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These 6 Island Countries Are Offering Extended Visas To Remote Workers So Grab The Sunscreen

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As intense as living through a pandemic has been we can’t deny the dramatic shift in perspective it caused around remote working, to the point where this might become the best year for those wanting to live abroad.

At the same time as people around the world realise they no longer need to be tethered to a physical place in order to get their job done, certain countries smashed by tourism decline are getting creative in how to reignite their economies for the longer term.

There are a bunch of countries shifting away from traditional tourism models (think constant streams of short-term visitors) in favour of perhaps less travellers who are keen to stay on for much longer periods. A classic quality over quantity scenario.

The result is extended visa programs for remote workers in some pretty lush and interesting destinations.

#1 Barbados 

 

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This Caribbean paradise is offering a ‘12-month Barbados Welcome Stamp,’ which would allow visitors to stay for up to a year and work remotely. The visa (US$2000 for singles and US$3000 for families) is valid for a year from the date of arrival and holders can leave and reenter the island during that time. Once you apply, you’ll know within five working days if you’re in.

With free Wi-Fi throughout the island (including restaurants, cafes, public libraries and parks) along with the fact visa holders can send their children to private schools or pay a small stipend to attend a state-owned public school, it’s an attractive option. We’ve written more about this particular scheme here.

#2 Anguilla

 

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This tiny British Overseas Territory in the Eastern Caribbean has only three confirmed COVID-19 cases and is prioritising low risk countries. This island offers white sand beaches with insanely turquoise water and “lots of WiFi”. Visa fees (US$2000 for individuals staying more than three months) cover two COVID-19 tests, a digital work permit and other costs.

#3 Bermuda

 

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Bermuda is another British island territory, this time in the North Atlantic Ocean. It’s known for its pink-sand beaches and crystal waters (along with its naval base).

The ‘Work From Bermuda’ Certificate has a US$263 application fee and you’ll get an answer within five working days. You will, however, need proof that you are either employed by a company outside Bermuda, enrolled as a student in a university-level program, or demonstrate “substantial means” or continuous annual income.

#4 Georgia

 

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Located at the intersection of Europe and Asia, between the Caucasus Mountains and the Black Sea, Georgia is a culturally and historically fascinating place to base yourself as a remote worker.

Their ‘Remotely From Georgia’ application is aimed at self-employed, remote workers designed for digital nomads looking to stay in the country for six months or longer. You’ll need a minimum monthly salary of US$2000 and agree to undergo a 12-day quarantine in a hotel at your own expense upon entering.

#5 Estonia

 

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Estonia in Northern Europe has always been ahead of the curve when it comes to all things digital – its super fast internet speeds, European location and low cost of living are a heady mix for companies. So it might seem like this Baltic country’s Nomad Visa has been a result of the pandemic, but it’s actually been around for years. They’ve just updated it in August to reflect global changes.

Less breezy than other applications, you have to show monthly earnings greater than €3,504 for the previous six months and apply via the Estonian consulate in your country. Currently, only residents of the EU, Schengen Zone, UK and a limited group of approved countries, including Australia, Canada, Japan and South Korea, can apply.

#6 Croatia

 

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At the end of August, Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic suggested via Twitter that the country will be welcoming digital nomads soon. He was in a photo with Dutch entrepreneur Jan de Jong, who had been vocal about the eastern European country developing digital nomad visas. They hope to have them rolled out for 2021, so keep your eyes peeled.

(Lead Image: Sandra Seitamaa / Unsplash)