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Moving to Portugal … an Expat Guide

in Moving to … Expat Guides
Portugal - Indalo Transport

So you’re thinking of moving to Portugal? – click for Map Guide

So you’ve decided to become an expat, and you’ve opted to move to Portugal. Bravo, what a brilliant choice! This beautiful and exciting country certainly won’t disappoint, particularly if you’re an expat looking to immerse themselves in a truly vibrant culture, and where adventure awaits them every single day.

Portugal has an incredibly rich heritage, and expats can experience it all through a cornucopia of festivals, delectable local cuisines, superb sherries, stunning scenery, and breath-taking architecture. Because the Portuguese are particularly proud of their artistic traditions, you’ll never be far away from seeing something amazing or experiencing something genuinely exciting.

Cascais - Indalo Transport

A beautiful panorama of Cascais, Portugal

You’ll find Portugal is a haven for museums, galleries, film and music festivals, all celebrating the vibrancy and colour of Portuguese culture. You’ll get to soak up the drama, and laugh heartily, at Portugal’s traditional Revista, a humorous political satire play. You’ll also be able to marvel at the beautiful sounds of the traditional Fado music genre, and you may find yourself getting ready to dance the passionate Corridinho.

Portugal also offers the sports-loving expat an adventurous retreat to explore. Golfing, hiking, mountain biking, hunting, rambling, horse riding, it’s all here for the fit and healthy Brit to enjoy.

The food in Portugal is simple but full of flavour, and you’ll find that spices and herbs are added to dishes to give them that distinctive Portuguese flair which always delights your taste-buds.

With so much to see and do, Portugal really is a treasure trove of possibilities for the expat looking for a life that’s thrilling.

If you choose to move here, The Douro Valley, which has been described as heaven on earth, will be right on your doorstep. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage site, famous for its vineyards. The Cascais is also found in Portugal, it’s famous because the James Bond film, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, was filmed there.

If you’re still not entirely sure of whether Portugal is right for you, then why not check out our infographic? It’ll show you what to expect from this amazing country, and we’ve also created a little list of just some of the exciting things to do once you get there.

(All links in this article open in a new tab of your browser, so you don’t lose your place!)

Portugal Infographic - Indalo Transport


Things to do in Portugal

Lisbon - Indalo Transport

Ponte 25 de Abril, Lisbon

  • Take a private tour of the beautiful religious cities of Fatima, or Virgin Mary.
  • Discover the village of Monsanto, its cobbled streets, stone houses, pointed castles and wandering shepherds will transport you back in time
  • Get creative in the town of Funchal, where museums, gardens and art await
  • If you’re heading to Lisbon and love clubbing, check out Music Box, it’s the most popular destination for a great night out on the town


Indalo Transport’s Top 3 things you need to do to prepare for your move to Portugal

luggage - Indalo Transport

Now, are you sure you’ve packed everything?

  1. Book your removals to Portugal

When you have a moving date, and you’ve gone through all your belongings and worked out what it is you’d like to take with you to Portugal, contact several removals companies for quotes.

After you’ve got your quotes, do a little background research on the firms you’ve contacted, check out their customer reviews to see if they’re really as good as they say they are.

Check to see if the company is fully insured and have a look into whether they offer a packing service or can provide you with advice and guidance on becoming an expat.

Once you’ve taken into consideration all of these things, book with your chosen removals team as soon as possible, to make sure they’re still available to help you move.

Whilst you’re here, why not have a look at the services we offer, and our glowing customer reviews. Maybe we’ll be your first choice of getting your things safely to Portugal from the UK.

  1. Make sure you and your pet have all their documents

ferret - Indalo Transport

Sorry little guy, you’re not allowed in to Portugal, ferrets are banned!

As Britain is a member of the EU, you and your family don’t have to worry about filling in copious amounts of customs paperwork or having to obtain a work permit or visa.

You can enjoy living and working in Portugal for up to three months without having to apply for residency. All you need to hand is your passport, and if you have one, your driving licence.

If you have pets, there are a few things you need to do in order to make their journey, as well as yours, as smooth as possible.

  • Get your pet microchipped.
  • After your pet has been chipped, book them in as soon as possible for a rabies vaccination. The reason why you need to do this asap is because you must wait 21 days after it has been done before moving abroad.
  • Some vets only give one course of vaccinations, but some advise to give two courses, therefore, the sooner it’s done, the sooner you can move.
  • Ask your vet for a Pet Passport. Just like our passports, this is a little book, complete with photo page to help people identify your pet. It is also a handy record of when your pet will need to get revaccinated for rabies.

Unfortunately, Portugal won’t allow ferrets into the country, they have been banned as domestic pets to avoid cross breeding with the indigenous ferret species.

  1. Research, research and do more research

research - Indalo Transport

Get online and start researching all about your new home


  • If you haven’t already got a place to move to, now is the time to start perusing the internet for your new home
  • If you don’t have a job to go to, now is the time to start looking for jobs. There are plenty of sites you can visit to start applying
  • If you’ve got the time, now would be a good idea to start learning a few, simple Portuguese phrases and words.

Now sit back, relax and start planning your wonderful, new life!


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