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Parviz Malakouti-Fitzgerald, Esq.

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  • Writer's pictureParviz Malakouti-Fitzgerald, Esq.

​​Unlocking 3 Top Countries for Americans Seeking Plan B

Updated: Feb 26, 2023

Lisbon Street Car

Americans want in on the new global mobility trend.

For the majority of Americans seeking dual citizenship, reasons vary between some combination of desire for greater optionality, variety in lifestyle, and a reliable Plan B. The world is full of diverse nations that offer second citizenship and residence programs, and the demand for these programs has only increased from Americans in recent years.

With so many options available, it can be challenging to determine which citizenship is the best fit for your individual goals. At Malakouti Law, we’ve noticed most of our American clients want to add a foreign home, rather than pick up and move their entire lives lock stock and barrel.

Here are countries with three of the most sought-after mobility assets for Americans looking for a second passport. With this, we've considered factors such as ease of obtaining, visa-free travel, and lifestyle benefits. From sunny beaches to bustling cities, these three nations are atop the list of sought-after second Plan B options for American citizens.

#1 - Portugal

Portugal, located on the Iberian Peninsula, is known for its stunning coastal towns, Mediterranean climate, and friendly people. The country's Golden Visa program is one of the most popular options for obtaining second citizenship in Europe. There are many different investment options for the program - the most economical one requires a minimum investment of €280,000. The investment outlays increase from there.

Algarve, Portugal

The real advantage of the Portuguese golden visa is that holders get to countdown their time towards naturalization eligibility without having to spend much time in the country.

Applicants must spend just seven days in Portugal each year. After five years, they can apply for Portuguese citizenship, as well as a beautiful maroon Portuguese passport. Because Portugal is a European Union country, Portuguese citizens have the right of free movement and residency in any of the European Union’s 27 countries.

Portugal's program appeals to Americans looking for a gateway to the European Union and a chance to experience the best of what Portugal offers, including its rich cultural heritage, delicious cuisine, and sunny beaches.

#2 - Canada

Canada is still a popular choice among Americans looking for a second residency or citizenship. With a strong economy, progressive social values, and an excellent educational system, it's not surprising that many American snowbirds are choosing to make it their second home. A hot new avenue to Canadian permanent residence is its new business start-up visa.

Bow Lake, Alberta, Canada

For those who want to make a play for citizenship, ramping up your time spent in the country can do the trick. Canadian permanent residents can apply for naturalization after 1,095 days of physical presence in the previous five years. That’s an average of 219 days per year over five years or 365 days per year for 3 years straight.

Canadian citizenship (and passport) offers visa-free or visa on arrival travel to over 185 countries. Canadian citizenship offers springboarding opportunities to access other countries. Just two examples would be the Panama Friendly Nations program, and the UK Youth Mobility Scheme visa.

An American considering renouncing U.S. citizenship in the future might find Canadian citizenship to be a solid substitute (albeit, without the citizenship based taxation.

#3 - Turkey aka Türkiye

Turkey, a major transcontinental country bordered by three seas and strategically located at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, is a destination growing in popularity for Americans seeking a second citizenship. Its location provides excellent transport links and access to key markets, making it a country of significant importance.

It also has stunning beaches over 5,000+ miles of coast on the Mediterranean, Aegean, Black and Marmara Seas.

Beach in Antalya, Turkey

Investors of means can skip straight to Turkish citizenship by making a minimum investment of $400,000 in Turkish real estate. Unlike in most caribbean citizenship by investment programs, the majority of Turkish real estate qualifies for the purposes of Turkey’s citizenship by investment program.

This freedom to choose the investment has made Turkey’s program skyrocket to become the most popular program in the world.

Turkish passport holders enjoy visa-free access to western “pariah” countries Iran,Venezuela and Belarus; American passport holders do not. In our experience, Americans most love Turkey for the culture, food, beaches and nascent business opportunity in Turkey’s beautiful capital, Istanbul.

Blue mosque in Istanbul, Turkey

Find the Right Program

Obtaining a second citizenship can provide numerous benefits for Americans, including future generations.

The key is educating yourself from reliable sources and then contacting a real expert to guide you. As mobility experts, we can successfully guide you to second citizenship, steering you clear of of red flags along the way.

To start on the path of second residency or citizenship, click here to book a consultation with Malakouti Law.

Each immigration and citizenship case is particular and you should consult with a qualified, licensed immigration lawyer about your case before taking any steps. The Law Office of Parviz Malakouti does not guarantee the accuracy of information presented nor assume responsibility for actions taken in reliance of this information. The information in this page could become outdated. Attorney marketing.

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