Nesting in Prague
August 11, 2015 7:44 AM   Subscribe

If things go well, I will be moving to Prague in the spring. I do have a friend there, however, I am trying to not bug them very much now as I am still in research stage. (I have a notebook filling up with info about the visa process, zivno, metro, all that. ) What I'm currently trying to figure out is the best way to go out about finding a place to live since I plan on staying and working after the course.

I will be doing a CELTA course that is 4 weeks. The school does offer student accomodation but I am terribly afraid of getting 20-something party kids up at all hours drinking and whatnot whilst I'm trying to study and sleep.

Ideally, I'd like to arrive a week or two early to get a flat on my own.

Various ideas I've had:
- Airbnb for about 6 weeks (arrive week early, do the course, and then have a week after the course) and researching flats while I'm there
- Arrive a week or two early, do airbnb, and search for flat at that time, before program starts
- Find a few places that look good online and ask my friend if he could check them out (Don't want to bother him, but if he had time, I think he would.)
- Hire an agent to take care of finding a place for me before I arrive. I know it's expensive, but sometimes it's ok to throw money at problem. Especially when jetlag and culture shock are involved.

Furnishing concerns:
- Furnished - more expensive, but less headache
- Unfurnished - where am I gonna find stuff in the few days I have before the program starts and coordinate delivery etc?

Flatshare concerns:
- not interested. I'm a loner. I need my quiet time. I would only do this as an absolute last resort. AirBnB is a bit different I think, I've had good experiences. But for more than a month, I do not want a roommate at all.

I'm concerned that graduating from the program, getting the visa/zivno in order, and finding a job AND an apartment AND stuff to put in it would be way tooooo much to handle. Having a home base would be great.

I won't have limitless funds but I'm planning on having enough to cover 3 months of rent and utilities (or airbnb), plus a security deposit. I've seen what seem to be reasonable (tiny) furnished studios for about 8-10 000 k on places like I'm ok with tiny. I'd rather tiny than someone leaving wet towels on the floor or eating my nutella.

So, mefites who've moved to Prague...

- How early should I try to find a place? Will I need more than a week? I don't expect to stay in it forever, but for 6-12 months, so doesn't have to be the most perfect ever. Location is more important to me than the actual space. (Near a metro, groceries, gym, and some restaurants. And a laundromat.)
- Is a furnished studio/flat not completely insane for the first 6-12 months?
- If it is, where are good places to get basic all the basics (either new or secondhand) - bed/futon, linens, basic kitchen stuff, a table and chair or desk? I'd need help with delivery since I won't have a car.
- What is the worst/best time of year to try to find a flat? I haven't picked an actual program start date yet. They're still posting their 2016 schedule. Depending on what I pick, I could start anywhere from March thru July.
posted by sio42 to Travel & Transportation around Prague, Czech Republic (4 answers total)
I would start with an airbnb rental for at least a month. Take a look at Sreality to get a better idea of flat prices in the center of Prague. You might find a real estate agent that speaks English but you will probably have to hire a translator when you go looking for a flat.

There are 2 Ikeas in Prague. They have a limited delivery area but you can find "man with a van" listings on, which might be better if you only want a few items. Tesco will have basic household items like sheets and dishes but I find Ikea to be cheaper on things like sheets and towels.

If you are an American, I would set aside some money to have an agency to help you with your visa and not trust the language school to take care of it.
posted by Ariadne at 8:37 AM on August 11, 2015 [1 favorite]

Yes definitely using a service for the visa/zivno thing..

I don't know why I think of Ikea as expensive... Probably because there's not one near me and I've only been one to a few times.

I'm looking at their site now and the prices seem reasonable enough that I'm going to look more into unfurnished tiny shoeboxes.

I really never would have given Ikea a glance at all otherwise so I'm marking as best answer. But I'm still open to hearing from others!
posted by sio42 at 9:14 AM on August 11, 2015

Also, frequent whatever expat forums you can find - there are normally always people arriving or departing looking to acquire or rid themselves of furniture. A lot of it will be ikea, often only lightly used, and even cheaper than new.
posted by koahiatamadl at 1:24 PM on August 11, 2015 [1 favorite]

Update: i used a service because they also review the lease and helped me get Internet. I found a furnished place that is nicer than any place I've ever lived.
posted by sio42 at 9:08 AM on May 10, 2016

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