Can I Visit Portugal As a Singaporean Citizen Without a Visa?
Portugal, with its picturesque landscapes, rich history, and vibrant culture, attracts many travellers, including those from Singapore. If you’re a Singaporean citizen planning a trip to this beautiful European nation, it is wise to be up to date with Portugal’s visa requirements.
Singaporean passport holders enjoy the privilege of visa-free entry into Portugal for short stays. Specifically, you can stay in Portugal for up to 90 days within 180 days without needing a visa. This applies not only to tourism but also to business-related visits, attending conferences, or even just transiting through the country.
Portugal is a member of the Schengen zone, a group of 26 European countries that have abolished passport control at their mutual borders. The 90-day visa-free agreement period applies to the entire Schengen states, not just Portugal. This means that the days you spend in any Schengen country, including Portugal, count towards the 90-day limit. So, if you’re planning a multi-country European tour, it’s essential to keep this in mind.
If you wish to extend your stay beyond 90 days, you’ll need to apply for the appropriate visa or residence permit. This could be for reasons like work, study, or other long-term commitments. It’s crucial to plan, as overstaying without the correct visa can lead to penalties or impact future travel to the Schengen Area.
While a visa might not be necessary, ensure your passport is valid for at least three months beyond your planned departure from the Schengen area. It’s also a good idea to keep proof of your return ticket, travel itinerary, and accommodation, as immigration officers might request to see them upon arrival.
As a result of its rich history, culture, and breathtaking landscapes, Portugal has become one of Singapore’s most popular tourist destinations. Whether you’re looking for a work visa, a study visa, an investment visa, or a long-term residency visa, understanding the visa landscape is essential. Short stays without a visa are possible for Singaporeans, but extended stays require a more formal application process. The purpose of this guide is to inform Singaporean citizens of the various visas that they may need if they intend to stay in Portugal for a prolonged period or for a specific purpose.
If a Singaporean citizen wishes to stay in Portugal for an extended period or specific purposes, the following types of visas will be needed:
- Golden Visa: It is designed for investors interested in making significant financial investments in Portugal, such as purchasing, creating jobs, or transferring capital.
- D7 Visa (Passive Income Visa): Designed for individuals who have a regular source of passive income, like pensions, property rentals, or dividends.
- Study Visa: For those wishing to pursue academic courses or professional training in Portuguese institutions.
- Work Visas: Catering to individuals who have secured employment in Portugal. This can further be categorised based on the nature of the job, such as general employment, self-employment, or highly-skilled positions.
The Portugal Golden Visa is a residency-by-investment programme introduced by the Portuguese government in 2012 to attract foreign investment to the country. It offers non-European Union (EU) nationals the opportunity to obtain a temporary residence permit in Portugal through various types of qualifying investments. Over time, this can lead to permanent residency and even citizenship. Here are the key aspects of the programme:
Types of Investments
The programme provides several investment options, including:
- Transferring capital of at least €1 million into Portugal
- Creating at least 10 jobs in Portugal
- Investing at least €350,000 in research activities
- Investing at least €250,000 in artistic production or the national cultural heritage
- Investing at least €500,000 in small and medium-sized businesses in Portugal
Initially, the Golden Visa is valid for one year, then renewable for subsequent two-year periods. Holders of the Golden Visa are required to stay in Portugal for a minimum of seven days during the first year and 14 days in the subsequent two-year periods.
Path to Citizenship
After five years of holding a Golden Visa, investors can apply for permanent residency in Portugal. After one more year (six years in total), they can apply for Portuguese citizenship, provided they meet all other requirements, such as demonstrating ties to the country and passing a basic Portuguese language test.
- The Golden Visa or Business Visa allows investors and their families to travel freely within the Schengen Area, which comprises 26 European countries.
- Immediate family members can also qualify for residency under the Golden Visa programme.
- Investors and their families can benefit from Portugal’s healthcare system and enrol in Portuguese schools and universities.
- Whether it’s property deeds, bank transfer receipts, or documentation showcasing job creation, tangible evidence of the investment is crucial.
- A clean slate is essential. Applicants must provide criminal record certificates from both Portugal and Singapore, ensuring they’re in good legal standing in both nations.
- A comprehensive health insurance policy that’s valid in Portugal is a non-negotiable requirement.
The application process involves submitting the required documents, undergoing criminal background checks, and providing evidence of the qualifying investment. Once approved, the investor and their family members receive residence cards valid in Portugal.
While the general time frame is between 12 – 18 months, certain complexities or nuances related to the specific investment might influence this duration. The efficiency of the Portuguese administrative system and the volume of applications can play a role in processing times.
The financial aspect of the Golden Visa is multifaceted. For the Golden Visa in Portugal, the initial application costs €5,325 per person, with a processing fee of €550. Renewals are €80 each, and for family members, the renewal fee is €2,663 each.
If you have queries regarding the visa fee or any other aspect of the process, it’s advisable to consult the Portuguese consulate or embassy directly. Alternatively, for expert guidance, reach out to the IAS team at +44 (0)333 305 9375 or visit our website online.
The D7 Visa, often termed the “Passive Income Visa” or “Residency Visa for Retirees”, is a unique offering by the Portuguese government, tailored for individuals with a regular and stable income. This visa is especially attractive to retirees, digital nomads, freelancers, and other individuals who can demonstrate consistent income without being employed in Portugal. Here are the comprehensive details:
Types of Income
The D7 Visa is designed for those with reliable incomes, such as:
- At retirement, pensioners and beneficiaries receive benefits
- The income derived from intellectual property or copyrights
- Returns from financial investments
- Alternatively, any other source of income that is stable and verifiable
The initial D7 Visa is granted for one year. Subsequent renewals are for two-year periods. After five continuous years on the D7, holders can apply for permanent residency. During the first year, visa holders are required to spend at least 183 days (consecutive or nonconsecutive) in Portugal.
Path to Citizenship
After six years of legal residency (which includes time on the D7 Visa and subsequent renewals), individuals can apply for Portuguese citizenship. This is contingent upon meeting other criteria, such as demonstrating ties to Portugal, passing a language proficiency test, and understanding the fundamental cultural and historical aspects of the country.
- The D7 offers a path to Portuguese residency without a hefty investment.
- Visa holders can travel freely within the Schengen Area.
- Access to healthcare, education, and other social benefits in Portugal.
- Demonstrable stable and regular income that meets or exceeds the Portuguese minimum wage. For couples or families, combined income can be considered.
- Proof of residence in Portugal, be it a rental agreement, property deeds, or a letter of invitation from a host.
- Comprehensive health insurance that provides coverage in Portugal.
- A clean criminal record certificate from the applicant’s country of residence and any other country where they’ve lived for more than six months in the past year.
The application begins with gathering all required documents and submitting them to the Portuguese consulate or embassy in the applicant’s home country. After preliminary approval, the individual can travel to Portugal to complete further administrative steps, which include registering with local authorities, obtaining a fiscal number, and opening a bank account.
Typically, the D7 Visa processing time ranges between 2-4 months. However, this can vary based on the consulate’s workload, the applicant’s specific circumstances, and any changes in the regulatory environment.
For Singapore citizens interested in the Portugal D7 visa, the processing fee is set at €83. Once in Portugal, obtaining a resident permit, which serves as your official ID, will cost €72.
The D7 Visa application centre fee is subject to change and may vary based on the applicant’s nationality and the specific consulate or embassy’s fee structure. It’s recommended to check the applicable visa fee directly with the Portuguese consulate or embassy or seek guidance from an immigration expert with IAS.
The Portugal Study Visa offers Singaporean students a gateway to pursue their academic aspirations in one of Europe’s culturally rich and diverse nations. Whether it’s undergraduate, postgraduate, or doctoral studies, this visa ensures students can immerse themselves in their chosen field of study in Portugal. Here are the key aspects of the Study Visa:
Purpose of the Visa
The Study Visa is designed explicitly for Singaporean citizens who have been accepted into a recognised educational institution in Portugal and wish to undertake their studies there.
The cornerstone of eligibility is an acceptance letter or enrolment confirmation from the educational institution in Portugal. The Portuguese Ministry of Education must recognise the institution.
The visa’s duration typically aligns with the academic programme’s length. For courses extending beyond a year, the visa might initially be granted for one year and is subsequently renewable based on the continuation of studies.
Students on this visa usually have the privilege to work part-time, although there might be restrictions, such as a limited number of working hours per week. It’s essential to verify the specific conditions attached to the visa.
- A confirmed enrolment or acceptance letter from the educational institution.
- Evidence of sufficient funds to support oneself during the stay in Portugal.
- Comprehensive health insurance that covers the student in Portugal.
- A clean criminal record certificate from Singapore or any other country where the student has resided for more than six months in the past year.
- Secure an acceptance letter from the educational institution.
- Collate all required documents.
- Apply to the Portuguese embassy or consulate in Singapore.
- Attend an interview or visa appointment if mandated.
Upon completing their academic programme, students might have opportunities to transition to another type of residence permit, especially if they secure employment in Portugal or decide to pursue further studies.
Portuguese student visas typically process in 60 days, but factors like residence country and embassy can extend this. Short-stay visas for Portugal usually take at least 2 weeks but can stretch to 60 days in unique cases. A Schengen visa permits up to 90 days of stay within the Schengen Area.
For those considering studying in Portugal, the student visa fees vary based on the visa’s duration. A short-stay student visa costs €75 (£65), while a long-stay student visa is priced at €90 (£78). These fees encompass the visa application processing costs. If you’re applying for the visa at the Embassy, there’s a fee of €90. Additionally, when applying for a residence permit at the SEF (Immigration and Borders Service), the charge is €83. Always ensure you consult IAS for the most up-to-date fee information.
The Portugal Work Visa offers Singaporean professionals an opportunity to explore the vibrant job market of this European nation. Whether it’s for a short-term contract, a long-term position, or even self-employment, this visa ensures individuals can legally work and contribute to the Portuguese economy. Here are the key aspects of Work Visa:
Purpose of the Visa
The Work Visa is designed for Singaporean citizens who have secured employment or have a valid job offer from a recognised employer in Portugal.
The primary eligibility criterion is a confirmed job offer or an employment contract from a company or employer based in Portugal.
The duration of the work visa typically aligns with the employment contract’s length. For more extended contracts or indefinite contracts, the visa might initially be granted for one year and is subsequently renewable based on continued employment.
Holders of the Work Visa have the right to live and work in Portugal, access the healthcare system, and enjoy other social benefits. They can also travel freely within the Schengen Area.
- A valid employment contract or binding job offer from a Portuguese employer.
- Depending on the job, proof of relevant qualifications or certifications might be required.
- Comprehensive health insurance, unless covered by the employer or the Portuguese social security system.
- A clean criminal record certificate from Singapore and any other country where the applicant has resided for more than six months in the past year.
- Secure a job offer or employment contract from a Portuguese employer.
- Gather all required documents.
- Apply to the Portuguese embassy or consulate in Singapore.
- Once the work visa is approved, the individual may need to apply for a residence permit upon arrival in Portugal, especially for more extended stays.
After a certain period of legal residency and employment in Portugal, individuals might be eligible to apply for permanent residence or even Portuguese citizenship, provided they meet other necessary criteria.
For those seeking a work visa for Portugal, the process can be lengthy. The SEF (Immigration and Borders Service) typically takes up to 60 days to review the work permit application. Following this, the Embassy requires an additional two to three months to grant an entry visa.
For Singaporean investors aiming for a Portuguese residency visa, the processing time ranges between 12 to 18 months. Always ensure you plan ahead and account for these time frames when making arrangements.
For a work visa in Portugal, expect the following fees: €90 for the entry visa, €83 for the SEF work residence permit application, and €72 to obtain the permit. An EU Blue Card costs €107, plus €100 for its residence permit. Converting a tourist visa to a work visa is possible but requires expertise. Always check current fees and consult professionals like IAS as needed.
How To Become a Permanent Resident In Portugal
In Portugal, residency permits are documents that allow non-EU/EEA citizens to reside in the country for extended periods legally. These permits are typically linked to the purpose of stay, such as work, study, family reunification, or investment.
To obtain permanent residency in Portugal, individuals typically need to have five years of continuous legal residence in the country. This period can be accumulated through various visa types, such as work, study, or family reunion visas.
Types of Residency Permits
- Temporary Residency Permit: This is granted to individuals who intend to stay in Portugal for more than a year but less than five years. The reasons can vary – employment, education, family reunification, or entrepreneurial activities.
- Permanent Residency Permit: After five years of continuous and legal residence in Portugal, individuals can apply for a permanent residency permit. This allows them to stay indefinitely in Portugal and offers more stability compared to temporary residency.
How to Apply for a Permanent Residency Permit
Ensure you’ve lived legally and continuously in Portugal for five years. This means you should be present in Portugal for at most six consecutive months or ten months cumulatively over the five years.
Gather Necessary Documents: Prepare the following:
- A valid passport and temporary residence permit
- Proof of regular income or employment
- Evidence of accommodation (e.g., rental contract, property deed)
- Comprehensive health insurance (if not covered by Portuguese social security)
- Criminal record certificate from Portugal and your home country
Apply for a permanent residency permit at the local branch of the Portuguese Immigration and Borders Service (SEF). It’s advisable to book an appointment in advance.
After submitting your application, you’ll likely be scheduled for an interview at SEF. This is a standard procedure to verify your documents and assess your eligibility.
If your application is successful, you’ll be issued a permanent residency card, which will need renewal every ten years, primarily for updating the photograph and personal details.
Remember, even with permanent residency, prolonged absences from Portugal can jeopardise your status. Ensure you maintain ties to the country.
Portugal Citizenship Requirements & Eligibility For Citizens of Singapore
Portuguese citizenship offers a superabundance of benefits, including the right to live, work, and travel throughout the European Union. For Singaporean citizens, acquiring Portuguese citizenship can be a strategic move, both personally and professionally. Here’s a concise overview of the eligibility criteria and requirements:
Eligibility for Singaporean Citizenship in Portugal
A primary criterion is having legally resided in Portugal for at least six years, irrespective of the type of residence permit held during this period.
A basic command of the Portuguese language is essential. Typically, this is demonstrated by passing a language test at the A2 level or presenting a relevant certificate.
Applicants should have a clean criminal record, meaning no significant convictions in either Portugal or Singapore.
Children born to Singaporean citizens in Portugal can be eligible for citizenship if one parent has legally resided in Portugal for at least five years. Additionally, Singaporeans married to Portuguese citizens for three years or more can apply for citizenship, often with reduced residency requirements.
Essential documents include:
- Birth certificate
- Proof of legal residency in Portugal
- Language proficiency evidence
- Criminal record certificates from both Portugal and Singapore
Submit the application and necessary documents to the local Registry Office (Conservatória dos Registos Centrais) in Portugal.
The application will undergo a review process, during which additional documents or an interview might be requested.
Upon approval, the applicant may be required to participate in a citizenship ceremony.
Dual Citizenship Consideration
While Portugal permits dual citizenship, Singapore does not. Acquiring Portuguese citizenship may necessitate renouncing Singaporean citizenship, as Singaporean law doesn’t recognise dual nationality.
Immigration Advice Service is a leading authority in immigration matters, offering expert guidance and support for those navigating the complexities of obtaining Portuguese citizenship and other immigration-related concerns. With a team of seasoned professionals, IAS ensures that your application process is smooth, compliant, and tailored to your unique circumstances.
Whether you’re a Singaporean citizen eyeing Portuguese residency or seeking advice on other immigration pathways, IAS is equipped to provide comprehensive assistance every step of the way. Our services range from initial consultations to full application support, ensuring that all your queries are addressed and potential pitfalls are avoided.
Ready to embark on your journey to Portuguese citizenship? Need help navigating the intricate process? Contact IAS today at +44 (0)333 305 9375 or message us online, and let our experts guide you towards a successful application. Your dream of living and working in Portugal is within reach, and with IAS by your side, you’re one step closer to making it a reality.
Last modified on October 10th, 2023 at 7:35 am
Need help with an immigration issue? Book a one-to-one advice session with one of our legal caseworkers.
We can complete your visa application on your behalf, taking the stress and hassle out of the process.
Fast Track Package
Need to submit an application quickly? We can help you complete and send it off in as little as 24 hours.
Ensure you have the greatest chance of a successful appeal with our legal support and guidance.
The Advice Package
With our Advice Package, you can book a one-to-one session with one of our legal team and receive bespoke advice tailored for your situation. We will review your case and give you expert advice on how best to proceed with your immigration matter. Reach out to a member of our team and book your session today.
The Application Package
Our Application Package is designed to help relieve the stress of immigration applications. One of our legal caseworkers will help you throughout the entire process, including establishing your eligibility for your chosen route, completing your application form to the highest standards and organising your documents. We will then submit it and monitor its status on your behalf.
The Fast Track Package
Our premium Fast Track Package is ideal if you need to submit an application quickly, such as if you need to meet a tight deadline. Our lawyers will work closely with you to see that your application is completed to the highest standards and ensure you get your application in on time, helping to take the stress and pressure off you.
The Appeal Package
Visa appeals can be a stressful process, especially if you’re relying on a specific visa to be approved. Our legal team can help you navigate the whole process and maximise your chances of a successful appeal, working alongside you to reach a favourable result. We can also represent you in immigration-related hearings and tribunals.
No, Singaporean passport holders can enter Schengen Area countries without a visa for short stays up to 90 days within 180 days.
If you intend to stay beyond 90 days, apply through the Portuguese embassy or consulate in Singapore, providing necessary documents like a valid passport, travel itinerary, accommodation proof, and travel insurance.
While there’s no fixed amount, applicants should demonstrate they have sufficient funds to cover their stay without becoming a burden on the state.
With the correct documentation and meeting the eligibility criteria, the process is straightforward. However, the specific visa type and individual circumstances can influence the application’s success.
Processing times vary, but typically, a Portugal visa application for Portugal takes 15 calendar days. Some applications take longer, especially during peak travel seasons.