Portugal plans digital nomad visa for remote workers

Lisbon is already a hub for remote work, thanks to the D7 visa. Photo / André Legier, Unsplash

Lisbon is courting laptop owners around the world with the promise of 12-month visas for remote workers.

Portugal is the latest country to create a “digital nomad visa”, allowing international visitors to stay longer. The ability for tourists to work remotely, while playing and living locally, is part of a national strategy to entice international freelancers to relocate for extended working holidays to the Algarve.

It’s hard to think of a more attractive home away from home. From the cultural hubs of Lisbon and Porto to the Atlantic coast, Portugal has instant appeal as a remote office.

The visa could even allow New Zealanders to settle in the Portuguese islands of Madeira and the Azores – if the wi-fi allows it.

The country’s D7 visa has long been used by freelancers to live and work in Portugal. Although originally aimed at offshore retirees from the UK, US and overseas, the D7 has seen the city’s cafes explode with remote workers.

Portugal is looking to attract remote workers from outside the EU, with its
Portugal is looking to attract remote workers from outside the EU, with its “digital nomad visa”. Photo / Juan Alvarez, Unsplash

Provided you can prove that your income is above the current minimum income – €822.50 or $1415 per month – and that you will spend the majority of the 12 months in Portugal, you can currently apply for this residency visa.

Portugal’s new ‘remote worker’ visa would be a bit more flexible – allowing visitors to come and go during long holidays.

Although other details have yet to be finalized, the visas would allow non-EU visitors to live and work in the country, provided they can show proof of income or employment with companies not based in Portugal.

It is by far the only country looking to attract remote workers. Countries from Georgia to Colombia have come up with their own digital nomad visas.

Bali last month confirmed B211A variation visas, allowing remote workers to connect from Denpasar for up to six months.

This will enable digital working for offshore businesses for up to 180 days, for visitors from New Zealand, Australia and other nationalities.

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