How to Apply for a Portugal D2 Visa

Discover the benefits of the Portugal D2 Visa for entrepreneurs. Live and work in Portugal for up to 2 years, with the potential for permanent residency.
March 22, 2023
Ana Fankhauser
March 22, 2023

The D2 visa is mainly meant for non-EU/EEA/Swiss entrepreneurs who want to invest in Portugal. It’s for people who want to start a business, move their existing business, or invest in an existing business in Portugal. Unlike the Golden Visa, you don’t need to invest heavily in Portugal to get a D2 visa. You can get this visa even if you plan to open a small business like a coffee shop.

The D2 visa offers fantastic benefits, which is why many people apply for it. Some of these benefits include the freedom to bring your family to Portugal and the ability to apply for permanent residency and even citizenship.

Eligibility Requirements

The Portugal D2 visa has several requirements you must meet. You need to prove that you are starting a business in Portugal or investing in an existing one. This also means you must prove you have enough money to set up and run a business in Portugal. Luckily, the Portuguese government does not have a fixed capital requirement for this.

The Portuguese government also requires that you have enough money to cover a year’s expenses. So, your savings should be at least equal to the minimum annual salary in Portugal. This amount is currently €10,640, but confirm the exact figure before applying. Also, note that the financial requirement might be higher if you are moving to Portugal with someone else. 

You must have a solid business plan when applying for a D2 visa. The Portuguese government checks whether your business will add significant cultural, social, and economic value. So, think of a unique business that can offer great benefits. Also, ensure your business plan doesn’t have any gaps to help make it stronger.

Another crucial requirement is explaining why you chose to invest in Portugal. Go for creative answers like noticing a market gap and seeing it as an excellent opportunity. You could also add that investing in that market gap could create job opportunities. Additionally, you could mention that Portugal seems like the perfect place to set up a business due to its low cost of living and friendly taxes. 

Here are other requirements to be aware of when applying for a Portugal D2 visa:

Visa has no specific amount. 

Required Documents

The Portuguese government needs you to show them some documents to help them decide whether or not to give you a visa. These documents include the following:

  • A visa application form
  • A business plan
  • A passport that remains valid for about three months after your visa expires. 
  • A travel insurance cover that includes medical coverage and repatriation.
  • Two recent high-quality passport photos.
  • A criminal record certificate that’s less than three months old. You will also require one for any dependent adult. 
  • Proof of means of subsistence to show you have at least the minimum salary in Portugal. You can prove this by providing bank statements for about six months. You may also provide a statement of responsibility. This should be signed by a Portuguese citizen or a foreigner who is a legal Portugal resident. 

Compare Prices from Law firms

Partners we recommend could result in us getting compensated. For more details, see our advertiser disclosure.

Company Service Price
MovingTo D2 Visa 2,500 EUR Apply
Almeida, Dias and Associados D2 Visa 2,500 EUR Apply
Lexidy D2 Visa 3,150 EUR Apply
Prismaat D2 Visa 4,000 EUR Apply
RHJ D2 Visa 3,500 EUR Apply

Application Process

Now that you know the crucial documents needed, follow these steps to apply for a Portugal D2 visa:

  1. Prepare a business plan and the required documents.
  2. Once done, contact the Portuguese Embassy or Consulate in your resident country and apply for the D2 visa.
  3. The embassy will call you for an interview if the application is approved. If all goes well, you’ll get your visa. Note that the application process might take up to 60 days. And the visa is usually valid for about four months. This period allows you to prepare, move to Portugal, and apply for residency.
  4. Once you get your visa and move to Portugal, you must apply for a residency permit with the SEF. Book your appointment immediately after you get to Portugal because the application process could take four months or even longer, meaning your visa might expire during the process. However, don’t panic; you can continue staying in Portugal, provided you have proof of your SEF appointment. You can book a SEF appointment online, via call, or by visiting their offices.
  5. When you finally get an appointment with the SEF, carry all your documents for a residency permit application. Remember that you must stay in Portugal for at least six months every year to retain the residency. You will get your residency permit within three months.

Although these steps sound easy, they are really not. Applying for a Portugal D2 visa can be draining and doesn’t guarantee success. Luckily, hiring a professional lawyer takes the burden off your back and greatly increases your chances of getting a D2 visa. The notoriously archaic bureaucracy in Portugal can be very intimidating, especially if you don't speak the language.

A lawyer ensures your application meets the latest requirements for getting a D2 visa. Then they will represent you during the visa interview and throughout the entire process. Also, your legal documents must be in Portuguese, so your lawyer can help translate them. Plus, they follow up on your application and fast-track it to ensure quick approval. 

Here are reputable law firms that have a history of assisting clients in getting visas quickly. Even after you enter Portugal, they take care of all your legal matters. So they put in all the effort until you receive your visa and can relocate to Portugal.

Interview and endorsement

Make sure you arrive on time once the Portugal embassy or consulate has confirmed the date of your appointment. The reason for this is that the interview process may take longer than anticipated. Keep in mind to bring the necessary paperwork.

The interviewer will mostly ask simple questions to establish whether you’re a good candidate for the Portugal D2 visa. Most questions will be about you, why you chose Portugal, and what you want to do there. However, the questions can vary depending on where you get the interview. 

Research Portugal and the specific place you want to move to. This helps you give more informed answers and shows you understand the market you want to invest in.

Be ready for any question, even about involvement in crimes. Ensure to answer them confidently, as they are not personal attacks but normal interview questions to help them know more about you before granting you the visa. So, insist on your good reputation.

You must also pay the visa application fee. Note that this fee does not guarantee approval of your visa application. After the interview, you have to wait for the results, which can take up to 60 days. 

Extending and Renewing the Visa

As aforementioned, the Portugal D2 visa expires after four months. If you want to renew the visa or extend this period, then you must do so before the visa expires. You can extend the visa for up to 90 days. Here are some of the documents required to apply for a visa renewal with the SEF:

  • Two updated photos.
  • Passport
  • Proof of sufficient subsistence
  • Proof of accommodation
  • Evidence of your residence permit application

The extension and renewal processes are pretty similar for most Portuguese visas. The difference is mostly in the required documents and some application processes. 

Pros and Cons of the Portugal D2 Visa

Pros of Portugal D2 Visa

  • The D2 visa offers a visa exemption. You can freely travel around the Schengen area using your D2 visa. 
  • The Portugal D2 visa allows you to go to Portugal with your family (partner and children). 
  • Your business partners can join you on the D2 visa allowing them to bring their families too.
  • The D2 visa opens the door for you to apply for permanent residency in Portugal. 
  • Besides residency, the D2 visa also allows you to apply for Portugal citizenship. 


Cons of Portugal D2 Visa

  • The D2 visa involves lots of processes and can be time-consuming.
  • Unlike the D7 visa, you must start a business in Portugal to get this visa. 


Who Can Get a Portugal D2 Visa?

Anyone can get a Portugal D2 visa provided they are planning to start a business in Portugal and have a business idea and finances to prove it. 

Is the D2 Visa Extensible to Your Family?

Yes. However, note that you must prove your financial ability to provide for them during their stay in Portugal. 

Is it Necessary for You to Know Portuguese When Applying for a Portugal D2 Visa?

You don’t need to know Portuguese to apply for and get a Portugal D2 visa. However, learning Portuguese is a good idea since you’ll be doing business with Portuguese people and companies. Also, you must pass the A2 Portuguese language test to apply for citizenship later. 

Does a D2 visa lead to citizenship?

Yes. The Portuguese government allows you to apply for citizenship after being in Portugal for at least five years. 


Getting a D2 visa is among the best ways to move to Portugal and enjoy everything it offers, from low taxes to great security. Like other visas, the D2 visa also has some requirements and steps to take to get it. This article has discussed everything you need to know about the Portugal D2 visa, including the exact application steps. Therefore, we hope these details will make your visa application smoother and help you start a new life in Portugal. However, remember to have a bulletproof business plan and enough finances to increase your approval rate. 

You could also contact a visa specialist if you need more help with your application. A professional can help you understand all the requirements and prices and advise on the best ways to meet them. Lexidy and Prismaat are among the best visa experts who can help you apply for a D2 visa, get a residence permit, and even set up your new business in Portugal. Their lawyers speak for you during interviews in case the interviewer speaks Portuguese. Additionally, they translate your legal documents into Portuguese. So, they hold your hand every step of the way until you get your visa. Prismaat also includes the NHR status and the NIF in all their prices.

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Ana Fankhauser

Ana has worked in many startups and moved to a few countries, which led her to create MovingTo. She believes that remote work is a growing trend that is here to stay and that digital nomads will move to countries that have more to offer than the ones you were born into. She mostly writes opinion pieces for MovingTo.

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