Renewing your Residency in North Cyprus

PassportToday I completed the final part in my annual quest for renewal of my residency.

Four weeks and one day ago, we attended the police station in Girne armed with

  • Passport;
  • Copy of the picture page;
  • Copy of the last residency stamp from the passport;
  • Copy of Contract with the stamp duty paid stamp;
  • Copy of lira bank account book.

On arrival at the police station, I was advised by my fellow questers to go into the office and collect a number, which I did. My number, number 17, fine I thought, in for a bit of a wait but hey, if you are given a number it is a very fair way of doing things. Not so, the lady who followed me in came out with number 12, so how did she manage that, she swears she didn’t know but didn’t offer to swap. You wait in a corridor with a full length window at the end. The sun was streaming in, it was very hot, there were just four chairs, all occupied, so along with my fellow questers, ex-pats and Turkish and Turkish Cypriots alike were obliged to stand in this oven until it was our turn. Eventually our number came up and in we went into a nicely air conditioned office. An extremely efficient and polite young man did all the necessary paperwork and then told us to go to Lefkoşa in two weeks to have our passports stamped with our new residency stamp and part with some money.

It is perhaps important to know that the rules have changed and if you are under 60 you now need a blood test with every renewal. The powers that be seem to think that under 60 years old expats are having a very active sex life and the sole cause of all sexually transmitted diseases on the island, funny I must have missed that bit before I was 60. It seems you go to bed aged 59 and 364 days, the next morning you wake up celibate, someone ran off with your sex drive and libido during the night and now you are 60, you are no longer a threat to the health and well being of the TRNC. Oh how they love their rules. Now it would be a simple matter for you to collect the necessary form for the blood test from some point, say the reception at the police station, go have your blood test and bring the result back with all the other paperwork and then take your place in the queue with all the other questers. It would be simple, but that is not the way it is. You have to queue with the other questers just to get the blood test form, go have your blood test, come back and then queue again. Why make life simple when they can make it complicated?

Two weeks and one day later we journeyed to Lefkoşa to complete stage two of our quest. The trick is to get there early so you will be fairly well placed in the queue there. A list is left outside the locked door so that those who have arrived early can write their name on the list and some degree of fairness can take place. Unfortunately, some friends who had arrived really early, didn’t realise that the piece of card they wrote their name on and would have meant they were first and second in the queue was replaced a little later, still outside the locked door, they wandered off and when they returned found the proper list there, consequently they became numbers 19 and 20 and we were 21 and 22. They did however advise us that two weeks was not long enough and that we should go and see a nice lady who would look on her computer and tell us if our cases had been processed; she looked and they had not, she checked further and found that Lefkoşa had not yet received our files from Girne Police Station.

Today, four weeks and one day since submitting the paperwork to Girne police station, we journeyed yet again to Lefkoşa in our quest. We arrived at 07.20 a.m., we were numbers 23 and 24 on the list. One couple from Őzanköy told me that they had arrived at 06.50 a.m. Once the office is open the difference between Girne police station and Lefkoşa is amazing. The number system really works, you are given another number and it is strictly in order. The waiting room is air conditioned and sufficient seating available. Having such a high number we played a guessing game, we reckoned we would be out by 10.30 a.m. We were very wrong, the system worked extremely well. There were several clerks processing the files and by 08.59 a.m. we were being dealt with. The lady who processed our file was courteous and efficient; she asked if we wanted a two year residency stamp, we of course said we did. It took less than 15 minutes from start to finish, including crossing the corridor to the pay office, when you consider there were two of us, that amounts to just over seven minutes each. The fee is 185TL each per year and the stamp for the residency entry in your passport is 7TL, which if you forget you can buy at the coffee shop in the same corridor as the waiting room and office. If you are eligible for two years residency i.e. over 60 years old, they simply double the fee.

Joy of joys, we do not have to go again until September 2012.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Comments are closed.