Foreigners need to know that Poles are satisfied with current regulations about gun ownership, which may seem pretty tight in comparison to other countries, especially some US states. Poland has a relatively low percentage of gun ownership. Statistics show that there is slightly over one gun for every 100 Polish citizens, while Poland’s western neighbours have 30 guns per 100 citizens. This indicated that firearms ownership is not widespread among Poles.
The reason for the low number of guns could be the fact that it is quite difficult to obtain a gun permit. There are a few conditions that have to be met by the applicant, who…
- … has to be 21 or older;
- … has to undergo psychological and psychophysical tests;
- … cannot be addicted to alcohol or other drugs;
- … has to have a permanent place of abode in Poland;
- … has to have a clear criminal record;
- … has to pass a special exam about gun usage, control and regulations.
The overall costs of obtaining a standard permit are about PLN 2,500. If you wish to apply, you need to file the form to the police station in your place of registered address.
Depending on your reason for getting a gun (sports activity, defence of necessity, hunting, historical re-enactment, collecting, inheritance or training business activity), you will need a different set of documents. E.g. to get a gun on the grounds of sports activity, you need to be a registered member of a shooting association and have a licence for that.
Once you get your hands on your gun licence, it is not that easy to buy one. Poland, unlike many American states, does not offer guns in convenience stores or supermarkets. However, there are special firearms shops where you can get all necessary supplies. Please remember to register your gun within 5 days of your purchase.
European Firearms Pass
Foreigners who have obtained gun licences in countries other than Poland will not find it easy to bring their guns to the country. You need a special permit issued by a Polish consulate abroad to import your firearms into Poland. If you wish to move across the European Union freely with your gun, you may think about getting the European Firearms Pass. It can be valid for up to 5 years and you apply for it at your local police station.