Portugal Golden Visa 2020: what it is and how to get it

Portugal Golden Visa 2020: what it is and how to get it

Golden visa for Portugal

Portugal Golden Visa
Portugal Golden Visa 2020: what it is and how to get it 7

Portugal is the only country in the European Union where you can become a citizen after only five years of obtaining a residence permit. In any other country, it would take you ten years or more, and you might have to give up your previous citizenship. How do you do it? How do you get citizenship without working, going to college, or getting married? It’s simple: invest in real estate, small business, or any other field in Portugal. This will entitle you to a golden visa. What is it, the rules of obtaining, the cost and not only – all told in this article.

Golden Visa – what is it?

It’s a misconception that the Golden Visa is a more expensive “ticket” with VIP services. Despite the name, it is simply a VIP program that is obtained on favorable terms. It is obtained by people who invest in government projects. The golden visa program is designed to attract investors from countries outside the European Union and the European Free Trade Association. For example, a CIS citizen has bought a house in Cascais. As of this moment, he is entitled:

  • Apply for a golden visa.
  • After one year, obtain a temporary residence permit.
  • After six years, apply for citizenship.

If you want to become a citizen of another country on a gold visa, it’s a win-win deal. For example, since the start of the program in Portugal in 2012, an additional 2.5 billion euros have been raised. Naturally, the investment is a condition for citizens of those countries that are not members of the EU and EFTA. The latter need only record their stay in Cascais to obtain a residence permit. What opportunities does the golden visa offer: 

  • You can live and work freely in Portugal.
  • The investor becomes eligible for visa-free entry into the Schengen area.
  • You can summon your relatives to Portugal through a family reunification application. Spouse, children, and parents receive a golden visa.
  • As a resident of Portugal, you can receive free education and health care.
  • Free investment in real estate.
  • Can not pay world tax, but provided that residence in Portugal is at least 183 days per year.

A few more advantages. For example, the gold visa is processed within 3 months, while the others are on a first-come, first-served basis, from 3 to 6 months. Further, you will not be asked to know the language (minimum B2 for all others) and will not be forced to take a history test. You will get tax benefits and only seven days a year required to live in the new country.

Who can get a gold visa

Who can get a gold visa
Portugal Golden Visa 2020: what it is and how to get it 8

For the most part, those who have opened their own business or IE and have made at least one of the following investments in Portugal. Namely:

  • transferred capital of 1 million euros;
  • created at least 10 jobs;
  • purchased real estate worth at least 500,000 euros;
  • invested at least 350000 euros in scientific research;
  • invested at least 250000 euros in culture and art;
  • invested 500000 euros in small and medium business development.

What to do next

What to do next
Portugal Golden Visa 2020: what it is and how to get it 9

Let’s say you’ve invested. Next, you need to apply for a visa and attach the necessary documents. How to apply:

  1. Register at the site of the Portuguese Immigration and Border Authority (SEF) and apply online.
  2. If a legal representative does it for you, they need to register at the other site and provide a power of attorney signed by you after registration.

What documents are required:

  • passport or valid ID card;
  • Schengen short-stay visa (proof of legal entry);
  • medical insurance (issued within the last three months);
  • certificate of criminal record from the country of residence or origin (issued within the last three months);
  • evidence of compliance with tax and social security obligations;
  • receipt of payment of fees for the Portuguese gold visa. 

More importantly, you must show that your investment will continue for the next five years and attach proof. This could be, for example:

  • bank statements for financial investments;
  • employment contracts for job creation;
  • acts of purchase for real estate investments.

Your application will take several months to process. After all the information is processed, SEF staff will contact you (or your legal representative) to set up an appointment.

How much does a visa cost

How much does a visa cost
Portugal Golden Visa 2020: what it is and how to get it 10

The initial visa costs €5,148. The same price for each family member. In addition, you have to pay a processing fee of 515 euros and pay 80 euros for each family member.

The golden visa extension costs 2,574 euros plus the same 515 euros for processing. Pay the visa fee on the official SEF website. The general requirement for all residents is that a permanent residency permit can only be obtained after five years of residency. After another year, one can apply for citizenship. Keep in mind that your investment must be maintained for five years after being granted the visa. Remember that your visa must be renewed annually and you must also prove your income and have a basic knowledge of the Portuguese language. 


Purchasing Portugal residence permit gives you the following advantages:

  • The possibility to apply for Portuguese citizenship is already 5 years after receiving the residence permit. A Portuguese passport gives you all the benefits of being an EU citizen.
  • Possibility of visiting Schengen without a visa.
  • The right to invest in liquid assets such as businesses, securities real estate.
More about the benefits of living in Portugal.

Depending on the type of investment, the amount will vary:

  • Purchasing real estate:
      1. from €500 thousand any real estate in Portugal. The prerequisite – the property must be owned for at least 5 years.
      2. from €350 thousand property that requires reconstruction and has been built at least 30 years ago in areas of cultural heritage.
      3. Purchase of shares – from €1 million for the purchase of shares in Portuguese companies.
      4. Investment in research or the arts – from €350,000.
One of the possible options for obtaining a Portuguese residence permit is investment. The following investment options are available:
  • the purchase of real estate;
  • a single capital transfer for research activities or works of art;
  • a capital transfer to register a company with a head office in Portugal combined with the creation of at least 5 permanent jobs.
After applying for a residence permit you must wait for its processing. It usually takes no more than 3-4 months. Add another 2 weeks for the production of the card and it turns out that the estimated waiting time can take up to 5 months. A year after the first residence permit, the card must be renewed for the next 2 years. For more information on obtaining a residence permit in Portugal through investment can be found in an article our blog.

Your family members can be granted residence status (Residence permit) in Portugal with you. This can be applied for:

  • spouses;
  • financially dependent children up to 26 years old;
  • your parents are over 65 years old.

If you add family members to the program, its cost increases For each situation it is calculated individually.

After 5 years of residency status, the holder of a golden visa (GOLDVISA) in Portugal can apply for citizenship. To do so, the following conditions must be met:

  • knowledge of the Portuguese language. Level at least A2;
  • no criminal record;
  • at least 18 years of age.