Join us virtually on March 6, 2024 for our first ever Interstride Symposium. Register now →
Interside mobile menu

Best digital nomad visas

interstride logo by Interstride
March 17, 2023

Are you a remote worker wanting to see the world or an international student looking for a way to work for a US company from a different country? Digital nomad visas provide a unique opportunity for people to move abroad for a year or longer while they continue to work remotely for a company located in the US or another country. This is a potential option for international students who did not win the lottery for an H-1B visa to still work for a US company.

As more people are drawn to the freedom and flexibility that remote work provides, more countries are offering digital nomad visas. There are currently over 50 countries that offer digital nomad visas. We reviewed the best ones around the world and listed them below. To rank the visas, we considered the cost, qualifications, visa term lengths, cost of living, and quality of life in the visa-issuing country.

Keep in mind that in most cases, you cannot work remotely on a tourist visa. You will need to apply for a digital nomad visa instead. For more information, explore our full guide on how to be a digital nomad and apply for a visa for remote work.

Top digital nomad visas

One of the biggest perks of being a digital nomad is the ability to work from anywhere. Digital nomad visas are available on every continent except Antarctica. While the choice of where to live is very personal, this list may help you determine the best digital nomad visa options for you and rule out which ones don’t interest you. All the digital nomad visas on this list allow spouses and dependents to be included in the application and live and study in the visa-issuing country with the visa holder.

1. Estonia

Estonia was the first country to create a visa specifically to attract digital nomads. It’s appealing to remote workers due to the low cost of living, high Internet speeds, and low crime rates. Located on the coast of the Baltic Sea in Eastern Europe, Estonia offers beautiful landscapes and mild weather. Most people in the country speak English, and because it’s part of the Schengen area and the European Union (EU), you will be able to travel to many other countries in Europe without getting additional visas.

Visa length: 90 days (Type C) or 1 year (Type D)

Minimum income requirements: $4,100 per month

Other requirements: Maintain income minimum for at least 6 months before applying; pay local taxes after 6 months; maintain health insurance

Visa fee: $115

2. Barbados

Barbados began offering a remote work visa called the Welcome Stamp in 2020. You can also reapply for the visa which means you could potentially spend years working and living in Barbados if you want. Barbados is an island nation located in the Caribbean. It offers rich culture, friendly locals, and great beaches. The Welcome Stamp visa application is quick and easy to complete online, and remote workers do not have to pay Barbados income taxes while living in the country.

Visa length: 12 months

Minimum income requirements: $50,000 per year

Other requirements: Background check; digital nomad health insurance for travel

Visa fee: $2,000 for an individual or $3,000 for a family

3. Georgia

Georgia, another beautiful Eastern European country, appeals to many digital nomads because you can stay in the country for up to one year and work remotely without having to get a visa at all. That means no long waits at the embassy and no fees. To apply, you just need to submit an application form and provide proof of income along with other requested information. You can work remotely from Georgia for a foreign company or as a freelancer.

Visa length: 1 year

Minimum income requirements: $2,000 per month

Other requirements: Pay local taxes after 6 months

Visa fee: None

4. Mauritius

Mauritius is an archipelago located in the Indian Ocean near Madagascar. It boasts one of the highest per capita incomes of all African countries. Digital nomads are attracted to the exoticism and natural beauty of the nation. Mauritius offers a Premium Travel Visa that remote workers can use. It’s aimed at long-term stays and can be renewed after the initial year. It’s easy to apply online and include your spouse and children on the visa if applicable.

Visa length: 1 year

Minimum income requirements: $1,500  per month

Other requirements: Proof of in-country accommodations; health insurance; pay local taxes after 6 months; must be from one of the eligible countries

Visa fee: None

5. Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a very popular destination for long-term and short-term travelers from the US, so it’s not surprising that the country offers a digital nomad visa. While in Costa Rica, you will be able to use your foreign driver’s license and open a national bank account, but you will not have to pay Costa Rican income taxes. The visa lasts one year and can be renewed for one additional year. Costa Rica is located in Central America and offers amazing beaches and rainforests to explore.

Visa length: Up to 2 years

Minimum income requirements: $3,000 per month or $4,000 per month if you have dependents

Other requirements: Qualifying health insurance

Visa fee: $100

6. Portugal

There is no specific Portugal digital nomad visa, but the D7 Passive Income Visa can work well for remote workers interested in moving there. It allows you to work for two years initially. Then, you can apply for a 3-year residency permit. After that, you can apply for permanent residency if you wish to remain in Portugal. The visa also allows you to travel to other countries in the Schengen Area for up to four months a year. Portugal has a very low cost of living compared to other European countries and could be a good place to settle long-term.

Visa length: Up to 5 years

Minimum income requirements: Minimum wage in Portugal, currently about $810 per month

Other requirements: Qualifying health insurance; criminal background check; proof of in-country accommodations

Visa fee: $165.13

7. Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE)

Dubai is a large, modern city located in the UAE. This is currently the only digital nomad visa option in the Middle East. Dubai is a great destination for remote workers due to fast Internet speeds and the large community of foreign nationals. It’s an ideal location if you enjoy shopping and nightlife. While you will not have to pay taxes in the UAE, the cost of living in Dubai is high, so make a budget and ensure you can afford to live there.

Visa length: 1 year

Minimum income requirements: $3,500  per month

Other requirements: Must have been employed or owned your company for at least 1 year; digital nomad health insurance with UAE coverage

Visa fee: $611

8. Colombia

In 2022, Colombia joined several other South American countries in launching a digital nomad visa. You can apply online now. Colombia reported that the visas may be granted for up to two years, but as of 2023, only one-year digital nomad visas have been approved. It may be possible to renew it after a year. Colombia has a very low cost of living and reliable Internet speeds. It is much safer than it used to be, and you will likely find other foreign nationals living and working in the major cities including Bogotá and Medellín.

Visa length: Up to 2 years

Minimum income requirements: 3 times the minimum wage in Colombia, currently around $900 per month

Other requirements: Qualifying health insurance with coverage in Colombia

Visa fee: $230

9. Croatia

Croatia is another great option for working nomads who want to live in the EU. This Mediterranean country is located between Italy, Slovenia, and Hungary. The country is rich in culture, history, and natural beauty. It’s easy to apply for this visa online, and you will not have to pay Croatian income tax. However, if you want to reapply for the visa after one year, you will have to leave the country for a designated amount of time before reapplying.

Visa length: 1 year

Minimum income requirements: $2,658 per month

Other requirements: Qualifying health insurance; criminal background check; proof of in-country accommodations

Visa fee: $185

Overview of the top digital nomad visas

Country:Continent/Region:Visa Length:Minimum income required:Other requirements:Visa fees in USD:Where to apply:
EstoniaEurope90 days (Type C) or 1 year (Type D)$4,100 per monthProof of income minimum for 6 months; pay local taxes after 6 months; maintain health insurance$115Estonian Embassy or Consulate
BarbadosCaribbean1 year$50,000 per yearBackground check; digital nomad health insurance$2,000 for an ind., $3,000 for a familyOnline
GeorgiaEurope1 year$2,000 per monthPay local taxes after 6 monthsNoneOnline
MauritiusAfrica1 year$1,500  per monthProof of in-country accommodations; health insurance; pay local taxes after 6 months; must be from one of the eligible countriesNoneOnline
Costa RicaCentral AmericaUp to 2 years$3,000 per month or $4,000 per month if you have dependentsQualifying health insurance$100Online or at a Costa Rican Embassy
PortugalEuropeUp to 5 yearsMinimum wage in Portugal, currently about $810 per monthQualifying health insurance; criminal background check; proof of in-country accommodations$165.13Portuguese Embassy
Dubai (UAE)Middle East1 year$3,500  per monthMust have been employed or owned your company for at least 1 year; digital nomad health insurance$611Online
ColombiaSouth AmericaUp to 2 years3 times the minimum wage, currently around $900 per monthQualifying health insurance$230Online
CroatiaEurope1 year$2,658 per monthQualifying health insurance; criminal background check; proof of in-country accommodations$185Online

Digital nomad visas wrap up

While the Estonia digital nomad visa was the first of its kind, many countries have followed suit. With a digital nomad visa, you can explore the beaches of the Caribbean or experience the hustle and bustle of Dubai. No matter which country you choose for remote work, do your due diligence and research what it’s like to live there before applying for your visa. Visit Interstride’s blog for a complete list of the countries that offer digital nomad visas and more information on how to find the best option for you.

X