Phase 1 will be performed from November 23 to December 2, with 16 teams vie for five places in the play-offs.
The 16 teams are divided into four groups of four, with Slovakia hosting Kosovo, Ukraine and Israel in Group 1; Switzerland hosting Faroe Islands, Lithuania and Finland in Group 2; Greece hosting Group 3, featuring Belarus, Italy and Portugal; and FYR Macedonia hosting Turkey, Iceland and Azerbaijan in Group 4. The teams will play a three-day round-robin tournament, at the end of which the group winners will advance to the next stage. The best second-ranked side complete will also proceed into the play-offs.
The 12 teams which don’t reach the podium in the EURO will meet the five groups progressing out of World Championship qualification phase 1 in the play-off stage, with the pairings selected via a draw. Even though they will not play with the EHF EURO 2018, Austria will also be qualified since the best third-ranked team in the EURO qualification, for the play-off stage. The 18 teams in phase 2 will play two matches, home and away, and the aggregate winners of each pairing will secure a spot.
More information on the World Championship eligibility period can be seen on the official site of this European Handball Federation.