Visas for Portugal

traveling to Portugal
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Updated on 01 November, 2023

If you are planning to visit or relocate to Portugal, it is important to be aware of visa and entry requirements. Portugal is a member of the European Union and of the Schengen space, meaning EU passport holders and residents of certain countries who have a visa-waiver program with Portugal are able to enter the country for up to 90 days with no visa required. Non-EU passport holders may require a visa to enter Portugal.

Portugal visa requirements for EU passport holders and residents

European Union citizens do not require a visa to travel to Portugal, regardless of the length of their stay in the country. They simply have to produce a valid identity card or passport on entry to Portugal. However, they will need to register with municipal authorities for stays longer than 90 days.

Foreign citizens living within the Schengen space who wish to enter Portugal must produce a residence permit in their country of residence, as well as a valid passport. They also have to present their Schengen visa and justify their stay in Portugal. Reasons can be for tourism, religious, family, scientific, cultural, professional, business or political purposes.

Portugal visa requirements for non-EU residents

Those who intend to stay for more than 12 months in Portugal will need to apply for a long-stay visa. They will be eligible either for a resident visa or for a temporary stay visa. You can obtain these visas with the Portuguese Embassy or Consulate in your country of residence.

The long-stay visa is applicable to foreigners moving to Portugal for medical treatment, retirement, studies, professional or religious training, research, teaching, high-profile jobs, investment or entrepreneurship. In most cases, you will first need to obtain a work contract and then use it to apply for a work permit via a Portuguese embassy in your country.

Do I need a visa to travel to Portugal?

Citizens coming from the following countries do not require a visa to travel to Portugal:

Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bolivia, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Guatemala, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, Monaco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, North Korea, Norway, Panama, Paraguay, Romania, Salvador, San Marino, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UK, United States, Uruguay, Vatican City, Venezuela.

Citizens holding passports from the following countries have to obtain a visa before traveling to Portugal, even for tourism:

Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belarus, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, China, Comoros, Congo, Cuba, Democratic Republic Of Congo, Djibouti, Dominican Republic, East Timor, Ecuador, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Fiji, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ivory Coast, Jamaica, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Maldives, Mali, Marshall Islands, Mauritania, Micronesia, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, North Korea, Northern Marianas, Oman, Pakistan, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Qatar, Russia, Rwanda, Samoa, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Syria, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Togo, Tonga, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, UAE, Uganda, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu, Vietnam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Do I need a visa to study in Portugal?

If you're an EU citizen (plus Switzerland, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) you do not need to apply for a student visa in Portugal. In fact, if staying for less than 3 months, you don't have to worry about any bureaucratic requirements. However, should your cycle of studies in the country last longer than the aforementioned 3 months, it is mandatory to register your stay with local authorities. To get a registration certificate, students will need to apply at their local council within 30 days after completing three months of arriving in Portugal. This certificate costs 15€ and is valid for the entire stay of the student in the country, being issued immediately upon request.

On the other hand, if you come from outside the EU/EEA, you'll probably need a student visa. The only exception applies to citizens who are staying for less than 3 months AND come from one of the 63 visa-exempt countries, such as the US, the UK, Canada or Japan. Nonetheless, students from countries that require a Schengen visa or are planning to stay longer than 90 days (regardless of nationality) will have to apply for a student visa. To do so, you will need to get a letter of acceptance from the university you wish to enroll in and get in touch with the Portuguese Embassy in your country of residence. After scheduling your interview at the embassy, you'll fill out the application form, submit all the required documentation in person and pay the 90€ visa fee.

Keep in mind the student visa is only valid for 3 months, which is why you will also need to obtain a residence permit if you're staying longer than 90 days. After your visa expires, this permit will allow you to remain in the country legally.

Applying for a visa to Portugal: required documents

Documents required during the visa application process may vary from one country to another. In general, you will need the following:

  • Completed and signed visa application form;
  • Passport size identity photo(s);
  • A valid passport containing at least one blank page;
  • Proof of sufficient funds to support you during your stay in the country;
  • Proof of return airfare purchase or onward travel out of the country;
  • Documents justifying the purpose of your visit;
  • Visa application fees, if required.

It is recommended that you start the visa process well in advance before booking travel, as visa application processing times can vary greatly.

Useful links:

Diplomatic Portal - Short Stay Visas

Egov - Apply Schengen Visa

Types of visas

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