Why is Portugal the top destination for European Golden Visas?

What comes to your mind at the mention of Portugal? The scenic and surreal landscapes, the rugged coastlines, steep hills, the expensive orchards, and the exciting trams plying across are all visually appealing. You ought to have the lip-smacking Portuguese cuisine, which seems one of the most underrated, and the versatile wine, which perfectly accompanies the tasty dishes.

Lately, Portugal has become one of Europe’s most desirable and popular places for Golden Visa. It has been placed among the top ten European countries to make investments. The main reasons include its social stability, good quality of living, and increased tech hubs. You may be looking for a more detailed explanation. Right? Let’s get started.

When Was Portugal’s Golden Visa Launched? 

The Golden Visa Program of Portugal was launched in October 20212. Per the 2023 records, the visa was granted to around 12,718 primary applicants, who were accompanied by 20,424 dependant members. This program is active to the present date, with slight alterations though. On the 6th of October 2023, the Golden Visa Program doesn’t allow real estate investment. These were some of the basic facts about Portugal’s Golden Visa Program.

9 Reasons for Portugal to be the top destination for a European Golden Visa

Now, let’s get to the topic and know why Portugal is the top destination for European Golden Visas. Here are some of the probable reasons.

Permits Access to Schengen Area 

Like other Golden Visa Programs, the Portuguese Golden Visa grants free travel access to the Schengen area without any visa. Moreover, you can live there for a maximum of 90 out of the 180 days in the Schengen region. This area has a total of 27 countries, some of which include Croatia, Austria, Estonia, Finland, Belgium, Italy, Iceland, Hungary, etc.

Has Improved Health and Education Facilities 

One of Portugal’s greatest USPs is its advanced healthcare facilities. Not only citizens but also legal residents can access the country’s healthcare facilities for free. Most of the medical expenditures are covered. However, charges may be levied on ER visits, family doctor consultations, and ambulance services. The WHO ranked Portugal 12th in 2022 amongst all the healthcare services globally. Similarly, Portugal is quite advanced in its education policies. The country provides the benefits of free education to students till they have attained 18 years of age.

The 2023 global survey ratings involving more than 17,000 participants ranked Portugal 24th. The country’s education system is split into three sections – primary, secondary, and higher education. Moreover, higher education has two divisions – polytechnic and university taught in both private and public schools. The national curriculum includes mandatory subjects like Portuguese, geography, history, science, mathematics, and English. Some schools in Portugal follow the U.S. and UK curriculum.

Low Crime Rates 

The Global Peace Index 2023 ranked Portugal as the world’s 7th peaceful country after Iceland, Denmark, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia, and Singapore. This country’s crime rates are low compared to most European nations. Portugal is a safe place to live and work, giving residents safety, peace, and security.

Great English Proficiency 

When it comes to English proficiency, Portugal scores pretty high. Most of their residents have an increased English fluency and are closely at part with native speakers. So, when you’ve decided to be a resident by investment here, you won’t face too many language barriers.

Free Work Access 

A Portuguese Golden Visa gives you and your dependants the scope to have free work access in Portugal, which is an added advantage indeed.

Good Tax Benefits 

Portugal’s tax policy is flexible. It has a DTA (Double Tax Agreement) with the U.S.A. and several other countries. If someone from the US has attained a Golden Visa and pays taxes there, then that particular individual does not have to pay taxes here. Tax residents of Portugal could opt for the NHR (Non-Habitual Resident) regime.

It would offer exemptions and many tax benefits within the first ten years of residing in the country. However, since January 2024, the NHR scheme isn’t valid anymore.

Tech Hubs

If you’ve planned for the Golden Visa in Portugal with the expectation of taking full advantage of the tech hubs, you won’t be disappointed. It’s pleasant news for tech professionals, who may reap the benefits of the immense tech facilities. In fact, in recent times, development centers and tech teams have been set up in Portugal by several international companies. So, that means some great job and investment opportunities are on the way.

Favorable Climate 

When you decide to reside in a particular country, the climatic conditions are one of the significant aspects you consider. If that’s one of your criteria, I would say that the pleasing climatic conditions of Portugal will impress you immensely. Summers, which stretch from May through September, are pretty hot. Winters are cool but appealing, with abundant sunshine.

The country has an average of over 300 sunny days each year. So, if -planning for a Golden Visa and the climatic conditions are your concern, I would say you’ll be in for fabulous weather most of the days of the year in Portugal.

Reasonably Priced

Suppose you are looking for a country with a beautiful landscape, favorable weather conditions, excellent facilities, and a low cost of living. In that case, Portugal is one of the apt choices. Portugal is Western Europe’s one of the most affordable countries, where food, accommodation, and transport all come at a reasonable rate.


Since it developed in 2012, the Golden Visa has attracted many applicants worldwide and contributed 7.3 billion euros in investment to Portugal. China has consistently garnered the most applicants, followed by Brazil and UAE.

Besides the myriad of opportunities the country provides, the family-friendliness of Portugal makes it a wonderful place to stay. You can select some of the most affordable investment schemes and may be granted citizenship in 5 to 6 years.

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