All Information about European Golden Visa

In this article

The European Golden Visa is a unique visa that applies to only Europe. It is a scheme that enables non-Europeans to obtain residence in the continent. It also allows them to become European citizens. However, it is only obtainable by wealthy people who are ready to make investments in Europe. In essence, it is an exchange of investment for a European belonging.
The Golden Visa and the ETIAS visa allow foreign nationals to come into the EU and Schengen states for different purposes. However, the ETIAS scheme only allows foreign visitors to tour, business, and travel through the EU states and Schengen area countries, but it cannot grant them permanent residence.
Various countries function in concordance with the Golden Visa program, and they are only the ETIAS EU countries and countries in the Schengen Region. Usually, foreigners visiting countries in the European Union and the Schengen zone must own a Schengen visa or an ETIAS visa waiver. However, those who intend to stay permanently in these countries and those who want to be citizens require more than the ETIAS and Schengen visas.
As earlier stated, the Golden visa, which qualifies European foreigners for citizenship and residency, can be obtained when they purchase properties, donate huge funds, or make significant investments. Every region has its minimum amount for investment.

Why Do You Need the Golden Visa?

The Golden Visa is an innovative program that pertains to individuals who are not citizens of the European Union and Schengen countries. There are a lot of benefits it has to offer.

Invest for EU Residency and Citizenship

The Golden Visa is set up so that once a foreigner makes an investment in a supported country and applies for it, such a person is immediately granted residency in that country. This right is not limited to that individual alone. It extends to the spouse and children. They all get to live freely in that country, obtain a quality education, and have access to public healthcare.
After a while of staying in the country, every foreigner with a Golden Visa will be eligible to make a citizenship application. Also, every country has a different time range for citizenship eligibility.

Freedom of Movement

Owning a European Golden Visa comes with the freedom of movement within the European Union countries and Schengen regions. You will be allowed to travel to any Schengen and EU regions without a visa.
However, visitors who do not reside in the Schengen regions are required to either get a visa or apply for the ETIAS visa waiver by 2022. The application will be done on the internet.

How to Get a European Golden Visa

Obtaining a European Golden Visa is simply by adding monetary value to any of the Golden Visa-supported countries. Make an investment, invest in or buy a property, donate to public and private projects, give charity to organizations, purchase government bonds. Whatever you do, ensure that it meets the minimum requirement of that country.
Some countries award citizenship to foreigners through investments, so they don't have to wait a while after being legal residents.
The Golden Visa has more requirements compared to the ETIAS visa because the latter requires only basic details, passports, and security questions from the applicants.

Countries offering Residency and Citizenship by Investment- European Golden Visa

As earlier stated, the countries that offer the European Golden Visa are Schengen countries and EU nations. You should also bear in mind that these countries have different requirements for awarding residency and citizenship.


Among other countries running the Golden Visa program, Malta is very prominent. For a foreigner to apply for residency, such a person must have a capital of more than 450,000 Euros and assets worth 150,000 Euros and more.
Other prerequisites are optional, and they include purchasing properties valued at 350,000 Euros and for 300,000 Euros in Gozo or South Malta, leasing properties for 12,000 Euros annually and 10,00 Euros annually in Gozo or South Malta, giving 28,000 Euros to the Maltese Economy if the property has been bought and 10,000 Euros for leased properties, giving 2,000 Euros to charity for NGOs, paying a non-returnable administration fee of 40,000 Euros.
In terms of citizenship, only foreigners that have obtained residencies for precisely 3 years will be eligible to apply. However, it can be done via direct investment. The conditions are buying a property for residence in the country with a minimum value of 700,000 Euros and owning it for a minimum of 5 years. Others include investing at least 600,000 Euros to fund Malta's national development. Also, they must donate 10,000 Euros to an NGO.


Ireland is not a Schengen area country, so it does not support ETIAS. The EU country grants its Golden Visa through the Immigrant Investor Programme known as IIP. It is otherwise called the Ireland Investor Visa. Foreigners can obtain residency by investing 1 million Euros or more in any closed-end fund or establishment. Alternatively, they can donate up to 500,000 Euros and above to projects that promote health, culture, sport, education, or art in the country.


ETIAS is allowed in Portugal, and it is meant for tourism, travel, and business intentions. However, it is time and rights limited. However, the Visa Program has made citizenship in Portugal an easy get. Foreigners would need to make investments. They include funding private and public research that pertains to science and technology with nothing less than 350,000 Euros, funding artworks and national heritage maintenance for 250,000 Euros and more, and buying units of venture capital funds or investment funds for at least 350,000 Euros.
They can also buy properties that are worth at least 500,000 Euros. For properties that have been built for over 30 years, they will make purchases with at least 350,000 Euros. Alternatively, they can deposit 1 million Euros into a Portugal-owned bank accounts. Apart from investments, they can provide a minimum of 10 job opportunities. These foreign nationals can apply for citizenship after 5 years of residency. After gaining a Portuguese residency, they can still own other citizenships elsewhere.


Italy is a Schengen area country, so it supports the ETIAS scheme, but not for visitors requiring a permanent stay. To be granted permanent stay, they need to meet up any of these requirements. They include making an investment of 500,000 Euros or more in any Italian limited firm, investing in an Italian-based startup with nothing less than 250,000 Euros, making a minimum of 2 million Euros in government-owned bonds, or giving 1,000,000 Euros to charity.


Although Australia is neither an EU country nor a Schengen state, it has adopted the Resident by Investment scheme for a while. It is included in this list because it has had a cordial relationship and series of agreements with the Union for years. Australian citizens are also eligible for the ETIAS visa scheme.
For Australia, the least acceptable amount for investment is 40,000 Euros. Every investor who applies for the Golden Visa must wait for up to three months for submission and authorization.
Australia also gives citizenship by investment. Every interested person will be required to invest 10 million Euros or more in a business or donate to a public development fund with 3 million Euros or more.
Alternatively, citizens from other nations that are now legal residents can wait for up to 10 years before they can become citizens.


The Golden Visa Program in Spain is widely used by many foreigners, especially investors, because of its high rate of development. Spain supports the ETIAS visa waiver program and requires a valid passport, bank card for payment, and a valid email address from every applicant.
To acquire a Golden Visa, foreigners can purchase real estate properties worth 500,000 Euros or more.
Alternatively, they can start up business projects and buy shares in different companies. Also, they can deposit 1 million Euros or more in any bank in Spain or buy government bonds for 2 million Euros and above.
After signing for a residence permit, every person has to wait for up to 21 days before authorization. After the authorization, the permit will be helpful for only two years. When it expires, it can be reiterated for another five years. The residency permit encompasses every applicant and member of their family.
As for citizenship, residency permit holders would have to wait for up to 10 years before applying. However, some exceptions are given to nationals from some countries. These nationals can request to be citizens after being legal residents for 2 years. The counties include the Philippines and Equatorial Guinea. Sephardi Jews and Latin American Citizens are also eligible.


It was known in time past for its Golden Visa project that enables citizens and immigrants from other nations to be granted permits to be legal residents and eventually citizenship rights. The only requirement was an investment. But since the beginning of November in 2020, it stopped handing out Golden Visas. However, its ETIAS visa program is still running.

Eligible Non-Eu and Non-Schengen Nations

Some countries are neither part of the EU nor are they found in the Schengen territory, but they offer Golden Visas to non-citizens. The prerequisite is also by investment. They can do this because they have agreements on visa exemption with the European Union. These countries are Grenada, St Lucia, Montenegro, Antigua and Barbuda, and Vanuatu. Nationals from these places are allowed to transit to any location in the EU for free with a stay period of 90 days.

Golden Visa- EU Citizen by Investment

The Golden Visa Project is one targeted at wealthy individuals. Europe has a very good level of development, which by implication means that it would cost a lot to earn its citizenship. However, recently, there have been reports in the EU about Golden Visa Projects. Some claims were laid that there have been discrepancies in the issuance of residency authorizations to non-Europeans. Some other reports have been laid that some European countries have received citizenships the wrong way.
Also, there are fears about the level of security for the Project. Since it is quite easy for wealthy foreigners to get a permanent license in these territories and they can access other related countries without a visa. This implies that they were deemed fit for free travels by only the nation where they obtained the Golden Visa, which is not considered enough for their legitimacy.
Written by: Fikayomi Abisola
Abisola is an ETIAS Travel and Immigration writer with several years of writing experience in the industry. Abisola has a unique enthusiasm for travels, tours, and tourism and loves to educate travellers about the criteria involved in international travelling.

Related Articles

France Digital Nomad Visa
Poland Digital Nomad Visa
Austria Digital Nomad Visa
Low Tax Countries in Europe
Is the Czech Republic Safe?
Is Iceland Safe?
Serbia Digital Nomad Visa
Montenegro Digital Nomad Visa
Latvia Digital Nomad Visa
Finland Digital Nomad Visa
Romania Digital Nomad Visa
EU Postpones Introduction of ETIAS Travel System to 2024
How Much Does a Trip to Spain Cost?
Cyprus Digital Nomad Visa
Everything You Need to Know About ETIAS Denial
Countries Felons Can Visit
Hungary Digital Nomad Visa
Winter in Spain
Italy Digital Nomad Visa
Is It Safe to Travel to Sweden?
Is It Safe to Travel to Italy?
Venice in Winter
Norway vs Sweden
Moving to Spain From the USA
Is Spain Safe?
Italy Solo Travel
New Year in Europe
Best European Cities to Visit in December
Winter in Germany
Hidden Gems of Italy
Best Christmas Markets in Europe
Italian Winter
Paris Traveling Tips
Living in Spain as an Expat
Winter in France
Best Time to Visit Greece
Best Time to Visit Norway
Is It Safe to Travel to Germany?
Is Croatia Safe?
Croatia Digital Nomad Visa: A Definitive Guide
Is It Safe to Travel to Poland?
Norway Digital Nomad Visa
Greece Digital Nomad Visa
Is It Safe to Travel to Norway?
Portugal Digital Nomad Visa
Estonia Digital Nomad Visa
The Roadmap to Spain Digital Nomad Visa
Your In-Depth Guide to Germany Digital Nomad Visa
Best European Countries for Expats
Tips You Need to Know When Traveling Europe
15 Greek Islands Americans Love to Visit
US Citizen Migrate to Germany
The Best Places to Visit in Germany When Travelling from USA
A Few Things to Know Before Traveling from America to Greece
Can Americans live safely in Germany?
Germany or The United States - Which Is Cheaper to Live In?
Places for Americans to Visit when Travelling to Greece
What is the Best Startup Visa Scheme in Europe?
The Key Information You Need to Know About the European Union Visa Policy Changes
How Does EES Differ from ETIAS - Everything You Should Know
How Long Can British Citizens Stay in Europe?
How Long Can You Stay in Europe Without a Visa?
Digital Nomad Visas in EU Countries
Which Countries Has the UK Agreed Trade Deals With?
Schengen Visa: Requirements & Application
All Information about European Golden Visa
Europe Travel: Why/When Will You Need ETIAS?
EU Blue Card: What is it, and what is it for?
Requirements for UK citizens when travelling to Europe
Where Can Americans Travel in Europe?
Differences between EU, EEA, EFTA, and Schengen countries
European Health Insurance Card
Who needs a Schengen Visa?