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Moving to Italy? Your Visa Options

I get asked all the time about what visa I had to move here. I can only share my own experiences, not advise people on what visa to get, but here's a little information for you if you're moving to Italy.

The Self-Employment Visa

While it was announced that Italy would offer a digital nomad visa more than a year ago, it is yet to manifest into a reality (welcome to Italy). So I applied for the self-employment visa (called autolavoro).

If you're an entrepreneur and can demonstrate having a certain level of income (I think it was around €9,000 a year) as well as a certain amount of money in the bank (I believe it was €17,000), then this might be a good fit.

The way it works is: every year there is what's called a decreto flussi. Essentially, this is a fixed number of spots for people with the autolavoro visa as well as a few others like those who will work seasonally or in certain industries.

You submit your application, and if you qualify and there are still spaces, you get it.

The visa is good for one year. It's just to get you into the country to stay. You don't renew it. Instead, you move on to apply for the permesso di soggiorno, which you will renew.

Listen, everyone says that this visa is impossible to get, but I had no problems. So if it's a good fit for you, go ahead and apply. I'm of the mind that if you think positively, you'll get positive results, so I never worried about not getting this visa!

The Student Visa

I have friends who just moved to Rome and, while he is of Italian descent, they were struggling to get the citizenship application approved in time. So they got student visas. They're in school to polish their already amazing Italian.

Even if you're not 20, this is an option and may be the easiest way to get in.

The Representative Office Visa

This visa just popped on my radar recently, thanks to my expat coaching client. This visa is unique in that it's designed for someone who already has an established business with headquarters in the U.S., who is looking to expand in Europe.

There are surprisingly fewer requirements in terms of revenue for the representative office visa (just €12,000 in annual revenues). The thing is: your business can't make money here in Europe. It's more of a research situation where you're investigating new markets.

There are other visas, like the elective residency visa for retirees, but these are the ones I have the most information for.

My suggestion? Talk to a lawyer or commercialista. They'll be able to best guide you to the right visa for your situation, and they'll know the current climate that will impact how long your application will take.

And if you need a recommendation, send me an email. I've got a great guy who's well-versed in helping Americans who are moving to Italy.

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