If you’re considering a move to Portugal from the US, you’re not alone. Portugal has become an attractive destination for expatriates seeking a high quality of life, beautiful landscapes, and a welcoming culture. However, before you pack your bags, it’s important to take certain factors into account to ensure a successful move and a fulfilling life in your new home. In this article, we’ll explore the top five considerations shared by individuals from the “Moving to Portugal” online community who have already made the move or have experience with the process.
- Patience, Research, and an Open Mind: The first and most common piece of advice is to exercise patience and keep an open mind. Sandeep Bains, a commenter, emphasizes the importance of being patient, scouting the country, and embracing change. Similarly, Luis Rosa advises against having unrealistic expectations and suggests vacationing in Portugal to get a true feel for the people and the place before making any long-term commitments. Remember that not everything will be perfect, and there will be cultural differences to navigate. So, research extensively, visit multiple areas, and keep an open mind to fully understand what life in Portugal entails.
- Financial Preparedness: Denison Taracanoff and Christy Wolfe highlight the financial aspect of moving to Portugal. It’s crucial to have a substantial savings or a significant bank account to ensure financial stability during the transition and beyond. Salaries in Portugal may not be as high as in the US, so it’s important to consider your income sources and make a financial plan that allows you to maintain your desired lifestyle. Understanding the cost of living and the local economy is essential for a successful move.
- Language Acquisition: While some commenters mention that English is widely spoken in Portugal, it is highly recommended to learn Portuguese. Acquiring at least a basic level of proficiency will greatly enhance your experience and integration into Portuguese society. Learning the language shows respect for the local culture and will enable you to communicate more effectively in everyday situations, build relationships, and navigate bureaucratic processes.
- Visit and Explore: Joanne Pandis advises visiting Portugal several times before making the move. Scouting different regions and spending extended periods of time in the areas you’re considering will give you a realistic feel for daily life. It’s important to experience the local culture, interact with the people, and gauge your comfort level with the bureaucracy and the slower pace of getting things done. This firsthand experience will help you make an informed decision about where you want to settle down.
- Seek Guidance and Connect with the Expat Community: Several commenters suggest seeking guidance and resources from various sources. Joining online communities like Moving to Portugal or Expats in Portugal Q&As can provide valuable insights and support from fellow expatriates who have already gone through the process. These communities can help you avoid costly mistakes, provide information on legal and administrative matters, and offer guidance on various aspects of living in Portugal.
Moving to Portugal from the US can be an exciting adventure, but it requires careful planning and consideration. By taking into account the advice shared by individuals who have already made the move or have experience in this area, you can increase your chances of having a successful transition and a fulfilling life in Portugal. Remember to be patient, conduct thorough research, embrace change, learn the language, visit and explore different regions, and seek guidance from the expat community. With the right preparation, Portugal can offer you a wonderful new chapter in your life.
Scott Kirk is the found of BuyProperty.com which provides insights and analysis into all properties for sale in Portugal and the admin to the biggest online community for foreigners moving to Portugal.