No doubt, a Golden Visa program has become quite popular in recent years. Remember that Golden Visa refers to a temporary residence permit that you can get when you make a qualifying investment in certain countries. The permit can allow you to have some rights including the right to work and live in the host country, visa-free travel in a couple of countries, and many more.
Today, citizenship by investment has become common in most countries, especially in Portugal, Spain, and Greece. But before you decide to apply for a Golden Visa that helps you to have citizenship, there are some things worth knowing. This article discusses how you can get citizenship through investment.
Understanding Golden Visa
You should note that a Golden Visa is a type of investment-type of authorization that gives you the chance to get citizenship or permanent residency in a foreign country. In most cases, European Union countries offer these Golden Visa programs. This means that a Golden Visa can help you to be eligible for European Union residency as well as citizenship by real estate acquisition, capital transfer, or through a donation.
Technically, if you are not an EEA, European Union, or Swiss citizen, then you can apply for this type of visa program in Portugal, Greece, and Spain, as long as you have a qualified investment. Many groups of people usually find the residency by investment programs appealing. This includes citizens from emerging countries and developing nations. Most people from developing countries can access this visa because they want to access job opportunities, education, healthcare, and many more.
European Golden Visa programs are suitable for this group of people. The visa programs can give them and their families these luxuries and free-travel requirements.
These visas are also ideal for investors and business owners. Therefore, investors and business owners who desire to spend a huge amount of time in Europe can apply for Golden Visas. The Golden Visa programs in Portugal, Spain, and Greece can allow you to have unlimited access in the EU countries. If you want to work, travel, or live in Europe, these permits can be a great option.
The US citizens and Hong Kong citizens can also apply for Golden Visas. You should note that these countries are not developing nations, though investors from the United States and Hong Kong show interest in these visa programs. Their purpose is to access an extra residency or even citizenship for some good reasons. In most cases, they seek the Golden Visa for various reasons that include, retirement, a lifestyle change, business relocation, or just to live in another country.
British people can also get a Golden Visa. Recently, after Brexit, many British citizens are interested in Europe’s Golden Visa programs. Take note that the British citizens used to stay free in European countries. But with the change in circumstances, most people are not trying to have European residency or citizenship at the end of a specific period.
The benefits of a Golden Visa
It’s worth mentioning that all Golden Visa programs offer applicants similar benefits and rights. These rights include the right to travel in European countries without requiring you to have an additional visa, the right to live in the country, and the right to include your dependent family members in your application. But the extent of these benefits and rights tend to differ slightly between programs, so you need to consult your immigration service provider for further details.
When you get your Golden Visa for Portugal, you can stay for at least 7 days in the country to obtain your Golden Visa status. If the Golden Visa permit is for 2 years, then you need to spend at least 14 days in Portugal during the 2-year period.
You can also qualify for a Golden Visa in Europe for making an investment. You need to make an investment so that you can be eligible to apply for this type of visa. Also, different European Union countries tend to have different qualifying investments requirements for their residency.
By now you may be wondering how long it takes to have a Golden Visa. In Portugal, the wait times to get your Golden Visa can depend on how busy the immigration office is. For example, in 2021, the wait times in Portugal after submitting an investment Golden Visa was 7 months.
You should remember that this assumes that you don’t have travel restrictions to Portugal. In such cases, you can decide to visit the immigration office to give your biometric data timely. Regardless of this, it’s still a good idea to get updates from your immigration service provider regarding the most updated wait times when you submit your application.
And, when you receive the Golden Visa card, you need to check its validity. Most Golden Visa Cards for Portugal are valid for two years, but they also offer the first permit which is valid for one year.
In general, most Golden Visa European Union countries provide a temporary residence permit during the first approval stage. When you meet the stay requirements as well as other criteria, you can receive permanent residency. For instance, Portugal’s Golden Visa can lead to permanent residency after 5 years. Therefore, if you can manage to meet this stay requirement at the expiry of this period, which is usually 35 days out of 5 years, then you can be entitled for permanent residency.
Also, the European Golden Visa program can lead to citizenship. Take note that a Golden Visa is a stage to residency in a host country. And, residency is a route to citizenship as long as you meet certain naturalization requirements of the host country.
With a Portuguese passport, you can visit at least 188 countries without any need for a visa. Before you apply for a Golden Visa for Portugal, you should remember that there are application costs. Besides making the qualifying investment, you also need to pay fees to the government. These fees are often paid per applicant and dependent. Therefore, you have to consult your immigration service provider to know more about these fees.