About Portugal

Portugal is a fascinating country with a rich history, beautiful landscapes, and friendly people. It is a member of the European Union and NATO and has a diverse economy, with agriculture, fishing, manufacturing, and tourism sectors.

If you're considering moving to Portugal, you should know a few things. This country offers a lot, from vibrant cities to stunning coastal towns. In addition, the cost of living in Portugal is relatively affordable, and the healthcare system is excellent. It's no wonder that more and more people are choosing to relocate there.

Of course, a few things to consider before moving, such as the Portuguese language and the weather. But overall, relocating to Portugal is an excellent choice for many people.

About Portugal

Key Facts


10.14 million (2022 estimate)






Portugal observes daylight saving time and has two time zones:

  • UTC+00:00 (Continental Portugal and Madeira)
  • UTC-01:00 (Azores)


Euro (EUR)






Christianity (84.3%) Roman Catholic (81.0%) Other Christians (3.3%) No religion (6.8%) Other religion (0.6%) Undeclared (8.3%)

Geographical Location

Geographical Location

Portugal is a sovereign country located on the Iberian Peninsula in south-western Europe. The country has an area of 92,090 square kilometres. Portugal is the westernmost country in Europe and is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the west and south and by Spain to the north and east. It has over 10 million people and a stable, democratic government. Portugal is a signatory of the Schengen Agreement, which allows for the free movement of people between member states.

Portugal has a land area of 92,090 square kilometres and a coastline of 1,798 kilometres. The country is divided into 18 administrative districts, which are further divided into 308 municipalities. The capital city of Lisbon is located in the district of Lisboa, in the western part of the country. Other major cities include Porto, Braga, and Coimbra.

Top Cities


Lisbon is Portugal's capital and the largest city, with over half a million population. The city is on the Atlantic coast of the Iberian Peninsula, known for its mild climate, hilly terrain, and historic buildings. Lisbon has a long history dating back to the Roman Empire, and it was an important trading port during the Age of Sail. It is also a centre of business and finance, with many banks and businesses headquartered in the city. Today, the city is a major tourist destination, with its mild climate, Mediterranean atmosphere, and stunning architecture.


Porto is a Portuguese port city on the Douro River in the country's north. It is the second largest city in Portugal after Lisbon and one of the major urban areas of the Iberian Peninsula. As of 2022, the city has a population of 237,559 people.

The history of Porto started when it was fortified by the Romans in the 4th century BC. In the 1st century AD, the city became an important trading post for the Portuguese Empire. Throughout the centuries, Porto has been a major centre of commerce and culture, playing a significant role in the history of Portugal.

Today, Porto is a thriving metropolis and a popular tourist destination. It is known for its beautiful architecture, delicious food, and world-famous port wine. If you are looking for a unique wine to enjoy, be sure to give Porto a try.


Braga is a city in Portugal and is the capital of the district of Braga, in the region of Minho. It is situated on the banks of the River Minho in the northwestern part of the country. The city has a population of 173,946 (as of 2022), making it the ninth largest city in Portugal. It is also the oldest city in Portugal, founded in the Roman era.

Braga is a major centre of culture and heritage in Portugal. It is home to the oldest Portuguese university (The University of Braga) and the Portuguese Army headquarters. The city is known for its historical and architectural landmarks, including the Bom Jesus do Monte Sanctuary, the Cathedral of Braga, and the Paço dos Duques de Braga. Braga also hosts several events and festivals throughout the year, making it a popular tourist destination.


The city of Coimbra is located about 100 kilometres north of Lisbon. Coimbra is also a convenient location for exploring Portugal, as it is situated between Lisbon and Porto.

The city is home to a world-renowned university, the University of Coimbra. Founded in 1290, the University of Coimbra is one of the oldest universities in Europe and has produced many famous alums, including several Portuguese Prime Ministers. Coimbra is rich in history and culture, and its residents are known for their warm hospitality.

The city has been transforming recently, with new restaurants and shops Popping up all over. Coimbra is also known for its fado music. Fado is a Portuguese style of music that is typically sad and melancholy. It is often said to represent the soul of Portugal. Coimbra is a great place to live, having a mix of history and modernity. Some of the famous landmarks are:

  • University of Coimbra
  • Se Velha De Coimbra
  • New Cathedral of Coimbra
  • Igreja Santiago
  • Igreja De Santo Antonio Dos Olivais

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Portugal is a large country with a diverse landscape. From the Atlantic Ocean to the mountains of the north, there is a wide range of terrain to explore. The Portuguese transportation system includes an extensive network of buses, trains, and metros that cover the entire country. In addition, many private transportation companies offer services to tourists and business travellers. And with various transportation options, you can quickly get around and see all Portugal offers.

Getting a Portugal Driving License

If you're moving to Portugal, one of the first things you'll need to do is get a Portuguese driving license. You may be able to use your existing driver's license for a short period, but eventually, you will need to obtain a Portuguese driver's license. Getting a Portugal driving license is a relatively straightforward process, but there are a few things you need to know before you get started.

Portugal driving license for EU Citizens

If you have a valid EU driving license, you can exchange it for a Portuguese one without taking a driving test. The process is pretty simple and can be done by visiting the IMT office and providing the following documents:

  • IMT Modelo 13 application form
  • proof of Portuguese residency
  • Valid ID card or passport
  • A photocopy of your current driving license along with the original one

You may also need to provide a criminal record check

Portugal driving license for non-EU Citizens

If you have a driver's license from a non-EU country, you must take a written and practical driving test to obtain a Portuguese license. The written test comprises 35 multiple-choice questions and must be taken in Portuguese. The practical test is a driving test that must be taken in a manual transmission vehicle. You will be issued a Portuguese driving license if you pass the practical test. The whole process usually takes about two months.

Basic Portugal Driving Rules

18 years


Minimum 18, Maximum 80





Urban areas (50km/h)
Motorways (90km/h and 120km/h)

Public Transport
Public Transport

In Portugal, taxis are most commonly used, especially in larger cities such as Lisbon and Porto. They are a reliable and reasonably priced way to get around, and most taxi drivers speak at least some English.

Taxis can be hailed on the street or found at designated taxi stands. You can also call a taxi company to request a pick-up. Portugal has various taxi companies, and Cooptáxis is the biggest of them. You can also book your ride online through taxi apps like Free Now, Bolt, and Uber.

Portugal is a large country with a lot to see, so having a car can help you get around. There are a few things to remember when renting a car in Portugal. First, Portugal has a lot of toll roads, so it\'s essential to factor that into the cost of your rental. Second, Portugal has strict laws about drinking and driving, so be sure to plan accordingly. And finally, Portugal\'s roads can be narrow and winding, so choosing a car that\'s comfortable for you to drive is crucial.

With all that in mind, here are a few of the best rental car companies in Portugal:

  • Discover Cars
  • Kayak
  • Europ Car
  • Auto Europe

The water taxi is a great way to see the country of Portugal. Water taxis are a common sight in Portugal and are a great way to see the country from a different perspective. You can hop on a water taxi in most major cities and towns; they\'re a great way to get from place to place if you\'re short on time.

In Portugal, air transport is an integral part of the country\'s economy and plays a vital role in connecting Portugal to the rest of the world. Portugal\'s airports handle over 100 million passengers each year, and the country\'s airlines provide service to destinations all over the globe.

Portugal\'s national airline is TAP Portugal, which is headquartered in Lisbon. TAP Portugal flies to over 90 destinations in 40 countries, and the airline has a fleet of over 60 aircraft. In addition to TAP Portugal, many other airlines operate in Portugal, including Ryanair, EasyJet, and Jet2.

Since 2010, the Portuguese government has invested over €1 billion in upgrading and expanding the country\'s airports. This has led to an increase in the number of airlines operating in Portugal and a significant increase in the number of destinations that can be reached from Portuguese airports.

Personal Finances In Portugal

Opening a Bank Account

In Portugal, personal finances are regulated by the Central Bank of Portugal. This body is responsible for ensuring the financial system's stability and supervising financial institutions. There are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to personal finances in Portugal:

  • Make sure you open a Portuguese bank account: You will need a Portuguese bank account to receive your salary and pay your bills. Without a bank account, you will have to use cash for everything, which can be challenging to manage.
  • Know the tax laws: Portugal has different tax laws than other countries, so it's essential to be aware of how much you will owe in taxes. This will help you budget accordingly.
  • Use a budget: Managing your finances is much easier when you have a budget. Be sure to track your income.
Opening a Bank Account

There are two ways to open a bank account in Portugal: through a brick-and-mortar bank or online. But, if you are not a resident of Portugal, most banks will not allow you to open a bank account online. The process is generally the same, whether you open an account in person or online. However, there are a few key differences that you should be aware of before you decide which option is right for you. For instance, when you open an account in person, you will need to visit a branch of the bank you want to open an account with. This can be convenient if you live near a bank branch or want to speak to someone in person about your account.

Opening an account online, on the other hand, can be more convenient if you live far from a bank branch or if you are short on time.

To open a bank account in Portugal, you will need to provide the following documents:

  • Valid ID (passport, EU national ID card, or Portuguese Residence Permit)
  • Proof of address (utility bill)
  • Proof of income (pay slip or Employment Letter)

These are the general requirements for opening a bank account in Portugal. However, banks may have additional requirements, so it's best to check with your chosen bank in advance. There are several reputable banks in Portugal:

  • Caixa Geral de Depósitos
  • Banco Santander Totta S.A
  • Banco Comercial Portugues
  • Banco Internacional do Funchal
  • Novo Banco

Setting Up Accommodation

If you're planning to move to Portugal, you'll need to find somewhere to live. First, you'll need to decide what type of accommodation you want. Do you want to rent an apartment, buy a house, or live in a hostel or guesthouse? Each option has pros and cons, so think carefully about what would work best for you.

Once you've decided on the type of accommodation you want, you'll need to start looking for a place to stay. The best way to find accommodation in Portugal is to use a reputable rental website (Idealista. pt or Portugalist.com) or a real estate agent. You can also ask friends or family if they know of any good places to stay.

Temporary Residence

If you are a foreigner intending to stay in Portugal for three months, you must apply for a temporary residence permit. The permit is granted for a specific purpose, such as employment, study or family reunification. It is valid for the duration of the designated activity, up to a maximum of five years.

After arriving in Portugal, you have three months to apply for a residence permit at the local office of the Immigration and Borders Service (SEF). You must submit various documents, including a passport, proof of accommodation and a criminal record check from your home country.

If your application is successful, you will be issued a Residence Card, which allows you to live and work in Portugal for the duration of your permit.

If you plan to stay in Portugal for less than 90 days, you must apply for a Schengen Visa. This visa allows you to travel freely throughout the Schengen area, including Portugal. The Schengen visa is valid for 90 days and you can apply at Portuguese consulates in your home country.

Permanent Residence / Citizenship by Investment

There are several ways to obtain permanent residence or citizenship in Portugal, including through investment. Portugal offers citizenship through investment programs allowing foreigners to obtain Portuguese citizenship in exchange for investing in the country.

Portugal's Golden Visa program is one of the country's most popular citizenship by investment programs. The program allows foreigners to obtain a Portuguese Residency permit by investing a minimum of €280,000 in Portuguese real estate. After five years of holding a residency permit, investors are eligible to apply for Portuguese citizenship.

Other ways of obtaining Portuguese citizenship include marrying a Portuguese citizen, having Portuguese ancestors, or working in Portugal for many years. Portuguese citizenship confers several benefits, including the right to live and work in any country in the European Union.

Health Service

Portugal offers a high-quality and affordable health service to all residents. The Portuguese health system is based on the principle of universality. Every person has the same level of care, regardless of income or social status.

There are many different health care providers in Portugal, including public hospitals, private hospitals, and primary care clinics. The public health system in Portugal is free at the point of service, and residents can choose to receive care from any provider they wish.

Portugal also has several specialist hospitals that provide care for specific conditions, such as cancer or heart disease. These hospitals usually have a team of specialists who work together to provide the best possible care for patients.

If you need any healthcare while you are in Portugal, you will be able to find a provider.


In Portugal, education is free and compulsory for all children between 6 and 18. Primary, Secondary and Tertiary are the three main divisions of the Portuguese educational system. Primary education lasts four years, secondary education lasts six years, and tertiary education includes undergraduate and graduate programs.

Portugal has a wide range of public and private educational institutions that offer high-quality education. Portuguese universities rank among the best in the world.

The educational system is highly centralized, and the Ministry of Education is responsible for setting educational policies. The government provides free education at all levels and also funds scholarships for students from low-income families. In addition, the government offers financial assistance for students with special needs.


Portugal is a beautiful country with a lot to offer newcomers. It's no wonder that so many people are interested in moving there. If you're thinking of moving to Portugal, be sure to do your research and prepare for the different culture and lots of beautiful cities. We hope this guide has helped you understand what to expect when moving to Portugal.

Apply for Portugal Citizenship

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Frequently Asked Questions

No, there is no direct citizenship by investment programme, however providing you purchase a property of more than EUR 280,000 you will be granted residency. Once residency is granted, providing you maintain your investment and fulfil your residency requirements, you will become eligible to apply for citizenship after a period of 5 years.

7 days in the first year, and 14 days between the next 2 years

Applicants must invest € 280,000 into government approved real estate for a minimum holding period, after which there are exit options available providing the possibility to realise capital gain on the investment.

Portugal enjoys year-round sunny, warm climates and some of the most stunning coastlines and beaches in Europe. Residents can also enjoy attractive tax incentives and visa-free travel throughout the Schengen Area. Plus, the chance to gain Portuguese citizenship within a 5 year period.

Portugal's Golden Visa is Valid for an initial period of 1 year, once renewed after year 1, it is then valid for 2 years moving forward.

Non - EU citizens who are above the age of 18 years old, have a clear source of funds and have no criminal record.

No. However, if the property is rented out, he will pay tax on income generated from the property, if the property is sold, there will be capital gains tax.

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