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14 European Countries Offering Digital Nomad Visas for Freelancers (+ How to Apply)

If you’re a new remote worker or a seasoned digital nomad and are wondering how to apply for the visas for freelancers available around Europe then read on.

Countries all around the world are quickly becoming aware of how lucrative it can be to invite digital nomads in with a visa for freelancers and provide them with some stability beyond the average tourist visa.

And, with a workforce who find themselves newly working online, people are understandably starting to weigh up their options outside their homes.

Visas for freelancers

It’s our prediction that digital nomad visas (or visas for freelancers) will become much more commonplace in the near future, especially as the travel industry rebuilds. Remote workers will likely be among the first people to move around once travel resumes.

News like Greece’s recent income tax reductions for digital nomads and freelancers and exciting new digital nomad visas in Croatia, Malta, and Romania only emphasises this trend.

Digital nomads and remote workers with the freedom to move, as well as new remote workers post-pandemic, will be looking for places to settle for a time that provides them with benefits.

One of the major benefits is that you can legally work within that country and typically apply for a local bank account and healthcare, which certainly addresses many of the daily problems that those living a remote lifestyle face.

Many of these visas for freelancers aren’t complicated to apply for, with most of the work being done online—though most do involve a trip to the local embassy for that country with paperwork and documents in hand.

You need to be aware of your tax situation, as you will usually be liable to pay tax in the country you are applying for a visa in. Be aware that most countries where you spend 180 days or more could require you to pay tax.

Read More: How to Move to Europe as an American: A Practical Guide

Europe’s Digital Nomad Visas for Remote Workers

While we anticipate this list being updated frequently, here are the countries in Europe that currently offer a visa for freelancers and artists, (or are planning to in the near future), and how to apply for one.

Of course, there are always requirements, and some are much more convenient than others. Below, find out everything you need to apply for a visa for freelancers.

1) Germany Freelance Visa

berlin freelance visa

Berlin has long been a haven for artists, freelancers, and those looking to start a new business. Germany is a wonderful place to work remotely, and they are very welcoming to freelancers, providing you meet the requirements and follow the steps properly.

It’s an attractive option for many as it allows you to legally bypass the strict Schengen visa requirements.

Note: You do legally become a tax resident of Germany with this visa for freelancers. You will register with your local tax registration office and be issued a Tax ID.

Berlin is an exciting and vibrant place to live. It offers a wealth of opportunities and is one of the world’s creative, tech, and financial hubs. Whether you like a great bar or dining scene, museums, exciting day trips, or thriving arts and culture, you’ll find it all here.

The seasons are typical for northern Europe, with cold winters and pleasant summers, and the cost of living is still currently at an affordable rate, thanks to the rent caps in Berlin.

Their permit program (known as the “freiberufler” visa, which means ‘liberal profession’) is specifically targeted at freelancers and remote workers. It grants you leave in Germany for three months. You can then apply for a residency permit, which extends to three years. From there, you can look into getting a settlement permit. 

solis portable wifi

This is one of the only visas for freelancers that has long-term residency in mind. Many visas for freelancers and remote workers don’t offer such long extensions, let alone residency options, but bear in mind each of these stages has its own costs and steps involved. 

The initial process can take up to three months, so make sure you start your application ahead of time. If you are from Australia, Canada, the EU, New Zealand, the United States, Israel, South Korea, or Japan, you can apply for visa for freelancers after you arrive in Germany.

germany freelancer

Other countries will require you to go to your local German embassy with the documentation listed below.

If you are applying from within Berlin you will need to follow these immediate steps:

You must officially register at an address, a process known as Anmeldung. This will involve finding and registering yourself in short-term accommodation and receiving an Anmeldung certificate.

You ideally need one or two clients based in Germany, which would be good to prepare ahead of time. This list of companies and startups in Berlin can point you in the right direction.

You will then need to make a Freelance Visa Appointment at the Immigration Office In Berlin, taking the following things with you:

  • Proof of income (you’ll need to demonstrate you can support yourself while in Berlin)
  • Two passport photos
  • Health Insurance
  • CV (ideally with a German language copy)
  • Valid passport with time to spare
  • Visa fee (currently sixty euros)
  • Certificates of Education and copies of these certificates
  • Freelance Plan (your projected earnings and losses). While there isn’t a set amount for this freelance visa, you are expected to earn at least eighteen thousand euros a year.
  • Letters of intent of those who intend to work with you once your visa has been processed (two to three would be ideal. They should also be German clients if possible). The letters should also be written or translated into German.

Helpful documents include letters of recommendation, portfolio/ samples of your work, cover letter, personal monthly budget, and bank statements demonstrating any savings and ingoings/outgoings.

Tip: More information on the full list of requirements, the paperwork needed, and the steps you must take once you’re in Berlin can be found on NomadenBerlin. They can also personally help with any of the steps.

Read More:

2) Croatia Freelance Visa

croatia digital nomad visa

This visa for freelancers has recently become available and is a hugely exciting prospect for digital nomads as Croatia becomes the next destination in a line of countries welcoming remote workers.

Currently, non-EU members can stay 90 days in Croatia, but this visa allows freelancers to stay for up to a year. Croatia recently held a ‘Dubrovnik for Digital Nomads’ conference, which really demonstrated how open they are to making this a positive change for everyone.

If you’d like to stay beyond the year, you will have to leave for six months and try applying again. It doesn’t put you on track for any kind of residency at this time.

There are huge advantages to being based in Croatia. Multiple fantastic cities with cafes and coworking spaces are already open, and many are in development. Typically, people choose Dubrovnik or Zagreb as their base, but that’s the tip of the iceberg.

Croatia’s weather is generally better year-round than most of the other countries on this list, and the cost of living is one of the most affordable. Croatia offers one of the best lifestyles in Europe, so we anticipate it being the next hot spot for digital nomads.

They have also just launched a digital nomad village scheme which looks very exciting.

Read More: 10 Budgeting Tips for Freelancers and Digital Nomads

Croatia Digital Nomad Visa Requirements:

You will need to apply at your nearest Croatian embassy or consulate or at the local police station if you’re already in Croatia.

You will need:

  • A completed application, which the police/embassy/consulate will provide, or you can find here
  • Proof you are a digital nomad (contracts are helpful here) and that you have sufficient funds to support yourself – a bank statement or proof of regular income to your account in which you must have available a minimum of HRK 28,800 for a period of 12 months ( approx. £3335.26 or $4619.53)
  • A valid passport and two passport photos
  • Government-issued background check from your home country
  • A valid private/travel health insurance policy that covers the entire term of your permit (we recommend Saftey Wing)
  • A valid rental contract and address in Croatia
  • Application Fees (more info on fees available here).

Read More: A Digital Nomad Guide to Zagreb

3) Georgia Freelance Visa

georiga remote working visa

This is a relatively new visa for freelancers and digital nomads. Georgia was a very welcome addition to the list, as it has been slowly gaining popularity among travellers and freelancers over the past year. 

Georgia offers a perfect location, at the midpoint between Europe and Asia, for those looking to explore off-the-beaten-track. It boasts incredible natural scenery for blowing off some steam, great food, and a low cost of living. The internet is fast and cheap.

Tbilisi is a fantastic international hub for traveling with direct flights going across Europe and Asia. The seasons are very distinct here with no extreme temperatures; winters are cold with a low of 0 degrees Celsius, and summers are warm with highs of 30 degrees Celsius.

Georgia has always been particularly generous, offering stays of up to one year for residents of ninety-eight countries. Now, their ‘Remotely From Georgia’ visa (applicable to ninety-five countries, including the UK, USA, and Canada) allows you to legally work your online business for up to a year with the possibility of extending after.

This program is currently free of charge, provided you meet the requirements below.

Note: You will be eligible to pay income tax in Georgia after spending 183 days there, which is as low as 1% if you earn under $155,000.

Remote in Georgia Requirements:

  • Minimum Monthly Income of $2000 USD – You can demonstrate this with your bank statements, contracts, and pay stubs.
  • Passport with over a year validity.
  • Annual Health Insurance. You’ll need to show you have health insurance coverage for at least six months (minimum stay) to a year.

Current Situation: You can still apply for the Remote Visa and go to Georgia despite current travel restrictions on tourists. You will have to quarantine for twelve days in a government-approved hotel. Georgia has consistently been one of the safest countries in the world throughout the global pandemic.

How to apply: You can apply online on the Remotely From Georgia website. Currently, over a thousand people have already applied for the visa.

Read More:

4) Estonia Remote Work Visa

Tallinn, estonia digital nomad

The Estonia E-visa was one of the first we heard about, and many Brits were investigating this option post-Brexit vote as a potential way to escape and hold onto European citizenship.

Unfortunately, this dream quickly evaporated because this visa doesn’t lead to citizenship or provide unrestricted travel to other EU nations; it only allows you to set up a business within Estonia.

In August 2020, they launched a visa for freelancers specifically for digital nomads, which offers many more options for people who want to enjoy Estonia as their base.

With this visa for freelancers, you are allowed to stay temporarily in Estonia, which the previous e-visa didn’t allow. It’s applicable for short—and long-term stays, with the minimum being 90 days and the long-term application granting you a year.

Firstly, Estonia is a wonderful country. It’s safe and relatively affordable, and Tallin has a surprising number of independent cafes to enjoy. The Wi-Fi is also one of the best in the world, and you have the option of taking the ferry to Helsinki or the train or bus to neighbouring Latvia for more variety. 

With the Estonia e-visa, you’ll be able to live and legally work in the country for up to a year.

Estonia Digital Nomad Visa Requirements:

  • Currently, depending on how long you plan on staying, the application costs between 80€ for a Type C (short stay) visa and 100€ for a Type D (long stay) visa.
  • You must make a minimum gross income requirement of €3,500 per month for the six months preceding your application.
  • You have to prove that you’re either employed by a company registered outside of Estonia or self-employed with a business registered outside of Estonia.

How to apply for an Estonia Digital Nomad Visa:

  • Fill in the application form online (it needs to be printed and signed). You can also register for their newsletter and updates on the website.
  • Make an appointment at your nearest Estonia embassy and take the visa fee, passport photos, and required documents including bank statements and any contracts proving your employment.
  • The process typically takes thirty days.

Read More: 10 Essential Tips for Beginner Freelancers

5) Czech Republic Freelancer Visa (Zivno)

prague freeelance visa

The Czech Republic has offered a zivno visa, or long-term business visa, for years now, and it’s certainly a good option if you’d like to establish a stable working life in the Czech Republic. You will register at the trade office and become a trade license holder.

The visa is targeted at freelance and remote workers, as well as people doing freelance contract work (like English teachers) looking to live in the country for longer periods of time. It is more accessible than other visas as you need to make 5587 euros per year to be eligible.

Note: You will be a licensed taxpayer and will need to be health insurance and social security in the Czech Republic.

The Czech Republic is a wonderful place to live, and has already become popular with digital nomads taking advantage of the Schengen Visa. This means a good community is waiting for anyone interested in working remotely, especially in Prague.

You will benefit from a low cost of living and a beautiful country with a rich art and culture scene to explore in downtime.

How to apply for the Zivno Visa:

It will involve a trip to your local Czech Republic embassy and cannot be applied for from within the Czech Republic. Make an appointment with your local embassy and request an appointment for the zivno visa.

They will interview you about your business plan, your intentions in the Czech Republic, and your knowledge of Croatia’s tax, health, and social security systems.

Many people opt for a local agency to help them out with obtaining this visa as you will need secured accommodation in the Czech Republic which is difficult to obtain from home.

You will also need to obtain a criminal background check, a passport, passport photos, and proof of at least 124 500 CZK in your bank account.

Getting help with the application for this visa is recommended.

Read More: The Best Asia Visas for Remote Workers (and how to apply)

6) Portugal Freelance Visa

portugal freelance visa

Portugal has a thriving digital nomad community, and it’s undoubtedly an attractive place to live with beautiful beaches, impressive hiking opportunities, delicious food, and typically good weather year-round.

Generally, people looking to live and work in Portugal have applied for the D7 passive income/retirement visa. If you can prove you have regular passive income from various sources, including intellectual property, then you can apply, and, in many cases, remote work income will be accepted.

Portugal has also launched a new visa specifically for digital nomads which may be more suitable.

This visa for freelancers and digital nomads entitles you to a year in Portugal which and then be extended for five years with the option to apply for permanent residency after that.

The new Portugal digital nomad visa, which is shortly being launched, will allow digital nomads to stay in Portugal for five months and should hopefully remove the confusion about whether a salaried income is acceptable.

How to apply for a Portugal Independent Visa:

You will need to apply in person at your local Portuguese embassy and provide:

  • two recent photographs
  • a valid passport
  • evidence of accommodation and sufficient means of supporting yourself
  • labour contract
  • a clean criminal record check

Read More:

7) Romania Digital Nomad Visa

romania for remote workers

One of the newer digital nomad visas allows you to apply to spend a year in Romania and then renew for another year if you meet the requirements.

Already a beloved spot within the community due to the affordable living costs, excellent infrastructure including lightning-fast and reliable internet, and frankly outstanding local travel opportunities, this visa is great news for people looking to make Romania a solid base from which to work.

While it’s still in its early days, a very exciting aspect of this visa is that the minimum financial requirement will be around 3300 euros. You will need to apply at your local Romanian consulate.

Read More:

Don’t miss our guide to Romania for remote workers to find out why we loved living there.

The other requirements for the Romania digital nomad visa include:

  • proof of being an employee or an owner of a company registered outside of Romania
  • proof that for three months before applying for the visa, the digital nomad has an income amounting to three times the national average of approximately 3300 euros per month.
  • proof of health insurance covering your time in Romania
  • A clean criminal record check
  • Proof of accommodation in Romania

Read More: How to Find Accommodation for Digital Nomads (15 Great Options)

8) Malta Digital Nomad Visa

malta digital nomad visa

A new digital nomad visa has been launched for people who want to experience island life while working. An independent country situated between Sicily and the North African coast, you can expect stunning coastline, consistently great weather, historic cities and sites for exciting day trips.

With an excellent healthcare system and fast Wi-Fi, it’s no wonder that many people have chosen to call Malta home, with foreigners accounting for 14% of the population.

The program offers non-EU citizens a six-month visa and the option of obtaining a one-year ‘Nomad Residence Permit,’ which costs €300.

You will also need to prove that you are contracted to work remotely by a company based overseas and show that they run their own business or offer freelance services to clientele based abroad.

A highlight of this visa is that you’re permitted to bring your partner or family along with you when applying.

How to apply for the Malta Remote worker Visa:

  • The minimum salary requirement for an applicant is €2700
  • You’ll need to fill in a form and a GDPR privacy document as well as writing a letter of motivation for moving to Malta and the intention of applying for the Nomad Residence Permit
  • Proof of a rental in Malta with a lease or purchase agreement
  • Submit your application, and find more information, on their website.

9) Work in Iceland Long Term Visa for Remote Workers

iceland digital nomad visa

Launched in 2020, the Iceland digital nomad visa offers high-earning remote workers an opportunity to experience the many highlights of Iceland for six months.

The opportunities for mind-blowing travel in Iceland are endless with fjords, national parks covering most of the island, and colourful fishing towns there won’t be a dull moment in your downtime.

You will need to prove you have an employment relationship with a company in a foreign country or verify your self-employment history in their home country

Hot to apply for the Iceland Remote Work Visa:

  • You will need to be from a country outside the EU/EEA/EFTA and not need a visa to travel to Iceland
  • You will need to earn around $88,000 (1,000,000 ISK) per year to qualify
  • Valid health insurance, criminal record check
  • The application forms and information on how to apply are available on the gov website.

10) Hungary Digital Nomad Visa — White Card

hungary budapest digital nomad visa

Hungary’s new residence permit is attracting many remote workers to Budapest and surrounding cities. You can currently apply for one year, but it can be extended for one additional year as long as you continue to meet the criteria.

You must be a third-party national, so not from an EU country, and hold a valid work contract from a country outside Hungary. You must also earn a minimum of €2,000 (Euros) per month and prove you have met this amount for at least six months prior to applying.

You can apply at your local consulate with proof of income and the items below.

Check for specifics by calling your local consulate.

Hot to apply for the Hungary Remote Work Visa:

  • You will need to provide valid proof of accommodation in Hungary when applying for your visa
  • Valid health insurance which will cover you for the duration of your time in Hungary, AXA is recommended
  • A valid passport and return flight
  • A filled-in application form

Read More: A Complete Guide to Budapest for Digital Nomads

11) Italy Digital Nomad Visa

The newly announced Italian digital nomad visa will allow remote workers to live in Italy for up to a year, with the possibility of extension.

Though it has not yet been launched, Italy has a self-employed visa program for which you may be eligible to apply.

italian digitla nomad visa

To apply for the Italy self-employed visa, you will need to demonstrate you have a clean criminal record and suitable accommodation within the state of Italy.

You will also need an annual gross income totaling €8500 one year prior to their visa application (or with promise by contractual compensation for services provided), health insurance coverage for hospitalization/medical expenses during the first 30 days after entry into Italy, and proof of sufficient funds.

How to apply for the digital nomad visa in Italy:

  • Meet the minimum income requirement
  • A clean criminal record
  • Health insurance

Read More: The Ultimate Digital Nomad Guide to Italy

12) Spain Digital Nomad Visa

Digital professionals now have the opportunity to live and work in Spain for up to a year, with the potential of renewing their visa up to five times or even becoming eligible for permanent residency.

spain digital nomads

You will need to have a global income of at least 20% stemming from Spanish companies and not possess any criminal records barring entry to Spain.

You will also need to demonstrate proof of remote work experience over the past year and valid private health insurance that is honored across all regions within Spain.

Lastly, an employment contract or appropriate housing arrangements are necessary to apply. So if you’re looking for a change of scenery and some warm weather, then Spain could be the option for you.

How to apply for the digital nomad visa in Spain:

  • you must receive at least 80% of your income from companies outside of Spain
  • have at least one experience working remotely
  • have a clean criminal record
  • have private health insurance valid in Spain

Read More: A Digital Nomad Guide to Spain (Everything You Need to Know)

13) Albania Long-Stay Visa

albania for digital nomads

Albania’s long-stay visa allows digital nomads to stay for up to one year, with the option to renew and stay longer. This visa is relatively new and is also known as Albania’s Unique Permit. Before the Unique Permit, digital nomads couldn’t legally work in Albania.

You can apply for the long-stay type D visa online without needing to be in person. Several options are available for the type D visa, including self-employed people and remote workers, making it relatively easy to find the right option for your situation.

Albania is located on Southeastern Europe’s Balkan Peninsula and is a more recent hotspot for digital nomads. It’s a beautiful country with many castles and unique archaeological sites.

Albania is an excellent digital nomad destination with natural beauty, including beaches and mountains. While there are infrastructure issues and power outages aren’t uncommon, the affordable cost of living and beautiful scenery are incredibly appealing.

Albania Long-Stay Visa Requirements

  • You must apply while outside of Albania
  • Completed visa application form
  • A recent passport photo
  • Application fee (amount varies, depending on reciprocity agreements)
  • Proof of sufficient income (no specific amount has been stated)

How to Apply for the Albania Long-Stay Visa

You must apply for your visa online while outside of Albania. There are two steps to the process: pre-verification of your online application and documents by the consul and an evaluation to determine whether or not your visa is approved. The assessment usually takes up to 15 days but can take up to a month.

14) Norway Residence Permit

norway for digital nomads

If you want to work remotely in Norway, you can apply for a Residence Permit for remote workers as long as you have one client in Norway. The Residence Permit, previously known as a work permit, lets international skilled, seasonal, and self-employed workers work and live in Norway for up to three years. After that, you can apply for a Permanent Residence Visa.

To qualify for the Norway Residence Permit, you must have at least one client in Norway. The best way to do this is to find a client online before you apply for your visa.

Norway is one of the most unique countries and is ideal for adventurous digital nomads who don’t mind cold weather. Although Norway is more pricey than other European destinations, it’s popular for its magical white mountains, intriguing fjords, and emerald-green forests. It’s also amazing for outdoor adventures like hiking and kayaking. 

Norway Residence Permit Requirements

  • An established business in your home country
  • Employment with at least one client with a registered business in Norway 
  • Proof of education completion (vocational training program, college or university degree, special qualification through long professional experience)
  • Proof that you’ll likely earn a yearly income that’s not less than normal pay in Norway
  • Application fee of 6,300 NOK (about $600)

How to Apply for the Norway Residence Permit

Application steps vary depending on where you’re from and whether or not you’re in Norway. You can check online to learn what your application process will be.

If you enjoyed this article on the best places for digital nomads in Europe then check out some of other articles:

Best Southeast Asian Cities for Digital Nomads

The ETIAS Visa Waiver: Everything You Need to Know

11 Best US Cities for Digital Nomads and Remote Workers

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