COVID-19 Travel
May 28, 2021

COVID-19 Travel Guidance for U.S. Citizens

COVID-19 Alert
July 21, 2021

Update on U.S. Passport Operations

International Travel

English

Country Information

Czech Republic

Czech Republic
Czech Republic
Exercise increased caution in the Czech Republic due to COVID-19.

Exercise increased caution in the Czech Republic due to COVID-19.

Read the Department of State’s COVID-19 page before you plan any international travel.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 2 Travel Health Notice for the Czech Republic due to COVID-19, indicating a moderate level of COVID-19 in the country. Your risk of contracting COVID-19 and developing severe symptoms may be lower if you are fully vaccinated with an FDA authorized vaccine. Before planning any international travel, please review the CDC’s specific recommendations for fully vaccinated and unvaccinated travelers

Visit the Embassy's COVID-19 page for more information on COVID-19 and related restrictions and conditions in the Czech Republic.  

Read the country information page.

If you decide to travel to the Czech Republic:

Last Update: Reissued with updates to COVID-19 information.

... [READ MORE]

Embassy Messages

Alerts

Quick Facts

PASSPORT VALIDITY:


6 months

BLANK PASSPORT PAGES:


2 pages required

TOURIST VISA REQUIRED:


Not required for stays less than 90 days

VACCINATIONS:


None

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR ENTRY:


€10,000+ euros or equivalent must be declared

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR EXIT:


€10,000+ euros or equivalent must be declared

Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Prague
Tržiště 15
118 01 Praha 1 - Malá Strana
Czech Republic
Telephone:
+ (420) 257-022-000
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: + (420) 257-022-000
Fax: + (420) 257-022-809
Email: ACSPrg@state.gov

 

Destination Description

See the Department of State’s Fact Sheet on the Czech Republic for information on U.S.-Czech Republic relations.

Entry, Exit and Visa Requirements

Embassy’s COVID-19 page for more information on entry/exit requirements related to COVID-19 in the Czech Republic.

Visit the Embassy of the Czech Republic’s website for the most current visa information.

Traveling Through Europe: If you are planning to visit or travel through European countries, you should be familiar with the requirements of the Schengen Agreement. 

  • Passports should be valid for at least six months beyond the arrival date into Schengen, to avoid difficulties entering and traveling within the Schengen zone. For additional details about travel into and within Schengen countries, please see our U.S. Travelers in Europe page.
  • You will need sufficient proof of funds and a return plane ticket.
  • The Czech Republic (official short name: Czechia) is a party to the Schengen Agreement. This means that U.S. citizens may enter the Czech Republic for up to 90 days for tourist or business purposes without a visa.
  • You may enter the Czech Republic for up to 90 days for tourist, business, study, and most other purposes (except work) without a visa. This is counted along with presence in all Schengen countries for up to 90 days out of any 180-day period.
  • You will need a visa for stays over 90 days or to work for any period of time in the Czech Republic. When a visa is required, submit your application to the nearest Czech diplomatic mission at least 3-4 months in advance of traveling to the Czech Republic. The U.S. Embassy cannot help expedite foreign visa applications. For additional information about visas for the Schengen area, see the Schengen Visa page.
  • The Czech Government requires travelers to be able to show proof, upon request, of sufficient finances to cover the cost of a traveler’s stay.
  • You must also carry proof of a valid medical insurance policy contracted for payment of all costs for hospitalization and medical treatment while in the Czech Republic.

The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of the Czech Republic.

Find information on dual nationality, prevention of international child abduction and customs regulations on our websites.

Safety and Security

Terrorism: Terrorist groups and those inspired by such organizations are intent on attacking U.S. citizens abroad. Terrorists are increasingly using less sophisticated methods of attack – including knives, firearms, and vehicles – to target crowds more effectively. Frequently, their aim is unprotected or vulnerable targets, such as:

  • High-profile public events (sporting contests, political rallies, demonstrations, holiday events, celebratory gatherings, etc.)
  • Hotels, clubs, and restaurants frequented by tourists
  • Places of worship
  • Schools
  • Parks
  • Shopping malls and markets
  • Public transportation systems (including subways, buses, trains, and scheduled commercial flights)

For more information, see our Terrorism page.

Crime: The Czech Republic generally has little crime. However, you should still take precautions against becoming a victim of crime.

Emergencies: dial 112

Police: dial 158

Firefighters and Rescue: dial 150

Emergency Medical Service: dial 155

  • Pickpocketing is problematic, especially in major tourist areas in Prague. Criminals operate in professional, highly organized groups and may be armed with simple weapons, so avoid direct confrontation. Do not leave your belongings unattended. High-risk areas include:
    • public transportation,
    • the city center,
    • crowded areas and outdoor cafes.
  • Victims of sexual assault report being drugged with rohypnol and other “date rape”-type drugs.
  • Use caution when accepting open drinks at bars or clubs, and do not leave drinks unattended.
  • Pedestrian traffic violations, such as jaywalking, may be enforced in Prague’s city center. Discretionary fines up to 2000 Czech crowns (about $100) may be applied. Refusal to pay may lead to a court procedure and an even higher fine. Streetcars have the right of way over pedestrians at crosswalks.
  • Casinos and gaming establishments are government-regulated, but some have been affiliated with, or attracted the interest of, organized crime.
  • Conduct currency exchanges at reputable banks or legitimate money kiosks. Pay close attention to the exact rate offered for the amount you wish to exchange, as rates may vary widely for smaller versus larger amounts and between different exchange offices. An offer to exchange currency by an unknown person on the street is most likely a scam.
  • ATMs are widely available throughout major cities. Criminal organizations have used electronic “skimming” to steal card information and PIN numbers at some ATMs. Use ATMs at secure, monitored locations (commercial banks, large hotels, and the airport).
  • Auto thefts and break-ins are common in the Czech Republic, especially in major cities. Use parking garages and anti-theft devices. Don’t leave valuables in plain sight inside vehicles, as this significantly increases the possibility of theft.
  • Overcharging scams: Verify charges paid with credit card are correct before signing for purchases, keep all receipts, and check your credit card accounts online to ensure correct billing.

Demonstrations occur frequently. They may take place in response to political or economic issues, on politically significant holidays, and during international events. 

  • Even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and possibly become violent. 
  • Avoid areas around protests and demonstrations. 
  • Check local media for updates and traffic advisories.

International Financial Scams: See the Department of State and the FBI pages for information.

Victims of Crime: U.S. citizen victims of sexual assault are encouraged to contact the U.S. Embassy for assistance. Report crimes to the local police at 112 and contact the U.S. Embassy at + (420) 257-022-000. Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting crime.

See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.

We can:

  • Help you find appropriate medical care
  • Assist you in reporting a crime to the police
  • Contact relatives or friends with your written consent
  • Provide general information regarding the victim’s role during the local investigation and following its conclusion
  • Provide a list of local attorneys
  • Provide our information on victim’s compensation programs in the U.S.
  • Provide an emergency loan for repatriation to the United States and/or limited medical support in cases of destitution
  • Help you find accommodation and arrange flights home
  • Replace a stolen or lost passport

Local resources available to victims of crime can be found at: Bilý Kruh Bezpečí (White Circle of Safety).

Domestic Violence: U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence are encouraged to contact the Embassy for assistance.

Tourism: The tourism industry is generally regulated and rules regarding best practices and safety inspections are regularly enforced. Hazardous areas and activities are identified with appropriate signage and professional staff is typically on hand in support of organized activities. In the event of an injury, appropriate medical treatment is widely available throughout the country. Outside of a major metropolitan center, it may take more time for first responders and medical professionals to stabilize a patient and provide life-saving assistance. U.S. citizens are encouraged to purchase medical evacuation insurance. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.

Local Laws & Special Circumstances

Criminal Penalties: You are subject to local laws. If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned. Individuals establishing a business or practicing a profession that requires additional permits or licensing should seek information from competent local authorities, prior to practicing or operating a business.

  • Ensure the security of your passport and other valuables to prevent incidents of pickpocketing or theft.
  • Always carry your passport. Czech Police, customs, or immigration officials can request to see your passport at any time. You may be fined if you fail to produce your passport.
  • Keep a copy of your passport bio data page (and pages with valid visas) in a safe place, separate from the passport itself.
  • Czech customs authorities enforce strict regulations concerning temporary import or export of items such as firearms, antiquities, medications, business equipment, etc. Contact the Embassy of the Czech Republic in Washington, D.C., for further customs guidance. The U.S. Embassy cannot help clear goods through Czech customs or advise on what items can or cannot be imported to the Czech Republic.

Furthermore, some laws are also prosecutable in the United States, regardless of local law. For examples, see our website on crimes against minors abroad and the Department of Justice website.

Arrest Notification: If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy immediately. See our webpage for further information.

  • The sale, possession, or use of illicit drugs is against the law in the Czech Republic.
  • The Czech Republic has a strictly enforced, zero-tolerance policy for drinking and driving.
  • Local police can require you to produce identification to establish your identity upon request and submit you to further questioning.

Counterfeit and Pirated Goods: Although counterfeit and pirated goods are prevalent in many countries, they may still be illegal according to local laws. If you bring them back to the United States you could be subject to fines and may have to relinquish them prior to entering the United States. See the U.S. Department of Justice website for more information.

Faith-Based Travelers: See the following webpages for details:

LGBTI Travelers: There are no legal restrictions on same-sex sexual relations or the organization of LGBTI events in Czech Republic. Outside of Prague, particularly in small towns, such relations or events are less accepted. LGBTI travelers should use discretion when traveling in these areas. See our LGBTI travel information page and section six of the Department of State’s Human Rights Report for further details.

Travelers Who Require Accessibility Assistance: While in the Czech Republic, individuals may find accessibility and accommodation very different from what you find in the United States. The law prohibits discrimination against persons with disabilities in employment, education, access to health care, and the provision of other state services. The government generally enforces these provisions.

  • Many buses and streetcars - especially in Prague - are configured for special needs access.
  • 72 percent of Prague’s metro stations are accessible to persons with disabilities, and work to expand barrier-free access is ongoing.
  • Taxi services for persons with limited mobility exist. There are several companies offering such services in Prague, and some service areas outside Prague.
  • Much of the center of Prague, most interesting to tourists, was built centuries ago with narrow cobblestone streets that may make accessibility difficult or impossible.
  • Accessibility outside of Prague is generally less available.

Students: See our Students Abroad page and FBI travel tips.

Women Travelers:

  • Be aware of “date-rape” drugs.
  • Be cautious in bars and clubs where alcohol is served. Leaving your drink unattended or accepting a drink from a stranger can lead to serious consequences.

See our travel tips for Women Travelers.

Health

For emergency services in Czech Republic, dial 112.

Prague has adequate Western-style medical clinics with English-speaking doctors and dentists, but its system is organized differently than in the United States. Though central emergency rooms exist in most hospitals, patients are often sent to a specialty clinic to treat specific medical conditions. Family practices like those in the United States are mostly in larger cities.

  • All major hospitals accept credit cards or cash as a method of payment. Private specialists usually expect cash, though some private facilities accept credit cards.

In the event of an injury, appropriate medical treatment is widely available throughout the country. Outside of a major metropolitan center, it may take more time for first responders and medical professionals to stabilize a patient and provide life-saving assistance. Ambulance services are on par with those in the United States. Response time is usually less than 15 minutes. Ambulance companies generally expect payment at the time of service.

Ambulance services are widely available.

We do not pay medical bills. Be aware that U.S. Medicare/Medicaid does not apply overseas. Most hospitals and doctors overseas do not accept U.S. health insurance.

Medical Insurance: Generally, patients who have overseas insurance coverage should expect to pay the bill at the time services are rendered and then seek reimbursement from their insurance company. Contact your health insurance company directly to find out if your policy includes overseas coverage. Many care providers overseas only accept cash payments. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage. Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for more information on type of insurance you should consider before you travel overseas.

We strongly recommend supplemental insurance to cover medical evacuation.

Always carry your prescription medication in original packaging, along with your doctor’s prescription. Check with the Czech Ministry of Health to ensure the medication is legal in the Czech Republic.

Vaccinations: Be up to date on all vaccinations recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Further health information:

Air Quality: Visit AirNow Department of State for information on air quality at U.S. Embassies and Consulates.

The U.S. Embassy maintains a list of doctors and hospitals on its website. We do not endorse or recommend any specific medical provider or clinic.

Health facilities in general:

  • Adequate health facilities are available throughout the country but health care in rural areas may be below U.S. standards.
  • Hospitals and doctors often require payment “up front” prior to service or admission, either in cash or by credit card.
  • Private hospitals usually require advance payment or proof of adequate insurance before admitting a patient.
  • Patients bear all costs for transfer to or between hospitals.

Medical Tourism and Elective Surgery

  • Medical tourism is a rapidly growing industry. People seeking health care overseas should understand that medical systems operate differently from those in the United States and are not subject to the same rules and regulations. Anyone interested in traveling for medical purposes should consult with their local physician before traveling and visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information on Medical Tourism.
  • Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for information on Medical Tourism, the risks of medical tourism, and what you can do to prepare before traveling to the Czech Republic.
  • We strongly recommend supplemental insurance to cover medical evacuation in the event of unforeseen medical complications.
  • Your legal options in case of malpractice are very limited in the Czech Republic.
  • Although the Czech Republic has many elective/cosmetic surgery facilities that are on par with those found in the United States, the quality of care varies widely. If you plan to undergo surgery in the Czech Republic, make sure that emergency medical facilities are available, and professionals are accredited and qualified.

Pharmaceuticals

  • U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Food and Drug Administration are responsible for rules governing the transport of medication back to the United States. Medication purchased abroad must meet their requirements to be legally brought back into the United States. Medication should be for personal use and must be approved for usage in the United States. Please visit the U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Food and Drug Administration websites for more information.
  • Additionally, see the Czech Embassy’s restricted medication section on its website before traveling with medication.

Assisted Reproductive Technology and Surrogacy

  • If you are considering traveling to the Czech Republic to have a child through the use of assisted reproductive technology (ART) or surrogacy, please see our ART and Surrogacy Abroad page.
  • The Czech Republic neither legalizes, regulates, nor prohibits couples to apply and perform surrogacy treatments. According to current legislation, assisted reproduction therapy permits heterosexual couples to apply but at present restricts single women or homosexual couples to apply for assisted reproduction.
  • If you decide to pursue parenthood in the Czech Republic via assisted reproductive technology (ART) with a gestational mother, be prepared for long and unexpected delays in documenting your child’s citizenship. Be aware that individuals who attempt to circumvent local law risk criminal prosecution.

Adventure Travel

  • Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information about Adventure Travel.

General Health Language

The following diseases are prevalent:

  • Tick-borne encephalitis and Lyme disease. If you plan to camp or hike in long grass or woodlands from March to October, you run the risk of both tick-borne encephalitis and Lyme disease. While there is a vaccine for encephalitis, no vaccine exists for Lyme disease. Use insect repellent and proper clothing as extra protection.
  • Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information about Resources for Travelers regarding specific issues in the Czech Republic.
  • U.S. living wills stipulating no exceptional interventions to prolong life are not honored in the Czech Republic due to laws against euthanasia.

Air Quality

  • Air pollution is a significant problem in several major cities in the Czech Republic Consider the impact seasonal smog and heavy particulate pollution may have on you and consult your doctor before traveling if necessary.
  • The air quality varies considerably and fluctuates with the seasons. It is typically at its worst in the wintertime. People at the greatest risk from particle pollution exposure include:
    • Infants, children, and teens
    • People over 65 years of age
    • People with lung disease such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema.
    • People with heart disease or diabetes
    • People who work or are active outdoors

Travel and Transportation

Road Conditions and Safety:

  • We strongly recommend that you familiarize yourself with the traffic laws of the Czech Republic to avoid fines, detention, or potential imprisonment.
  • On two-lane roads and in small towns, drivers will encounter uneven surfaces, roads in poor condition, irregular lane markings, and unclear sign placements.
  • Pay special attention when driving on cobblestones and among streetcars in historic city centers, especially in wet or icy conditions.

Traffic Laws:

  • To drive in the Czech Republic, visitors must have an International Driving Permit (IDP), available from AAA in the United States, to accompany a U.S. driver’s license. Failure to have an IDP with a valid license may result in an additional fine if stopped for a traffic offense, or denial of an insurance claim after an accident.
  • All private cars, including those of foreign visitors, must carry additional safety gear, including reflective jackets, warning triangles, and a first aid kit. These can be purchased at any gas station or large supermarket.
  • In the case of a traffic accident or breakdown on the highway, make sure that you use the warning triangle, placing it at least 100 meters before the car on a highway and 50 meters on other roads. For all accidents, call the Police at 158, or Emergency Services at 112. For general roadside assistance call Road Traffic Assistance (UAMK) at phone number 1240. UAMK operates 24 hours a day and can be called from highway telephones, located every two kilometers alongside the road.
  • Czech law requires all passengers and occupants of private vehicles to use seatbelts.
  • There is a zero-tolerance policy for driving under the influence of alcohol. Police can use breathalyzers on drivers stopped for any reason. Driving with any detected alcohol in the body, however slight, is illegal and usually leads to immediate fines and possible criminal proceedings.
  • Czech law requires the use of headlights at all times.
  • toll sticker is required for all cars to drive legally on major highways. For more information, visit the official Czech highway toll website.
  • In the Czech Republic, winter tires are obligatory from November 1st to March 31st, if there are wintery weather conditions, or if such conditions are to be expected during your drive.
  • Using hand-held cell phones while driving is prohibited.
  • Streetcars always have the right of way over other vehicles and pedestrians, including at crosswalks.

Public Transportation: Public transportation in the Czech Republic is generally very good. There are extensive intercity train and bus networks, and larger cities have high-quality urban mass transit systems. Information on tickets and pricing within Prague can be found here.

  • Passengers on public transportation must buy a ticket prior to boarding and validate it upon boarding to avoid being fined. Tickets must be validated by inserting it into a validator found inside trams and buses and in the entry halls of Metro stations.
  • In Prague, tickets can be purchased at newspaper stands, post offices, and from vending machines at all metro stations and at major tram stops. Tickets can also be purchased by text message on a mobile phone on a Czech network, but the traveler must have received the reply message with the ticket before entering a tram, bus, or metro station. Most newer trams also allow passengers to purchase tickets onboard.
  • Travelers may encounter plain-clothes ticket inspectors wearing small metal badges with “Přepravní Kontrola” on them at any time. Fines for failure to have a validated ticket range from 50 to 1500 CZK. In Prague, the usual fine is 800 CZK if paid on the spot or within 15 days. Inspectors should provide a receipt for on-the-spot payments.
  • Trams always have the right of way over pedestrians, including at crosswalks.
  • Legitimate taxis are clearly marked, and the Embassy strongly recommends calling for a taxi rather than hailing one on the street. If calling is not possible, visitors should get taxis at clearly marked “Fair Place” stands. The potential for substantial overcharging in taxis exists, particularly in tourist areas. Agree on a price in advance or ensure the driver is using the meter. Ridesharing and mobile taxi apps, such as Uber and Liftago, are prevalent in Prague and in most major cities.

See our Road Safety page for more information. Visit the website of the Czech Republic’s national tourist office and the Ministry of Transport.

Aviation Safety Oversight: The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has assessed the Government of Czech Republic’s Civil Aviation Authority as being in compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards for oversight of the Czech Republic’s air carrier operations. Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.

For additional travel information

International Parental Child Abduction

Review information about International Parental Child Abduction in Czech Republic.  For additional IPCA-related information, please see the International Child Abduction Prevention and Return Act (ICAPRA) report.

Last Updated: July 7, 2021

Travel Advisory Levels

Information for Vaccinated Travelers

The CDC's latest guidance on international travel for vaccinated people can be found here.

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy in Prague
Tržiště 15
118 01 Praha 1 - Malá Strana
Czech Republic
Telephone
+(420) 257-022-000
Emergency
+(420) 257-022-000
Fax
+(420) 257-022-809

Czech Republic Map