4 ways to move to Europe without spending too much money

4 ways to move to Europe without spending too much money

Yuri Vilensky Co-founder of the Hello Move migration platform. Helped 250 people to move abroad.

To legally reside abroad for more than 90 days in a row, you must obtain a temporary residence permit (residence permit). The latter can be extended and, as a result, obtain a permanent residence permit (permanent residence) and even citizenship of a foreign state.

There are different options for obtaining a residence permit. Some of them are quite complex. For example, a document can be issued by Residence Permits / Enterprise Greece for investments in real estate in the country for significant amounts, on average from 250,000 euros (almost 21 million rubles). Of course, not everyone can afford it. As well as marrying a foreigner, reuniting with a spouse abroad or getting permanent residence due to ethnic roots.

Therefore, we will analyze more interesting opportunities that will be available to a larger number of people.

1. Startup visa

An interesting option to move your business abroad or start a new project.

Who is it for

For adult entrepreneurs with an innovative startup idea and a working prototype. And candidates must have start-up capital (usually several living wages in a bank account) and have no criminal record.

Where does

In 20 European countries. Specific application conditions and requirements differ for Europe Startup and Entrepreneur Visa Index / Nano Globals from country to country.

What is needed

A business plan for an innovative startup that solves any social, economic or environmental problem. If the enterprise is not yet operational, a prototype of the product is needed. If the business is active, indicators that confirm that the service or product is popular. Experts call it traction.

Let's analyze the specific requirements for business plans using the example of Latvia. The project must be new Startup Visa / Magnetic Latvia for the country's market. It is desirable that it is not focused on the capital; the state wants to develop the infrastructure of small towns. The advantage will be the connection of business with port activities: special economic zones have been created around the two ports, which are important for the government. The business plan itself should include 15 pages and a short presentation describing the applicant and the project.

How to get a

When the business plan is ready, it must be sent to the authorized body for review. It is different in different countries. Thus, in Latvia the project is evaluated by Incubation (INK) program / Magnetic Latvia, one of 13 accredited business incubators. After the approval of the business plan, you need to send the documents to the consulate or visa center and obtain a residence permit for a period of one to five years with the possibility of extension.

2. Student visa

A good option for young people.

Who is it for

For adult school graduates, bachelors and masters. The applicant must have no criminal record.

Where does

In all European countries. But in some countries, a foreigner may not enroll in any educational program. For example, in Switzerland, only people who already have the right to stay in the country (for example, on a work visa) can receive the Recommendation of the Higher Education Council on Admission of Foreign Nationals to Medical Studies in Switzerland / Higher Education Council medical education.

What is needed

A document confirming admission to a foreign university. With this method of obtaining a residence permit, the most difficult thing is to enter and find money.

In most European countries, higher education is paid and quite expensive. So, to study in Sweden, Finland, Denmark or the Netherlands, you will have to pay Country Profiles / The European Commission from 7 to 25 thousand euros per year (1-2 million rubles). In France and Belgium, you can find options for 5-7 thousand euros per year (about half a million rubles), and in Poland, for three thousand euros (250 thousand rubles). There are free options, for example, in Greece Language Requirements / Study in Greece and the Czech Republic How to apply / Study in the Czech Republic, but for admission you need to know the language of the country.

To pay for studies, you will need significant personal funds, a scholarship or grant (one-time payment). The latter are issued by employers, foundations, universities, governments, ministries of foreign affairs or education, regional authorities. Information about potential sponsors can be found on the websites of universities, international educational organizations and government departments.

For the admission itself, you will need a diploma of secondary (for undergraduate) or higher education (for graduate and postgraduate studies), a portfolio, a letter of motivation and a certificate that confirms proficiency in a foreign language. The same documents will come in handy when applying for a scholarship or grant.

How to get a

To begin with, it is worth deciding on the country and the university, the size of the required scholarship and the methods of finding a sponsor will depend on this. When choosing a university, you can focus not only on personal preferences, but also on different ratings, for example, on the QS World University Rankings or THE World University Rankings.

The admission process itself will look something like this.

  1. Preparation of documents.It will not only be a diploma, but also a motivation letter with a portfolio. In the first, you need to tell about yourself and your desire to enter a university. The second will include achievements, projects, scientific publications and recommendations from teachers and employers.
  2. Passing the required exams.You will have to confirm your knowledge of a foreign language, the specific test will depend on the requirements of the university. Most likely, it will be IELTS or TOEFL for English, DELF for French, Test DAF for German. Some programs will also require additional exams. For example, for admission to law in some UK universities, you need to pass the Do I Need to Sit the Test / LNAT LNAT test.
  3. Filing an application.You need to register on the institution's website and upload documents in your personal account.
  4. Interview with a representative of the university.Some universities conduct interviews with candidates they like before making a decision.

The review usually takes from one week to two months.

Then you can apply for a scholarship or grant. She will need the same documents as for the university. The chances of receiving financial assistance are increased if there are scientific publications, an honors degree, proven proficiency in a foreign language and good references from teachers and employers.

After receiving a document confirming enrollment, you can apply for a visa through the consulate. A residence permit is issued for a year, and then renewed upon presentation of a document on the transition to the next course.

Students have the right to part-time jobs and work. After successful completion of the training, you can get a graduate visa. It gives the right to stay in the country from nine months to two years, look for a job or start your own business in order to extend the residence permit. After that, you can get permanent residence and citizenship.

3. Visa for talented

It aims to bring brains to the country.

Who is it for

People whose talent or knowledge is recognized. For example, scientists, artists, actors, writers, designers who can prove that their skills are highly valued. And, of course, they have no criminal record.

Where does

In Great Britain Apply for the Global Talent visa / GOV.UK (Global Talent) and France International talents and economic attractiveness / Official website of the French Visa Application Center (Passeport Talent). The first program is aimed only at finding talented people, while the second includes other categories, such as investing in French companies.

What is needed

Documentary evidence of talent. These can be diplomas, nominations, certificates, articles, recordings of speeches on forums, and so on. The documents must be international or directly related to leading Russian companies like Yandex. Publications, in turn, cannot be self-promotion, they must be someone else's reviews of the applicant's work.

Moreover, such evidence does not have an expiration date; some achievements from the beginning of a career can also be provided. Although, of course, it is better to show something fresher, for example, over the past 3-5 years.

How to get a

Let's look at the example of the UK, in which this program is narrower in nature and is less related to employment than in France. The whole process takes from five months to a year.

First, you need to choose one of two categories: Exceptional Talent or Exceptional Promise. The first option is more suitable for experienced professionals who have been doing something for a long time and have many achievements. The second one is for beginners who have already achieved serious success in some area, for example, they made a film that received international awards.

Then you need to collect all documents that can confirm knowledge, skills and achievements. You will also need three letters of recommendation to apply for a visa. They must be either from a British or international organization, or from a British national, necessarily a well-known specialist in some field.

All documents must be uploaded to the GOV.UK website and an application must be filled out there. After that, it is automatically sent to the Home Office of England and to government accredited organizations. The latter are divided by industry. Scientific achievements are assessed by Work in the UK as a researcher or academic leader (Global Talent visa) / GOV.UK by the British Academy, the Royal Academy of Engineering and the Royal Society of London, achievements in the field of art Work in the UK as a leader in arts and culture (Global Talent visa) / GOV.UK, Arts Council England, and in the field of digital technologies Work in the UK as a leader in digital technology (Global Talent visa) / GOV.UK, Tech Nation.

After approval from one of these organizations and the Ministry of Internal Affairs, you can take all documents to the visa center and wait for a visa. A residence permit is issued for a period of one to five years at the choice of the applicant with the possibility of extension and obtaining permanent residence.

4. Self-employed visa

It is similar to a startup visa, but there are differences.

Who is it for

For individual entrepreneurs with successful experience in creating and running a small business. For example, designers, programmers or freelance photographers.

The applicant must have no criminal record.

Where does

In the Netherlands. Similar programs are also available Self-employment or self-employment / France Visa Center in France, and visas for freelancers are issued in Estonia by Estonian Digital Nomad Visa / Republic of Estonia, e-Residency and Germany Visa for self-employment / Make it in Germany.

What is needed

Successful freelance business with case studies for clients from the Netherlands. This can be a website, a photography for a brand, a logo design, and so on.

Another important condition is a well thought out business plan. On the one hand, it should outline the prospects of the enterprise and its benefits for the country's economy, as well as confirm their competencies as a businessman. On the other hand, to show that the business started will provide sufficient income for living and working in the Netherlands. For example, a designer can describe how to find customers, the planned number of orders for a certain period and the income from them.

How to get a

First, you need to apply for an entry visa and residence permit at the Dutch consulate in St. Petersburg or the embassy in Moscow and submit your biometric data. After that, you need to send documents and a business plan to the Dutch Migration Service (IND) and pay the fee.

The business plan itself is assessed by the Self-employed person / Immigration and Naturalization Service by the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO) on the basis of three criteria: the prospects of the company, the benefits to the country and the experience of the business creator. The maximum you can score is 300 points, the minimum threshold for passing is 90 in total for all points. The final decision of the migration service mainly depends on the number of points.

The process usually takes 90 days to six months. If the application is approved, a residence permit is issued for two years with the right to extend it for a similar period. Then you can already get permanent residence and citizenship.