Getting a Retirement Visa for an EU Country

Q&A with a Reader 

I am signed on for your email blog posts on retirement options of which I received the latest issue today. I realize the focus is on ‘early’ retirement but my wife and I are about your age and have planned a more traditional retirement.

We have lived in Europe for 4 years previously while I represented the US Department of Labor. We are very comfortable there and, of course, it was easy living there because the US government took care of everything for us, including visas, drivers licenses, taxes, living allowance, etc. I early retired myself and we are financially comfortable. My wife plans to leave her position within the next 12 months.

Compare international retirement destinations, click here

We also love to travel and have been to 75+ countries but enjoy cruising so much we have narrowed our search for a permanent retirement location to the European locations of Barcelona, Athens, and Venice, primarily because of their cruising capability, international airport, other general travel options available, and relatively low cost of living. Also, our mutual opinion on these locales versus other international locations is very favorable as we have visited all of these cities several times.

Since you have already done significant research on this retirement out of the US subject area, are there any resources you could point me to get specifics on a retirement visa for an EU country and other considerations to living overseas in a European location on a more permanent basis?

Certainly, your blog is an excellent resource but I am trying to develop a specific check list for what we need to do to accomplish this particular lifestyle change.

I have found it is just about impossible to get anything definitive from a European consulate in America by telephone for various reasons. We don’t live near one so I am thinking we may need to head to the city we decide on, as a tourist for 3 months, and park out at the consulate there until we get somewhere … ??? …

Thanks for any help you can provide … Daniel

Hi Daniel,

Thank you for taking the time to write and for your interest in our website.

In your situation, I would recommend that you click on the following article by Nomadic Mike and read it through. At the bottom of the article he speaks to long term visas and mentions Italy and Spain (two of your choices) as places that offer them for retirees. He also tells you what you need to bring with you and how to go about applying.

Schengen Visa Info A blog post from Nomadic Mike on How to (Legally) Stay in Europe for more than 90 Days. Detailed and clear with useful information. 

Certainly, if you have further questions, go to his Contact Page and write him an email.

How exciting for the both of you. Good luck, and do feel free to write to us any time. I’m sure this information will be a great start for you.

Best Regards,



Very helpful, courteous and prompt response to my inquiry  – thank you for all you do – Daniel


About Retire Early Lifestyle

Billy and Akaisha Kaderli retired three decades ago at the age of 38 and began traveling the world. As recognized retirement experts and internationally published authors on topics of finance and world travel, they have been interviewed about retirement issues by The Wall Street Journal, Kiplinger's Personal Finance Magazine, The Motley Fool Rule Your Retirement newsletter, nationally syndicated radio talk shows and countless newspapers and TV shows nationally and worldwide. They wrote the popular books The Adventurer's Guide to Early Retirement (Your Simple Path to FIRE) and Your Retirement Dream IS Possible.
This entry was posted in Heart Song, Housing, Q & A From our Readers, Travel Tips and Insight and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.