Bulgarian history in brief
Bulgaria, short for Republic of Bulgaria, is a unitary state on the Balkan Peninsular. The country shares borders with Romania on the North, Turkey on the South-East, Greece on the South, Macedonia on the South-West and Serbia on the West.
The history of the nation has started, as many historians agree, in 681 AD. The first monarch was Khan Asparuh. Under the leadership of Krum, the Bulgars expanded and consolidated their empire. In 865 AD under Boris I they adopted Christianity.
Bulgaria was the first state to fall under the Ottoman Turks, mainly due to the proximity of the two countries. During the Ottoman Rule, which continued for over five centuries, there was no development in any aspect of life, the country was thrown and kept into dark ages. Bulgarian culture was preserved only in monasteries of the Orthodox Church. In 1878 the country was liberated through the military support and activities of the Russian army.
During World War I and World War II Bulgaria allied itself with Germany and suffered defeats. In 1944 the Red Army once again entered Bulgaria and established a communist satellite regime, which lasted until 1990 when Bulgaria gained back its independence.
Free elections were held in June 1990 and in July 1991 a new Constitution was adopted.
Bulgaria joined the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in 2004. After undertaking substantial political and economic reforms, in 2007 the country entered into the European Union.
The government is promoting economic growth, attracting more and more foreign investors, and offering very supportive taxation and allowances.
National Revenue Agency – Narodna Agencia po Prihodite
Congratulations on your job placement!
Now that you have found a new job in Bulgaria, it is time to make yourself familiar with some important institutions in the country.
Your new employer will provide you with a Labour Contract. As a European Union citizen, you do not need a work permit. As a rule, EU citizens who are employed can work with no restrictions and without the need for a work permit.
Once you have obtained your Residence Permit, you will have been furnished with a 10-digit unique number, which will be your Tax number. The number will be displayed on the front side of the Residence Permit. A copy of this document will be required by the employer in order to enter your details in the NRA for taxation purposes.
By law, each employee pays a 10% income tax. This applies to all employees irrespective of the amount of their salary.
Banks in Bulgaria – How to open an account
There are several well-established Bulgarian banks, which can be considered when opening a bank account in Bulgaria. The process is easy but be warned, it takes a bit of time to fill in several documents as the country is big on paperwork. All banks have different fees for opening an account, maintenance, cash withdrawals, etc. It is worth checking on this.
Banks to choose from:
- United Bulgarian Bank – https://www.ubb.bg/en
- DSK Bank – https://dskbank.bg/en
- Eurobank Bulgaria (Postbank) – https://www.postbank.bg/en
- First Investment Bank (FiBank) – https://www.fibank.bg/bg
- UniCredit Bulbank – https://www.unicreditbulbank.bg/en/
To open a bank account you will need:
- A valid passport and national ID card
- A corresponding address (you can use your employer’s address)
- A minimum deposit amount to activate the account (10-20 Bulgarian Leva)
It usually takes a week to receive a bank debit card, either to have it sent to the correspondence address or it can be collected from the bank in person. Most of the banks offer online banking, which is far cheaper than in-branch transactions. The only prerequisite is to have a Bulgarian mobile phone number, however, it is best to consult with your individual bank.
Mobile Phone services in Bulgaria – Providers
In general, mobile services in Bulgaria are very reasonable and the quality of the network is very good. There is good coverage all over the country. No matter if you are talking over the phone or using the Internet, you can be in touch with the world with no interruptions for only a few BG Levs.
A1, Vivacom, and Yettel are the three major mobile network providers in Bulgaria.
Offices of the providers can be found all over the country, especially in Sofia and other big cities. There are two options to use mobile services:
- under contract, minimum for one or two years
- Pre-paid SIM cards.
Usually, all providers have special monthly offers. It is worth checking on those prior to signing any contract. Bear in mind, that the provider will be asking for 100 BG Lev deposit for the contract, which will be included in the first monthly invoice. This applies to all foreigners in Bulgaria.
Documents required for the mobile phone services contract:
- ID card and National Passport
- Proof of address
- Utility bill
- Bank account number
For more details on mobile service providers, see below: