Topics Covered Hide
- What citizenship actually means
- Understanding the concept of citizenship by investment
- Benefits of a nomad citizenship
- Most common requirements for citizenship by investment programs
- Exploring different options for a nomad citizenship
- How to choose the best nomad citizenship program
- Bottom line, your goal is also important in the process.
- Citizenship by investment versus residency by investment
- Countries offering nomad citizenship by investment programs
It may seem hard to believe, but there are people out there who have no clue that you can have two or more passports – two or more citizenships. Indeed, you can be a citizen of more than just one country, and while it takes some effort, it does come with a bunch of benefits.
These days, anyone can get a second – or even a third – passport. It is no longer a thing of the past or science fiction movies. More and more investors, business people, and even regular individuals look for the opportunity to become global citizens – gaining nomad citizenship.
What citizenship actually meansCitizenship is given by a particular country. As a citizen of the respective country, you gain access to a plethora of privileges and rights – the kind of rights that you would not have otherwise. Obviously, citizenship comes with some responsibilities too.
In terms of rights, you can live in the country and travel freely. You get the right to work, vote, and access the healthcare system, among many others. Similar rules may apply to other countries in special agreements with your new country.
In terms of responsibilities, you agree to respect the laws of the country for your nomad citizenship.
There are more ways to obtain new citizenship, and average individuals will most likely be naturalized. In other words, they will gain the right to live and work there. They will integrate in the society and can apply for the citizenship after a particular number of years.
Some countries also accept citizenship by marriage, not to mention finding relatives in the respective countries. But then, there is another interesting way to skip the wait – citizenship by investment. The name is self-explanatory, yet it can be quite confusing for some.
investment" data-toc="1" >Understanding the concept of citizenship by investmentCitizenship is a mutual agreement between the state and the individual. They aim to grow together and find benefits in this collaboration. A passport becomes an extension of this agreement – also, an international form of identification.
Each country has a specific passport. Some passports are more powerful than others, depending on the agreements the respective country has with others. You may have multiple rights in other countries as well.
When it comes to citizenship by investment, you can forget about marriage, birth, or naturalization. This is the one and only way to buy your new passport. It does not take years – instead, it can be done within months only.
You do not need to integrate into the respective society and prove that you are a serious individual. Instead, you only need to make an investment. You invest money in a country's economy, and you will be given citizenship – simple as that.
Such programs are known as citizenship programs, and many countries have their own. This is now a way to make a donation. Instead, you invest. Not only do you get citizenship, but you also start a new business venture that may actually be profitable.
Countries providing citizenship by investment have different programs. Each of them will come with particular criteria. For instance, some countries allow real estate investments. Some others are focused on economic sectors that slack.
There are, of course, some eligibility criteria and requirements. Besides, this is less likely to happen overnight, but within months. Since not all programs are the same, people are often confused about residency by investment and citizenship by investment – two different things.
So, what is nomad citizenship? Citizenship by investment will never be referred to as nomad citizenship in official papers – in theory, it means the same thing. This is a structured application procedure. It is 100% legal and backed by multiple laws.
Most importantly, this is the quickest way to obtain citizenship.
On the other hand, despite having a bad reputation at times, citizenship by investment is not a scam or a possibility to avoid tax. It is not a way to buy your citizenship, although it looks like it. Instead, you invest, meaning you join or start a business.
Benefits of a nomad citizenshipThere are more reasons wherefore people invest in nomad citizenship, and they vary widely from one individual to another. The freedom of movement allows global mobility, so the numerous advantages of second citizenship make perfect sense for most people.
Try to see it this way. No matter what your current nationality is, it comes with some benefits. Whether you have a moderate passport or a powerful one, there are some advantages. A second citizenship offers twice as many opportunities.
Nomad citizenship will give you the possibility to travel all over the world. You become a global citizen. Based on the nationality you get, you might be able to travel in most countries out there, not to mention work or reside in many of them.
Most importantly, more passports will give you more visa-free travel opportunities. Imagine being a freelancer with a few powerful passports – you can travel and work, live in a bunch of different countries, and feel like you are always on holiday.
This opportunity depends on where you choose to get a second citizenship. For instance, many countries are seen as tax havens. They have little or no taxes at all. Residing in such a country will allow you to save a fortune on your income.
Save money and optimize your tax in a perfectly legal way. It may sound a bit unethical, but it is perfectly legal. Obviously, there are many small details you need to take into consideration, but tax planning is definitely a plus for business people.
Citizenship is almost always granted by birth. Having nomad citizenship will allow you to pass the new nationality to your family – children and grandchildren. On the same note, they will have twice as many opportunities in the future.
Whether it comes to living, studying, or perhaps starting their grownup lives, your successors will have more opportunities with two different nationalities. It is a gift that today's adults have no access to – they had to earn it.
Finally, the nomad citizenship may give you the opportunity to gain some insurance. You can freely relocate to your other country if you are unhappy with your government or things are not too stable. Unexpected situations may arise when least expected.
Economic or political instability can ruin your life. When you have a second passport, you will be able to move freely. It really makes no difference what the reason is – simply use your citizenship wisely to gain as much as possible.
Other benefits of nomad citizenship include:
- Less fiscal obligations
- Extra business opportunities
- Asset protection against excessive taxation
- Visa free travel opportunities
- Access to education and national services
- Entitlement to a pension
- Investor tax benefits
- Better quality of life
Most common requirements for citizenship by investment programsDifferent countries may have different names for their programs. In theory, they refer to the exact same thing – making an investment to get citizenship. However, requirements vary widely from one jurisdiction to another.
For instance, while often irrelevant, some countries require medical exams to prove good health.
However, some requirements are quite common. Being at least 18 years old is one of them. Sure, your parents could opt for such a program, but they would need to go through other procedures to get you citizenship if you are under 18.
Then, no one wants criminals. Most countries will try to see your criminal record. You need a clear record. You might get away with petty crime, but serious convictions are likely to get you rejected – after all, most countries try to avoid bringing criminals over.
You need to have good character, and there are different ways to check you out.
Finally, your investment funds must be proven. You cannot just invest $1M without mentioning the source. Bank extracts or contracts might be required to prove the origins of the funds. A legal source is mandatory.
All in all, make sure you double-check all the requirements upfront.
Exploring different options for a nomad citizenshipNow, you are ready to go for your nomad citizenship, but you need to explore your options. You know that you will need to make an investment, but it cannot be a random thing. Again, this is a factor that varies widely from one country to another.
Whether it comes to the transfer of funds or government bonds, this is one of the quickest and most straightforward ways to bring money into a country. It is the simplest way to invest money in a different jurisdiction.
Most countries will accept this type of transfer when interested in citizenship by investment. There is nothing to worry about if you are rejected for any reason – you usually get the money back, but you should still check upfront.
Lots of countries allow investing in real estate, which is actually a great opportunity. You will need a place to live anyway, so you might as well buy instead of renting out. However, compared to government bonds, this type of investment is usually more expensive.
Furthermore, there is more paperwork involved – chances are you will need a local lawyer to help you out. But on the same note, an investment in a property can bring in significant returns in the long run, depending on where you invest.
This is another easy opportunity to get your nomad citizenship, yet it is a bit sketchy. At the end of the day, you make a donation. It is not an actual investment, meaning you are less likely to get anything back if you are accepted.
There are no returns whatsoever. Despite being usually lower, most people avoid this investment.
How to choose the best nomad citizenship programThere are quite a few aspects to take into consideration when interested in nomad citizenship. While it is worth considering all of them, keep in mind that what works for some people will not work for everyone else, so you need to consider your own needs too.
For instance, some people are tied to one country or another. Perhaps you have been on holiday to Spain over the past 10 years, and you fell in love with the laid-back lifestyle – you might as well consider retiring early there. You have a tie with that country.
Some others may have worked in Switzerland or perhaps Portugal for a decade. Some others may find a developing country to provide more opportunities, especially if they have business experience in a developed jurisdiction.
You get the point – if you have some ties with a country, you will most likely be drawn there.
Then, your requirements and needs are just as important. Why do you consider second citizenship? Is it tax planning? Some countries are seen as tax havens. Is it the opportunity to make business? Some countries offer a more dynamic environment.
Are you after more stability? Switzerland is a better choice than Russia. Are you after visa free travel? Neutral countries in the west have agreements with a lot of countries – some passports offer visa free travel to most countries out there.
Bottom line, your goal is also important in the process.There are a few other things you need to ask yourself. Are you interested in relocating or not? The decision may affect the final answer. How about the investment you want to make? Maybe you are not experienced with real estate, or you do not believe in it.
Plus, think about the potential returns too.
Finally, each country has specific demands. Whether you invest in a business, government bonds, or real estate, there are some minimum requirements. Some countries may require €100,000 investments, while others may demand over €2M.
Your available budget dictates everything you do in terms of investments.
This opportunity makes no exception either.
Citizenship by investment versus residency by investmentIt is important to know that plenty of countries offers residency by investment. You make an investment, and you are granted residency – either for a particular amount of time or forever. The residency is different from the actual citizenship, though.
While you have plenty of rights and can usually access education and healthcare, too, the truth is being a citizen will give you more rights. Some countries also allow voting in local elections as a resident as well – do your homework upfront.
Once you get the actual residency, you can then wait for a particular time – usually about five years – and apply for citizenship. Now, things are slightly different when it comes to nomad citizenship by investment.
While plenty of countries offers residency by investment, the list is much shorter when it comes to actual citizenship. The list is relatively low, yet it is still worth some consideration – it basically helps you save a bit of time.
On another hand, citizenship by investment programs come and go – countries bring them in on a regular basis, then get rid of them. There are two solid exceptions out there. Saint Kitts and Nevis started such a program more than three decades ago.
The program is still available today, yet it has been through a bunch of changes overtime.
Dominica is another exception – the program has been around for almost three decades.
Most other investment programs are relatively fresh – most of them are less than 10 years old. The past decade has also seen many programs come and go – not successful enough for governments to keep them going.
Countries offering nomad citizenship by investment programsHere are some of the current countries offering citizenship by investment programs.
Despite being insignificant in size, Vanuatu has a very powerful passport and allows traveling without a visa in about 130 countries. Getting citizenship is super fast – you will be a nomad citizen within a couple of months only.
The only problem is that your investment must be made as a donation, so there are no returns.
Grenada will give you its nomad citizenship in about four months. The passport is also powerful and offers you visa free travel to over 140 countries. It is one of the few passports offering easy access to both China and the USA.
You will need to make a donation or invest in real estate worth $150,000 or more.
Getting citizenship in Dominica takes between three and nine months and requires a donation or an investment in real estate worth $100,000. The passport will allow you to travel without a visa in almost 150 countries.
Antigua and Barbuda
You will need up to half a year to get nomad citizenship in Antigua and Barbuda, as well as a minimum investment of $130,000 – business, real estate, or donation. It is excellent for families and offers visa free travel to about 145 countries.
Malta requires an investment of up to €700,000 – it can get higher, and it represents a hybrid model between a donation and a real estate investment. You can travel to over 180 countries without a visa. It also allows traveling to the EU and USA.
Taking citizenship may take up to three years.
It takes around three years to obtain your citizenship by investment in Russia. When it comes to the investment, it depends – on government bonds, real estate, or business. It is entirely up to you. Once you get your passport, you can travel without a visa to almost 120 countries.
It is worth noting that during 2022, new restrictions have been applied to Russia – travel-related too.
Turkey is quite pretentious when it comes to investment requirements. You will need to come up with $250,000 for this investment. It can be a bank deposit or a real estate investment. You can also invest in a business, but there is a rule – you must hire locals.
You get visa free access to more than 110 countries. It takes around three months to get citizenship. The program is great for real estate investors. It is also important to know that it provides access to the USA.
Montenegro will give you citizenship within six months – usually faster than that. The investment is quite high – $350,000. It is a mix between a classic donation and a real estate investment – a hybrid model.
It is suitable for those who want access to Europe.
Plus, the passport allows you to travel to over 120 countries.
Saint Lucia is a paradise in terms of nature and landscapes and only requires $100,000 for an investment – real estate, bonds, business, or donation. It takes up to six months to get a passport, and it offers access to almost 150 countries without a visa.
Saint Kitts and Nevis
This is the oldest citizenship by investment program in the world. It takes anywhere between three and six months, and it provides access to the American continent – more than 150 countries without a visa. You need to invest $150,000 in real estate or make a donation.
The Bulgarian citizenship offers access to the EU, but it takes up to two years to get it. The investment goes up to €500,000. It has to be an actual investment, so there is some return. You will be able to travel to about 175 countries without a visa.
ConclusionBottom line, this nomad citizenship idea has never been more viable. In a world where anyone can travel anywhere – with or without some effort, you can now find a more desirable environment to match your long term goals.
It is important to know that citizenship by investment programs tends to change on a regular basis. New programs pop up, while others simply disappear. Investment requirements and eligibility criteria can also change, so research everything before making a final decision.
It is also important to wait if you cannot find the perfect program – your personal needs come first.