pay your credit card bills on time. The requirements for getting a credit card will differ from one bank to another. However, there are some conditions that are basic and standard in Poland. 

Most credit card providers will need some form of identification. So you must include your ID or passport in the application. Similarly, your bank will ask for a residence card so make sure you carry it with you. Finally, Polish banks will need an income statement to issue a credit card. So, if you have an employment contract, you should attach a statement from the past three months. 

The income statement condition is different for those who have a specific work contract. Here, most banks will expect you to produce contracts from the previous 12 months. It implies that the period of employment has to be longer than 12 months. However, the trick to getting a credit card is to have a stable job with regular income. I wouldn’t recommend getting one if you are not actively working since you might end up in debt. 

Which Credit Card Provider to Choose in Poland

In terms of application requirements, I would recommend Millennium and PKO BP. They are more lenient and favourable towards expats. For instance, Millennium will only need a residence card for a fixed period of time. PKO BP on the other hand, needs at least a residence permit with a PESEL number on it. 

The deal gets better if you are from an EU country. You will only need a certificate of residence registration and a document confirming that a PESEL number was granted. Another popular provider among expats is Pekao S.A bank. They need a residence card and you should consider getting a bank account with them. Credit cards are easier to issue to customers who already have an account with the bank. 

You could also go to BZWBK bank for your credit card. However, they will need a residence permit for the period of two years. Any number of banks might ask for additional documents. So you should check the requirements on their websites before applying for one. 

However, don’t worry if you feel like you don’t meet some requirements. Most banks will relent if they feel like you are eligible. Credit cards are in most cases, the most attractive and profitable product for most banks. So, as long as you have a proper residence document and a steady source of income in Poland, you can get a credit card.