Do Columbians Need a Visa To Go to Portugal?
If you are a Colombian, you do not need to apply for a visa to visit Portugal if you do not intend to stay for more than 90 days. However, you can only go for family visits, tourism, education that won’t last more than 90 days, business or work meetings, or medical treatment.
You do not need to apply for a Schengen visa for these purposes. If you enter Portugal freely for 90 days, you must not engage in any form of employment, whether paid or unpaid. If you want to stay longer and work, you must apply for the appropriate visa.
In addition to Portugal, you can visit other countries in the Schengen area for 90 days without needing a visa.
Note that from 2025, Colombians aged 18 to 70 will be required to apply for the European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS). This is a document you can get for €7. Its work is to track entry and exits to and from the Schengen.
The ETIAS’ validity is 3 years, and you can visit Portugal or the Schengen region for 90 days out of a possible 180.
If you want to move to Portugal via long-term study, work, or investment route, you must meet Portugal national visa requirements and apply for a visa.
Portugal Long Stay Visa & Investment Options For Colombians
As a Colombian, you are eligible for certain kinds of long-stay visas. You only need to meet the Portugal visa requirements before applying.
Below are some of the visas you can apply for:
- Golden Visa
- D7 Visa
- Study Visa
- Work Visa
Colombians are eligible to apply for a Portugal golden visa. This is a visa by investment and one that leads to permanent settlement in Portugal. It is also one of the fast-track pathways to citizenship.
You must invest between €200,000 to €500,000 in Portugal for 5 years to get the golden visa. And that is not all; you must also maintain your investment for 5 years.
At the end of the 5 years, you can apply to extend your golden visa or apply for permanent residence or citizenship.
The golden visa is a naturalisation route that does not require lengthy minimum stays. You only need to spend 7 days at a go per 365 days.
With the visa, you can also visit other countries in the Schengen region and stay for 90 days without applying for a visa.
Below are some other perks of being a golden visa holder:
When applying for a golden visa, you can do so with your family. If you already have your golden visa, you can still get your family members to join you. Here are the family members who are eligible for family reunification under the golden visa program:
- Your spouse or de facto partner.
- Your dependent child under the age of 18.
- Your dependent child over 18 admitted to study in a school in Portugal.
- Your siblings, if they are less than 18 and your legal wards.
- Your spouse or partner’s siblings, if they are less than 18 and their legal wards.
- Your parents, if they are dependent on you and are also above 64.
- Your spouse or partner’s siblings, if they depend on them and are above 64.
Pathway to Citizenship
Colombians can acquire citizenship or become permanent residents of Portugal after spending 5 years on a golden visa. This is one of the fastest routes to naturalise in Portugal.
Visa-free Access to the Schengen Zone
You get visa-free access to the Schengen region if you hold a golden visa. You and your family can visit Schengen countries and spend up to 90 days there.
You may be exempt from paying taxes if you are a golden visa holder. But this is if you are a non-habitual resident (NHR). A non-habitual resident does not spend up to 183 days in 1 year in Portugal.
If you hold this status, you will not be required to pay taxes on the funds you earn outside of Portugal. However, you will still have to pay taxes on the returns on your investments in Portugal. But this would still be lower than what others are required to pay.
As a non-habitual resident, you have to pay only 20% of taxes as opposed to the 48% others pay.
Live, Study or Work Freely
With the golden visa, you can live, study or work in Portugal without inhibitions. Your family members can also study or work freely.
Access to Portugal’s Borders
If you are on a golden visa, you have no entry limits. You can choose to exit or re-enter the country at any time.
Before applying for the golden visa, you must meet certain criteria. Here they are below:
You must be at least 18 before applying for the golden visa program.
As a Colombian, you are eligible to apply for the golden visa.
Criminal Record Certificate
Portugal mandates everyone applying for her national visa to undergo a criminal record test. This ensures that criminals or terrorists are kept out while citizens and residents are kept safe. As such, you must present a criminal record certificate issued by the Police of your country.
If you happen not to have lived in Colombia for the past 5 years, you must present a criminal record certificate from every country you have spent up to 3 months.
Fund Earned Abroad
You cannot borrow funds in Portugal and use them for the golden visa application. The funds must have been money you earned outside of Portugal.
You must present a medical insurance policy certificate with a minimum value of €30000. Note that if you are moving to Portugal with your family, you must also acquire this insurance for them.
If you apply for the golden visa, you must acquire an NIF number. Without this number, you cannot open a bank account, pay taxes or do any financial transactions in Portugal. The NIF number is not hard to get. It is issued at any tax office located in Portugal.
Bank Account in Portugal
After getting your NIF number, you must use it to open a bank account in Portugal. If you have an account with a bank in Colombia with a branch in Portugal, you already meet this requirement.
If you want to open a bank account in Portugal, you have to walk into any bank of your choosing and present the following documents:
- Your NIF number from the tax office.
- Your Colombian passport.
- Your Portuguese phone number.
- Your evidence of income.
- Your address in Colombia.
If you are not in Portugal at the time of your application, our team can help you get an NIF number and open a bank account if you give us power of attorney. Call us at +44 (0)333 305 9375.
Means of Subsistence
You have also to show you have enough money to live in Portugal. The amount you need to show in your bank balance will increase as you add more family members.
Investment in Portugal
You must invest in Portugal before applying for a golden visa. Depending on the investment you choose and its location, it can cost between €200000 to €500000.
Maintaining Your Investment
You must maintain the investment you made in Portugal for 5 years. The Portuguese government requires you to swear an affidavit to this effect.
Minimum Stay Criteria
You must stay for 7 days at a go in Portugal yearly.
Investment Options Available
Below are the available investment options that you can choose:
Donations to Cultural or Arts Heritage
You can donate funds to institutions that preserve or restore arts or cultural heritage. If the artistic heritage is in the rural areas, you must invest €200,000. If it is an urban area, you have to invest €250,000.
Donations to Scientific or Tech Research
You can also fund tech or scientific research in Portugal. You have to invest €400,000 if the research will take place in a rural area and €500,000 if the research is in an urban area.
Set Up a Company or Business
Another investment option you can choose is the business establishment option. The business must be in Portugal and offer employment to Portuguese citizens and residents.
When you set up a business, it must be with at least €500,000, and it has to create at least 10 permanent jobs or 8 if it is in a rural area.
Invest in a Business
Lastly, you can also invest in an already-existing business with €400,000. It is also required that your investment will create at least 5 permanent jobs.
You can pool resources with friends or family members and get a golden visa. For example, if it costs €400,000 to restore a certain cultural heritage in a rural area, you and your partner can invest €200,000 each to meet the requirement. You both will get the golden visa and bring your families to Portugal.
If you want to apply for a golden visa, you have to present the following documents:
- Valid Colombian passport.
- Recent passport photograph.
- Medical Insurance policy certificate for every applicant.
- Affidavit to show you agree to maintain your investment for 5 years.
- Criminal history certificate from the Colombian Police and every other country you have spent at least 3 months in. Note that this document must be issued at most 90 days before the start of your application process.
- Portugal visa application form.
- NIF number that shows you agree to comply with the tax rules during your stay.
- Portuguese bank account number.
- Evidence you have paid the application fee.
- Signed consent form that shows you permit the SEF to run a background check on you.
- Evidence that you have invested in a valid investment option.
- Marriage certificate if you are married and are going with your spouse or partner.
- Birth certificates if you have kids and are going over with them.
- Adoption certificates of your wards.
- Signed visa application form.
Portugal visa fees
- For the processing fee, you pay €533. You will also pay this fee every time you renew your visa.
- For each of your dependents, you pay €83. You will also pay these fees when you want to renew their visa
- For your application fee, you pay €5325.
Even though we listed these fees, you should know you will pay more for the visa. You will have to pay the lawyer who will prepare your investment documents. It may also cost you to gather your supporting documents. Some documents, like the medical insurance policy and the criminal record certificate, may require you to pay a certain amount for its issuance.
If you are still unsure what document to present, our team will gladly help you.
Due to the processes involved in the golden visa, you can expect it to take up to 2 years before the SEF decides on your application.
Colombians can apply for a D7 visa to work remotely in Portugal. The D7 visa is for digital nomads, freelancers, the self-employed and passive income earners. You can work for your employer anywhere in the world but from Portugal.
One of the criteria of this visa is that your income must come outside Portugal. In addition to that, you are not allowed to take any employment from Portugal, even if it is a remote job.
There are 2 types of D7 visas: the temporary stay and the residency visa.
When you apply for a temporary stay visa, you get a permit to stay in Portugal for 1 year. You can extend for another 2 if you want. With this visa, you have multiple entries into Portugal and can visit other Schengen countries.
If you intend to move to Portugal with your family, the temporary stay visa is not for you. It is also not a route to permanent residence or citizenship.
The residency visa, on the other hand, allows for family reunification. It is also a route to permanent residence or citizenship. With the residency visa, you get 2 years to stay and the possibility of renewing for an extra 3. This visa allows only two entries into Portugal. You can also visit other Schengen countries.
When you apply for a D7 visa, you will get an entry permit valid for 4 months. Within these 4 months, you must schedule a meeting with the SEF to switch your entry permit to a residence permit.
You have to present the following documents to the Embassy if you want to prove your eligibility for the digital nomad visa (D7 visa):
- Valid Colombian passport. This must have been issued in the last 10 years and is valid up to 3 months after your visa expires. There must also be at least 2 blank pages for your visa.
- Digital passport photographs taken at most 3 months to the day you are submitting your application.
- NIF number from a tax office in Portugal.
- Birth certificate to show that you are 18 or above.
- Criminal record certificate from the Colombian Police. This document should not be gotten earlier than 3 months before you submit your application. You must also get one from every country you have spent at least 3 months in the past 5 years.
- Medical Insurance policy certificate acceptable in the EU area and worth at least €30,000.
- Marriage and birth certificates if you intend to move with your family.
- Account with a Portuguese bank. You already meet this criteria if you have an account with a bank in Colombia that has a branch in Portugal.
- Bank statement showing that you earn at least €3,040 monthly or € 8,460 per year for passive income earners.
- Cover letter that explains the intent behind moving to Portugal.
- Signed visa application form.
- You pay €75 if you want the temporary stay visa.
- You pay €90 if you want the residence visa.
- You pay €320 for the residence permit.
Typically, it takes the Embassy 3 to 6 months to process D7 visa applications.
The SEf takes about 2 weeks to issue a residence permit after interviewing with them.
The Portugal visa process can sometimes take longer if the visa application centre or Embassy has too much workload.
As a Colombian citizen, you can conduct research or study in Portugal without applying for a visa if your study will take less than 90 days. But if you want to study a course in Portugal that will take more than 90 days, you must apply for a long-term study visa.
The long-term study visa’s validity is 1 year. However, it can be extended till you are done with your course.
Unlike other visas mentioned above, the length of stay of the study visa does not count towards permanent residence or citizenship. So, even if you study in Portugal for 5 years, you will not be eligible for citizenship. You must switch to another kind of visa for your stay to count.
Your family members can join you in Portugal if you are on a study visa. However, they must be either your spouse/partner or child.
If you are applying for a study visa, you must show the Embassy the documents listed below:
- Acceptance letter from a Portuguese school.
- Evidence of paying your tuition fee stipulated by your school. If you are on a scholarship, a different kind of funding or sponsorship, attach the proof here, and you would have met this criteria.
- Evidence you have enough money to fend for yourself in Portugal. You can present a sponsorship letter in lieu of this.
- Evidence you have accommodation in Portugal. This can be replaced with an invitation, sponsorship letter, or proof that you have space in the school’s dormitory.
- Medical insurance policy valued at least €30000.
- Valid Colombian passport.
- Recent digital passport photograph.
- Visa application form, duly signed and completed.
- Criminal record certificate from Colombia and any other country you have spent at least 3 months in the past 5 years.
- €90 for the visa application.
- €83 for the residence permit.
- €72 when you get your residence permit from the SEF.
It may take 1 to 3 months to get a response from the Embassy.
Colombians can work in Portugal if they have a job offer from a Portugal-based employer. But to get to Portugal, you must apply for a work visa.
When you apply for a work visa, you get a 1-year permit that can be extended if your employer still needs your service.
After staying in Portugal for 5 years, you can switch to permanent residence or citizenship. When you get Portuguese citizenship, you can also get a passport, giving you visa-free entry into more than 180 countries.
Before applying for a work visa, your prospective employer must have gotten approval from the Labour authorities in Portugal to sponsor you. They must do this while proving that no one in the EU is available or willing to do the work.
Upon approval by the Labour authorities, you can now begin your application from Colombia. You will get a residency visa to enter Portugal and stay for 4 months if successful.
Within these 4 months, you must schedule an interview with the SEF and get your residence permit.
You can come to Portugal with your family members. And they are free to study or work with any employer of choice. However, you do not have this leeway. You are tied to your employer that sponsored you.
With a work visa, you cannot change employers or even locations without the permission of the SEF. Doing so will warrant removal from Portugal.
Colombians are also free to apply for the Portugal job seeker visa to come to search for jobs in Portugal. This visa is valid for 4 months. You must get a job within this time or return to Colombia.
Prove your eligibility for the work visa by submitting the following documents:
- Valid Colombian passport.
- Signed job contract between you and your employer in Portugal. The offer must bear the contract terms, like your pay, location and employment duration.
- Recent digital passports taken in compliance with the EU-photo standard rules.
- Medical insurance policy document that has a value of a minimum of €30000.
- Marriage and birth certificates if you are going with your family.
- Bank statement with enough money to sustain you in Portugal.
- Evidence of accommodation in Portugal.
- Criminal record certificate from the Colombian Police.
- Consent form showing you permit the SEF to check your criminal record.
- Completed visa application form.
€90 for the application fee.
€83 for the residence permit application fee.
€72 for the residence permit issuance fee.
You should expect the SEF to respond to your employer’s application within 60 days.
The Portugal embassy can take up to 90 days to reply.
Portugal Residency For Colombians
Colombians can get a Portuguese residence permit if they want to stay in Portugal for work, study or business that will last for more than 90 days. This is called a temporary residence permit. This residence permit can be for work, study, digital nomad or golden visa.
After holding these permits (except study) for 5 years, they can apply for permanent residency.
The application for permanent residence is done online at the SEF’s website.
You must schedule an appointment with the SEF to apply for permanent residence. They will tell you where to submit your supporting documents.
Below are the documents you need to submit:
- Proof you have scheduled a meeting with the SEF.
- Evidence of holding a temporary residence permit.
- Valid Colombian passport.
- Recent passport photographs.
- Evidence you changed addresses if you did.
- Marriage and birth certificates if you are applying with your family.
The application fee for permanent residence is €15.
Portugal Citizenship For Colombians
Colombians can apply for citizenship via marriage, naturalisation or investment. With Portuguese citizenship, you can get a Portuguese passport, making you an EU citizen. You can live, work or study anywhere in the EU without restrictions.
You will also have visa-free access to over 180 countries. Again, your citizenship will be transferred to your children when they are born.
Before applying for citizenship, you must have been a permanent resident for at least 1 year or held a temporary residence permit for 5 years.
Below are the documents you must submit to show you meet the eligibility requirements for Portugal citizenship:
- Portuguese citizenship request letter addressed to the Minister of Justice.
- Birth certificate
- Proof of ties to Portugal includes your CIPLE test result, admission letter from a Portuguese school, and your Portuguese home or property address.
- Proof you have paid the application fees.
- Criminal record certificate.
- Valid Colombian passport.
- Digital passport photograph.
- Evidence of legal stay in Portugal.
- Marriage certificate, if it applies.
- Evidence of service to a Portuguese community, if it applies.
At Immigration Advice Service, we specialise in simplifying visa application processes for you. Knowing what to do and when to do it as regards visa application can be cumbersome. Let us take that weight off your shoulders and handle your applications.
We can estimate how much the visa you are applying for will cost, assess your eligibility and even coach you on how to apply if you wish to do so yourself. Our experts are always ready to help you achieve your dreams of moving to Portugal.
Last modified on September 25th, 2023 at 7:26 am
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Colombians can travel to Portugal without needing to apply for a Schengen visa. However, as from 2025, Colombians must get the ETIAS to enter Portugal.
Portugal is a Schengen visa country. It is a member country of the Schengen area—an area where the member countries have decided to erase borders with one another.
The Portuguese authorities did not stipulate a particular amount one must hold while visiting. However, it is advisable to have between €45 to €75 to spend daily.