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The 10 reasons to live in Portugal

The 10 reasons to live in Portugal

It's good to live in Portugal! That's what millions of tourists who discover the country every year think. And even more so for the thousands of expatriates who drop their luggage here after discovering their dream destination.

Portugal has become more and more popular over the years. The country benefits from major assets that give it a unique status and make it an incomparable destination where it feels good to live.

Discover the 10 reasons why so many people come to live in Portugal.

1. A unique quality of life in Europe

There is a certain serenity here. People take the time to enjoy the beautiful things. The Portuguese people are known for their legendary hospitality and kindness. He does not wait for you to adapt to him, he will automatically make a gesture towards you and “this at any age”, in your language and with an always present and benevolent smile.

3. A sunny weather 300 days a year (9 months a year)

You will be surprised by the brightness of the sky almost all year round. Lisbon is nicknamed the City of Light with 2786 hours of sunshine per year. Those looking for vitamin D will be delighted. The climate is generally very pleasant, Mediterranean type, mild, warm, sunny and well-tempered by the oceanic climate.

5. Golf, surfing, water sports, horse riding, skiing : a wealth of leisure activities

Knowing that Portugal has 800 km of coastline, it will not be surprising that water sports are very popular. Here are the most popular sports:

Surf
Nazaré: In 2011, Garret McNamara surfed the largest wave ever certified by the Billabong XXL Big Wave Awards, giving Nazaré its international reputation as a stormy sea with huge waves.

Read More

Golf
Portugal has 90 courses from North to South recognised by the most experienced professionals in the world. They offer a variety of routes and great challenges in terms of play. It is even said that “Playing golf in Portugal remains engraved in the memory of those who experience it”. From 2014 to 2018, Portugal was voted the best golf destination in the world by the World Golf Awards. 42 golf courses are located in the Algarve, one of the favourite destinations for golfers in Europe.

Ski
And yes, you can even ski in Portugal! 300 km from Lisbon, in the district of Guarda in the Serra da Estrela at an altitude of 1984 metres, is the ski resort of Vodafone. It includes no less than 5 ski lifts, including 1 chairlift for 9 slopes with a total of 7.7 km of skiable area.

Trekking
Portugal has many natural areas that are ideal for hiking, walking or mountain biking. Parks are often equipped with sports equipment as part of a fitness trail, so you can do some outdoor fitness exercises during your walks.

7. Efficient and developing health system

Portugal has access to a quality health system (12th in the OECD ranking).

Unlike Switzerland, every resident in Portugal is covered free of charge by the public health system.

Read More

The public health system
The public services responsible for providing care to the population are organized within the National Health Service (NHS).

Strengths of the Portuguese public health system:

  • The Portuguese hospital network is composed of large, modern and well-equipped hospitals. The public system offers an excellent quality of care.
  • The costs are covered by the Portuguese social security system and you only pay a moderating fee according to the consultation.
  • Here are some examples of prices related to the moderating fees:
  • 4,50 € Consultation with non-specialised family doctor
  • 7.00 € Specialized consulting
  • 16.00 € Emergency service for surgeons
  • 14.00 € Emergency service basic doctor
  • Drugs are covered at 20, 40, 70 and 100% depending on the disease.
  • Generic drugs are reimbursed with an additional 10%.
  • Weaknesses in the Portuguese public health system:
  • Dental and optical care are slightly reimbursed
  • You do not choose your attending doctor


The private health system

Comparable to the complementary insurances in Switzerland, the private health system is completely independent of the public system. In this sector, Portuguese social security does not intervene. It is a system parallel to the public system. All costs are your responsibility unless you opt for local private insurance.

In Portugal, there are 107 private hospitals, as many as public hospitals. They are modern, mostly equipped with the latest medical equipment technologies and above all with an impeccable organization that avoids long waiting times.

Private insurance

Private insurance adapts its rates to age and takes into account health risks. Private insurance companies offer many products. It is therefore appropriate for you to choose those that correspond to your medical situation and needs.

9. A very fine gastronomy

Portuguese cuisine is considered one of the richest in the world thanks to its variety of products and influences. It is based on a Mediterranean cuisine made of popular dishes.

While meat is widely appreciated, Portuguese cuisine revolves largely around the quality and freshness of its fish and seafood.

Each specialty is accompanied by an appropriate wine. Indeed, all of Portugal produces wines and while Port is the most famous, the wines of the Douro and Alentejo, among others, are no less remarkable.

2. A low cost of living

In 2019, the minimum wage in Portugal is EUR 600. The average salary is EUR 943.
For comparison, you will buy there:

  • 1 coffee at EUR 0.75
  • 1 baguette of bread for EUR 0.70
  • 1.5 litre of Coca-Cola at EUR 0.95
  • 1 cinema ticket at EUR 6.70
  • 1 daily special at the restaurant for EUR 7.00
  • 1 18-hole golf course at EUR 40.00
Read More

The low cost of living in Portugal makes it a very attractive country for people with modest incomes who want to significantly improve their quality of life. Thus, it is not complicated to live in Portugal with less than EUR 1500 per month.

4. The security

The crime rate in Portugal (3,983 per 100,000 inhabitants) is relatively low compared to the European average of 7,232
Among 162 nations, Portugal is considered the 3rd most peaceful country in the world, according to the 2019 Global Peace Index, (http://visionofhumanity.org/indexes/global-peace-index/)

  • Switzerland: 11th
  • Germany: 22nd
  • Belgium: 18th
  • Spain: 32nd
  • Italy: 39th
  • France: 60th

6. Mobility and its infrastructures

Airports
Portugal has about 10 airports on its territory (including Madeira and the Azores), 4 of which are international. The main international airports are therefore Lisbon-Portela, Porto Airport and Faro Airport.
In addition, 5 low-cost airlines each serve one or more of them. In 2018 there were more than 50 million passengers.

Read More

The road
The road network is in good condition and traffic is perfectly good throughout the country.
Speed limits are the following: 120 km/h on motorways, 100 km/h on main roads (symbolized IP or IC), 90 km/h on conventional national roads and 50 km/h in cities and towns. There is a charge for motorways.

The train (comboio)
Most people take the train to travel around Lisbon or to connect the capital to Coimbra-Guarda, Porto or Faro. There are several categories of trains: Intercidades (the fastest), Regionais/Urbano (Regional), which constitute the most extensive network, and Inter-Regionais (omnibus). There is also the Alfa Pendular, Portugal’s TGV, which links the far south (Faro) to the far north (Braga) via Lisbon, Coimbra and Porto (among other cities).

The bus (autocarro)
Portugal has a bus network served by large comfortable coaches. Rede Expressos (by far the most widespread) operates direct connections between major cities. There is even wifi on board many buses! (For links between Portuguese cities: www.transpor.pt.)

Car rental
Car rental is the ideal solution for those who value their freedom. We will be able to advise you to benefit from the best rates and avoid any unpleasant surprises.

Subway in Portugal
The subway is present in some Portuguese cities such as Lisbon and Porto. It is a reliable and fast way to visit the country’s major cities from one end of the other.

Tramways and funiculars
Portugal also has a large network of tramways and emblematic funiculars that allow you to travel around the city.

8. The beauty of the landscapes

From green valleys of pines and vines to arid plains covered with olive trees and cork oaks, from long sandy beaches to coves enclosed in cliffs, Portugal offers an incomparable diversity of landscapes from north to south.

Read More

On the side of the capital Lisbon, the area including the wonderful Serra da Sintra or the Arrábida Natural Park also offers many advantages for lovers of hiking (on foot, by bike, on horseback…) or trekking and climbing, not to mention golf, which remains one of the great attractions of the Costa do Estoril. As for the nature reserves (Tagus and Sado estuaries), they provide an excellent opportunity to discover an almost unspoilt nature by observing birds or dolphins in their respective ecosystems.

In Porto, it is in the region bounded by the Douro valley that the wine estates that cultivate the vines used for wine production are located. In 2001, the whole region was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. And is an ideal spot for long and beautiful walks.

Finally, in the Algarve, hiking is also very famous. From the green valleys to the peaks of the Monchique or Caldeirão hills, from the thermal waters of the Caldas de Monchique to the banks of the Rio Guadiana that penetrate the continent, from long stretches of fine sand to coves enclosed in cliffs jagged by the sea, the region offers, from east to west, a diversity of landscapes that make it charming, original and surprising.

10. Help to people

As the Portuguese minimum wage is relatively low, personal assistance services are available and will allow you to offer you home help that will improve your daily comfort. Initially, for cleaning, cooking and DIY, and perhaps later for services to assist the elderly (nursing care, household shopping, etc.).

1. A unique quality of life in Europe

There is a certain serenity here. People take the time to enjoy the beautiful things. The Portuguese people are known for their legendary hospitality and kindness. He does not wait for you to adapt to him, he will automatically make a gesture towards you and “this at any age”, in your language and with an always present and benevolent smile.

2. A low cost of living

In 2019, the minimum wage in Portugal is EUR 600. The average salary is EUR 943.
For comparison, you will buy there:

  • 1 coffee at EUR 0.75
  • 1 baguette of bread for EUR 0.70
  • 1.5 litre of Coca-Cola at EUR 0.95
  • 1 cinema ticket at EUR 6.70
  • 1 daily special at the restaurant for EUR 7.00
  • 1 18-hole golf course at EUR 40.00
Read More

The low cost of living in Portugal makes it a very attractive country for people with modest incomes who want to significantly improve their quality of life. Thus, it is not complicated to live in Portugal with less than EUR 1500 per month.

3. A sunny weather 300 days a year (9 months a year)

You will be surprised by the brightness of the sky almost all year round. Lisbon is nicknamed the City of Light with 2786 hours of sunshine per year. Those looking for vitamin D will be delighted. The climate is generally very pleasant, Mediterranean type, mild, warm, sunny and well-tempered by the oceanic climate.

4. The security

The crime rate in Portugal (3,983 per 100,000 inhabitants) is relatively low compared to the European average of 7,232
Among 162 nations, Portugal is considered the 3rd most peaceful country in the world, according to the 2019 Global Peace Index, (http://visionofhumanity.org/indexes/global-peace-index/)

  • Switzerland: 11th
  • Germany: 22nd
  • Belgium: 18th
  • Spain: 32nd
  • Italy: 39th
  • France: 60th

5. Golf, surfing, water sports, horse riding, skiing : a wealth of leisure activities

Knowing that Portugal has 800 km of coastline, it will not be surprising that water sports are very popular. Here are the most popular sports:

Surf
Nazaré: In 2011, Garret McNamara surfed the largest wave ever certified by the Billabong XXL Big Wave Awards, giving Nazaré its international reputation as a stormy sea with huge waves.

Read More

Golf
Portugal has 90 courses from North to South recognised by the most experienced professionals in the world. They offer a variety of routes and great challenges in terms of play. It is even said that “Playing golf in Portugal remains engraved in the memory of those who experience it”. From 2014 to 2018, Portugal was voted the best golf destination in the world by the World Golf Awards. 42 golf courses are located in the Algarve, one of the favourite destinations for golfers in Europe.

Ski
And yes, you can even ski in Portugal! 300 km from Lisbon, in the district of Guarda in the Serra da Estrela at an altitude of 1984 metres, is the ski resort of Vodafone. It includes no less than 5 ski lifts, including 1 chairlift for 9 slopes with a total of 7.7 km of skiable area.

Trekking
Portugal has many natural areas that are ideal for hiking, walking or mountain biking. Parks are often equipped with sports equipment as part of a fitness trail, so you can do some outdoor fitness exercises during your walks.

6. Mobility and its infrastructures

Airports
Portugal has about 10 airports on its territory (including Madeira and the Azores), 4 of which are international. The main international airports are therefore Lisbon-Portela, Porto Airport and Faro Airport.
In addition, 5 low-cost airlines each serve one or more of them. In 2018 there were more than 50 million passengers.

Read More

The road
The road network is in good condition and traffic is perfectly good throughout the country.
Speed limits are the following: 120 km/h on motorways, 100 km/h on main roads (symbolized IP or IC), 90 km/h on conventional national roads and 50 km/h in cities and towns. There is a charge for motorways.

The train (comboio)
Most people take the train to travel around Lisbon or to connect the capital to Coimbra-Guarda, Porto or Faro. There are several categories of trains: Intercidades (the fastest), Regionais/Urbano (Regional), which constitute the most extensive network, and Inter-Regionais (omnibus). There is also the Alfa Pendular, Portugal’s TGV, which links the far south (Faro) to the far north (Braga) via Lisbon, Coimbra and Porto (among other cities).

The bus (autocarro)
Portugal has a bus network served by large comfortable coaches. Rede Expressos (by far the most widespread) operates direct connections between major cities. There is even wifi on board many buses! (For links between Portuguese cities: www.transpor.pt.)

Car rental
Car rental is the ideal solution for those who value their freedom. We will be able to advise you to benefit from the best rates and avoid any unpleasant surprises.

Subway in Portugal
The subway is present in some Portuguese cities such as Lisbon and Porto. It is a reliable and fast way to visit the country’s major cities from one end of the other.

Tramways and funiculars
Portugal also has a large network of tramways and emblematic funiculars that allow you to travel around the city.

7. Efficient and developing health system

Portugal has access to a quality health system (12th in the OECD ranking).

Unlike Switzerland, every resident in Portugal is covered free of charge by the public health system.

Read More

The public health system
The public services responsible for providing care to the population are organized within the National Health Service (NHS).

Strengths of the Portuguese public health system:

  • The Portuguese hospital network is composed of large, modern and well-equipped hospitals. The public system offers an excellent quality of care.
  • The costs are covered by the Portuguese social security system and you only pay a moderating fee according to the consultation.
  • Here are some examples of prices related to the moderating fees:
  • 4,50 € Consultation with non-specialised family doctor
  • 7.00 € Specialized consulting
  • 16.00 € Emergency service for surgeons
  • 14.00 € Emergency service basic doctor
  • Drugs are covered at 20, 40, 70 and 100% depending on the disease.
  • Generic drugs are reimbursed with an additional 10%.
  • Weaknesses in the Portuguese public health system:
  • Dental and optical care are slightly reimbursed
  • You do not choose your attending doctor


The private health system

Comparable to the complementary insurances in Switzerland, the private health system is completely independent of the public system. In this sector, Portuguese social security does not intervene. It is a system parallel to the public system. All costs are your responsibility unless you opt for local private insurance.

In Portugal, there are 107 private hospitals, as many as public hospitals. They are modern, mostly equipped with the latest medical equipment technologies and above all with an impeccable organization that avoids long waiting times.

Private insurance

Private insurance adapts its rates to age and takes into account health risks. Private insurance companies offer many products. It is therefore appropriate for you to choose those that correspond to your medical situation and needs.

8. The beauty of the landscapes

From green valleys of pines and vines to arid plains covered with olive trees and cork oaks, from long sandy beaches to coves enclosed in cliffs, Portugal offers an incomparable diversity of landscapes from north to south.

Read More

On the side of the capital Lisbon, the area including the wonderful Serra da Sintra or the Arrábida Natural Park also offers many advantages for lovers of hiking (on foot, by bike, on horseback…) or trekking and climbing, not to mention golf, which remains one of the great attractions of the Costa do Estoril. As for the nature reserves (Tagus and Sado estuaries), they provide an excellent opportunity to discover an almost unspoilt nature by observing birds or dolphins in their respective ecosystems.

In Porto, it is in the region bounded by the Douro valley that the wine estates that cultivate the vines used for wine production are located. In 2001, the whole region was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. And is an ideal spot for long and beautiful walks.

Finally, in the Algarve, hiking is also very famous. From the green valleys to the peaks of the Monchique or Caldeirão hills, from the thermal waters of the Caldas de Monchique to the banks of the Rio Guadiana that penetrate the continent, from long stretches of fine sand to coves enclosed in cliffs jagged by the sea, the region offers, from east to west, a diversity of landscapes that make it charming, original and surprising.

9. A very fine gastronomy

Portuguese cuisine is considered one of the richest in the world thanks to its variety of products and influences. It is based on a Mediterranean cuisine made of popular dishes.

While meat is widely appreciated, Portuguese cuisine revolves largely around the quality and freshness of its fish and seafood.

Each specialty is accompanied by an appropriate wine. Indeed, all of Portugal produces wines and while Port is the most famous, the wines of the Douro and Alentejo, among others, are no less remarkable.

10. Help to people

As the Portuguese minimum wage is relatively low, personal assistance services are available and will allow you to offer you home help that will improve your daily comfort. Initially, for cleaning, cooking and DIY, and perhaps later for services to assist the elderly (nursing care, household shopping, etc.).

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