How to move to Portugal as a legal resident

Spread the love


Moving to a different country or continent is something I believe everyone should experience in life.

I moved abroad in my early twenties, for an exchange program. I wrote a post about it on The Lifestyle Hunter blog. It was the best decision ever, as you can read here. I was overseas for almost 2 years and this experience has helped shape the person I am today.

Living abroad makes us a better person in a whole, as I mentioned in my interview to the Wandering Educators. It shows us how being part of a new environment can help us grow. It helps us respect other cultures. It gives us the opportunity to see the local beauty whether that’s a different architecture, food, animals, seasons and temperatures, art, fashion, infrastructure, vehicles and so on.

Many citizens want to move abroad but find some difficulties in the process. Sometimes you are too young to participate in an MBA program. Sometimes you are too old for that internship or sometimes your country of citizenship doesn’t have the work & study agreement with your desired travel destination. Or when your age and education/work background are eligible to join a program, you still have to worry about the financial means.
I know that can be extremely frustrating. Especially when that’s the only plan you have for a better life.
Because of this, I’m always researching about different programs overseas and exploring possibilities. I love discovering new paths to move abroad.

A couple months ago, a friend of mine told me about an incredible opportunity to live in Europe with a Resident Visa.
And the best part: you don’t have to be a millionaire investor to apply.

The Residence Visa my friend was telling me about, is not a general European Visa. What does it mean? It means it is country specific. In this case, Portugal. Once approved and being all settled in the Portuguese life, holding the proper documents, you’re still going to need to carry your passport when traveling Europe.

So without further ado, let’s check out more about this visa.

What is the Portuguese Residence Visa?
The Portuguese Residence Visa allows you to stay for a 4-month period in Portugal, in order to lodge residence when hoping to stay in the country for over a year.

Who can apply?
There are 7 (sub)types of eligibility, depending on the reason for your stay:

  1. worker
  2. independent professional or enterprising immigrants
  3. scientist for research, teaching in a higher education institution and for a highly qualified activity
  4. Student, exchange student, professional internship or volunteering
  5. higher education mobility programmes
  6. family reunion
  7. pensioners, clergy, and people with earnings

What’s the Required Documentation?

  • Application form;
  • Valid passport (+ 3 months after the intended date of departure);
  • Two identical photographs, passport size, in white plain background with a good quality;
  • Ticket that assures the return (except: residence visas for family reunification, researching or teaching in a higher education institution, and highly skilled labor);
  • Travel medical insurance that covers any expenses which might arise, including urgent medical attention and repatriation;
  • Authorization of access to the Portuguese criminal record by the Aliens and Border Service (SEF – Serviço de Estrangeiros e Fronteiras);
  • Criminal record certificate from the country of origin or from the country where the applicant lives for more than a year;
  • Documents related to accommodation;
  • Documents proving that the applicant possesses sufficient income. (As of today, it must be at least equal the 12-months worth in the statutory minimum wage: € 557.00 x 12 for one applicant.).For a family application, consider: a) First applicant: 100% – b) Second or more adults: 50% – c) Children and minors under 18: 30%.

(according to “Portaria nr. 1563/2007, 11th December and Portaria nr. 760/2009, 16th July”)

* Minors shall present an authorization signed by a person exercising permanent or temporary parental authority or by a legal guardian.
NOTE: Children below 16 years do not need to present documents related to the criminal record.

Other documentation may be asked for by the consular post according to the requirements of local consular cooperation.
This information does not replace a consultation with the competent Consular Post.


Exploring the beautiful and charming Cascais near Lisbon Portugal


Now you know what this visa is, who can apply, what the required documents are and how much money you need to apply….tell me: isn’t it so doable?
Most immigration programs ask you to prove way more money than this. The Canadian Express Entry, for example, requires you to have at least $12,300 (in Canadian dollars) when applying to immigrate. And that’s for one person only.

So for this Portuguese Resident Visa, you are expected to have at least €6,684 in funds, which is nearly USD $7.850.
It is possible to save up around USD $8,000. I know, it may take more or less time for some of you to achieve this amount, but don’t give up, it is possible.


And one of the benefits of living in Portugal you gotta keep in mind is that it makes it a lot easier to visit the rest of Europe.
Weekend getaways in Europe? Yes, please!
Imagine you visiting a different country every time…It sure looks like a life-changing opportunity to me.

UPDATE: As you’ve seen on my Twitter, I’ve just returned from Portugal, and yes, I really like it. I went to Lisbon and Cascais as well as Carcavelos. Everything is so charming there! And compared to Spain and France for example, Portugal is so much more affordable.

If you’re in or going to Europe, visit Portugal, you won’t regret it. I’ll be posting photos from my trip on my Instagram soon too.


Hey, if you like this post, you’ll also like...

How to get your Italian Citizenship – the ba...   I started this blog because I love everything travel related, especially on the subjects of living abroad, immigration and citizenship. I ha...
How can I move to Canada? Follow my blog with Bloglovin   There are many different paths you can take when it comes to going to Canada. But how to decide which one i...
How can I immigrate to Canada? What is Express Ent...   It is one of the ways to immigrate to Canada as a permanent resident (or Permanent Resident - PR). Briefly, it works as a points system that ...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *