Everyone who visits Portugal as a tourist has 90 days to stay in the country without interruption. But suppose you want or even need to stay in the country for a more extended period. In that case, you must apply to the Migration Service of Portugal (Servico de Estrangeiros e Fronteiras, SEF) to extend the tourist visa. In this article, we will explain the main requirements and deadlines for you to be legally allowed to continue to stay in Portugal.
Is it possible to apply for an extension of a tourist visa in Portugal?
Extension of a tourist visa can be requested directly from Portugal, subject to compliance with all necessary rules. Before we proceed to the discussion of the main package of documents that are necessary for the extension of a tourist Schengen visa and a short-term tourist visa, it is essential to mention the fact that there is no tourist visa for Ukrainian citizens visiting Portugal because between the 27 countries of the European Union and Ukraine agreements on a visa-free regime were concluded. Therefore, citizens of Ukraine are allowed to enter the country for tourism for up to 90 days without applying for a visa, subject to all the requirements for entering Portugal. Therefore, what we call the extension of a tourist visa, in the case of Ukrainians, is an extension of the legal stay on the territory of the Portuguese Republic in a visa-free situation.
Do I have to wait until the visa expires?
No, you don’t. Any interested person should request an extension of the tourist visa before the end of the period of validity and not after. The Migration Service of Portugal warns tourists that applications for the extension of tourist visas must be submitted at least 30 days before the period of this permission to stay in the country. In addition, the Migration Service of Portugal has many tasks, the solution of which is a rather lengthy process. Therefore, as soon as you find out that you need to stay in the territory of the Portuguese Republic for a more extended period than your tourist visa allows, contact the Migration Service of Portugal to make an appointment and submit the relevant documents.
Who can apply for an extended stay in Portugal on a tourist visa?
Any citizen who entered the territory of Portugal on a tourist Schengen visa, a short-stay tourist visa, or a visa-free regime can apply for an extension of their stay in the country. To do this, the interested person must apply directly to the Migration Service of Portugal, making a preliminary appointment to deliver all necessary documents at the branch of the Migration Service, where it will be convenient.
How can I make an appointment with the Portuguese Migration Service?
An appointment at any of the Migration Service of Portugal offices can be made online by creating your account on the service's official website. For this, you need to go to the official website of the Portuguese Migration Service and select the “register” option.
Next, you must enter a valid email address. Please note that only citizens with a residence permit in Portugal or a visa to stay in the country can register. In all other cases, interested parties should contact the Migration Service of Portugal directly by phone.
After that, you will be asked to enter your Portugal residence permit number or visa number, your date of birth, country of citizenship, and your chosen password to enter your account.
Upon completing the third step to register your account on the official website of the Portuguese Migration Service, you can make an online appointment at the nearest service office.
If you arrived in Portugal under a visa-free regime or cannot make an appointment through your account, it is possible to make an appointment by calling the city phone number 217115000 and by mobile 965903700. However, we would like to immediately draw your attention to the fact that you can reach Migration; the service of Portugal is not easy, so in this matter, you will need patience and perseverance.
What documents are required to extend the period of stay in Portugal on a tourist visa?
In this article, we will consider a list of documents for extending the period of stay in Portugal on a tourist Schengen visa and a short-term visa, as well as a visa-free regime. Let's start in order, namely with a package of documents for extending a tourist Schengen visa. According to articles 71 and 72 of Law no. 23/2007 of 4 July (Lei n.º 23/2007, de 4 de julho), Articles 44 and 45 of Regulation No. 84/2007 of 5 November (Regulamento n.º 84/2007, de 5 de novembro) and Decree of the Ministry of the Interior no. 1563/2007 of 11 December (Portaria n.º 1563/2007, de 11 dezembro), a request to extend your stay in Portugal on a tourist Schengen visa can be submitted to any branch of the Migration Service of Portugal, having the following documents with you:
- a hand-filled form for the extension of this category of visas;
- two identical color photographs on a white background, as for a passport, if your appointment is scheduled at the office of the Migration Board in Aveiro or Braga. If you made an appointment at other offices of this public service, then it is not necessary to have photographs with you because you will be photographed directly at the Portuguese Migration Service;
- passport or another valid travel document;
- confirmation of the availability of means of subsistence throughout the period when you plan to stay in the territory of the Portuguese Republic, as provided for by the Regulation of the Ministry of the Interior of Portugal No. 1563/2007 of 12 November 2007 (Portaria n.º 1563/2007, de 11 dezembro);
- proof of accommodation for the entire stay in Portugal;
- a return ticket for any transport, guaranteeing your return to the country of your citizenship;
- your permission for the Migration Service of Portugal to know whether there was or is any criminal record, only if the period of stay you require in the country exceeds 90 days (except for minors under 16 years of age);
- if the applicant is a person under 16 years of age, then permission to extend the visa from the parents is required;
- proof of the reasons why you need to stay in the country for more than 90 days must be provided, namely:
- for force majeure reasons (for example, a last-minute flight change by an airline due to bad weather conditions);
- for significant personal reasons (for example, an unforeseen extension of your business trip);
- residence of your family in Portugal and evidence that you are relatives;
- for humanitarian reasons (for example, due to a sudden illness of you or a close family member, in which case you must present a medical certificate with a diagnosis and current state of health).
Before proceeding to the discussion of the list of documents for the extension of a short-term tourist visa and visa-free regime, it is necessary to mention some important facts. First, the total period the Migration Service of Portugal can extend a Schengen tourist visa to an interested person cannot exceed 90 days. Also, remember that if you submit your request to the Migration Service of Portugal 30 days after the end of the permitted period of stay, you will be denied an extension of the tourist Schengen visa immediately.
As for the list of documents to extend a short-term tourist visa or a visa-free stay in Portugal, it is the same as for the extension of a tourist Schengen visa, except for two documents such as:
- permission from you to the Migration Service of Portugal to know if you had any criminal record, only if you require a period of stay in the country exceeding 90 days (except for minors under 16 years of age);
- proof of why you must stay in the country for more than 90 days.
Also, as in the case of the extension of a tourist Schengen visa, the maximum period for which the Migration Service of Portugal can extend you a short-term tourist visa or a visa-free regime is a full 90 days, so in total, you can stay in the country for 180 days (90 days for a tourist visa). Therefore, Schengen visa, short-stay tourist visa, or visa-free regime + 90 additional days for which you are allowed to stay in the country by the Migration Service of Portugal).
How much do I need to pay to extend a tourist visa?
Based on the table of fees charged for administrative services by the Migration Service of Portugal, provided for by Law No. 23/2007 of 4 July (Lei n.º 23/2007, de 4 de julho), as well as by Order of the Ministry of the Interior of Portugal No. 1334-E/2010 of 31 December (Portaria n.º 1334-E/2010, de 31 dezembro), by Order No. 305-A/2012 of the Ministry of the Interior of Portugal of 4 October (Portaria n.º 305-А/2012, de 4 de Outubro) and Order No. 204-A/2020 of the Ministry of the Interior of Portugal of 24 August (Portaria n.º 204-A/2020, de 24 de Agosto), to extend the tourist Schengen visa, short-stay tourist visa and visa-free stay in Portugal, you will need to pay 30.38 euros (see Image 5).
Is there a possibility that a tourist visa extension will be denied?
Such a possibility certainly exists. The Migration Service of Portugal analyzes the request, which can be either approved or rejected. If a request for an extension of stay in the country as a tourist was submitted with all the necessary documents, then the probability of approval is relatively high. If your application is rejected, you can stay in the country until the end of your Schengen tourist visa, short stay tourist visa, or visa waiver. To avoid deportation and subsequent prohibition of entry into the territory of Portugal and other countries of the Schengen area and the European Union, before your permitted stay in the country as a tourist expires, you must leave for your country of citizenship. Otherwise, you are in Portugal with the status of an illegal immigrant, which is not recommended and is fraught with several adverse consequences.
Can I travel to other countries with an extended visa?
If you have extended your tourist Schengen visa, you can travel to the territory of other countries belonging to the Schengen area, which consists of 26 states.
But if you have requested an extension of a short-term tourist visa or a visa-free regime, then it is forbidden to travel outside of Portugal. This is because the permitted period of stay in the Schengen countries is 90 days. An extension obtained in Portugal is valid only in that country.
Should I ask for a tourist visa extension in Portugal?
If you came to Portugal for tourism and want to stay a little longer than allowed to get to know it better, you should ask the Migration Service of Portugal to extend your legal stay there. However, if your goal is to live in Portugal, this is not the best way to get a hold of the country. In this case, applying for one of the existing visas per the purpose you are pursuing in Portugal is best.
According to the already established tradition, we remind you that our article is only informative, all your decisions are up to you, and we want to wish you only good luck!