The D7 vs The Digital Nomad Visa (D8)

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Written by: | Last updated on March 6, 2024 | Est. Reading Time: 5 minutes
This article is available in: en_US

There are lots of different routes to residency for people from outside of the EU, and two of the most popular residency visas are the D7 and the Digital Nomad Visa or D8

If you’re searching for ways to move to Portugal, you’ll see these two residency visas mentioned a lot, and a lot of the information can be quite confusing. Some sites even call the D7 the digital nomad visa.

The two visas share a common regime and similar requirements (for example a NIF number, address in Portugal, and funded Portuguese bank account). The big difference: the income required and the type of income required.

For a single applicant, the D7 requires a minimum of €820 of passively earned income per month, as of 2024. This is income you don’t actively work for, for example a pension, social security, or income from a rental property.

The D8, in comparison, focuses on income you actively work for (e.g. a salary or freelancing income). The requirement for a single applicant is higher—an average of four times the Portuguese minimum wage, which, as of 2024, is €3,280.

NicknamePassive Income VisaDigital Nomad Visa
Income Requirement€820 p/month€3,280 p/month
Income Types* Pension
* Dividends
* Royalties
* Interest
Salary or Freelancing Work from a remote job
Valid For2 Years (renewable)2 Years (renewable for 3 years)
Citizenship PossibleYes (after 5 years)Yes (after 5 years)
Minimum Stay Requirements6 consecutive months/8 non-consecutive months per permit period*6 consecutive months/8 non-consecutive months per permit period
*Some flexibility is given if you need to travel for work or family emergencies.

The D8 (Digital Nomad Visa)

The D8 is aimed at those that earn an income from abroad through a salary from a remote job or through freelancing. To be eligible, you need to show an average income of €3,280 per month or higher. 

The term digital nomad is often associated with those in their twenties or thirties but could apply to anyone, if their income was actively earned through a remote job or through freelancing.

This is quite a high salary when compared to other visas like the D7. This is possibly because the digital nomad visa is new, or because the Portuguese government views salaries are less stable than a pension, or because most digital nomads live in expensive parts of the country like Lisbon, Ericeira, and Lagos. 

There are two options within the digital nomad visa: a 12-month temporary stay visa or a 24-month residence permit. As Portugal is seen as a popular destination for nomads to “settle,” most nomads are likely to opt for the 24-month residence permit. However, the 12-month permit is an option too.

Can you apply for the D7 or D2 instead? Possibly. You may qualify for one of those visas if your income is considered passive, however, it’s clear that the Portuguese government is trying to push most remote workers and freelancers towards the digital nomad visa instead. 

Like the D7, the digital nomad visa requires you to spend 6 months in Portugal without gaps or 8 months with gaps. This is per permit period. Initially, the residence permit is granted for two years [source].

Read more about the digital nomad visa

The D7 (Passive Income Visa)

The D7 is aimed at those that have an income they earn passively. The most common examples given are a pension or social security, royalties, dividends, or interest. To be eligible, you’ll need to show an income that’s equivalent to the Portuguese minimum wage (as of 2024, this is around €820 per month). 

Basically, it’s income that’s paid out to you regularly and that you don’t have to do much or anything for. You aren’t reliant on a job for this income and even if you were to get sick, you would still continue to receive it. From the Portuguese government’s point of view, that means you’re less likely to become a burden on the Portuguese state. 

However, even though the minimum income is €820 per month, it has to be said that this would only just support you if you were to move to Portugal and even then, it would be difficult to live off. The Portuguese government is obviously aware of this, and so your application will look more appealing if your income is significantly higher. 

Like the D8, the digital nomad visa requires you to spend 6 months in Portugal without gaps or 8 months with gaps. This is per permit period. Initially, the residence permit is granted for two years [source].

Read more about the D7


Why do some sites refer to the D7 as the digital nomad visa?

Until late 2022, many digital nomads, freelancers, and remote workers used the D7 to move to Portugal. Although this visa was initially aimed at retirees, or those with a passive income, there was a big surge in people with active incomes (such as a salary from a remote job) that wanted to move to Portugal, and the D7 was used for this purpose. 

Since 2022, however, there is now a D7, or passive income visa, and the D8, or digital nomad visa, and the two are different. The difference, if you haven’t already spotted it, is that the D7 is for passive income such as a pension or income from a rental property, whereas the digital nomad visa is for income that’s actively earned, such as a salary from a remote job or income from freelancing. 

Written by

James Cave is the founder of Portugalist and the author of the bestselling book, Moving to Portugal Made Simple. He has visited just about every part of Portugal, including Madeira and all nine islands of the Azores, and lived in several parts of Portugal including Lisbon, the Algarve, and Northern Portugal.