What Americans need to know about Portugal


What Americans need to know about Portugal

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  • By KipperTree
  • December 15 2023

What Americans need to know about Portugal

Moving to Portugal is a big step for those who don’t speak Portuguese. In this guide, discover what Americans need to know before they move.

Article by Viv Europe - Official Legal and Relocation Partner to KipperTree.

September 16, 2022

There’s a lot that Americans need to know about Portugal before relocating here. The good, the bad, and the best! It’s only fair that we have an honest conversation about this. 

So here are a few important things American ex-pats should know before starting their relocation journey. From visa requirements and language barriers to the cost of living and job opportunities, there’s much to discover.

The rich culture and history, spectacular landscapes, mesmerizing beaches, and idyllic climate might make Portugal the centre of attraction for tourists from all across the globe. However, Portugal offers much more than that to expatriates who want to settle here.

First things Americans need to know about Portugal

With the confident growing economy – a treat to foreign investors, new modern tech companies with the latest advancements, and Lisbon being the hub for all the startups and entrepreneurs, Portugal is considered an ideal place for ex-pats to live in.

Portugal is increasingly at the top of the list considered by Americans who want to settle in Europe for various reasons.

The high-quality life, low cost of living, great tax benefits, easy access to transport and healthcare, and the idyllic climate are a few of them.

US citizens in Portugal

According to research, among all 690,000 ex-pats currently living in Portugal from around the globe, around 20,000 are US citizens.

Of course, it’s not a large number, considering the total number of expatriates, and this is because the USA discovered Portugal very recently in terms of the country to live in.

The British, French, Brazilian, and Chinese are citizens who have lived in Portugal for a long time, and the number keeps increasing.

If you’re an American citizen and you are thinking of moving and settling in Portugal, whether to escape the chaotic way of life in big cities, to enjoy retirement, or for whatever reason, you need to know a few things about how to live in Portugal.

Language Barrier

Learning a foreign language might be a challenging task, but for an ex-pat to settle in some country and avoid any kind of communication barriers learning its native language must be a priority. It will certainly help you a big way in settling up.

American ex-pats in Portugal

Although Portuguese people are very hospitable and helpful to foreigners, many don’t speak English. Learning the Portuguese language will help you communicate with locals, buy land or maybe get a job.

Notably, learning Spanish is not enough because people might think it’s similar to Portuguese, but in fact, it is not and is most likely to be quite offensive to locals.

Fortunately, today there are several methods for learning Portuguese. Apps like Duolingo, Babbel, and Busuu are some of the most popular.

Also, if you want a more personal approach, we can recommend a very charismatic and professional teacher, Helena Palha, who works for a company called Lengalenga. All classes are 100% online, and you can learn and practice your Portuguese.

Cost of living in Portugal

Moving from the US to Portugal needs a bit of financial planning. The cost of living is one of the most important things Americans need to know about Portugal.

Usually, every foreigner, when visiting some other country, compares the cost of things, life, education, or health with that of their own country. It seems to be natural.

So when a US citizen settles in Portugal and compares the cost of living in Portugal with that of the US, there will be a pleasant surprise. After all, Portugal is much more affordable, from buying food to renting a house or an apartment.

To take a look at the comparative summary of the costs of living in Portugal and the United States, read the full article here