This is a follow-up post to How I Organize Long-Term Travel.
When I organize my long-term residency plans (think from 2017 right through to 2021/2022) I usually approach it only from a fact-gathering / information-gathering viewpoint. This means that I keep myself open-minded, but still focused, while I gather as much facts as I can about the countries and situations that I may find myself in the future.
Below you will see quiet a few boards, and a lot of it has changed over the past week. For example, until a couple of weeks ago, I had plans to move to Spain or Portugal later this year but after some research into the visa details felt that it would be too cumbersome for me to arrange my papers. For example, both Spain and Portugal required police checks in all countries that I’ve lived in, as well as being physically in Australia in order to submit a fingerprint with the Australian Federal Police. If I was residing in Australia, this would not be a problem but since I have no plans to visit until next year, I decided to hold off the trip until next year.
What are the next option? Well, the next option is the easiest – and that was to not only stay in Germany for the duration of my Working Holiday Visa, but to also look into options of staying for longer. Looking into details about Germany, I saw that their freelance visa was actually for three years (not two that I previously noted) and from there, starting reading more about EC permanent residency which would allow me to become a permanent resident of the European Union. And with this, started plotting my plans to go from freelance visa (including one extension) to EC permanent residency until 2022. And there you have it. 2017 to 2022 will be all about Germany (so far in this journey…)
However, I still wanted to see what my options are in living and work remotely in other parts of Europe/Germany and I also wanted to have the option of it going beyond the Schengen agreement in case the opportunity arises. On the road to being an EC permanent resident, I still have the option to reside in Germany or reside elsewhere as long as it’s in Europe. Since I needed to be self-employed to do this, I decided to first target the self-employment visas followed by the Working Holiday Visa agreements. Despite the research, I found that Germany was still the most straightforward path from WHV to EC permanent residency in the European Union that did not require a large cash outlay and a lot of paperwork. However, France has an option to set up as a micro-entrepreneur so now I have France in my sights for summer to fall next year. And since I am planning a trip back to Australia in December, I can also allocate Spain to escape winter. In this case, on the road to EC permanent residency via the German residency route I can slowly ‘ease’ myself into German winters 😉
Now, some people are wondering – but what about those immigration schemes? Aren’t there affordable schemes? Yes, I am aware of these schemes. But many of them require a large cash outlay and meeting a lot of other conditions and paperwork. These schemes may even provide you the pathway to EC permanent residency in the same or a slightly shorter time period.
My only, main problem is that Germany currently has restrictive dual nationality laws. I am hoping that perhaps by 2022 they will start considering dual nationalities. However, if I still feel very strongly about having citizenship somewhere in the European Union, at the very least under the EC permanent residency all the requirements will not be as strict as non-EEA/EU residents. Or, I could save up enough to afford an immigration investment programme.