The best visa options for Europe

When considering a move to Europe, whether for permanent residency or temporary stay, knowing the best options available is crucial. This was the focus of the conversation between AIM Global’s Client Manager, Benjamín Valdivia, and journalist Victoria Walsh on the Café Plus program of Radio TXS Plus.

Benjamín highlights that navigating the world of visas, residency, and citizenship can be daunting for those unfamiliar with it. This is where AIM Global’s expertise in international mobility comes into play. “We provide guidance to individuals looking to move from one country to another,” he adds, emphasizing that they work with various types of visas in three countries – Portugal, Greece, and Spain – which may expand during 2024.

The term ‘Golden Visa’ is often heard, but what does it entail? Benjamín Valdivia explains: “Its main difference is being an investment visa. Other types of visas require meeting different requirements; for example, for a ‘Digital Nomad’ visa, you need to have a remote work contract; for the Golden Visa, you need to invest.”

Portugal, Greece, and Spain offer investment visa programs, although the investment amounts and other requirements vary in each country. However, Valdivia explains that investing in Spain offers an extra incentive for Chileans and Latin Americans in general: “Most people applying for the Golden Visa want to obtain a European passport for legal residency. For example, in Portugal and Greece, it’s 5 years, and in Spain, it’s 10, but for Latin Americans, it’s only 2 years to maintain residency.”

Delving into the characteristics of each country, Spain stands out for the speed at which the Golden Visa is granted, as well as the opportunity to diversify assets through property investment starting from just 500,000 euros. Additionally, as mentioned, Chileans have the option to apply for Spanish citizenship after 2 years of residency.

Portugal offers one of the most attractive programs in Europe, allowing foreign investors to obtain citizenship in just 5 years without the need to actually reside in the country. “Your main residence doesn’t have to be there,” emphasizes Benjamin Valdivia. Investment options range from 500,000 euros in funds, similar to Spain, to contributions in artistic and/or cultural projects starting from 200,000 euros.

In the case of Greece, the Golden Visa program is attractive for those seeking quick residency, with a low investment amount starting from 250,000 euros in real estate and residency obtained in just 1 or 2 months. However, citizenship (passport) can only be obtained after 7 years of residency in the country.

AIM Global’s Client Manager concludes the conversation by mentioning that one of the countries being added to the firm’s international mobility portfolio during 2024 is the Republic of Malta. This island nation, located south of Italy, has a residency by investment program with property investment starting from 400,000 euros. This opens the door for investors to permanently reside in the country and enjoy unrestricted access to all Schengen Area countries.

If you’re interested in the topic or want to learn about other visa options for Europe, don’t hesitate to schedule a meeting with us. Our team, with offices in Santiago and Lisbon, is ready to address all your concerns and guide you through the entire process. Get in touch today!

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