You know what’s frustrating? D7/D8 visas are apparently processed quickly

I’m in a few expat groups on Facebook and I regularly see people posting about receiving their D7 or D8 visas and residence cards in a turnaround time of 1-3 months. Talk about infuriating. We GV folks have invested large sums of money in the country only to be treated like dirt - while the digital nomads bringing in pennies are given the red carpet? What gives?


GV is politically unpopular, the government wants to dismantle it, and GV processing is de-prioritized.

This is of course not reflected in the private sector marketing material which will swear up and down that you’ll get your GV in a few months and citizenship 5 years after that lol.


I know–it’s incredibly frustrating to see how quickly the D7 folks are being approved. However, remember that they don’t have the flexibility to spend only one week annually in Portugal; they are effectively becoming Portuguese residents (at least for half the year). I try to remind myself that I’m investing for the prospect of living in Europe down the road if I so choose, especially since I don’t have the freedom right now to leave my life here in the States.


Its real easy . Its not the US, its portugal!! It won’t become the US either, so if you don’t like the status quo, don’t come!!

I see a lot of negative posts by a number of (understandably frustrated) people about the bureaucracy, inefficiency, delays, and unfairness of SEF in processing the GVs.

I don’t think this is fair and wanted to give some perspective as we’ve seen similar challenges in North America and specifically the US and Canada through either direct experience or knowledge from friends going through the process.

If applying for family reunification in Canada, if you’re applying for your spouse, after sending in the paper documents you have zero information for 5-6 months and takes a year to process

The green card process in the US takes years.

Yet, if you qualify for a North America Free Trade TN-1 visa for skilled professionals you can get a 3 year work visa by showing up a the border of Canada, US or Mexico with a job offer and proof of skills.

So, this isn’t unique to just one country but it appears a common challenge with governments and immigration.

I know it’s frustrating but keep an eye on the end goal which is Portuguese citizenship and all the door which that opens up.

We’ll all get there. One day at a time.


Oh it’s basically impossible for most people to immigrate to the USA. It’s horrible.

I have no illusions there, be sure to always vote for the folks working for more immigration and to improve our bureaucracy. The Biden admin is a bit mixed on that but they are taking some steps to streamline a lot of paperwork, so I hope they tackle a bit of immigration too while they’re at it.


I don’t think we need to be “fair” to SEF. Sure, it shares visa processing delays with other countries…but we are investing a lot of money in PT, specifically for a visa. This makes the comparison to green cards in the US somewhat irrelevant.

It is difficult to see digital nomad visas get waived through when ours languish for years. That is “fair” to GV applicants.

Plus, SEF is so bad the government is replacing the entire agency!

they are not lying - it is true - 24-36 is still a few - especially compared to the many you will live in Portugal eventually :slight_smile:

Also, OP is not complaining about the inefficiency of SEF to be clear, but pointing out that SEF is quite efficient - when it wants to be. and that GV is in fact the one that being ignored.

TN-1 equivalent is an H1-B - which takes a similar amount of time to process but there are just more people that are eligible for an H1-B than a TN-1… The US system preferences certain countries over others. The SEF and the Portugal government does seem to preference certain kinds of visas over others, in fact letting in MANY MANY more immigrants through the D7 process and even inviting them.

The real rub may be the EU looking down upon the investment visas in general, and Portugal trying to weasel out of the commitments already made

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