New Portugal Golden Visa Rules: Time to Opt for the D7 Visa?

In recent years, Portugal has become a highly sought-after destination for expats, investors, and retirees from around the globe. The golden visa Portugal, launched in 2012, has been a major driver of this interest, offering residency and a pathway to citizenship in exchange for real estate investments. 

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However, the landscape is shifting. The Portuguese government has approved new laws to terminate the Golden Visa program through real estate investments, signalling a significant change in the country’s immigration policy.

This development has intensified the focus on alternative pathways to Portuguese residency, particularly the D7 Visa, also known as the Passive Income Visa. As the Golden Visa Portugal program faces its impending conclusion, prospective applicants are evaluating their options more critically. 

The Golden Visa and the D7 Visa both offer unique routes to residency and citizenship but cater to different types of applicants: the former to investors and the latter to individuals with stable passive incomes.

Let’s delve into the latest updates on the Golden Visa, explore its benefits and criteria, and compare it with the D7 Visa to help potential applicants make informed decisions about their future in Portugal.

Whether you’re an investor looking to capitalize on Portugal’s real estate market or someone with a steady passive income seeking a peaceful Mediterranean lifestyle, understanding the nuances of these visa options is crucial in navigating this new era of Portuguese immigration.

Portugal Golden Visa

The Portugal Golden Visa has been one of the most popular residency programs for investors since its inception in 2012. Designed to attract foreign investment, the Golden Visa offers residency permits in exchange for qualifying investments in real estate, capital transfer, or job creation. 

This program has not only boosted the Portuguese economy but also provided investors with a gateway to the European Union. 

As new legislation aims to terminate the Golden Visa through real estate investments, it is essential to understand its benefits, eligibility criteria, and current status to make informed decisions.

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Recent News and Facts

  • End of Golden Visa through Real Estate: The Portuguese government has approved new laws to terminate the Golden Visa program through real estate investments. Although it is still possible to apply, the program will cease to be available once the President of Portugal publishes the new laws.
  • Success and Popularity: The Golden Visa program has been highly successful, with over 11,535 permits granted since its launch in 2012. In 2022, there was a 42% increase in investments through the program.

Benefits: The Golden Visa offers a range of benefits, including:

  • Residence permit for five years, allowing travel throughout the Schengen Area.
  • Opportunity to apply for permanent residence after five years.
  • Eligibility for Portuguese citizenship after six years.
  • Automatic qualification for the Portuguese Non-Habitual Tax Regime (NHR), which can provide significant tax benefits.

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Non-EU, non-Swiss, or non-EEA national.
  • Minimum investment of €250,000.
  • Clean criminal record.
  • Spend an average of 7 days per year in Portugal.

Investment Options: 

The Golden Visa program allows for investments in real estate, capital transfer, or job creation.

Portugal D7 Visa (Passive Income Visa)

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The Portugal D7 Visa, often referred to as the Passive Income Visa, is an attractive option for retirees and individuals with a stable passive income who wish to live in Portugal. Launched to attract non-EU nationals who can sustain themselves financially without engaging in local employment, the D7 Visa provides a straightforward pathway to residency and citizenship.

This visa is ideal for those looking to enjoy Portugal’s high quality of life, favourable tax regime, and beautiful landscapes without the need for substantial initial investments.

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Non-EU/EEA/Swiss citizen with a reasonable net regular passive income.
  • Minimum required income: €8,460 per year, plus 50% of this amount for each accompanying family member.


  • Residence permit for one year, renewable for two years.
  • Opportunity to apply for permanent residency after five years.
  • Eligibility for Portuguese citizenship after five years.
  • Visa-free entry and circulation through the Schengen Area.
  • Family reunification and access to the National Health Service and Education System.


  • Proof of stable passive income.
  • Clean criminal record.
  • Residence address in Portugal.
  • Spend at least 16 months in Portugal during the first two-year period.

Application Process:

  1. Obtain a NIF number and open a bank account.
  2. Submit the application at the Portuguese consulate or embassy.

Key Differences Between the Golden Visa Portugal and the D7 Visa:

  • D7 Visa requires a minimum of 6 to 8 months of physical presence in Portugal each year, while the Golden Visa requires only 7 days per year.
  • Both visas offer pathways to Portuguese citizenship and residency, but the D7 Visa is targeted at individuals with stable passive income, while the Golden Visa caters to investors. The choice between the two depends on individual circumstances and preferences.

Wrapping Up

Navigating the visa options for Portugal can be complex, but both the Golden Visa and the D7 Visa offer unique advantages depending on your financial situation and lifestyle preferences. 

Whether you’re looking to invest in real estate or have a stable passive income, Portugal provides flexible pathways to residency and citizenship, along with the perks of living in a beautiful and culturally rich country.

The post New Portugal Golden Visa Rules: Time to Opt for the D7 Visa? first appeared on From Frugal to Free.

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