Alex Staff Agency

Where Do Digital Nomads Go? Handpicked Popular Destinations

Career: tips and trends

Let's start by unraveling the concept of the "digital nomad visa." The first thing that needs clarifying is that it’s not a visa in a traditional sense. It’s a special program that opens up a new basis for getting a resident permit in some countries.

How does it work? It’s simple: you enter the country with or without a visa (based on the agreement between your countries) and then submit an application to get a legal digital nomad status.

Who can seize this exciting opportunity? Well, it's not limited to just programmers! Any professional engaged in digital technology work and operating remotely can embark on this journey, provided they meet the financial requirements.

Where to? Today, novice nomads have over 50 enticing options to choose from. Don’t worry, we've narrowed the list down to 5 European countries – Cyprus, Greece, Spain, Montenegro, and Croatia – for their affordability and welcoming atmosphere.

What documents are necessary? While the specific requirements may vary slightly from country to country, certain key elements remain consistent. Generally, you'll need to show proof of income, (such as bank statements showcasing financial activity), evidence of remote work (contract with a company or clients), or passive income, a rental agreement, etc.

For more detailed information on documents, you can find helpful links below.

1) Cyprus

Financial requirement: €3500 per month

To start out as a digital nomad in this sunny country, you'll need to first get there. The procedures vary depending on your citizenship; you might need to obtain a Schengen visa, a national visa, or possibly no visa whatsoever. Consult the official regulations accordingly.

Once standing on Cypriot ground, go to the Ministry of the Interior and let them know you want to get a residence permit as a digital nomad. They’ll ask for a few documents to check if you’re eligible. Read this article to know what you’ll need.

How long can you stay? Those applying for the first time can only get a permit that lasts 1 year. But the second attempt (after this year expires) will bring you 2 additional years. So, in total, the nomadic program offers 3 years in this sunny country.

Can you bring your family along? Yes, you can, just apply together. However, this will affect the financial requirement. Add 20% more to the sum mentioned above if your spouse goes with you and 15% for each kid.

How much does it cost? Prepare around €70 to pay for processing your application.

How fast is it issued? This bureaucratic adventure usually lasts for around 5 weeks. But what if you want to leave the country and come back without any complications (with your entry visa expiring soon)? Then keep the check that you get after paying the fee. It has a valuable stamp on it that serves as confirmation that you’ve applied for your residence.

2) Greece

Financial requirement: €3500 per month

Your journey will begin with the Greek consulate or embassy. Collect all the necessary documents, make an appointment, and get the visa to enter the country. After that, apply for residence at the Ministry of Migration online.

How long can you stay? Up to 2 years if it’s your first time. But don’t worry, if you get attached to the country, you can renew it as many times as you want. Unfortunately, this way won’t lead you to citizenship in the future.

Can you bring your family along? Yes, it is allowed. Just prepare documents that you earn a bit more than the basic financial requirement: 20% for your wife or husband and 15% for a kid.

How much does it cost? €75 for applying.

How fast is it issued? For about 1+ month. While you wait, you can still cross borders and return safely even if your visa expires – all thanks to a special document that you get after applying.

3) Spain

Financial requirement: €2550 per month

Find a way to come to Spain. Some can do it legally without a visa, others will need it to cross borders (a tourist one will do). The next step would be to get a residence permit at the Ministry of Inclusion, Social Security, and Migration. As for what documents you’ll be asked to show, they’re stated on the official website.

How long can you stay? So far, Spain is the most generous among the countries we’ve listed. You can get 3 years from the start and 2 extra years to extend your stay.

Guess what happens if you live in Spain for 5 years? The doors to permanent residency are open for you! Stay there for another 5 years, and citizenship is almost in your pocket.

Can you bring your family along? Certainly, but the required salary changes: add approximately €1000 for your husband or wife and €350 per child.

How much does it cost? About €80 for applying.

How fast is it issued? You’ll wait for about 1 month. The confirmation that you get after you submit everything is the document that makes your stay in Spain legal even with an expired visa. And if you want to cross borders and return without complications, go to the Police Department (Oficina de Extranjería) and ask for a return permit (known as "autorización de regreso").

By the way, you don’t have to come to Spain to apply for a digital nomad status. You can easily do it from your home country. However, it’ll only be for 1 year (with a possible extension).

4) Montenegro

Financial requirement: €1350 per month

Montenegro has visa-free agreements with many countries. If it’s your case, just come here and submit documents to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MUP).

How long can you stay? 4 years in total (2 years for those applying for the first time with subsequent extension). To stay longer, find different grounds for a residence permit. Or simply live somewhere else for 6 months and then apply again.

Can you bring your family along? Yes, Montenegro offers a reunification process. Add about €300 to the required salary for each family member.

How much does it cost? About €70 of a state fee.

How fast is it issued? 1-2 months. Once you've submitted your application, you will have a confirmation showing that your documents are being reviewed. This allows you to stay in the country beyond your tourist visa or visa-free period.

5) Croatia

Financial requirement: €2550 per month

To kickstart your nomad journey, first get approval for your online application. You’ll need it for your package of documents to obtain a visa D through an embassy or visa center (if you need it).

Once in Croatia, you have 30 days to apply for a residence permit. Read more about the requirements there.

How long can you stay? 1 year only. Then you have to leave the country. But at least you can repeat the process 6 months later.

Can you bring your family along? Yes, through reunification. Add 10% for each family member to the required salary minimum to be eligible.

How much does it cost? About €150.

How fast is it issued? A decision is usually ready within a month.

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