8 Things Expats “Hate/Do Not Like” About Portugal

8 Things Expats “Hate/Do Not Like” About Portugal

Expats not from EU/EEA/Swiss can obtain Portuguese residency with the D7 visa if they can provide proof of sufficient income to support themselves while they are in Portugal.

This visa is appropriate for retirees or income earners who want to live in Portugal without having to make a substantial financial investment.

The D7 visa can then be extended after one year for two subsequent two-year periods, and after five years, it can be changed into a permanent residence permit. You can also apply for Portuguese citizenship after five years of having a D7 visa, provided you meet the other criteria outlined in Portuguese nationality law.

There are many things for expats to get used to but also appreciate when they choose to live in Portugal. There are certain things they might not love as much as the wonderful weather and incredible places to visit, so if you’re interested in learning what they are, keep reading.

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Communication barriers

Many people find it challenging to learn the barest minimum of Portuguese to get by in everyday life. Mastering Portuguese to the point where you can fully immerse yourself in the culture is even a more time-consuming endeavor. 

Misunderstandings like this can lead to stressful interactions between international visitors living in Portugal and locals. 

House Isolation

Thermal insulation uses materials that contain this thermal resistance capacity, reducing heat exchange between the internal and external environments.

The problem lies in the same construction method of most buildings, in the materials used, and especially in the thermal insulation applied.

So, before you choose your next home in Portugal, make sure it has good quality insulation.


The majority of Portuguese citizens are well aware of and prepared for the existence of bureaucracy. The uncertainty surrounding which paperwork to submit or who to contact is the most frustrating aspect. 

So, as a foreigner living in Portugal, doing anything becomes extremely difficult or downright impossible. 

Hills and Portuguese Sidewalks

Portuguese cities, especially Lisbon, are filled with hills. Although walking through the streets of these beautiful cities is impressive, it is also quite tiring.

Then, there is the amazing Portuguese cobblestone (“calçada”). An impressive piece of art and to be admired, however, they can become quite slippery and are not friendly for any type of footwear.

So, if an afternoon stroll around the city is in your plans, be prepared to exercise your legs and bring comfortable shoes that are well suited for walking on Portuguese streets.

Portuguese have a slow pace

Some features of Portuguese culture, like the slow pace of life, may irritate expats. Locals are typically not in a rush to address problems, which can cause bureaucratic procedures to move much more slowly. You’ll hear the word “devagar” a lot; it means “slowly” in Portuguese.

We know that moving to a new country can be overwhelming, so it is important for expats to know all the factors before moving to Portugal.

Sometimes a few small adjustments, can be beneficial so that you can experience all that this amazing country has to offer. We know that after a while these little things that you may not “like” at first will become part of your everyday life and bring a little magic to the experience of living in Portugal.

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