Evidence of Entry for GV application

Does anyone have experience applying for GV without prior entry to Portugal? The SEF requirements document below says that Evidence of entry and legal stay in the National Territory" is required for GV application, but with the current pandemic we’re trying to manage everything remotely and will only travel to PT for biometrics. Please share your experience! Thank you!

As I understand it, that PDF from SEF gives you the full list of required docs, but it does not tell you at which point of the process they will be required.
In this example, you may not have the ‘evidence of entry’ at the time of the initial online submission, but you must present it at your subsequent biometric appointment.
Furthermore, when you register yourself on the SEF portal , you will see the same list of documents but some marked as ‘mandatory’ while others not, probably for the same reason.

Btw I am having fun with this requirement as well, as the only such ‘evidence’ I will be able to show is a faint border control stamp in my passport :slight_smile:

I’ve never been to Portugal during the GV process, everything was arranged remotely by the law firm. Now we are planning to travel for biometrics, and valid Schengen or national Portuguese visa with the stamp from the port of entry is sufficient proof that you entered legally and stay legally in PT.

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Yes, and I have just checked - the SEF portal list does not have this evidence marked as ‘mandatory’ for initial submission.


Thank you so much, @tommigun and @w00zle - this makes a lot of sense! Appreciate your help!!

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Does anyone have experience with the SEF requirement for a medical insurance for Golden Visa? Is getting a medical insurance mandatory if we’re not planning to move to Portugal at this time?

Not a lot of experience with the Canadian GV. :slight_smile: For PT GV, insurance is not required if you are not planning to move immediately. Insurance is required when you actually are boots-on-ground.

Sorry of course I meant Portugal LOL. Thank you for your response @jb4422

A related question: for holders of passports not eligible for visa-waiver, on what basis should entry to PT (for the biometrics appointment) take place? Should one separately apply for a tourist visa, or something else?

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A boarding pass showing your name and date should suffice.

Thanks for your reply, but my question was a bit different. The issue is that the holder of a passport not eligible for visa waiver needs a visa to enter Portugal for the SEF appointment. What kind of visa should this be?

I don’t think it matters. IIRC, in and of itself, the appointment is considered essential travel which is in and of itself grounds for issuance of a short-stay visa (how are you going to go to the appointment if they don’t let you in - circular argument). Of course trying to get that visa under these circumstances may be difficult due to the inability to get through to SEF in the first place, but… your lawyer should be able to sort this if the regular tourist visa is too difficult to get for some reason.

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It will be a short stay schengen visa known as C visa. I will share my recent experience with the Portugal Consulate.

My GV application is under analysis, waiting for pre approval from SEF.
I applied for a short stay visa with a fully booked travel plan for tourism to Portugal for a week. On the cover letter I mentioned that I would need a multiple entry visa in order to facilitate (like biometrics) my GV process in the near future. I attached all the supporting documentation used for GV along with SEF screen shots of the applications status.

What did I get from them. 10 days , single entry. For this I had to drive all the way from texas to washington to submit the visa application. They probably did not even bother looking at my pending GV application.

I am starting to hate this process.

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They might have, but if it hasn’t been pre-approved, then it isn’t relevant yet - after all, you could be denied.

Thanks for these responses. In summary, it sounds like the basic answer is: “any visa (or visa waiver) will do - as long as you enter Portugal legally”.

Since about half of GV/ARI applicants are Chinese (at least historically), and Chinese citizens need a visa for Portugal, it would be vaguely interesting to know which visa most use in practice. Without evidence, I’d guess that historically it would have been a standard short-stay tourist visa, but the pandemic now makes the answer much less obvious.

It is not consistent whether or not they would ask you to provide proof of entering PT legally. They didn’t ask my husband at Porto branch, but SEF in Coimbra asked me how I entered Portugal.

If you have a connecting flight in another country in Schengen, you won’t get an entry stamp in your passport in Portugal again. You should keep your boarding passes or show them your itinerary.

Now that U.S., Canada and UK citizens can enter Portugal via e-gates and bypass SEF agents, presumably there will be no visa stamp made in passports on entry. Can someone who uses these egates confirm if there is any printed receipt provided by the egates or what lawyers are advising about evidence of stay when using the egates?

I have not yet used the e-gates so cannot answer about the receipt.
However, here’s the official UK govt advice:

Passport stamping

Check your passport is stamped by the border officer when you enter and exit Portugal as a visitor.

You can use the staffed immigration booths or, if you are aged 18 and over, the e-gates designated for UK and some other non-EU nationals. Hand your passport for stamping to the border officer after you have passed through the e-gate.

Border guards use passport stamps to check you’re complying with the 90-day visa-free limit for short stays in the Schengen area. If relevant entry or exit stamps are not in your passport, a border officer may presume that you have overstayed your visa-free limit.

If you are missing entry/exit stamps, you can show evidence of when and where you entered or exited the Schengen area and ask the border officer to add this date and location in your passport. Examples of acceptable evidence include boarding passes and tickets.

This begs the question. If the idea is to streamline the process and avoid agent interaction, yet everyone needs manual intervention to stamp the passport, will the egates really be any faster?