Where South Africans can work with digital nomad visas

In recent years, several nations have introduced remote working or digital nomad visas to attract individuals to extend their stay in their country. If you’re contemplating a change of environment and have a job that allows remote work, you can consider working from various locations globally, creating an ideal workcation experience.

Numerous countries now provide digital nomad visas, enabling South Africans to reside there under a working visa while working remotely for a job outside that country. It’s essential to note that each country has different travel regulations, and contacting their embassy directly is advised for detailed information.

Countries that offer digital nomad visas to South Africans

Georgia

Georgia announced the implementation of a digital nomad visa. Freelancers and self-employed individuals can apply for this special visa, allowing a stay of 6 months or longer. The visa mandates travel insurance, but beyond that, there are no significant restrictions.

Estonia

Estonia has introduced a digital nomad visa to encourage prolonged stays, particularly for those in technology, finance, or marketing. Applicants undergo a comprehensive background check to confirm their digital nomad status. The annual quota for eligible visas is 1,800, and approvals can be granted for short or long-term stays.

Costa Rica

Costa Rica offers the Rentista visa, allowing nomads to stay for up to two years, extendable thereafter. To qualify, individuals need to demonstrate a minimum steady income of $2,500 (around R42,000) per month.

Noruega

Norway provides an intriguing digital nomad visa for Svalbard, an archipelago between Norway’s mainland and the North Pole. There are no specific limits, and applicants only need to prove sufficient income to support themselves.

Bermuda

Bermuda has joined the digital nomad visa trend to stimulate longer stays and investments. Qualifications include being over 18, proof of a ‘good character,’ which means you will have to submit a police clearance certificate, and providing proof of employment and health insurance. Students engaged in research or studies are also welcome to apply.

México

Mexico’s temporary resident visa permits living and working in the country for a year, renewable for three years. The criteria include providing a monthly income of over $1,620 (around R27,000) for six months before application and a minimum bank balance of $27,000 (around R450,000).

Portugal

The D7 Passive Income visa in Portugal allows individuals with the required income to stay for a year, extendable up to five years. Applicants must open a local bank account, show long-term accommodation, and possess health insurance.

República Checa

The Czech Republic offers a year-long visa, requiring pre-arranged accommodation, a criminal history record, and proof of the subsistence minimum, approximately R80,000.

Alemania

Germany’s renowned ‘freelance visa’ permits freelancers to work for up to three years, subject to a rigorous approval process. Artists can also apply for a specific visa in Berlin.

España

Spain’s new law allows remote workers from foreign companies to reside in the country without a full work visa, lasting one year and extendable for two more years.

Grecia

Greece has passed a law introducing digital nomad visas, requiring proof of no engagement in business activity in Greece and a monthly income of at least 3500 euros.

Francia

While France doesn’t offer a digital nomad visa, freelancers can work in the country under the profession liberale visa, requiring a monthly income of at least €1,540 for 12 months.

Croacia

Croatia offers a digital nomad visa valid for up to a year, with proof of a monthly income of approximately HRK 16,907.50.

Malta

Malta’s Nomad Residence permit allows travelers to work in the country with a monthly income of at least €2,700, renewable at the discretion of Maltese authorities.

Mauricio

Mauritius offers a Premium Travel Visa for remote workers, requiring proof of income, travel, and health insurance, lasting up to one year.

Islandia

Iceland provides long-term visas for remote workers, valid for up to 180 days, with proof of income not below ISK 1000 per month.

Barbados

Barbados’ Welcome Stamp, a 12-month visa, allows remote workers with a minimum income of USD 7200 per month, renewable upon approval.

Dubai

Dubai’s virtual working program enables remote workers to live and work in the city for one year, requiring health insurance, a passport older than six months, and proof of a minimum income of USD 5000, supported by three months of bank statements.

Final thoughts

Applying for any visa generally necessitates the submission of legalised civic documents including birth and marriage certificates where applicable. These documents play a pivotal role in accurately representing your civil status. Ensure these documents are appropriately attested and translated if required, adhering to the guidelines set by the specific country’s consulate or embassy. Accurate verification of your civil status strengthens your visa application, contributing to a seamless and successful process.

Disclaimer: The information provided here outlines the basic requirements for applications for digital nomad visas. However, these requirements might vary depending on individual cases.