Applying for a Working Holiday Visa to Portugal

It’s time for me to move to Europe, and I decided Portugal was going to be where I landed for a while. Here are the steps I took in order to get a Portugese Working Holiday Visa as a Canadian. 

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Signed on 3 May 2018, the memorandum between Canada and Portugal has the primary objective to promote youth mobility, for youth aged between 18 and 35, to travel and work.

The maximum number of visas/entry permits is four hundred (400) to be granted to Canadian citizens for temporary stays of up to twelve (12) months in Portugal.

See this website for more details: Youth Mobility Details

Canadian - Portugal Working Holiday Visa Requirements

To work/travel in Portugal through the Working Holiday Portugal, you must:

  • -be a Canadian citizen
  • -be 18-35 years old (inclusive), and
  • -have a valid Canadian passport

Other requirements may apply, check Portugal’s website for more details.

What the Working Holiday Visa Allows

This visa allows you to:

  • -Live in Portugal for up to one year
  • -Work on a short term basis (Max. 6 months)
  • -Study for up to four months
  • -Travel to other countries within the Schengen area without a visitor visa

Step 1: Gather Your Documents

There are a few documents you need to put together in order to apply for the Working Holiday Visa to Portugal from Canada. Here is an outline of all the documents and what I used to put my application together.

Application: Create an account on the new E-Visa Portal

Passport: A valid Passport (validity must extend until at least 3 months after the end of a planned journey);

Insurance: Copy of your medical and travel insurance covering comprehensive medical, hospitalization and repatriation expenses for the duration of the stay; (need a minimum of $30,000 coverage). 

For my insurance, I typically use Manulife CoverMe for my trips. I bought 6 months of coverage from Manulife and used a printout of that for my application.

Accommodation: Available contact details for the place of accommodation in Portugal (address, phone numbers, and email). You can write in a hostel/hotel’s address if you have booked a stay here. 

Background Check: Police certificate issued by the authorities of any country the applicant has resided for over one year. I used Certn online service. It cost $60 and I got my results the next business day.

Form: Authorisation for the Portuguese authorities to consult police records within the Schengen area. This form will become available via the portal process as explained in the application step. 

Declaration Letter: Letter explaining the reasons for applying for this Visa (see below for example)

Bank Statement: Evidence of sufficient funds: certified copy of a bank statement. I used a screenshot of my RBC bank dashboard to show I had approximately $5k of savings. The actual amount isn’t listed anywhere.

If applying for school: Evidence of relevant educational qualifications;

Envelope: Self-addressed envelope for the return of the passport. *I gave my passport with my application so I anxiously waited until I got the email it was ready*

Example of a Declaration Letter:

<date>

Dear Consulado Geral de Portugal,

I am writing to express my interest and supplementary documentation to receive a Youth Mobility Visa for Portugal beginning for Jan 9, 2022. 

During the course of my stay, my intention is to travel and work incidentally.

I appreciate your review of my visa application for Youth Mobility Visa.

Obrigada, 

Amanda Perkins

Step 2: Contact the Portugese Consulate

Once you have completed the e-visa, you wait until you hear about the acceptance or rejection. 

The Toronto Embassy Office is located at:

438 University Avenue, Suite 1400, box 41, Toronto, ON M5G 2K8 Canada

If you have any questions, you can email this embassy email  consulado.toronto@mne.pt and they will get back to you in 3 to 5 business days (usually).

Step 3: Wait

I sent my documents to the consulate on December 16, 2021 and received my visa on Jan 18th, 2022. I would allow for approximately 4 weeks.

I had planned to leave by Jan 8, 2022, however the visa was delayed so that resulted in having to cancel my flights and accommodation so if you are nervous about the timing, book your flights and accommodations that are flexible to change (even if you have to pay a little more) so that you can make adjustments if you need to.

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