A lifestyle that seemed impractical not very long ago, the last few years have proven that working remotely from anywhere in the world is more than possible… and now, globally accepted. After the pandemic, the switch to a hybrid work model is here to stay, and with more and more nations around the world offering the golden visa option, remote work is becoming exceedingly attractive.
A McKinsey consumer survey in 2020 revealed that 41% of workers reported being more productive working remotely than in the office. In related news, Recreational Equipment Inc (REI) has announced its plan to sell its new headquarters to embrace remote work from multiple satellite campuses.
As remote work is becoming an integral part of life, more countries are introducing visa schemes to attract remote workers. Not only will these highly educated and well-paid professionals boost the country’s economy, they will also enjoy a laid-back lifestyle with plenty of benefits. Portugal, Greece, and Malta are a few countries that offer Golden Visas for remote workers. In this blog, we explain why they are among the best countries for remote work.
Generally, a destination should check certain boxes that it deems attractive to remote workers. These include good infrastructure, affordable cost of living, healthcare insurance, safety, quality internet connection, and a pleasant climate. Additional factors related to the country’s migration policies and the availability of entertainment and activities could further allure remote workers.
Portugal Golden Visa
Portugal has recently set laws protecting workers’ rights, especially those working remotely. Living and working in Portugal is supreme for multiple reasons; the relatively low cost of living compared to other countries such as the United States and other Western European countries, the country’s low crime rates, and friendly citizens are merely a few. Aside from its strategic geographic location and splendid landscapes, Portugal boasts quality infrastructure. It has the 17th fastest internet access worldwide. Portugal ranked number 18 for fixed broadband speeds, as reported by Speedtest Global Index in May 2022.
According to the EF English Proficiency Index ranking for non-native English speakers, Portugal ranks in the top ten English proficient countries in the globe. Momondo, a global travel search site, conducted a survey that compared 111 countries regarding remote working conditions, related costs, safety, and accessibility, among other factors. Portugal scored one of the highest in all categories as a go-to work and travel destination, making it a remote worker’s paradise.
Portugal’s Golden Visa scheme, the path to its permanent residency and citizenship, allows remote workers to benefit from its Non-Habitual Resident (NHR) income tax regime. Once registered as a tax resident, the program offers many advantages; one is a tax exemption for all foreign-sourced income.
Malta Golden Visa
Malta is another country with a Golden Visa that appeals to remote workers. Malta is famous for its sunny weather, outdoor activities, and Mediterranean island lifestyle. Travel+Leisure magazine mentions: “Malta has jumped on the bandwagon of increased demand for remote working globally, as the pandemic shifted goalposts and new trends are being set.”
The Island of Malta possesses a central location close to Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East. This location significantly facilitates doing business as well as travelling. With English as Malta’s official language, communication is effortless.
The Island has a nationwide 5G internet service, an infrastructure asset. Remote workers in Malta reduce their carbon footprint by spending less time commuting on the small Island. As per the Legatum Prosperity Index 2021, Malta ranks 25th since 2011 and performs best in healthcare. The Island owns a top-notch healthcare system that offers high-quality services. The low covid rates and government restrictions add to Malta’s safety score for remote work.
Greece Golden Visa
Greece, or the Hellenic Republic, presents remote workers with stunning beaches and a favourable climate. The cost of living in Greece is approximately 30% less than in numerous other European cities. For instance, compared to the United Kingdom, the rental prices in Greece are almost 150% lower.
Greece houses a good expatriate community that indulges in its rich history, indoor and outdoor activities, and world-class dining. Because of the emphasis on tourism, the majority of Greeks speak English, and the country’s infrastructure accommodates locals and visitors alike. Since Greece is well connected, remote workers have the luxury of island-hopping to Santorini, Rhodes, or Crete.
Greece’s Golden Visa is one of the cheapest in Europe. With its government introducing new tax incentives, remote workers who settle in Greece can take advantage of a 50% tax break for the first seven years.
With the projected rise of remote work in 2023, working from a Mediterranean beach is no longer an unattainable dream. As several countries open their borders to professional workers, Portugal, Malta, and Greece stand out as honourable mentions. Their quality of life combined with migration policies make them desirable options for inspiring future remote workers.
Savory & Partners is an accredited agent for multiple governments where citizenship by investment is offered. Founded in 1797, the agency has evolved from pharmaceuticals to family assets and legacy protection through second citizenship and residency. The company’s professional, multinational staff is made up of expert advisors who have guided thousands of clients, including many North African investors, on their journey to find the most suitable CBI program for them. The Savory & Partners team will be happy to answer your enquiries in English, Arabic, Farsi, French and Spanish.
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