Job seeking visa in Portugal: What you need to know in 2024


Portugal, renowned for its idyllic beaches and delicious cuisine, is shaping up to be a destination of choice far beyond tourism. In 2024, this magnificent country is opening up even more to the world with the launch of a new job search visawelcoming international professionals with open arms. The initiative is part of an ambitious campaign by the Portuguese government to attract skilled talent from all over the world. And guess what? It's been a huge success. This move towards international openness will be further amplified by the organization of the 2030 World Cup, positioning Portugal not only as a cultural and tourist hub, but also as a dynamic center for global professional opportunities.

What exactly is the Portuguese job search visa?

First, a little background. Portugal isn't just about good wine and pasteis de nata galore. The economy is on the move, startups are flourishing, but local workers are in short supply. They need new blood, fresh ideas, and the manpower to make it all happen. So they've pulled out the big guns: a brand-new visa so that people like you and me can test the professional waters without too much hassle.

This exceptional visa allows foreign professionals with valuable skills and experience to come to Portugal to actively seek employment. By offering this possibility, Portugal opens itself up to a new wave of inventions and skills, strengthening its economy and filling gaps in important sectors with skilled labor. The JOB SEARCH offers a safe and legal framework for foreign candidates to explore the Portuguese job market, while giving themselves enough time to find a position that matches their professional profile.

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This visa stands out for the possibilities it offers and the ease of access it represents. Applicants must meet specific conditions, such as possessing the following qualifications recognized professional qualifications or experience professional experience in fields in demand on the Portuguese market. In addition to these conditions, the visa requires proof of financial resources to support the applicant's stay during the job search period, enabling professionals to fully commit to their professional integration without having to face financial constraints.

Eligibility requirements for the Portugal job search visa

Before you start dreaming about your escapades on the beaches of the Algarve or your strolls through the picturesque streets of Lisbon, let's see if you've got all the boxes for this special visa. Don't worry, I'll take you through it step by step.

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1. Education level : Diploma in hand?

For a start, Portugal is looking to attract brains. If you have a university degree or a high-level professional qualification, you're on the right track. Think bachelor's, master's or even doctor's degrees. Basically, the more you've studied, the better your chances of getting over that first hurdle.

2. Professional experience : You're not fresh out of school, are you?

Have a certain professional experience in your field can be a big plus. Portugal appreciates people who are not only academically gifted, but have also got their hands dirty. If you have a few years' experience, that's a good point for you.

3. Language skills Do you speak Portuguese... or English?

Although speaking Portuguese is a huge advantage, don't worry if it's not. If you're fluent in English, that can work too, especially in international industries. That said, learn some basic Portuguese would do no harm and show your commitment to integration.

4. Financial evidence

You need to prove that you can look after yourself while you look for work. This means having enough savings to cover your living expenses in Portugal for a few months. You don't have to be a gold digger, but make sure you have a little nest egg to put you at ease.

5. Documents in order Papierasse and patience.

Prepare your file carefully: valid passport, diplomas, up-to-date CV, letters of recommendation, and anything else that can prove your seriousness and intentions. The stronger your file, the better your chances of convincing the authorities that you're the ideal candidate for this visa.

That's it! If you tick all these boxes, you're probably a good candidate for a job-seeker visa in Portugal. Of course, each case is unique, so don't hesitate to consult the official website or ask for professional advice for personalized information. Good luck on your Portuguese adventure - who knows, maybe your next big opportunity awaits you there!

Documentation required for a job search visa in Portugal

1. Valid passport

  • What you need: A passport valid for at least six months after the planned end of your stay in Portugal, with at least two blank pages for visas.
  • Why it's important: Your passport is proof of your identity and nationality. Blank pages are required for entry and exit stamps.

2. Visa application form

  • What you need: A completed and signed application form.
  • Why it's important: This official document summarizes your personal information and the purpose of your trip, essential for the evaluation process.

3. Passport-size photos

  • What you need: Two recent passport-size photographs.
  • Why it's important: These photos are used to officially identify you for the purposes of your application.

4. Proof of accommodation

  • What you need: A document proving your place of residence in Portugal, such as a rental contract, a letter of invitation from a friend or relative, or a hotel reservation.
  • Why it's important: This shows the authorities that you have a safe place to live while you look for work.

5. Proof of financial means

  • What you need: Bank statements or other proof that you have sufficient funds to support yourself during your job search.
  • Why it's important: These documents ensure that you won't become a burden on the state during your stay.

6. Health insurance

  • What you need: Proof of valid health insurance covering you in Portugal.
  • Why it's important: Health insurance is essential to cover any medical expenses you may incur during your stay.

7. Criminal record certificate

  • What you need: An official document from your country of origin certifying that you have no criminal record.
  • Why it's important: This proves that you are a law-abiding citizen, an essential criterion for obtaining a visa.

8. Curriculum vitae (CV)

  • What you need: An up-to-date CV outlining your educational qualifications and professional experience.
  • Why it's important: Your CV helps potential employers to quickly assess your suitability for the Portuguese job market.

9. Cover letter

  • What you need: A letter outlining your intentions to find a job in Portugal and how your skills and experience match the Portuguese job market.
  • Why it's important: This letter personalizes your application and underlines your commitment to your professional project in Portugal.

Remember to use chatgpt or an AI tool to help you write a good cover letter.

10. Certified translations

  • What you need: Certified translations for all documents not written in Portuguese.
  • Why it's important: Certified translations ensure that all documents are comprehensible to the Portuguese authorities, making it easier to assess your application.

11. Proof of language skills

  • What you need: A document proving your proficiency in Portuguese, English or Spanish. This can be a language diploma, a certificate from a language course, or any other official document proving your language level.
  • Why it's important: As communication is essential in the professional world, demonstrating that you can express yourself and understand one of the languages commonly used in Portugal is essential for your integration and your job search.

12. Return flight booking

  • What you need: Proof of round-trip flight reservation. Make sure your ticket can be cancelled, to avoid any financial loss in the event of a change of plans.
  • Why it's important : Some embassies and consulates require this proof to make sure that you intend to leave the country if you don't find a job. It also shows that you have made the necessary arrangements for your return.

With these well-prepared documents, you put all the chances on your side for a successful visa application. Make sure everything is in order, and good luck with your application!

How to apply for a job-seeker's visa in Portugal

Step 1: Fill in the IEFP form

First and foremost, register with the Institute for Employment and Professional Training (IEFP) by filling in an online form. This "Declaration of interest in registering with IEFP" is a prerequisite for starting your professional adventure in Portugal.

  • Where can I find it? Access the form on the IEFP website (
  • Why is this important? This step shows the Portuguese authorities that you are serious about finding a job in Portugal.

Application form for a visa to work in Portugal

You must fill out an online form " DECLARATION OF INTEREST FOR IEFP REGISTRATION "in which you declare that after entering the country, the Portuguese intend to register with the Institute for Employment and Vocational Training to look for work.

Link to IEFP form : Pedido de Visto de Procura de Trabalho (

Step 2: Applying for a Jobseeker's Visa

Once you've completed the IEFP form and registered your intention, you're ready to officially apply for your job-seeker visa.

  • How to proceed? You can make this request online via the link provided ( or by making an appointment with the nearest Portuguese consulate.
  • Documents required : Prepare all required documents, including your valid passport, IEFP expression of interest, proof of professional skills and experience, health insurance, passport photos, flight reservations, and proof of accommodation in Portugal.

The Consular Rendezvous

The success of your application depends largely on the consular interview. Make sure that the information you provide on your IEFP form is consistent with what you say at the interview.

  • Preparation: Be prepared to discuss your job search plans in Portugal, demonstrating how your skills can meet the needs of the Portuguese job market.
  • Advice : Clarity and honesty are essential. Show that you have a realistic plan for finding a job in Portugal.

Duration of the visa to work in Portugal

The duration of the work-seeking visa in Portugal is designed to give applicants sufficient time to find a job and settle in the country. Typically, this visa is valid for an initial period of 120 days (about 4 months). This duration is designed to be long enough to allow a thorough job search, yet short enough to ensure that candidates are actively engaged in their quest for professional opportunities.

This initial term is renewable once for a period of 60 days from Portuguese territory. This means that the beneficiary will have 180 days to find a suitable job in Portugal and obtain a work contract from your potential employer.

After 6 monthsIf the holder of a job-seeker's visa is unable to find a job within the period of validity of the visa, he or she must leave Portugal, and will not be able to return under the same visa, until the visa expires. an entire year from the date of departure from Portuguese territory.

Key points to remember

  • Initial duration : 120 days, offering the flexibility to explore the Portuguese job market.
  • Objective: The duration is balanced to encourage an active job search, while providing enough time to navigate the job market, participate in interviews, and potentially begin the process of applying for a job offer.

Possibility of renewal or change of status

If, during this period, you find a job in Portugal, you can then start the process of changing your visa status or obtaining a residence permit adapted to your employment situation. This usually involves providing proof of employment, such as an employment contract, to the competent authority to transform your job-seeking visa into a more permanent residence permit.

Practical advice

  • Planning : Start your job search as soon as possible to maximize your chances of success while your visa is valid.
  • Documentation : Keep all documents relating to your job search and potential job offers in order, as they may be required for any application to change your visa status.
  • Consultation : Consider consulting a immigration or a specialist lawyer to understand the options available after your job-seeker visa expires, especially if you've found a job or are close to doing so.

How to find a job in Portugal!

In Portugal, looking for work is a bit like going on an adventure. The country is known for its beautiful beaches, mouth-watering cuisine and, perhaps even now, your next great professional opportunity. Portugal's economy is growing fast, so it needs new talent in many fields. So how do you go about finding the right Portuguese job for you? Which jobs don't require you to queue at the door? Here's a brief overview.

Online job search in Portugal : Job boards are a good place to start. Do you know or LinkedIn? Ideal for narrowing down ads by experience, position or even city. Open 24 hours a day, it's the job supermarket.

Exchange and interact Events such as job fairs, professional meetings or simply a coffee to network are excellent ways to meet people who can put you on the path to a job. Don't forget to use professional social networks such as LinkedIn. Sometimes, a little conversation can go a long way.

Knock on every door : It can sometimes be useful to send your CV even if there's no job offer. Nothing ventured, nothing gained, as the saying goes? Show your skills to the companies that interest you.

Growth sectors and jobs in demand in Portugal

The Portuguese job market in 2024 continues to reflect global trends, with increased demand in the technology, service and tourism sectors. Portugal stands out for hosting international companies and startups, creating a dynamic and diverse environment for professionals. Here's an overview of the most in-demand jobs in Portugal.

But first, here's the list of jobs in the job search visa application form:

  • Architects, urban planners and designers
  • Biologos, Botanists, Zoologos
  • Electrical, electronics and telecommunications engineers
  • Industrial, civil, mechanical, mining and metallurgical engineers
  • Agricultural, forestry and environmental engineers
  • Specialists in finance, accounting, management, marketing and public relations
  • Legal and social specialists (lawyers, economists, psychologists, journalists, translators, etc.)
  • Physicists, chemists, mathematicians and statisticians
  • General practitioners and specialists
  • Nurses and nursing assistants
  • Pharmacists
  • Health professionals (physiotherapists, nutritionists, therapists, etc.)
  • Nurses and family assistants
  • Veterinarians and veterinary assistants
  • Teacher
  • Education aids
  • Analysts and programmers (software, web and applications)
  • IT experts and operators
  • Telecommunications technicians
  • Cultural and religious technicians (librarians, museum curators, photographers, decorators, etc.)
  • Performing artists and workers
  • Physical and sports technicians (athletes, trainers, instructors, etc.)
  • Office, administration and secretaries
  • Call center and call center staff
  • Chefs and cooks
  • Kitchen helpers and meal preparers
  • Bakers and confectioners
  • Waiters and bar staff
  • Hotel receptionist
  • Hairdressers, beauticians, masseuses and the like
  • Sales clerks and cashiers
  • Security and security personnel (guards, porters, etc.)
  • Agriculture, animal production and forestry workers
  • Fishing and aquaculture workers
  • Responsible for the mining, manufacturing and construction industries
  • Basic structural construction workers (masons, calceteiros, reinforced concrete workers, carpenters)
  • Construction finishers (tilers, plasterers, plumbers, painters, etc.)
  • Metallurgists, metal workers (builders, welders, locksmiths, etc.)
  • Electrical and electronics workers
  • Food processing workers (meat and fish preparation, canning, etc.)
  • Clothing and footwear industry workers (tailors, shoemakers, etc.)
  • Machine operators in the mining, manufacturing and construction industries
  • Vehicle mechanics, equipment and repairers
  • Warehouse and logistics employees
  • Locomotive drivers and similar
  • Car, van and motorcycle drivers
  • Heavy vehicle and bus drivers
  • Cleaners and housekeepers

Growth sectors and jobs in greatest demand

Information technology and software

Portugal's technology industry is experiencing sustained growth, driven by the installation of numerous international companies and the emergence of innovative startups. Profiles in high demand include :

  • Web developers (front-end and back-end): with growing demand for skills in software development, mobile applications and web solutions.
  • Cybersecurity specialists In the face of increasing cyberthreats, IT security skills are increasingly valued.
  • Experts in big data and data analysis The ability to interpret and exploit large data sets is essential to guide strategic business decisions.

Tourism and hospitality

Portugal, with its rich culture and varied landscapes, continues to attract visitors from all over the world, generating strong demand for tourism and hospitality professionals:

  • Reception staff These include waiters, barmen and receptionists, particularly in tourist areas like Lisbon, Porto and the Algarve.
  • Tourist establishment managers to supervise the smooth running of hotels, inns and other accommodation.

Call centers

Customer care centers, especially for international markets, are an important sector in Portugal. They are mainly looking for :

  • Customer service agents Our mission: to provide assistance and support to a global customer base, requiring a command of English and, ideally, other European languages.

Language teaching

With English as an essential global skill, teaching this language remains a notable opportunity:

  • English teachers In private schools and language centers, to meet the growing demand for English language learning at all levels.

Real estate sector

The dynamism of the Portuguese real estate market opens up prospects for :

  • Real estate agents knowledge of market trends, local regulations and negotiation skills are crucial to success in this field.

Jobs for digital nomads

Portugal has also positioned itself as a preferred destination for remote workers, thanks to its high-quality infrastructure and attractive living environment. Areas of activity include:

  • Digital marketing and social network management to support companies' online visibility.
  • Graphic design and content creation Creative minds and copywriters find an environment conducive to inspiration.

Glossary and words to remember

Here is a glossary of terms commonly used in the context of immigration, visas and employment in Portugal. This glossary aims to clarify certain concepts for those considering moving to and working in Portugal.

  • Autorização de Residência (Residence permit) : Permit issued by the Portuguese authorities authorizing a foreigner to reside in Portugal for a fixed or indefinite period. This status is often required after entering the country on a long-stay visa.
  • Visto de Longa Duração (Long-stay visa) : This visa allows you to stay in Portugal for more than three months. It is necessary for people wishing to work, study or join family members in Portugal.
  • Visto de Procura de Emprego (Visa de recherche d'emploi) : A specific type of visa that allows its holder to stay temporarily in Portugal for the purpose of seeking employment.
  • IEFP (Instituto do Emprego e Formação Profissional) Institut de l'Emploi et de la Formation Professionnelle. This government agency provides job search support services and vocational training programs.
  • NIF (Número de Identificação Fiscal) Tax identification number. This is a unique number required for almost all financial and administrative transactions in Portugal, including opening a bank account, signing an employment contract or buying/selling real estate.
  • SEF (Serviço de Estrangeiros e Fronteiras) Service des Étrangers et des Frontières. This is the government agency responsible for controlling immigration and issuing residence permits for foreigners residing in Portugal.
  • Contrato de Trabalho (Contract of employment) : Legal agreement between an employer and an employee defining the terms and conditions of employment, including salary, hours of work, and job responsibilities.
  • Segurança Social (Social Security): Insurance system that provides assistance to citizens and residents in times of need, including retirement, health benefits and unemployment. Workers and employers contribute to this system through monthly contributions.
  • Cidadão Estrangeiro (Foreign citizen) : Term designating a person who is not a Portuguese citizen but who resides or works in Portugal, under certain legal conditions.
  • Título de Residência (Residence permit) : Official document issued by the SEF attesting to the right to reside in Portugal. It is required for foreigners wishing to stay in the country for an extended period.

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