Living in Portugal is the dream of many expats. To accomplish this goal it is frequently necessary to go through the visa procedure. Do you know what's the best visa for you?

Last Updated on April 24, 2024 by

Many expats dream of living in Portugal.

Applying for a visa is part of the relocation process.

Do you know which visa is best for you?

Some expats think the Schengen Visa is ideal if you plan to reside in Portugal.

That’s not really the case.

Below you will find the answers to some recurring questions about the Schengen Visa to Portugal.

Do I need a visa to enter Portugal?

Several aspects must be taken into account to answer this question, but your nationality is the most important one.

If you do not have European nationality, or if the country where you were born does not have any treaty or agreement with Portugal (related to entry into its territory), you will probably have to apply for the Schengen Visa.

The Schengen Visa is intended for short stays (up to 90 days within a 180-day period), encompassing 26 countries in the Schengen area.

These countries are Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.

As a rule, this Visa is granted for tourism within the Schengen area. However, it may be granted for other purposes, such as family members’ visits, medical treatment, business, and seasonal work, among others.

Can I work in Portugal if I enter the country with a Schengen Visa?

It depends.

Only people with seasonal jobs (such as working in hotels during the holiday season) may be suited for this visa, and the job can last 90 days maximum.

In this case, the Schengen Visa application must also follow the job-related route.

Working in Portugal (with the Schengen Visa) in any other situation is illegal and viable for legal action.

If you enter Portugal on a Schengen Visa and intend to reside here, you may be in for a long waiting period in which you will be able to leave the country only once your Residence Permit is granted. The Expression of Interest is a procedure we don’t recommend due to its unstable and complex nature.

Can I use the Public Health System if I stay for more than 90 days in Portugal on the Schengen Visa?

Foreign citizens who are irregular in Portugal can use Public Health System. However, they must present the address certificate issued by the residence City Council.

They must pay for medical expenses (except in certain cases, such as urgent and vital health care, minor exams, and vaccination).

Can I overstay my Schengen Visa period in Portugal?

One should always stay within a Visa deadline.

You may request an extension of the Schengen Visa period to stay in Portugal, although you must request it before the 90-day deadline. You will also have to appoint the reasons to justify the period extension.

Some of the reasons may be:

  • Due to humanitarian activities.
  • Due to reasons related to force majeure (e.g. alteration of the flight date at the last minute).
  • For serious personal reasons.

Someone who overstays their Schengen visa may have to pay a fine. Their passport may be restricted within the Schengen area. This may hinder your entrance into all the Schengen area countries.

We highly recommend you take the time to enter and/or exit Portugal with the proper documentation to avoid setbacks and serious consequences.

You can always count on Viv Europe to help you.

I was granted a Schengen Visa. Am I guaranteed entry into Portugal?

There is no guaranteed entry into Portugal with a Schengen visa.

The Public Agency that will examine and grant or deny your entry into Portugal is the Foreigners and Borders Service (SEF).

SEF has the discretionary power to grant or deny entry into the country, regardless of the documents you present.

But all its decisions must be duly justified, under penalty of individual complaint (article 191 of Administrative Procedure Code) or hierarchical challenge to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (article 193 of CPA).

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