Top 3 Digital Nomad Visas in Europe for 2023

Before the pandemic, many workplaces always questioned the feasibility of remote work. However, the world has drastically changed, and remote work has become the new normal. It’s been so impactful that new types of digital nomad visas have been created to attract a new audience of remote professionals!

Considering the freedom of location selection that comes with remote work, there has been a significant increase in the number of digital nomads open to remote work and travel and this has skyrocketed the number of digital nomad visas popping up all around the world and in Europe. 

One common way ambitious remote workers will work abroad is with a tourist visa that allows them to live in another country. However, a tourist visa only allows a short-term stay in a given locale, i.e., about 30-90 days. In addition, laws relating to remote work on a tourist visa are open to interpretation and often fall in a grey area.

What is a Digital Nomad Visa? 

 

Considering this, many countries introduced digital nomad visa programs that allow digital nomads to work remotely legally without additional procedures. Spain, Portugal, and Italy are among the many countries that offer varying degrees of availability of such programs, enticing remote workers worldwide to these foreign lands. 

A few key reasons for introducing digital nomad visa programs were to grow tourism, attract business and recover economies from the pandemic losses. Digital nomad visa programs range from three months to 12 months, with a possibility of extension in many instances. Most European countries have similar basic requirements to be eligible to apply for a digital nomad visa.

However, additional eligibility requirements may be applicable in some cases. Earlier, an article in Global Career Book provided a great insight into the Top Digital Nomad visas. Yet, as countless people can attest, Spain remains one of the most attractive options for digital nomads worldwide.

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Spain needs no further introduction, whether for its marvelous architecture, beautiful Mediterranean beaches, or unique gastronomy. It remains the ultimate travel “El Dorado” for digital nomads worldwide. Starting in January 2023, Spain introduced a digital nomad visa. According to Schengen Visa Info, the Spanish digital nomad visa has a few requirements. 

Spanish Digital Nomad Visa

 

Spain needs no further introduction, whether for its marvelous architecture, beautiful Mediterranean beaches, or unique gastronomy. It remains the ultimate travel “El Dorado” for digital nomads worldwide. Starting in January 2023, Spain introduced a digital nomad visa. According to Schengen Visa Info, the Spanish digital nomad visa has a few requirements. 

An income of €2,334 per month, proof of work experience, and at least one year of remote work experience is necessary to be eligible. The employer must be based outside of Spain and approve remote work for a company’s employees.

Those working for a foreign company must have at least three months of work experience. Self-employed professionals must have worldwide clientele and receive income from online activities outside Spain. Freelancers must be working for at least one company.

In addition, for those who have a clear criminal record, are approved for entry into Spain, have valid full health insurance, and did not reside in Spain for five years, this program may be a good fit. The visa is valid for one year and is renewable every two years. Each visa application costs €80. The processing time for Spain digital nomad visa is approximately two to six weeks. While Spain remains a beautiful destination for digital nomads, it is rivaled by non-other than Portugal.

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Portugal Digital Nomad Visa


Whether for the sunny beaches of the Algarve, the pristine forests of Madeira’s Laurisilva, or the magnificent architectural landscapes of Lisbon, Portugal is one of the ideal places frequented by digital nomads worldwide. While there is no specific digital nomad visa for Portugal, the best alternative is D7, also called the “Portugal Passive Income Visa.” This visa comes with some additional requirements.

According to Schengen Visa Info, evidence of passive income and an annual salary of a minimum of €8,460 is mandatory. In addition, an individual must also stay for at least 16 months during the initial two years. Some other requirements include a Portuguese bank account and a Numero de Identificacao Fiscal (NIF) ID to conduct financial activities. Portugal may be a good fit for those fulfilling the above requirements. The cost of a visa application is €180. Better yet, one can attain permanent residency in the nation after five years. While Portugal is arguably more attractive than Spain, neither of the destinations holds a handle up to Italy.

Italy Digital Nomad Visa

 

What is “Dolce Vita” other than gazing at the sunset on the Amalfi coast, enjoying Pizza Napolitana in Naples, or taking the time to appreciate Renaissance art in Florence? Working as a digital nomad in Italy, each of these may become common. According to the Schengen Visa Info, although the digital nomad visa for Italy was approved, it is still awaiting implementation. Until then, one may opt for “Visto Per Lavoro Autonomo” that is Italy’s self-employment visa.

Italy’s self-employment visa is applicable for both freelancing and business purposes. While this visa serves as a pathway for entry into the country, additional procedures are required to stay and work here. These include administrative authorization for self-employment activity and a residential permit. The cost of the application is €116. Visa is valid for a maximum of 2 years. Visa renewal is a possibility, provided the applicant fulfills the eligibility requirements of the territory.

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Many countries will likely introduce digital nomad visa programs soon to welcome international travelers intending to boost tourism, business opportunities, and economic growth. Among all the destinations discussed in this article, Spain is the only country with a fully implemented digital nomad visa program. Until the digital nomad visas are fully implemented for Italy and Portugal, digital nomads planning to travel to these destinations can opt for alternative visa pathways that cover remote work. While digital nomad visas are still a global work in progress, there is nothing that can stop ambitious people from traveling and working worldwide. 

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