Greece Country Profile

Passport
For more details visit Greece Passport Ranking
  • Passport Grade
    A
  • Passport Ranking
    25/198
  • Passport Score
    176.4/198
  • Visa-free Countries
    155
  • Visa-required Countries
    43
  • Access to the World's GDP
    75%
  • Access to the World's Surface Area
    60%
  • Access to the World's Population
    46%
  • Access to the Unesco Sites
    80%
Citizenship and Naturalization
Birthright citizenship (Jus Soli)
  • Birthright citizenship (Jus Soli)
    Restricted
    Restricted: A child born in Greece will become a citizen at birth if at least one of the parents was also born in Greece. The parent must also has been "permanentnly domiciled" in Greece from his or her birth.
Naturalization - Standard Conditions
  • Minimum residency period
    12 years
    Can apply after 7 years of PR, which takes 5 years to obtain.
  • Physical presence requirement
    On average, 10 months a year. Also, cannot leave for longer than 6 months at a time
  • Language test
    Yes, Greek
  • Need to renounce original citizenship?
    No
  • Can minor children naturalize?
    Yes, unmarried children younger than 18 receive citizenship automatically with parents
  • Can naturalized parents pass citizenship to a child born abroad?
  • Can you lose naturalization due to prolonged absence/ naturalization elsewhere?
Naturalization - Your Spouse is a Citizen
  • Living IN the country: Residency/marriage requirement
    3 years / 0 years
    May apply immediately after marriage, assuming you have resided there for 3 years. Also, must have a child together.
  • Living ABROAD: Marriage requirement
    Not allowed
  • Language test
    Yes, Greek
  • Need to renounce original citizenship?
    No
Naturalization - Other Beneficial Provisions
  • Your child is a citizen
    3 years
    May apply immediately after having a child with a Greek citizen, assuming you have resided there for 3 years.
  • Citizens of specific countries
    3 years
    3 years for citizens of all EU counties.
"–": The provision has not been analysed.
Visas and Residencies
Visas and Residencies
Taxation
For more details visit Cost of Living
  • Taxation Type
    Residence-based
A tax resident of a country with a RESIDENCE-BASED tax system pays taxes on their WORLDWIDE income. However, if you lose tax residency status there (e.g., by moving out), the country will generally stop taxing you.

Several incentives are available for new residents. Employed and self-employed can claim a 50% tax reduction on their Greek income. Retirees can claim a flat 7% tax rate on their non-Greek income. And hign net-worth individual can use a €100,000-a-year tax payment that takes care of taxation of their non-Greek income of any size.
Greece is part of the European Economic Area (EEA), allowing its citizens to live and work in any other EEA country, plus Switzerland. (The EEA consists of 27 European Union countries plus Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein.)
Schiff Sovereign's Take on Greece
Greece is a fascinating country. It is the cradle of democracy and the place where Western civilization started.

The idea of Greece used to invoke images of culture, literature, wise philosophers, the magnificent cities of Athens and Sparta, and a great civilization. Don’t get us wrong, it still very much represents these outstanding feats of history.

And on top of that, the country offers a great climate, healthy food, and a relaxed vibe. It’s a wonderful place to spend time, especially if you avoid the crowds of Athens and Santorini.

Greece is part of the EU and the Schengen Area, so residents and citizens enjoy access to both.

And there are relatively easy ways to move to Greece. We have discussed how economically self-sufficient people can obtain residency in Greece in this report. This residency, however, requires you to spend significant time on the ground each year. If you want a pure insurance policy, you may want to consider the country’s attractive Golden Visa.

If you have Greek roots, also take note of the fact that Greece is home to an explicit Citizenship By Ancestry program, making it possible for you to claim Greek citizenship even if it has been long lost by your Greek ancestors.

The cost of living is low, and the cost of housing has been lagging behind other Southern European countries offering Golden Visas.

But keep in mind that Greece also has its fair share of problems.

The country has been mired in a sovereign debt crisis since the 2008 global financial crisis. The country has the highest debt-to-GDP ratio in all of Europe. 

We wouldn’t consider banking there unless absolutely necessary.

It's hard to imagine a scenario in which Greece remains in the Euro Zone for too much longer. The math just doesn't add up. 

However, quitting the Euro Zone will probably not mean that Greece leaves either the European Union or the Schengen Area. So all is not lost: there will probably still be an opportunity for free trade and free movement across the continent.
Schiff Sovereign's Rolodex
Service Providers available in Greece
  • Citizenship by Ancestry
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Greece Overview
  • Region
    Europe
  • Capital City
    Athens
  • Largest City
    Athens
  • Currency
    Euro
  • Languages
    Greek
  • Population
    10.4 million (89th)
  • Life Expectancy
    81.5 years (39th)
  • GDP (Nominal)
    $222 billion (54th)
  • GDP/Capita
    $21,280 (54th)
Useful Data
For more details visit Cost of Living
  • Cost of Living
    Moderate (4/7)
  • Climate
    Very comfortable (1/5)
  • Safety
    Very Safe (2/7)
  • Pollution
    Average (3/5)
  • English Proficiency
    Moderate (3/5)

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PREMIUM REPORTS
Greece inside Schiff Sovereign resources

Articles featuring Greece

Lifestyle Design

Greece isn’t the problem, it’s a symptom of the problem

July 22, 2015 Munich, Germany By plane, Asia and Europe are 12 hours apart. But on the ground the gap feels like decades. It’s always a shock to leave a place like Vietnam (where I was last week) and fly to Europe. Vietnam is one of the fastest growing countries in the fastest growing region […]

Trends & News

“Boots on the ground” report from Greece

June 30, 2015 Piraeus, Greece [Editor’s note: This letter was written by a Greek-American friend of Simon’s who is currently living near Athens.] Since my arrival into the country late May, the topic of most discussions I overhear everywhere are naturally about the debt negotiations. I’d call opinions in support or against the Tsipras governments’ […]

Trends & News

Nine years later, Greece is still in a debt crisis...

Sometimes you have to marvel at the absurdity of the financial universe in which we live. On one side of the Atlantic, we have the United States of America, which triggered yet another debt ceiling disaster last Thursday when the US government’s maximum allowable debt reset to just over $20 trillion. Of course, the US […]

Trends & News

When ancient Greece experienced their own ‘2020’...

For the powerful city-state of Athens in ancient Greece, the year 430 BC was one of the most tumultuous and dramatic in its history. Prior to 430 BC, Athens had been at the pinnacle of stability and power for decades. But in the course of that single year, the city was invaded by Sparta at […]

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