The Investor’s Checklist for a Second Passport

Updated: 12 July 2021

As more and more investors apply for second passports, the process gains more focus in the public eye. The path to citizenship by investment is rather tricky. There are many points of great importance. Obtaining a second passport by means of investing in another country’s economy is a huge decision. Therefore, it should be implemented with considerable care. In this article, crucial points to think about on the way to economic citizenship are listed.

Choosing the Right Country

Most people choose a country based on their own limited knowledge of pros and cons. For instance, most EU countries seem very appealing for people with average interest in the topic. It is true that having a Netherlands passport is very advantageous, but obtaining is not at all easy. It is quite common among investors to make the mistake of applying for the passport of countries with incredibly complex procedures. On top of it all, there is no guarantee of a successful application. It usually takes more than 2 years to get a result from these countries, and if the application is rejected, the reason is not explained. Further attempts might lead to same results because of the same mistakes.

Instead, the investors should look for the answer of this question: “What country offers the simplest way to receive citizenship?” In Europe, only Malta and Cyprus offer their passports in exchange for investment. The Maltese citizenship can be received within 12-16 months, and the passport of Cyprus — in just 3-6 months.

Saving Money the Right Way

Especially in big transactions, the desire to save is quite natural. Wealthy people try to minimize unnecessary expenses, too. However, doing this the wrong way might lead to problems. These problems might in turn cause bigger expenses.

To start with, it is crucial to only review official programs, approved and initiated by the government. There are clear, sometimes harsh, requirements and certain limitations to these programs. Yet at the same time, everything is transparent and unambiguous. Five Caribbean countries — Antigua and Barbuda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Grenada, Dominica and Saint Lucia — offer excellent options in exchange for a relatively low amount of investment.

There are really cheap options, too, like Honduras’ passport program which accepts $30–50k investment. However, what is the point in investing in a passport which would not offer anything to the investor’s favour in return? This mistake is also tied to the mistake number one on this list — the wrong country choice. It, in the end, results not in a gain, but of a loss of several thousands of dollars.

Transparency is Important

It is never a good idea to hide information from authorities during the application process. Close to 80 per cent of cases that get rejected fall in the category of “Incorrect personal information”. This means that during the due diligence (security check), the authorities found out some information is lacking or is not completely true (previous convictions, tax avoidance, etc.) Incomprehensible sources of income, legal problems or bans on entry to certain countries can become a serious obstacle.

Countries’ laws differ dramatically sometimes. So, the applicants often do not even realize that their activities are illegal in another country. For this reason, consulting professionals and local lawyers is a good idea. Moreover, this is why being transparent and honest helps the case massively. Transparency guarantees preventing all the risks and finding a solution before the verification begins.

Being Careful with the Property Choosing

For investors who want at least a partial return of their investment, real estate is a viable option. However, if this is the case, being there in person during the process is really important. Some investors just delegate this task to their assistants and do the transaction after only talking to some agents. Price tag and pictures of the property might tell a lot, but they do not tell the whole story.

After such transaction, the investor might regret the decision massively. People often realize too late that they chose a wrong location, a wrong type of house, or even a wrong city to invest in.

Asking Professionals When Needed

Applying for a second passport is not as straightforward as one might think. There are many legal details that the applicants should care for. The process is definitely not easy to handle without professional consultancy. Every program has its own details that might lead one’s application to fall through. Professionals usually know the risks of each program, and thus prevent mistakes beforehand.

Not hiring a professional is risking the investment which might lead to huge losses. Professionals of the sector save applicants time and frustration during the tiring process. Moreover, they know what to take into consideration and how to handle all the paperwork. Their experience will definitely increase the chances of a successful and quick procedure.

What Makes Visa-Free Travel Valuable

Visa-free travel is the ability to enter a country without obtaining a visa in advance. It allows one to travel without the hassle of going through the bureaucratic motions involved with getting a visa. It saves time and energy. It provides business people with massive comfort by saving them from the entire headache.

Often visa-free travel is regarded as the defining factor for the quality of a passport. It is true that it is a major contributing factor, but is it the only factor worth highlighting? At this point, one should realize that mere numbers are not that important. It sounds very appealing to have a second passport that grants visa-free travel to more than 130 countries. While it is definitely a big plus, it is not necessarily crucial. How many of the visa-free countries are actually important for the investor? Simply, choosing the passport with visa advantages to necessary countries for one’s activities is better than the passport that offers visa-free travel to the most number of countries.

Why is Second Passport Important for YOU

Second passport as an idea is always attractive. Although it sounds cool, does everyone really need it? Most people want a second passport as an insurance policy. Yet one should first decide what is it that they are protecting.

If the goal is visa-free travel, there are many countries offering this advantage. If the aim is to reduce taxes, Caribbean passports might be good options. The examples can be multiplied, but the answer is the same. The applicant should decide what it is they are seeking, and plan their further activities based on that priority.

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