Sold on moving to Cyprus? There are a few things you need to know. In this guide, we’re going through Brexit’s impact on moving to Cyprus, how to get yourself a passport, healthcare and plenty more.
Cyprus is hugely popular for both holidaymakers and expats alike. The paradisiacal nature of the island makes it a no brainer for sun-seekers. But there’s a whole lot more to Cyprus than just the warm weather.
If you’re set on making the move, read below for more information on the ins and outs of moving to Cyprus.
Moving to Cyprus after Brexit
Since leaving the EU at the end of December 2020, Brits have a bit more to think about when moving to the continent. Brexit has resulted in a maximum stay of 90 days in a 180-day period for UK nationals travelling to the EU countries. Any stay exceeding this timeframe usually means getting a visa.
Moving to Cyprus after Brexit is no exception. UK citizens eyeing up a long-term move to Cyprus will need a residence permit. You’ll need a temporary residence permit first, sometimes referred to as a ‘pink slip’. This permit allows you to live in Cyprus for one year with the option to renew.
You can apply for permanent residency after five years of living in Cyprus. You can also get your hands on permanent residency through an immigration permit. Securing one of these permits is usually dependent on your job.
You can find out more about the type of residence permit most suitable to you in the Migration section of the Cypriot Civil Registry and Migration Department website.
Also read: Moving to Spain after Brexit.
How to get a Cypriot passport
There are four avenues you can go down to get a Cypriot passport. Two involve family connections to Cyprus: one through marriage and the other through Cypriot origins. If you have no family links to Cyprus, you can acquire a passport through years of residence or investment.
Cyprus immigration rules
The type M127 scheme relates to citizenship through years of residence. You will need to have lived in Cyprus for a total of seven years to qualify. Additionally, you must have resided in Cyprus continuously for one year before your application.
An M127 application costs around €1000 in fees to the Cypriot government: €500 initially for application submission and a further €500 once your application is approved.
The other way to get a Cypriot passport is through investment. The Cypriot government was forced to abolish the Cyprus Investment Programme in November 2020 after fears of exploitation.
Citizenship through investment has been an issue in other EU countries too, such as Portugal and its ‘Golden Visa’. This has since been replaced with the Cyprus Residency by Investment programme.
The new scheme allows investors to achieve residency. This can become citizenship after a minimum of five years living in Cyprus with a residence permit. Currently, you’ll need to invest a minimum of €300,000 to qualify for residency through investment. You can do this by purchasing:
- A brand-new residential property worth over €300,000 (plus VAT)
- A commercial property
- Shares in local companies
- Units in local investment funds
Healthcare in Cyprus for expats
Healthcare in Cyprus is affordable and effective, adding to Cyprus’s popularity among expats. Many doctors in Cypriot hospitals are trained overseas, so English is commonly spoken. Like many other Western countries, Cyprus’s healthcare system is separated into public and private.
Public healthcare in Cyprus
Public healthcare in Cyprus is funded by taxes and obligatory social service contributions. It is administered by the Ministry of Health and determined by your residency status.
If you have lived in Cyprus for more than three months, you are considered a resident by the healthcare system. As a resident, you can register for the General Healthcare System (GHS) and assign yourself a local doctor.
Private healthcare in Cyprus
Private healthcare in Cyprus is a common choice for expats. You’ll gain access to a wider variety of healthcare services and avoid some of public healthcare’s long waiting times. You can choose from a range of policies, catering to different requirements.
Expats in Cyprus tend to go for either international private medical cover or local private medical cover. International cover tends to be more flexible and stable, whereas local cover is cheaper. Usually, expats pay for treatment and services upfront and are reimbursed a month or so later.
Living in Cyprus pros and cons
Moving to Cyprus is always going to take a bit of thought. There are many factors of Cyprus life that will entice you and put you off. So, to give you a helping hand, here is a handful of pros and cons of living in Cyprus.
Low cost of living
The cost of living is low for everyone in Cyprus. Whether you’re buying groceries, renting a room or hopping on public transport – don’t expect to spend big. On average, the cost of living is 13.4% cheaper in Cyprus than in the UK and rent is 28.94% cheaper.
Warm weather all year
Moving abroad to chase the sun? Look no further than Cyprus. It has one of the warmest climates in Mediterranean Europe, with summer-like weather for seven months of the year. The winters are mild too, but you can find snow in the Troodos mountains.
Low crime rate
Cyprus is a safe place to live. Its low crime rate makes it a favourite for expats, especially families and retirees. There’s little fear of leaving the house at night or walking the streets on your own. According to Numbeo, Cyprus beats the UK in almost every crime rate department.
Not a lot of jobs
Being an island has its drawbacks and unfortunately for Cypriots, one of them is the job market. Cyprus imports almost everything from other countries and makes very little of its own basic goods. This means the nation is missing many industries, factories and major, big-branded companies. A reduction in job sectors means a reduction in job opportunities.
Although to some people being digitally behind means not having the latest smartphone, in the case of Cyprus is a bit more glaring. It ranks one of the lowest in Europe for digital public services (e.g. functionality and usability of Government websites) and integration of digital technology (e.g. business digitisation and e-commerce). Internet connections, though widely accessible, are known for being flimsy too.
Send money to Cyprus
If you’re set on moving to Cyprus, you’ll need to know what to do with your money. Whether you’re in the market for buying international private health insurance, investing for citizenship or transferring money to a Cypriot bank account, we can help.
Our Currency Specialists can guide you through the process of your exchange and offer solutions and strategies to save you time and money. As well as taking out the hassle of trading foreign currencies, our market-leading rates ensure you’re getting the most for your money.
Book a chat (it’s free) with a Privalgo Currency Specialist today and see what we can do for you.Book a chat with a Currency Specialist