How to start a transport company in Poland

How to start a transport company in Poland

How to start a transport company in Poland

Transport companies are one of the most sought-after and profitable industries in Poland, and the transport business in Poland is very well developed due to the country’s location – it is at the crossroads of transport routes in Europe, from north to south and from west to east. In addition, many Polish companies are active in Western Europe. There is a very high volume and intensity of freight traffic and the demand for transport services is constantly growing. Opening a transport company in Poland can be an interesting experience if you prepare properly.

In this article, we will try to explain in as much detail as possible how to open a transport company in Poland, what is needed for this and what requirements and difficulties entrepreneurs may encounter when registering a company.

Here are the basic steps that will help you when registering a transport company in Poland. The first thing you need to do is register your company. You can do this via a special website for company registration in PolandS24. You will then need to apply to the Polish authorities and obtain the necessary licences and permits to start your company. You will then need to prepare a business plan for your new transport company. This will need to be a plan that covers all the necessary aspects of the company, such as objectives, marketing, finances and so on. You will then need to hire the necessary employees and purchase the necessary equipment for your transport company in Poland. You will also need to make agreements with insurers and other relevant companies. Once you have made all the plans and obtained all the relevant permits, you can start your own transport company in Poland. Now let’s explain each step in more detail.

Registering a transport company in Poland

So, if you want to open a transport company in Poland, for example, to deal with cargo or passenger transport, the first thing you should decide is the legal form of your future company. According to statistics, in Poland, it is most common to open either a sole proprietorship or a limited liability company for this type of business. The requirements for opening a sole proprietorship in Poland are much stricter – you must have a residence permit or permanent residence, be a resident of the EU and have a Pole’s Card. Therefore, the best option for a transport company in Poland and a foreign entrepreneur will be to open a limited liability company. The company can be registered using the S24 application. In this system, it is possible to perform all the necessary procedures online and receive the results as soon as possible. To get started, you need to find the official website and register. Then, in your personal account, you can go through several steps to register your company in Poland. To do this, you will need to provide the necessary information and follow the following steps:

  • Name of the prospective company
  • Business address
  • Provide the data of the founders, appoint the members of the board of directors – for them you will need to make an ePUAP profile, but first you will need to obtain a PESEL number (Personal Identification Number). In order to verify your identity for ePUAP purposes, it is necessary to visit a Polish state office or a consulate in your country of residence
  • Submit Articles of Association
  • Bring in the share capital (the amount of share capital required to register a company is PLN 5,000)
  • Determine the classification of business activity (PKD). In accordance with the division of business activity classification H, group 49; 49.3; 49.4; 49.41
  • Once all the forms have been filled in and the data and documents have been confirmed, proceed to registration in the Polish Companies Register (Krajowy Rejestr Sądowy)
  • Pay the state duty for the submitted application. The fee is PLN 350
  • The company receives a KRS number, memorandum of incorporation and NIP number
  • Open a bank account. You must be in person to open it
  • The next step is to register with the tax, social security and statistical offices

IMPORTANT: There are certain requirements for foreigners setting up a transport company in Poland – they must not have a criminal record in the country, it is necessary to have experience in transport, to have or obtain a certificate of professional competence (certificate of professional competence) for at least one employee of the company. In order to obtain this certificate, it is necessary to be able to speak Polish and to pass an exam consisting of passing a special ten-day course. It is also important to have a set amount of money to provide a certain number of vehicles.

Obtaining a transport licence in Poland

In order to operate a transport company in Poland, it is necessary to obtain a transport licence. Transport services in Poland must be licensed if the permissible total weight exceeds 3,500 KG (2.5 t – 3.5 t) Transport Licence – LM The procedure for licensing a transport business in Poland is relatively straightforward, and there are a few rules to follow to complete it. Firstly, an application must be submitted to the state institution providing transport services. The application must be prepared in accordance with the requirements set out in the regulations. The application must state the reason for and effect of the regulations under which the applicant is seeking a licence. Secondly, the applicant must submit documents confirming the company’s financial and asset situation. Certificate of registration of the company in Poland, statements from the tax office. Additional requirements for the licence:

Certificate of professional competence (certificate of professional competence) for at least one employee of the company. A 10-day course is possible (knowledge of the Polish language is compulsory, the exam is paid). It is also possible to employ a transport manager with the relevant professional qualification.

  • Have an operational base (car park or transport yard). Have your own fleet or several rental cars
  • Have a criminal record certificate for company employees
  • Have a professional liability insurance policy for the carrier. This should be for at least €9,000 for the first vehicle and at least €5,000 for each subsequent vehicle. The financial security can also be in the form of a bank guarantee or public liability insurance
  • Digital tachograph card (tachograph card) for the recording of road traffic data with a value of PLN 290
  • A driving permit (National Licence) is a permit to transport within the country. It is issued for an indefinite period of time. The cost – from PLN 1,000

Types and cost of transport licences

International truck transport licence. One of the most common types of transport licence. It is granted for a period of up to 5 to 10 years. Cost:

  • for 5 years – £4,000 (official fee) + £440 for an extract from the licence, which must be in each vehicle
  • from 5 to 10 years – PLN 8,000 (official fee) + PLN 880 for the licence extract

Transport licence for the carriage of passengers. Main requirement – the transport vehicle must be structurally adapted to carry more or less than 9 persons including the driver. Costs:

  • up to 5 years – £3,600 (official fee) + £396 for the licence extract, which should be in each vehicle
  • from 5 to 10 years – PLN 7,200 (official fee) + PLN 792 for an extract from the licence

Transport licence for the carriage of passengers. Carriage brokerage is the activity of passing on transport orders to other companies. Cost:

  • from 2 to 15 years – PLN 800
  • from 15 to 30 years – PLN 900
  • from 30 to 50 years – PLN 1,000

Once all the documents have been successfully submitted and the state fees paid, the company receives a licence to provide transport services and can start operating in Poland.

IMPORTANT: A Polish transport company can operate without obtaining additional licences throughout the European Union.

Features of running a transport business, searching for drivers

The transport market in Poland is very competitive – there are a large number of companies offering transport services to customers. This poses additional challenges for transport companies in Poland to compete in the market. In order to be successful in this area, it is necessary to monitor prices and attract new customers. For transport companies in Poland, there is also the problem of finding and recruiting drivers. Most Polish drivers work for private companies and prefer more secure and permanent employment. Therefore, it makes sense to hire employee-drivers from former CIS countries. The qualifications of these drivers are often very high and wages can be lower than in the market. The average wage for a truck driver in Poland is between PLN 4,500 and PLN 5,000. Issuing an invitation to a Ukrainian driver to work in Poland on behalf of a company is not too difficult. On the basis of such an invitation, it is possible to obtain a Polish national work visa D for a stay of 180 days.

IMPORTANT: Please note that all drivers employed by a Polish company are subject to psychotests and medical examinations confirming that there are no contraindications to work as a driver.

NOTE: Every Polish transport company is obliged to obtain a Driver’s Certificate for each foreign non-EU driver employed in Poland. It is issued by the GITD for a period of up to five years, but no longer than the period of validity of the visa, employment contract or company licence – which expire much earlier.

Bookkeeping in a transport company

Accounting in a transport company has its own specificities. Let’s take a look at what they are and what they entail. A transport company is distinguished by the following characteristics:

  • It has vehicles on any basis (own, leased, rented) with which transport services are provided
  • An essential part of the workforce is made up of employees operating the vehicles, with the conditions of their admission to work and their mode of operation subject to certain rules
  • The existence of a specific set of costs necessary both to obtain the right to provide transport services (vehicle registration, insurance, availability of specially trained persons to operate them) and to operate the vehicles (special materials, regular maintenance)
  • The compulsory use of a number of special documents: consignment note, rail or air waybill, bill of lading, documents on the transition from one mode of transport to another

The activities of a transport company are treated as the provision of services and are subject to the general rules for their documentation and reflection in accounting. However, depending on the specifics of the services included in the contract, they may have these variations:

  • The transport service is provided independently or is separately identified in the contract for the supply of goods. In this case, transport should be shown as a separate activity in the income and expense account
  • If, as part of a contract for the supply of goods, the seller independently delivers the goods to the buyer and the cost of this service is included in the price of the goods, transport as a separate activity is not shown in revenue and the costs incurred in connection with the delivery form the cost of sales

When accounting for transport costs, the following things deserve attention:

  • The means of transport used must necessarily be reflected in the accounting. This applies to own, leased and hired vehicles
  • The vehicle registration with the haulier must be permanent in the case of own vehicles or temporary in the case of leased or hired vehicles

The main reporting deadlines for a transport company in Poland are:

  • Corporate Income Tax (CIT) – to be paid in advance by the 20th of the previous month
  • CIT-8 (annual report) – by 31 March each year
  • VAT-7 report – monthly by the 25th of the previous month and paid
  • Payrolls – by the 15th of the previous month and payment
  • Annual financial report by 30 June

Travel documents for the transport company

A business trip, the driver’s assignment must be carried out outside the place of business or outside the employee’s permanent place of residence.

The law in Poland requires the employer to set a per diem rate of at least PLN 23 per day in the collective agreement or in the employment contract with the employee, as well as a per diem for foreign travel in the amount set by the Minister of Labour and Social Policy in Poland.

The process of setting up a company in Poland is quite time-consuming, but in principle, if the entrepreneur approaches the matter competently, there should be no particular problems. If you want to open a company in Poland and save time and effort, it is better to turn to professionals who are well versed in all stages of the company’s operation and know the local law. We are ready to help you at every stage. If you have any questions or would like more advice on this topic, please contact us at

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