How To Move To Barbados – What Are Your Options? part 2 – Part one is here.
Moving to Barbados in 2022
So, you have your Bajan lover, want to move in with them, or just want to live in Barbados? You’ve done your research and know that non-nationals can live in Barbados. But what are the different options? What are they exactly? How do you apply for each one? Is there a difference between the types? Find out here!
It’s possible to move to Barbados as a retiree, investor, or business visa. You can also become a permanent resident on a spousal visa if you’re married to a Bajan. There is no limit on how many of these visas you can apply for at any one time.
Barbadian Retirement Visa
The retirement visa is for 55 years or older who have a monthly income of around USD 3,000 or own assets over USD 100,000.
To apply for this type of visa, you must be able to demonstrate that you can support yourself financially, have fully paid for your medical insurance, and have a place to live. You should also provide two referees who are Bajan citizens or permanent residents of Barbados.
The investor visa is for those who wish to invest in Barbados. The government specifies that you must invest at least US$200,000 in Barbados. There are no restrictions on the type of investment you make; it can be either personal or business-related.
Like all other visas that allow non-nationals to live in Barbados, this visa also allows you to work and study whilst living on the island. You must, however, gain approval from the Barbados Immigration Department to work.
Business Visa (Exemption)
This type of visa is included in the list because it is another common form of immigration into Barbados. The business visa allows you to live in Barbados if your company operates there and you are seen as an essential part of that operation. It’s technically called an “Exemption Visa” and is valid for three years.
Spousal Sponsorship (Permanent Resident)
If you’re married to a Bajan, then you may be able to live in Barbados as a permanent resident by applying for a spousal sponsorship visa. You must either be married or have been married to the person before they turned 21 years old.
This visa allows you to remain in the country even if your marriage ends, whether through divorce or death. As with all other visas that allow non-nationals to live in Barbados, this visa allows you to work and study whilst living on the island. You must gain approval from the Barbados Immigration Department to work.
The Permanent Resident visa is also known as the “PR” visa. It allows you to live, work and study in Barbados indefinitely. This means you never have to renew your visa or leave Barbados for extended periods. You must have held a Spousal Sponsorship visa for one year before you can apply for this type of visa.
You must also demonstrate that you’re integrated into Barbadian society. This includes having a primary school-aged child, speaking English, and being familiar with the culture. You will need to prove your employment status and have at least Bajan $15,000 in savings. If you’re self-employed or a business owner, you must demonstrate that your company is making a profit.
Again, as with all other visas that allow non-nationals to live in Barbados, this visa also allows you to work and study while living on the island. You must gain approval from the Barbados Immigration Department to work.
Ways to Move to Barbados In 2022
Everybody loves Barbados. It’s beautiful, charming, and tiny – just 90 square miles of paradise. What has made it so appealing? The crystal blue ocean with the perfect powdery white sand you’ve ever seen, the unspoiled nature, and its laidback vibe.
Many people want to live here and with good reason: the coastal strip of sun-soaked beaches, the never-ending summer with its warm sunny days and balmy nights, not to mention the amazing food. Barbados is also a tax haven. It has no capital gains or personal income taxes; there are only some small company taxes – if you choose to pay them at all.
The island is a popular offshore financial center. In particular, the government is trying to attract entrepreneurs with its Start-up Incentive Act. New businesses receive tax exemption on corporate profits for the first three years, and they enjoy a ten-year tax holiday thereafter.
This has led many people to relocate here – especially those who run online companies or consult internationally. If you are considering moving to Barbados or starting a new business, there are many things to consider. Here are five simple steps that will make your relocation process easier!
Step 1: Find Out If You Need a Visa
No visas are required for EU citizens. Americans and Canadians can stay in the country without restriction too. However, other foreigners have to apply for a visa in advance. See the Barbados Ministry of Foreign Affairs website for the requirements.
The next step is finding a place to stay. You can either rent or purchase property – it’s entirely up to you. If buying, consider that the housing market is currently in an unusual situation with little inventory available and high prices, but it remains to be seen if this will continue.
Step 2: Find a Job
The unemployment rate is currently 10.10% – about the same as in Canada. However, Barbados has very high underemployment (estimated at 30-40%), where many people who are ostensibly employed have jobs that provide little income.
If you already have a job offer, great! If not, your best bet is to network and attend career fairs and similar events organized by the Barbados Investment and Development Corporation (BIDC), the largest national investment promotion agency. For more tips on finding employment in Barbados, check out this recruitment agency.
Step 3: Learn the Language
English is the official language of Barbados – but they also speak their own dialect. It’s definitely not as easy to learn as French or Spanish, which you might’ve heard of already. You will most likely be fine with English-speaking friends, but if you are serious about life in Barbados, it would be worth your time to learn Bajan.
Step 4: Prepare For Cultural Differences
There are lots of cultural differences between Barbados and Canada. One example is driving – people drive on the left side of the road here! It might sound dangerous at first, but it’s quite easy to get used to.
The first thing you will notice is that the Barbadian dialect is melodic and lilting compared to standard English – it might sound like a different language altogether. Another notable difference is how many people greet each other with “Good morning” or “Good afternoon,” which they say before or after you say it to them.
Step 5: Make Friends and Network
One great way to make local connections is through social media platforms. There are currently more than 8,000 members in over 400 groups which makes the site an excellent place for networking. You can join any group that resonates with you, such as expats living in Barbados or the self-development group, and start meeting people.
According to expats on Reddit, another good website for making friends is Internations. This social site puts you in touch with many other foreigners living and working all over the world – including Barbados! As a final tip, don’t forget that there are multiple Facebook groups specifically for expats and immigrants who want to move to Barbados.
Frequently Asked Questions about Moving to Barbados
What do I need to move here?
You’ll need your passport, a valid driver’s license (or an international one), some cash to last you for the first few months once you arrive, and someone with whom to cohabitate. There are no visa or work permit requirements if you intend to stay less than 180 days. If you plan to stay longer, check with your local Barbadian consulate.
How much money will I need?
You can live cheaply in Barbados. It costs about US$5500/CAD$6997 for a couple to live comfortably here per month. That’s less than what most people spend on rent or mortgages back home, but it allows for car rental, eating out at restaurants, trips to the grocery store, and occasional beers.
What does it cost?
A local beer will set you back around $3.50CAD$, a meal in a restaurant would cost about $20CAD$ or more. A beer can is $1.35CAD$, a bottle of rum from $15CAD$-20CAD$. Domestic beer in a supermarket is around $2.55CAD$, a rum and coke at the bar are around $6.50CAD$.
Where do I live?
There are many different housing types available in Barbados, from apartments to condos, from high-rises to gated communities. You can even get a villa with a pool these days if you’ve got the money! There are also many choices in rural Barbados.
So, you’ve decided to move to Barbados? Well, that’s great news! Moving to a new country can be one of the most exciting experiences in your life. Of course, it will also come with its fair share of stress and worry, but if you plan correctly, this might be a move that you will never regret.