Italy is offering "digital nomad" visas. Here's how to apply.

Ever dream of working from the picturesque Amalfi Coast? You might now be able to with a new “digital nomad” visa that Italy is offering foreigners who wish to pack up their laptops and venture abroad.

The Italian government signed the program into law in March 2022, but only opened applications on April 5 — two years later. In doing so, Italy follows dozens of other countries in establishing a program to attract foreign remote workers who want to experience a European lifestyle while keeping their earnings tied to U.S.-based companies. 

Drawing foreigners in can help boost local economies, particularly in smaller Italian towns where populations are dwindling as local residents age. But some experts warn that an influx of people earning U.S. salaries could drive up prices for local residents earning far less.  

The new digital nomad visas are valid for one year, and can be renewed.

Am I eligible?

Applicants must meet a range of criteria in order to be eligible for the visas. For one, a worker must have the ability to do their job remotely, using a laptop or other tech tools. Workers must also be able to provide proof of employment or contract work with a firm based outside of Italy. Both employees of companies and freelance workers are invited to apply. 

Candidates must have either a college-level degree or the equivalent in job experience. Additionally, a worker must be able to demonstrate that they’ve perviously worked remotely for a period of at least six months. 

There’s an income threshold, too, of roughly $30,000 to apply. And, you can’t have been convicted of a crime within the past five years. You must also have health insurance, and be able to demonstrate that you have a place to live in Italy.

How do I apply?

Visit your local Italian consulate’s website for instructions, which vary by location. While application forms vary by consulate, the Italian consulate in New York has a form on its site that asks for basic information like one’s place of birth and passport information.

The application fee is just over $120, according to Italian law firm Studio Legale Metta. 

Within eight days of arrival in Italy, digital nomads must also apply for a residence permit.

Previously Italy had a 90 day rule that meant visitors could only stay for that long without a work visa. 

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