Spain’s Golden Visa programme grants a residency permit to international investors purchasing Spanish real estate at €500,000 and above. The process is quick and easy, and investors can obtain their new residency permit within 60 – 90 days. The Spanish Golden Visa permit is essentially a residency permit and to maintain it investors just need to spend one day per year in Spain. The Spanish investor visa can be renewed every two years and after five years it is possible to gain permanent residency. It is also possible to apply for Spanish Citizenship after ten years of residency, but to qualify for this, applicants must have resided full time in Spain for the ten years prior.

Although Spain’s programme is highly popular, it is often overlooked for neighbouring Portugal’s Golden Visa programme, which requires a fund investment from €500,000, plus fees. Applicants in Portugal have the ability to apply for citizenship after just five years of residency, without the need to reside in full time. As many investors end goal is an EU citizenship and passport, Portugal is often more favourable from this point of view.

However, if you are a citizen of any Latin American country, Brazil, Andorra, Philippines and Equatorial Guinea you have the ability to fast-track to Spanish Citizenship after just two years of full-time residency as opposed to ten years, according to Spain’s citizenship laws. This is a game changer for those whose end goal is European Citizenship. The key thing to consider here though is that to qualify you must reside in Spain for the majority of the two years, so applicants will need to be willing to relocate. If relocation is not an option, then Portugal’s Golden Visa programme may still be a quicker and more flexible way to gain EU Citizenship.

There are many factors to consider when weighing up your options. See below the comparison table for a summary of Spain versus Portugal. For a free consultation to discuss your options in more detail, please do not hesitate to get in touch with our experts.

Spain Golden Visa Vs Portugal Golden Visa Comparison

Considerations Portugal  Spain
Cost From €500,000 From €500,000
Minimum Stay for Residency 7 days p.a 1 day p.a
Time to Citizenship 5 years + 10 years +
Fast-track Citizenship for Latin Americans N/A *2 years +
Residency Requirement for Citizenship 7 days p.a, for 5 years 183 days+ p.a , for 10 or *2 years
Relocation Required for Citizenship No Yes


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