The Italian Job: how to apply for Italy’s new Digital Nomad visa

Applicants who meet the minimum entry requirements will be able to work from home in Rome for up to one year.

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Helena Young

UK workers can now say “arrivederci” to the daily grind thanks to Italy’s new Digital Nomad visa. As of April 5, both freelancers and employees are able to apply for the visa, which will allow them to legally live in the home of gelato for up to 12 months.

The new programme means over 40 countries now offer this type of entry pass, including the recently announced Japan Digital Nomad visa. The perk has been growing in popularity as staff take advantage of workplaces becoming mobile by choosing to work abroad.

However, like most visa schemes, there are some eligibility requirements that must be met before you can start living the ‘dolce vita’ lifestyle. Below, we explain how to apply for the Italian visa, what documents you’ll need, and where the best WFI (Work From Italy) spots are.

How and where to apply for the new Italy visa

Brits interested in taking a Roman Holiday will need to make an appointment at the Italian consulate on Farringdon Street in central London. It’s best to do this at least eight weeks in advance as it’s notoriously tricky to find a suitable date and time with any consulate at short notice.

Once an interview time has been confirmed, you’ll need to bring the below key documents to your appointment:

  • A completed application form
  • Passport (expiration date must be at least three months after the visa period ends)
  • Two passport-size photographs on a white background, showing your full face 
  • Application fee of €116, payable in cash and in euros

According to the Italian government website, successful nomads can expect their visa to arrive within 30 to 90 days. That’s why we recommend starting your application six months before you plan to taste your first bruschetta.

Sole traders will also need to apply for an Italian VAT number within eight days of their arrival. This is also known as a residence permit, or “permesso di soggiorno”. The form can usually be obtained from your local Italian post office.

How long is Italy’s Digital Nomad visa valid for?

Once your visa application has been approved, you’ll be able to live and work in the country legally for up to 12 months, with the option to renew if you choose to stay for longer.

Eligibility requirements for Italy’s Digital Nomad visa

Like most countries offering a remote working visa, the Italian government has released a list of criteria that workers will need to meet to qualify for the new Digital Nomad visa. It includes:

  • Annual income of at least €28,000 or £23,955 (around £2,000 a month)
  • Qualifications: applicants must have a university or college degree OR at least six months’ experience in the industry they are applying for
  • Work contract: remote workers must prove they are employed, while freelancers must show evidence of existing contracts
  • Proof of secured accommodation in Italy (this can be a short-term, like an AirBnB booking, or a long-term lease agreement)
  • Private health insurance (with coverage of at least €30,000 per year)
  • Affidavit: while yet to be confirmed, most Italian visas require a criminal background check certificate which means this could be a soon-to-be-announced stipulation 

Can I bring family members?

Remote workers can bring their partner and bambinos along with them, meaning it is already much more welcoming to overseas workers than the UK’s minimum visa requirements. Family members will need to apply for a ‘family reason’ permit. 

Where should I work remotely in Italy?

There aren’t many locations on this Mediterranean mecca that won’t appeal to Brits seeking to escape the cloud-covered grey of old blighty. 

No-doubt many nomads will find themselves drawn to a commute by gondola in Italy’s urban escapes. After all, who could resist a colosseum-side desk view in Rome? Or a lunch break in the fashion capital of Milan?

But the Digital Nomad visa is also a chance for UK employees to sample some of the country’s lesser-known, bella beauty spots.

Italy has partly embraced the nomad visa to encourage younger professionals to visit the very remote – and very beautiful – coastal villages in the south of the country.

Places like Amalfi and Tropea have small, four figure populations but are bursting with azure-blue ports, fresh seafood dishes, and arresting Byzantine architecture.

Forget saving your annual leave for a meagre week of sun; with Italy’s Digital Nomad visa, you’ll have a year-long holiday to live and work in one of Europe’s worst-kept secrets.

Interested in working a real-life Italian Job? Read our guide to dropshipping as a nomad for expert tips on getting started.  

Written by:
Helena Young
Helena is Lead Writer at Startups. As resident people and premises expert, she's an authority on topics such as business energy, office and coworking spaces, and project management software. With a background in PR and marketing, Helena also manages the Startups 100 Index and is passionate about giving early-stage startups a platform to boost their brands. From interviewing Wetherspoon's boss Tim Martin to spotting data-led working from home trends, her insight has been featured by major trade publications including the ICAEW, and news outlets like the BBC, ITV News, Daily Express, and HuffPost UK.

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