Guidance

Living in Hungary

Official information for UK nationals moving to or living in Hungary, including guidance on residency, healthcare, driving and the Withdrawal Agreement.

What you should do

Coronavirus

You should follow the advice of the Hungarian Government and your local authority. You can also read our Hungary travel advice for our latest guidance.

Stay up to date

You should:

Attend a citizen outreach meeting

The British Embassy regularly holds events across Hungary for UK nationals. Attend one of our citizen outreach meetings to keep up to date on working and living in Hungary.

You can also:

The Withdrawal Agreement

The Withdrawal Agreement sets out the terms of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU and provides for a deal on citizens’ rights. It sets out a transition period which lasts until 31 December 2020. During this time you can continue to live, work and study in the EU broadly as you did before 31 January 2020.

If you are resident in Hungary at the end of the transition period, you will be covered by the Withdrawal Agreement, and your rights will be protected for as long as you remain resident in Hungary.

Any rights that are not covered by the Withdrawal Agreement will be the subject of future negotiations. Read this guidance page for more information

In the meantime, make sure you are registered as a resident in Hungary. We will update this guidance as soon as more information becomes available.

You should also read our guidance on living in Europe.

Visas and residency

Check the entry requirements for Hungary.

You must carry your ID or passport at all times – a copy of your ID or passport won’t be accepted.

Residency

If you are resident in Hungary before the transition period ends on 31 December 2020, you will be able to stay. The Hungarian government is committed to protecting the current rights of UK nationals legally resident in Hungary from 31 December 2020.

If you’re staying more than 3 months, you must register at your local National Directorate General for Aliens Policing (Országos Idegenrendészeti Főigazgatóság).

You should receive your registration certificate on the spot; your address card will be delivered through the post.

If you move to a different town in Hungary, you must register your address again at the local registry office (Kormányablak).

For more information read the Hungarian government’s guidance for UK nationals living in Hungary.

If there are changes to residency registration processes, we will update this guidance as soon as information is available.

Passports and travel

The rules on travel will stay the same until the transition period ends on 31 December 2020. During this time you can continue to travel to countries in the Schengen area or elsewhere in the EU with your UK passport.

Apply for or renew your British passport online from Hungary.

Check your passport is valid for travel before you book your trip. Your passport should be valid for the proposed duration of your stay.

You’ll need to renew your passport before travelling if you do not have enough time left on your passport.

We will update these pages with details of any changes to the rules as soon as information is available. You should sign up for updates to this guidance.

Driving in Hungary

Driving licence rules will stay the same until 31 December 2020.

Holders of UK driving licences who are resident in Hungary may use their UK licence for a period of one year from the date their residence in Hungary began. After one year, they should exchange their UK licence for a local driving licence. There is no requirement to retake any exams during this process, both for EU and non-EU citizens.

You can still use your Hungarian licence in the UK for short visits or exchange it for a UK licence without taking a test if you return to live in the UK.

Read the guidance on:

When driving, you should always have:

  • your driving licence
  • your car papers
  • your insurance paper
  • your MOT certificate
  • your passport or ID and those of your passengers
  • a high-visibility jacket
  • a red warning triangle
  • first aid kit

Bringing a UK-registered vehicle to Hungary

Read our guidance on taking a vehicle out of the UK.

Read the European Union’s guidance on car registration and taxes in Hungary. You may be exempt from some of these taxes. If so you will need certificates of exemption.

Healthcare

If you are living in Hungary or move there permanently before 31 December 2020, you’ll have life-long healthcare rights in Hungary as you do now, provided you remain resident.

You must be registered for healthcare as a resident in Hungary, and if necessary, healthcare insurance.

If you are employed in Hungary, state health insurance is normally arranged through your employer. Insurance contributions will be deducted from your wages. If you’re self-employed, you can arrange to make voluntary contributions through the National Tax and Customs Administration Office.

If you’re seconded to Hungary by your company, there are special rules regarding health insurance. You should contact your company’s HR department.

The Hungarian government has committed to protecting the current rights of UK nationals. Find more information on the Hungarian government’s dedicated website.

Read our guidance on who is able to access healthcare in Hungary and how to register.

State healthcare: S1

If you live in Hungary and receive an exportable UK pension, contribution-based Employment Support Allowance or another exportable benefit, you may currently be entitled to state healthcare paid for by the UK. You will need to apply for a certificate of entitlement known as an S1 certificate.

You can apply for an S1 certificate through the Business Services Authority.

European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)

If you are resident in Hungary, you must not use your EHIC from the UK to access healthcare in Hungary.

When you travel from Hungary for a temporary stay in another European Economic Area (EEA) country or Switzerland, you can use an EHIC to access state-provided healthcare in that country. During that short stay:

You should also read guidance on:

Working in Hungary

Read our guidance on working in an EU country.

You may need to apply for a UK police certificate.

If you are resident in Hungary on or before 31 December 2020, your right to work will stay the same, as long as you remain resident in Hungary.

Education and professional qualifications

If you are resident in Hungary on or before 31 December 2020, your right to study in Hungary will stay the same, as long as you remain resident in Hungary.

Read the guidance on continuing your studies in the European Union.

Professional qualifications

If you have already been recognised by an EU country as holding valid professional qualifications, this will remain valid after 31 January 2020.

If you have not had your professional qualifications recognised, you can submit an application under the current rules until 31 December 2020.

Read the Hungarian government’s guidance on how to request recognition of your qualifications.

Money and tax

The UK has a double taxation agreement with Hungary to ensure people do not pay tax on the same income in both countries. Ask the relevant tax authority your questions about double taxation relief.

Existing double taxation arrangements for UK nationals living in Hungary have not changed following the UK’s withdrawal from the EU.

Read guidance on:

In order to pay income tax in Hungary you need to get an income tax card (Adóigazolvány) with your tax number (Adóazonosító) from your local National Tax and Customs office.

You should get professional advice on paying tax in Hungary. Find an English-speaking lawyer in Hungary.

Declaration of assets

All residents must declare assets outside Hungary, including bank accounts, securities, rights, insurance, annuities and property. The declaration is separate to the annual tax return, and there are severe penalties and criminal charges for non-compliance.

National Insurance

Find out if you can pay National Insurance while abroad in order to protect your State Pension and entitlement to other benefits and allowances.

If you are employed or self-employed in the EU or EEA and you have a UK-issued A1/E101 form, you will remain subject to UK legislation until the end date on the form.

Pensions

You will need to tell the UK government offices that deal with your benefits, pension and tax if you are moving or retiring abroad.

If you retire to Hungary you can claim:

Life certificates for UK State Pensions

If you get a ‘life certificate’ from the UK Pension Service, you need to respond as soon as possible. Your payments may be suspended if you don’t.

Pensions after 31 January 2020

There will be no changes before 31 December 2020 to the rules on claiming the UK State Pension in the EU, EEA or Switzerland as a result of the UK leaving the EU.

You can continue to receive your UK State Pension if you live in the EU, EEA or Switzerland and you can still claim your UK State Pension.

If you are living in the EU, EEA or Switzerland by 31 December 2020 you will get your UK State Pension uprated every year for as long as you continue to live there. This will happen even if you start claiming your pension on or after 1 January 2021, as long as you meet the qualifying conditions explained in the new State Pension guidance.

If you are living in Hungary by 31 December 2020, you will be able to count future social security contributions towards meeting the qualifying conditions for your UK State Pension.

If you work and pay social security contributions in Hungary, you will still be able to add your UK social security contributions towards your Hungarian pension. This will happen even if you claim your pension after 31 December 2020.

Read our guidance on benefits and pensions in the EU.

Benefits

You will need to tell the UK government offices that deal with your benefits, pension and tax if you are moving or retiring abroad.

You may still be able to claim some UK benefits like child and disability benefits if you live in Hungary.

Many income-related benefits such as Pension Credit and Housing Benefit cannot be paid to you if you’re abroad for more than 4 weeks.

You may be eligible to claim some Hungarian social security benefits – see Hungarian social security benefits.

You can request proof of the time you’ve worked in the UK from HMRC if you are asked for this.

Under existing Hungarian legislation, Hungarian citizens (including those who have repatriated to Hungary and persons holding dual nationality) as well as citizens of other EU Member States over the age of 65 years can travel free of charge on public transport services in Hungary, including BKV in Budapest.

Benefits after 31 January 2020

There will be no changes before 31 December 2020 to the rules on claiming UK benefits in the EU, EEA or Switzerland as a result of the UK leaving the EU.

If you are living in the EU, EEA or Switzerland by 31 December 2020, you will continue to receive any UK benefits you already receive. This will continue for as long as you live there and meet all other eligibility requirements.

If you work and pay social security contributions in Hungary, your UK social security contributions will be taken into account when applying for Hungarian contributions-based benefits. This will happen even if you claim contributions-based benefits after 31 December 2020.

Read our guidance on benefits and pensions in the EU.

Voting

If you are permanent resident in Hungary before the transition period ends on 31 December 2020 you can vote in local municipal elections.

You cannot vote in European Parliament elections.

You may be able to vote in some UK elections.

Births, deaths and getting married

If your child is born in Hungary, you will need to register a birth abroad.

If someone dies in Hungary:

Find out how you can get married abroad.

Find out about notarial and documentary services for UK nationals in Hungary.

Accommodation and buying property

See buying a property abroad.

Pets

Current pet travel rules will stay the same until 31 December 2020.

If you’re travelling with your pet for the first time you must visit your vet to get a pet passport.

Read guidance on bringing your pet to the UK.

Emergencies

As well as the European emergency number 112, Hungary also has:

  • 104 – ambulance and emergency medical services
  • 105 – fire-brigade, rescue services, civil protection
  • 107 – police

See Hungary – emergency numbers.

If you need urgent help, contact the British Embassy Budapest.

Other useful information

Returning to the UK

You should tell the UK and Hungarian authorities if you are returning to the UK permanently.

Before you leave the country, you must return your registration certificate to your local immigration office and your address card (lakcímkártya) to any Kormányablak.

To move your pension to the UK, contact the International Pension Centre.

If you get healthcare in Hungary through the S1 form, you must contact the Overseas Healthcare Team on +44 (0)191 218 1999 to make sure your S1 is cancelled at the right time.

Read the guidance on returning to the UK permanently which includes information on, amongst other things, tax, access to services and bringing family members.

Disclaimer

Please note that this information is provided as a guide only. Definitive information should be obtained from the Hungarian authorities. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office will not be liable for any inaccuracies in this information.

Published 27 November 2013
Last updated 23 January 2020 + show all updates
  1. Brexit update: includes further details on passport validity, healthcare rights and State Pension uprating if the UK leaves the EU with a deal.

  2. Education and professional qualifications information added.

  3. Brexit update: healthcare section updated to reflect transitional arrangements announcement

  4. Brexit update: Pensions section updated to include further details on State Pension uprating. 

  5. EU Exit update: We have added information to 'Passports and travel after the UK leaves the EU' section

  6. EU Exit update: New information added into passports and travel, pensions and returning to the UK sections.

  7. EU Exit update: updated information on EU Exit added to healthcare, visas and residency, driving and money and taxes section

  8. We have updated the contact details you need to apply for an S1 form.

  9. Updated information on passports: you must use the checker tool to see if your passport is still valid for your trip

  10. Double taxation section updated.

  11. EU Exit update: new outreach events added to EU Exit section.

  12. EU Exit update: added latest information for UK nationals living in Hungary under the visas and residency section.

  13. EU Exit update - Updated information on access to healthcare

  14. EU Exit update: updated information on pensions and driving.

  15. EU exit update: added in link to information about new outreach events in Hungary

  16. EU Exit update: New information in residency and visa section on draft withdrawal agreement in principle between the UK and EU. Plus information on travelling with pets in Europe in pet section.

  17. Complete revision of guidance to ensure it's up to date and accurate.

  18. Amended April 2017

  19. First published.