Quality of life

Portugal has been around since 868 and it is the most westernmost sovereign state of mainland Europe. The fact that its coast is border by the Atlantic Ocean and by Spain (northern and eastern coats), it has since early times been a gateway to and from Europe. Besides the Portuguese mainland, its territory extends to the Atlantic archipelagos  of the Azores and Madeira. Portugal has much to offer from forests (rain and dry), wild beaches, snowy mountains, rivers, dams to amazing ancient and cosmopolitan cities. It’s not such a small country after all.

Kleya has prepared a short list of what is hot in Portugal and what it has to offer, to all those who wish to visit and those who decide to make it their home.

In 2017 alone, Portugal hosted over 12 million foreigners; it has, without a doubt, become a very popular country and here’s why:

The Friendliest people in the world, according to Forbes.

Local Portuguese are very warm and welcoming towards foreigners; they make themselves available, try to speak the same language and they might, even, invite you to grab something to eat or drink upon meeting you; these are some of the reasons why Forbes nominated Portugal as the friendliest country in the world in 2018. Check out some of these numbers:

  • Friendly attitude towards expats: 94%
  • Ease of making local friends: 58%
  • Expats likely to stay forever: 47%
Weather forecast: Sunny.

Lisbon receives an average of 2799 hours of sun per year, roughly 300 days of sunshine; it is the third sunniest city in Europe. Both winter and summer seasons are mild.

You get your money’s worth

In 2017, Portugal was ranked the cheapest holiday destination, so you can get the quality you desire and your money can really go the extra mile.

You can eat delicious traditional Portuguese meals for under 10€. Portions are often so massive that you could share a meal and at that cost. On average a beer costs 1€ and a late-night Ice Cream run can cost 5€.

Portuguese hostels are cheaper than others, they are family friendly and are equipped to help you feel at home. This year’s HOSCAR Awards placed 5 Portuguese medium-sized hostels on the top 10 best medium-sized hostels of the world list, three of which hold the top 5 spots. You can stay in these hostels for as little as 16€ per night.

Today, almost every airline offers a direct flight to Portugal, which not only makes your trip less stressful but also more affordable.

Beaches and Surf

Whether you’re searching for the perfect wave or for a calm beach to relax, Portugal has it all. Portuguese beaches are becoming more famous with time, from the biggest wave ever surfed (23.9 meters) to the pristine and wild beaches considered to be the most beautiful in the world, Portugal will definitely surprise you.

Wine and Dine

Portugal is known for many amazing things, especially for its rich delicacies and wine.

Pasteis de belém they are traditional custard tards, the original ones are from Pastéis de Belém and their secret recipe is one of Lisbon’s best kept secrets and is estimated to be more than 200 years old. Most, if not all, Portuguese pastries and traditional sweets were created inside the walls of the convents and monasteries produced by the nouns that resided there.

For the love of cod: almost every Portuguese traditional dish consists of cod and it is to die for, whether you prefer boiled, grilled, fried, baked or even roasted: the Portuguese have figured out a way to cook cod that way! The most well-known cod dishes are bacalhau com natas, pasteis de bacalhau and bacalhau à Brás.

Port Wine for example is the country’s most common wine, it comes from the Douro region and its unique process includes stopping the fermentation process in order to rise the alcohol levels by adding a locally produced moonshine, but what makes this wine special and unique that it can only be found in the Sour region is the soil and position of the valleys. Most of the original distilleries are still up and running nowadays and are open to the public for visits and wine tasting.

Portugal has much to offer for those who are thinking of settling down here, however moving is like starting over. If your new destination is in another country or city, it’s not just a simple move, it’s an adventure. Whether it be a new home for you or your business, the naked walls long for ornaments, pictures, awards and memories of which you will make. The light of a new location enters through the curtain less window and projects new paths, waiting to be discovered and lived. Find out what your next favourite restaurant will be, what your daily routine will be like, get to know your neighbours, grow your business and your family. Whether you are retiring, studying or even opening a new business, enjoy leisure activities that will give you the peace of mind that you need to devote yourself to what you want to achieve. This is an opportunity to discover new things and to rediscover yourself, a new experience filled with new routines, tastes and hobbies. Portugal has a little something to offer everyone. Portugal has, throughout its continental territory and islands, the most wonderful landscapes that will receive you with open arms. A unique country that offers you a cosmopolitan culture in modern cities of great cultural heritage, beaches that are mistaken for paradises or bucolic places away from the commotion of the great urban centres.

Discover what makes you live, a new beginning in Portugal
Portuguese food as told by Chef José Avillez

There are many reasons as to why people fall in love with Portugal, but for many that reason is the food. You can discover a fusion of flavours due to the influence of Portuguese maritime discoveries and colonial-era ties on its Mediterranean foundation, but most importantly, you will taste delicious and nourishing food. Moreover, there is a growing number of acclaimed chefs and new Michelin stars capturing international attention. We had the pleasure of sitting down with Chef José Avillez that runs the 2 Michelin Star restaurant Belcanto that guided us to the best of the Portuguese cuisine.

We asked Chef José Avillez, in his opinion what the best Portuguese gastronomy is and what plates we should taste at Belcanto to have an unforgettable Portuguese experience:

Portuguese cuisine is incredibly rich and varied. We have a Mediterranean diet. However, because of all the travels our navigators did during the Age of Discovery, our cuisine was enriched and influenced by ingredients and techniques from different continents. Besides that, Portugal has a wide variety of landforms, climatic conditions, and soils: we have a long coast line, Northern Portugal is mountainous, the Central coastal region consists of dunes and pine forests, Southern Portugal (namely in Alentejo) is an area of plains… so each region has different products (olive oil, cheese, smoked sausages, ham, meat, fruits, vegetables, fresh herbs…) and a different cuisine. That’s why the Portuguese cuisine is such a treasure. But what I really love is our fish and shellfish. The flavours and the textures are amazing. I do believe we have the best fish and shellfish in the world. At Belcanto we serve Portuguese cuisine with a contemporary inspiration and an emphasis on top quality ingredients and on the accuracy of preparation. I would suggest you try the “Dip in the sea”: sea bass (cooked in a vacuum sealed bag at 54 ºC), seaweed, codium, bivalves (mussels, cockles, and razor clams) and sea water (mussel’s water)
Health & Wellness

Nowadays people seem to have less time and less to worry about their health and well-being, our lives are always fast paced that we can’t keep track of time to and we always seem to push our first day of being healthy without ever really getting back to it. There are various reasons as to why you should try to begin your healthy lifestyle right away.

Did you know that Portugal is in the top 5 countries out of 64 with the best quality of life? Here you may enjoy mild temperatures all year-round, above the average and affordable healthcare and it is an overall safe country to live in and to be in healthy in. You may feel inspired to become healthier as walking around in the beautiful streets of Portugal will count as a good exercise, many locals do activities along the beach coast inside and outside of the water.

There are so many benefits of becoming healthier and more active from feeling better about yourself, sleeping better and even help you live longer.
Have you ever woken up and said “today is the day that I will start my health new lifestyle” and never really began? Well, what if we told you that it’s really not that hard to make those changes and it’s even easier to make those changes while living in Portugal?

Portuguese cuisine is a mix of a healthy Mediterranean diet, today many restaurants offer locally grown produce, biological and are also vegan friendly, which will give you strength and keep you healthy at the same time. The 300 days of sunshine will be sure to give you that vitamin D kick that you need to jump start off your week. Portugal’s coastline and parks are equipped with exercising tools and with marvellous views that will, give you the enthusiasm you need to start working out

Living in Portugal

Kleya can teach and guide you with your first steps in Portugal, from registering in the national health system, to obtaining a bus pass, registering at the post office, choosing telephone and tv utilities, amongst many other things.

Useful tips


  • Hello: Olá
  • Thank you: Obrigado (if you are male) Obrigada (if you are female)
  • Good morning: Bom dia
  • Good night: Boa noite
  • Please: Por favor
  • Excuse me: Com licença
  • Goodbye: Adeus

Local Know how

  • In local pharmacies, butcher shops and bakeries you might need to take a ticket to be served.
  • Most, if not all Portuguese streets are paved with the beautiful “Calçada portuguesa”, that make up a unique mosaic handmade by Portuguese workers. Although beautiful, these little stones may be hard to walk on, so if you’re thinking of taking a stroll, make sure to wear comfortable walking shoes.
  • Due to small and tight streets parking may become a scene from a mission impossible movie, it is very common to see people pointing to empty parking space, they only want a tip for their help, 50 cents will do.

Ordering coffee

  • Café- Expresso
  • Meia de leite - half milk, half coffee
  • Galão – large glass of milk with one shot of expresso
  • For emergencies call 112
Tax AND Legal

NHR individuals can benefit from the special personal income tax (“PIT”) regime for a ten-year period. This regime is applicable both to Foreign-source income and Portuguese-source income. Include rest of information in PDF.

It is very important to get these steps right so that you are more likely to qualify for this status, it is better done when you have experienced professionals by your side guiding throughout this process.

Non-European Union citizens are able to obtain a residence permit in Portugal that enables them to freely travel within the Schengen area. This Investor Temporary Residence Permit (commonly called “Golden Residence Permit") is granted provided an investment is made within the if an investment that meets the criteria defined by the Government.

If you are already an EU national or have a Golden Visa status, you can apply for a Non- habitual resident status that allows you to attain some fiscal benefits and optimize your assets.

It is very important to get these steps right so that you are more likely to qualify for this status, it is better done when you have experienced professionals by your side guiding throughout this process.

Property: New city, new home
Looking for a place to call home, but you’re not sure exactly what to do or to watch out for? Here are some of the things that you should do when buying or renting a new home:

(i) The first thing you should do is research the location, if it not only fits your monetary needs but if it will be practical and friendly for your daily routines;

(ii) If you’re renting or buying a house that already comes equipped with home appliances, make sure these are up and running before moving in;

(iii) ask ahead of time if pets are allowed

(iv) are you renting but want to make the house more “you”, ask the landlord before making any permanent changes to the apartment

(v) make sure the contract is friendly and protective of both parties;

(vi) ask how many advance payments you will need to make and make sure you have it down in writing;

(vii) if you do not agree with the terms, speak your mind;

(viii) find out exactly how much a real estate agent can charge you.

Kleya has a track record in advising foreign clients that want to establish residence in Portugal and has identified the key elements in the real estate offer that are key: Safety, Flexibility and Return. In a decision that involves a significant financial commitment people must be sure that their investment will not be put at risk easily. At the same time, very few can predict what will happen in the medium to long term, hence having a real estate product with liquidity or that can be used to live or to rent is a very common solution. Let’s look at this example: buying an apartment where you want to live only 6 months and the other 6 months you want to use for touristic exploration. You shouldn’t focus only on the rents you expect to receive (knowing the rents in the market and the occupancy rate, it is easy to estimate your return) because you must also consider all the expenses incurred to generate that income like utilities, taxes or the management fees. In terms of risks, the most important one is the market risk. Two important questions to take into consideration: “which are the segments that may look for you apartment?” and “what differentiation factor you have to offer to make your apartment stand out?”. Regarding liquidity, you must identify the locations where there is more demand or growing locations so that in 5 years’ time you can sell your apartment very quickly.

Business: Entrepreneurship
BBC journalist Lennox Morrison once said that Lisbon’s working hard to support home-grown businesses and attract fledgling entrepreneurs from around the globe. The French chain TF1 also made a report last year on how more French entrepreneurs are looking to start their business in Portugal.

And why is that? Portugal has become the hub for companies and start-ups: the Atlantic coast, relatively small cities that offer a sense of security (even the capital Lisbon only has 548,000 people), golden sandy beaches, beautiful country side and roughly 300 days of sunshine a year. Now added key elements for a business: a modern infrastructure with highways and broadband coverage throughout the country, ports and airports connecting you to the world, a well-qualified workforce that masters at least one foreign language. Moreover, if you establish your company in Lisbon, you will find that the office and staffing costs are relatively low compared with other capitals in Western Europe. The best part is that the Portuguese government is making Portugal more enticing than ever by adapting its tax laws. The time that you take to create a company and the simplicity of processes comes to a surprise for every foreigner who wants to start a business. Foreign investment-friendly tax laws such as the Non-Habitual Resident (NHR) regime created special tax rates for high skilled professionals.

In short: good business reasons combined with the Quality of Life and the investment-friendly laws make a quite attractive mix.
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