An excellent second passport provides you with the key to more travel, work, investment opportunities, and stability in your life. With a second passport, you know you have a place to run to if things go badly in your home country.
A second passport is also a status symbol. In the age of citizenship by investment, only those who can afford it can get second passports from particular countries. Many countries prefer this route to any other when it comes to giving away citizenship to foreigners. However, it is possible to get one, regardless of your economic status.
There are other ways that one can get a second passport. When looking for a second passport, you must find out what your home country rules on dual citizenship are.
Here are five ways to get an excellent second passport in 2020.
Citizenship by Investment
Citizenship by investment means exactly as it sounds. Invest in a country and in return you will get citizenship. Many countries offer this opportunity to foreigners by advertising their citizenship by investment programs in different countries.
To get a second passport in this way, you need to meet certain requirements set by your prospective second home. First, you have to invest a certain amount of money in identified sectors of the economy. Many countries that offer citizenship by investment require interested parties to invest in property, government bonds, business, and also in government-approved research programs.
When you have met the investment threshold, you are now qualified to apply for your second passport. When you apply, you will be required to show your legal source of income and prove that you have met your tax obligations at home. You will also be required to have police clearance to prove that you don’t have a criminal record. Also, you must be over 18 years of age.
Your family also qualifies to apply for the citizenship by investment program with you. Your family includes your children. For adult children, most countries will accept them if they are still in college. Your spouse and your elderly parents who are dependent on you are also valid dependents and can make their application with you.
This is the fastest method to get a second passport. Many countries that run this program ensure that their applicants receive their passports in up to six months of application. Citizenship by investment is not encumbered with residency period requirements. You make your investment as required, apply for the passport, wait for a few months and you can get your second passport in the mail.
When you make up your mind to apply to citizenship by investment program, seek out a legal representative. This will help you to smoothly navigate the application process and save you from losing your money to scams. They will also help you decide on the best investment decision to make to qualify for the program.
- Countries that offer citizenship by investment include:
- St Kitts and Nevis
- Santa Lucia and others.
Citizenship by Naturalization
To get a second passport by naturalization means that, you have legally moved to another country and spent a considerable amount of time. You can then apply to become a citizen of that country based on the amount of time living in it. When you become a citizen following this process, you become a naturalized citizen.
Unlike citizenship by investment, getting your second passport through naturalization takes years. Many countries require that foreigners who want to be naturalized to have been legally residing in the country for at least five to ten years before they can be considered for naturalization. Also, depending on your home country, your naturalization period in different countries will vary. You may be required to be a resident for much longer or shorter than people from other countries.
You don’t have to be a full-time resident to get your second passport by naturalization. In this case, a country will set a specific number of days for several years that you need to be in the country before you are naturalized. Many countries that opt for this route to citizenship require foreigners to spend at least 14 days in their country every year for many years before they can apply for citizenship by naturalization. This gives you ample time to get to know the country before you choose to become a citizen.
Citizenship by naturalization may also require you to have basic knowledge of the official language in the country. This is the main reason why there is a long waiting period. Citizenship by naturalization has minimal financial requirements. You pay for most of it by the time you spend in the country. You may, however, be required to pay application fees.
Here are some countries from which you can get your second passport through naturalization:
- United Kingdom
- The United States of America among others.
Citizenship by Ancestry
Citizenship by ancestry or descent is an easy method you can use to acquire a second passport. When you get it right, it’s a straightforward method to get your second passport. To qualify, you need to prove that your ancestors came from a particular country whose passport you want.
If you were born in a different country from your parents, you can easily acquire a passport from your parents’ country of birth. This is citizenship by ancestry. For some European countries, if you can prove that your grandparents or great-grandparents were born in that country, you can easily get your second passport under your ancestry.
Most times, you don’t have to leave your home country to visit your country of origin. You can start the process at the embassy nearest to you. Here, you can get the information you require and they will even facilitate your application for and receiving your passport if you qualify.
Here is a list of countries from which you can get citizenship by ancestry:
Citizenship by Marriage
Marriage is another way to get your second passport. If you get married to a foreigner, you can apply for citizenship in their country. If you move from your home country to your partner’s you will need to apply for citizenship by marriage. However, marriage does not qualify you to become a citizen immediately. All it does is shorten the length of time you have to wait before you are naturalized into citizenship.
Every country has its laws on how marriage affects citizenship. If you choose this route to get your second passport, you must know how the rules affect you and your spouse’s citizenship status.
Citizenship by marriage has been abused by people seeking citizenship in foreign countries. Consequently, many countries have increased the time it takes for married foreigners to become full citizens. However, they remain permanent residents with the full rights of a citizen.
A lot of stigma has been attached to this method of citizenship in a foreign country. Many see a marriage between foreigners as a method to seek greener pasture in developed countries. This especially true when the marriage is between people from different parts of the world. For example, one spouse is from a developing country while the other is from a developed country.
This then causes countries to make rules on how citizenship is gained through marriage. Here is a list of countries where you can get a second passport faster due to marriage:
- Cape Verde
Exceptional citizenship is a rare method of gaining citizenship in a country. Only a few countries around the world offer this kind of citizenship.
You can only get your second passport with exceptional citizenship by doing something extraordinary for the country that gives it to you. For example, if you can start a business in a foreign country that creates hundreds of jobs for its people, you could be a prospective recipient of exceptional citizenship.
Another way people have gained exceptional citizenship in foreign countries is by making substantial donations towards specific initiatives in the country. The government could then appreciate you the donor by offering citizenship for your exceptional good deed towards their country. If you have some rare skills, it is also possible for you to receive exceptional citizenship from countries looking for your particular skills.
Like citizenship by investment, if you get exceptional citizenship, you become a citizen immediately. You do not have to wait for years to be naturalized. This is the major advantage of this method of getting your second passport in 2020.
What are the benefits of getting a second passport?
Your home country passport may not allow you to travel to many countries visa-free. You can acquire a second passport from a country whose passport is more superior or accepted by most countries for visa-free travel. In this way, you can just wake up in the morning and book a flight to many countries. If you hold a European country passport, you have visa-free access to all European countries and another 161 countries. This means that, if you are a regular traveler, you save a lot of money by not having to pay entry and visa fees in many countries.
Many people seeking second passports do so to minimize their tax liability. Your home country may charge you tax at much higher rates than other countries. In this case, you can find a country with lower tax rates to become a citizen. This lowers the amount of tax you pay as a citizen of the new country.
You have a place to go
With a second passport, you are sure you have a place to go to when things in your home country are not working. You can board a plane with your second passport and escape the turmoil in your home country.
Access more opportunities
With a second passport, you have access to many opportunities for business growth, job seeking, and personal growth. You can leave your home country and seek for a job in your second passport country comfortably. This broadens your search for available opportunities for personal, professional, and business growth.
Give a second passport to your children
You can also give your newborn children citizenship in two countries. This enables them to enjoy a high quality of life with the flexibility that comes from having two passports.
Peace of mind
A second passport provides you with peace of mind. You have secured the future for you and your family in an ever-changing world. Knowing that you have the backing of another, probably superior government wherever you are in the world provides a sense of security and peace of mind.
When you hold two passports, you have the opportunity to grow your understanding and experience of culture. You get to enjoy and practice the cultures of the two countries. You could be deep in your home country culture and also learn how to experience the culture of your second home. This gives you a new appreciation of culture. You get to roam around the world with the history of two countries and two cultures that you ascribe to.
There are different ways you can gain a second passport. Citizenship by investment is the most convenient if you can afford it. It is a fast process and all you need is to make a financial investment as provided for by the government. Many countries offer citizenship by investment. Similarly, exceptional citizenship is also fast to acquire. However, it is a rare method to get your second passport.
Getting a second passport has many benefits. You have the opportunity to live and work in different parts of the world without any hindrances. You also have the opportunity to travel far and wide visa-free and with minimal restrictions. A second passport may also help you to lower your tax expenses depending on the country you choose as your second home.