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Last update 17 June 2024Diplomatic missions

Risk index

Level 2: Increased attention (please be informed in detail about the current situation in the country)


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Regular passport: visa not required

Diplomatic passport: visa not required

Official passport: visa not required

Untied Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

Embassy of the Republic of Bulgaria in the United Kingdom
Address: 186-188 Queen’s Gate, London SW7 5HL, UK
Telephone: +44 20 7581 3144; +44 0 20 7584 9400;
Fax: +44 20 7584 4948
Out-of-hours hotline: + 44 20 7 5813144; + 44 20 7 5849400
E-mail: [email protected] 
Web site: www.Bulgarianembassy-london.org ; www.mfa.bg/embassies/uk

Consular Office:
Telephone:+44 20 7581 3144; +44 0 20 7584 9400 ;+44 020 75893763;
Opening hours: 09:30 – 13:30 (for all consular services)
E-mail: [email protected]

Honorary Consul of the Republic of Bulgaria in the Untied Kingdom
Paul Martin, Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE)
Address: NI-CO, Landmark House
Cromac Quay, Belfast, UK
Е-mail: [email protected] 

His Britannic Majesty's Embassy in Sofia, the Republic of Bulgaria
Address: 9 Moskovska St., Sofia
Telephone: +359 933 92 22
Fax: +359 933 92 50
Consular Department:
Telephone: +359 933 92 22
Fax: +359 933 92 50
Working hours: Mon– Fri, 09:00 – 17:00; lunch break – 12:30 – 13:30
E-mail: [email protected]

British Council
Address: 7 Krakra St.
Telephone: +359 2 942 43 44
Fax: +359 2 942 42 22
E-mail: [email protected]

General information

General Information

Security level:
In relation to the 2017 and 2019 terrorist attacks, the 2018 chemical weapons attacks and the assessment of the threat of a terrorist attack within the UK, the UK authorities have assessed the threat level of a terrorist attack in the UK as ‘significant’ (terrorist attacks are possible). The Ministry of Foreign Affairs recommends Bulgarian citizens travelling to the United Kingdom to inform themselves in detail about the current situation in the country and to strictly follow the instructions of the local authorities.

Access to the UK healthcare system is conditional on a person being permanently resident in the UK. However, this concept is not defined in a legal act, but has guidelines and interpretation, with the final decision being made by the respective health facility.
It is important to register with a GP as soon as possible after arrival. Information about practices in your area can be found here: http://www.nhs.uk/Service-Search/GP/LocationSearch/4 
In practice, for EU nationals where at least one family member is working legally in the UK, there should be no problems accessing health services, but you should check in advance given the need to be covered by the system as soon as possible after your arrival.
The European Health Card issued by the NHIF can be used to access health services, including for pregnancy and childbirth, but this will also involve checks that your health insurance rights in Bulgaria are continuous.

Specifics of the local legislation:
Remember that abroad you should comply with local acts and norms. You fall within their jurisdiction during your stay there. We recommend that you inform yourself about them in advance and comply with them. Penalties for breaking the law can be more stringent than those in the Republic of Bulgaria for the same offences.
Pay special attention to and observe local rules on the possession and consumption of alcoholic beverages and psychotropic substances. Place all medications in their original packaging and check whether some of them are not considered illegal drugs in Great Britain. If you use such substances, carry a copy of a doctor’s prescription confirming this fact.
Avoid carrying third party belongings when crossing borders.
If you are detained by the local authorities for any reason, require to get in touch with the Diplomatic Mission of the Republic of Bulgaria. The consular officer will contact you as soon as possible.
We advise you to conclude a contract for

Customs requirements:
Items and accessories for personal use shall not be declared and shall not be subject to duty if they are within the normal quantity. Personal belongings and accessories for personal use are not dutiable, providing they are within the reasonable amounts.

Check the website of the Ministry of Finance HERE and the website of the Customs Agency HERE.

Practical advice:
The Embassy does not have accommodation facilities and does not provide means for food and return to the Republic of Bulgaria. In cases where Bulgarian citizens are left without funds in the United Kingdom, the Embassy of the Republic of Bulgaria in London may assist such persons in transferring certain sums of money from their relatives, acquaintances and friends through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Sofia to the Embassy, which sums shall be paid immediately by the Embassy to those in need. The amount should be deposited in the name of the person in need at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Directorate of Finance and Property Management, address: Sofia 1113, 2 Alexander Zhendov St.

Local currency:
British Pound (GBP).

Access to the UK labour market for Bulgarian nationals:
As of 1 January 2021 the UK is implementing a new points-based immigration system. It stipulates that European citizens who are not yet settled in the UK and do not have rights under the Withdrawal Agreement (temporary settled status and settled status) must meet specific requirements to work in the UK.

Details of the different visa routes for work and employment in the UK can be found at HERE.

General information on employment and the exercise of employment rights:
All people legally entitled to work in the UK have statutory employment rights arising from their type of employment.
There are three legal categories of workers in the UK and they are: employees, workers and self-employed persons.
You can find out what kind of worker you are and what your employment rights are HERE.
Information on employment status and relevant employment rights can be found HERE.
Information on workers' rights can be found HERE.
The Farm Work Welfare seasonal farm work application can be downloaded from HERE.

Extremely detailed information on many aspects of the British system — employment, the welfare system, protection of rights, pensions and more — can be found on the British government's website:

Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Services - provides information and advice on employee rights, counselling on conflicts and disciplinary action taken by the employer in the workplace and opportunities for conciliation and arbitration: www.acas.org.uk; Telephone: 0300 123 1100.

Citizens Advice Bureau - a national network of information and advice bureaux providing advice on an extremely wide range of employment, welfare, health and family issues. https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/work/

Work Rights Centre - a registered charity that provides free and confidential information in a variety of European languages and can help you understand and access your employment rights and improve your chances of getting a job: http://www.workrightscentre.org/, [email protected]

Health and Safety Executive - Occupational Health and Safety Service — whistleblowing on health and safety issues in the workplace:

Reporting accidents at work - you can call: 0345 300 9923

International Pension Centre - for nationals of other Member States who also have service in the UK (International Pension Centre)
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 218 7777

Interactive tool to determine eligibility for certain benefits:

Depending on the circumstances of individual cases, reports of violations may also be referred to Bulgarian institutions:
National Commission for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings:
Sofia, telephone +359 2 807 80 50
Е-mail: [email protected].

Executive Agency ‘General Labour Inspectorate’ - hotline - 0700 17 670.

Travel papers and visas

Travel papers and visa requirements

As of 01 January 2021, citizens of the Republic of Bulgaria will be able to enter and reside without a visa in the United Kingdom for short stays of up to 6 months. During this period, they will be able to enter repeatedly for the purpose of tourism, participation in meetings and conferences, short courses, but not to live permanently, work or access public funds.
Under the new UK entry rules published on the Home Office website, from 1 October 2021 EU, EEA and Swiss nationals will require a passport to travel to the UK.
Bulgarian nationals granted settled status or temporary settled status will only be allowed to enter the UK with an identity card until at least 31 December 2025. National Identity Cards will be able to be used for entry to the UK by these categories of persons after the 31 December 2025 date, provided the cards meet the security standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organisation.
Further information, including customs regulations (such as import regime for currency, cigarettes and alcohol), insurance and driving, import and export of plants, travel with pets, healthcare and other important information for travellers, can be obtained at: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/visiting-the-uk-from-1-january-2021 

Those intending to stay long-term for work, study or to settle to live in OK will need to apply for a visa. Visa application is through the UK government website: https://www.gov.uk/browse/visas-immigration.

Holders of biometric passports /Bulgarian passports are biometric/ will be able to fill in the visa application through a smartphone application. If they are unsuccessful or it is not possible to read a passport, they will need to visit the Visa Application Centre.
Successful applicants will receive secure access to their immigration status in lieu of a physical document.

Please note that in addition to the visa application processing fee due https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/visa-regulations-revised-table/fees-5-october , visa applicants (excluding certain professions which are exempt), applicants are also required to pay a healthcare fee which will ensure they have access to healthcare through the National Health Service https://www.gov.uk/healthcare-immigration-application/how-much-pay.

The following immigration routes are open to Bulgarian citizens:
Skilled worker route;
Skilled work- Health and Care visa;
Highly skilled workers – Global talent route;
Student routе;
Innovative entrepreneurs;
Specialist occupations;
For more information: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/visiting-the-uk-from-1-january-2021 ; https://www.gov.uk/guidance/visiting-the-uk-after-brexit

Competitive service

Identity documents:
An application for renewal of a Bulgarian identity document shall be submitted in person at the Consular Office with the Embassy of the Republic of Bulgaria in London, after a pre-booked appointment by electronic means. Appointments can be booked electronically by following the instructions available on the Embassy's website at: http://bulgarianembassy-london.org/consular-services/bld/
Information on the online renewal of the Bulgarian identity document, as well as a link to the application, is available on the Embassy's website at: http://bulgarianembassy-london.org/consular-services/bld_online/ 
It is advisable to pay for all services at the Embassy's Consular Office using a bank card at a POS terminal.

Legalization of documents /Apostille/:
In order to be valid in the Republic of Bulgaria and to be able to serve before the Bulgarian institutions the documents issued by the United Kingdom to Bulgarian citizens should be additionally formalized with an Apostille.
British public documents are authenticated with an ‘Apostille’ at the Legalization Office of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
Information on how to obtain an Apostille can be found at the following link : https://www.gov.uk/get-document-legalise 

Notarial certifications:
Pursuant to Article 84 of the Notaries and Notarial Activities Act, Bulgarian diplomatic and consular missions abroad may certify the date, content and signatures of private documents that are not subject to registration. In accordance with the requirements of the Notaries and Notarial Activities Act, the Consular Office certifies the date, content and signatures of private documents only when they are presented by Bulgarian citizens presenting a valid Bulgarian identity document (passport or identity card) outside the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria. The signatures of foreign citizens shall be authenticated only if the document is intended to be effective in Bulgaria.
The presentation of a Bulgarian driving licence is not allowed. It is also inadmissible for a Bulgarian citizen to present an identity document of a foreign country. In such cases, certification will be refused.

Certification of the signature of a translator:
The Embassy of the Republic of Bulgaria does not have staff translators from English into Bulgarian and vice versa if the documents are provided with an Apostille. The signatures of suitably qualified translators who have been authorised by the Embassy to be its sworn translators may be authenticated. Their names, addresses and telephone numbers are available at the Embassy's Consular Office and on the Embassy's website at the following address: http://bulgarianembassy-london.org/consular-services/sworn_translators_bg/

Certification of a declaration-consent from a parent for the travel of a child outside the borders of Bulgaria without an accompanying person or accompanied by one parent:
The National Border Police Service reminds all citizens that children cannot be allowed to leave the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria without the notarized consent of both parents. (Where the child is travelling with one parent, a document with the other parent's consent is required). For parents who are abroad, the notarization is carried out by a competent official at the respective Bulgarian Embassy or consulate.
The declaration of consent shall be certified before a notary public in Bulgaria or a Consular Officer at the Embassy of the Republic of Bulgaria in London. The signature of the parents is affixed in person, on the spot at the Consular Office. Parents must present the original birth certificate of the child.
Accompanying children leaving the borders of the Republic of Bulgaria must have a notarized power of attorney from both parents.
Detailed information on the regime of leaving the Republic of Bulgaria for persons under the age of majority can be found on the website of the Ministry of Interior - General Directorate ‘Border Police’ at the following Internet address: https://www.mvr.bg/gdgp

Certification of the authenticity of the original copy:
The Consular Office certifies the accuracy of copies and extracts of documents submitted by Bulgarian citizens. The documents to be certified must be drawn up by a Bulgarian office. The original and a copy of the document must be presented for certification.

Civil Status:
The Consular Office with the Embassy of the Republic of Bulgaria in London provides the following civil status services:
Registration of the civil event ‘birth’ in the Republic of Bulgaria of children with Bulgarian citizen parent(s) born abroad, based on documents issued by foreign local authorities
- The newborn child must be registered in Bulgaria within 6 months after birth in the municipality of residence of the mother, if she is a Bulgarian citizen. If only the father is a Bulgarian citizen, the child is registered at the father's address of residence in Bulgaria.
- The required document for registration is the Birth Certificate issued by the British authority, using the form that contains the parents' names. The document should have an Apostille affixed. Information about the Apostille can be found on our website in the section Legalization of documents /Apostille/
- After legalization it is necessary to translate the document into Bulgarian, which can be done in Bulgaria by a licensed company or by one of the sworn translators registered at the Bulgarian Embassy in London. If the translation is made by a sworn translator of the Embassy in London, the signature of the translator must be certified by the Consular Office of the Embassy in London.
- The completed documents are deposited by the parents with the municipality of the mother's place of residence in Bulgaria, where the child is registered and receives a Bulgarian birth certificate with an ID number. The English birth certificate is retained by the municipal authorities.
- The registration of the child in Bulgaria can also be done through a person authorized by the parents, the authorization being certified by the Consular Office with the Embassy.
- Registration can also be done through the Embassy Consular Office.
Registering in Bulgaria the death of a Bulgarian citizen occurring abroad — In the event of a death, the relatives of the deceased Bulgarian citizen should contact a funeral home/agency in the UK to learn about the service and transportation of the deceased abroad.
- The Embassy does not finance or carry out the service and transportation of the deceased.
- The Embassy can provide information about funeral directors in the UK.
- A death of a Bulgarian citizen occurring abroad shall be registered in the municipality of the permanent address of the deceased in the Republic of Bulgaria.
- For this purpose, the death certificate — Death Certificate, issued by a local civil status authority, with an Apostille, and translated into Bulgarian, is deposited with the municipal authorities at the permanent address of the deceased in Bulgaria. Information about Apostille can be found on our website in the section Legalization of documents /Apostille/.
Registration in Bulgaria of a marriage contracted in the UK — When contracting a marriage outside the Republic of Bulgaria it is obligatory for Bulgarian citizens to register their marriage in the Republic of Bulgaria within 6 months from the date of contracting the marriage — Registration of the marriage is carried out in the municipality of residence of one of the spouses in Bulgaria.
- The document required for registration is the original certificate of civil marriage abroad. The document should be certified in advance with an Apostille. Information about Apostille can be found on our website in the section Legalization of documents /Apostille/.
- After obtaining an Apostille on the original marriage certificate, it must be translated into Bulgarian. Translation can be done in Bulgaria by a licensed company or in London by sworn translators registered with the Embassy. Where the translation is made by a sworn translator in London, it is certified by the Consular Office of the Embassy in London: http://bulgarianembassy-london.org/consular-services/registration/.
Due to local legal requirements, no marriages are performed at the Embassy. Such contracts shall only be concluded in municipalities and designated religious institutions holding the necessary permits and subject to the relevant procedure for prior notification to the municipality. For detailed information, please refer to : https://www.gov.uk/marriages-civil-partnerships.

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