Ep 70: A roadmap for living and working abroad

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Please note, that this transcription is automatically created, so it may not be perfect!

Al
Hello and welcome to a Sideways Life podcast. This is episode 70. I'm out.

Leanne
I'm Leanne.

Al
And hello. Welcome back. Well, I suppose we say welcome back to Us, haven't we?

Leanne
Welcome back, Al.

Al
Welcome back. Leanne. Even though I've seen you every day for the last four weeks, but you haven't seen us, listener. We haven't heard us because why have we not been around, Leanne?

Leanne
Well, if you listen to our last episode, you'll know that we ran away from home for a few weeks and learned some stuff. And since then, we have basically moved in a nutshell. We left our lovely housing issue early, thankfully, because new tenants Hi Cath and Dave can move and seen it. So we packed up our life and hotfooted it to split. But more on that in a little bit.

Al
So just to give you an idea of the format of today's episode, so if you're regular listeners, you remember back in episode 65, 66 and 67, it was kind of like a mini series where we asked the three important questions you need to ask before you take the step to live and work abroad and just refresh your memory. Or if you have not listened to them, then maybe go back and listen to they are chunky episodes. They're all maybe about sort of 45 minutes to an hour each, but we think they're really foundational to your journey. And the first question was, why do you want to live or work abroad? And that is episode 65. Then the second question was.

Leanne
Leanne, how are you going to sustain your life abroad?

Al
That's episode 66. And finally, we go to the where, which is episode 67. Where do you want to live abroad? And most people also included, start off by saying, where do you want to live? Oh, I want to live in Spain. I want to live in Costa Rica. I want to live in Bansko, in Bulgaria. They could start with the wear. And that, we think, is kind of like the final piece of the puzzle. Why do we think that?

Leanne
Because the where bit is kind of irrelevant if you don't understand, if you're not emotionally and psychologically in a place where you can move confidently and effectively, as we said, if you listen back, if you're ready to take that red pill, you better be ready. And then the hair. If you can't figure out a way to sustain yourself, then you're just going on a long holiday, right?

Al
That's a really good point. There is a difference between there's kind of like three stages of living and working abroad. There's a long holiday or a gap year or something, which is just there's no reasonable expectation that you're going to be staying away. Then there is nomadding where. There's an expectation you'll stay away for a while, but there's nowhere in particular you're thinking of staying. And then there's expat or expattery, as we like to call it, where you would go. I'm going to this one place, and this is where I'm going to make my life for the next X number of years.

Leanne
Yes.

Al
I suppose the first part of that what was the word I used to gap here? The first part of that is we're not really dealing with that because that's sort of more of a longer, as Lean said, a longer holiday. And so we can't really help with that because we're not really done much of it, have we?

Leanne
No. And there's plenty of other folks out there that I'm sure we'll talk about that type of stuff much better than us.

Al
Absolutely. So we're talking about the types two and three, which is someone who wants to be a Nomad, that's someone who just moves around either weekly, monthly, sometimes even yearly, annually, and expats, someone who's decided that they want to live and work abroad for in one place for a substantial period of time. Now what we're going to do today is we're going to use our own roadmap. Now, we have created a roadmap. We've not filled up a fancy name of it yet, but by the time you look at it, which is a sidewayslife comrodemap, we may have come up with a fancy name for it, but the idea is that it goes through these three things. They say, first of all, why do you want to move and work abroad? Secondly, how are you going to make it sustainable? How is your everyday life going to look? And then finally, where are you going to live? Each one of these three stages has three questions, which gives us nine questions in total, and we are going to go through those and tell you our honest answers to each one of those nine. So you can see how the road map would help.

Al
Yes.

Leanne
And I think just to expand on that a little bit, is it this roadmap we've developed to try and help people who are looking to live and work abroad over the coming year months, because we get lots of questions from our listeners which is great about very different things, either general or specific. And then we also mentioned a few episodes ago that wants to do some kind of challenge, some kind of way to engage people who are listening that aren't yet living and working abroad just to see if we can help a little bit. So that's where this road map has come from. And we have developed it with the help of some of our lovely listeners who have been in touch. So thank you to you. You know who you are.

Al
And so the context of why we're going through this for ourselves now, you might think, well, you are living and working abroad. Yes, we are. But our tenancy ended in Austria. And so now we have to be out of Croatia in about a month's time our visa ends. Very sad. So we're kind of like, okay, well, where do we want to live? And we've been talking very much like where. So Portugal is one option. Going back to Croatia is another option. There's a potential option on the table of a Spanish digital Nomad visa, though we don't know how that's going to work.

Leanne
Yeah. Or nomadding. Again, I think we went from nomadding to being in one place for a year, and now we're trying to figure out, well, if we are going to go from Nomad to expert, how do we do that? What do we need to think about? What's our why, what's our how, what's our where? So we can test this on ourselves before we even try and test it on you? Because that would be irresponsible, really, wouldn't it?

Al
And we've not actually done this properly. So this is literally alive version of it. So the first three questions, stage one, why do you want to live and work abroad? So the three questions we think that you should ask yourself are, why is it not good now? So why is it that you don't want to stay where you are? Will it be different or how will it be different? And why can't you have what you want now? That all sounds good.

Leanne
It does sound good. So to give you kind of a bit more context of how we're going to apply this to ourselves currently, we believe that Croatia or potentially Portugal are the two top places we should consider or rule out. So I guess we'll do this from a perspective of kind of Croatia moving from Croatia, going to Portugal in a few weeks time, and just answer these questions, much like we were living in our home country and deciding to move to Portugal because we've been here for a year. So it's a stable situation we've been in and we're about to become unstable.

Al
Yes. Because there is an option of potentially renewing our Nomad visa. So we have to leave the country for three months, then we come back under a tourist visa, and then we can renew our visa for another year. So really, it's almost like this is our home. And so this is where you're sitting right now, listener, and you're thinking of you want to move somewhere else. And Portugal is kind of like, oh, that's what we think we want to move to. So if we got those ground rules out the way.

Leanne
Yes.

Al
Shall we start with the first question on stage one? Why is it not good now?

Leanne
So why is Croatia not good now? Well, I think I would like to just narrow that down in a little bit and say, why is Austria or was Austria not good now? Loved Austria. And I think this is the key thing in your why. And we've said this before in the episode, go back and listen. If you're running away from something you're completely unhappy with, there's going to be other things to sort out there. So in terms of why it got good now, it is good, Austria is good, but there were just little things that were missing for both of us that we didn't quite realise until we ran away from home. And I think that was just that we do own our own business, we are self employed, we have to have a little bit of hustle in our lives. And Croatia's, beautiful as it is, most of the people we met there are retired, no longer working or have kind of passive incomes or less intensive businesses, which was great. But as our friends Duncan Lawrence said, they were like, we were chatting to them before we moved and they were like, yeah, the issue is we're going to phone you on Wednesday afternoon and see if you want to go for lunch.

Leanne
And I was like, no, the issue is we're going to say yes. So I guess it's just finding somewhere that's got a little bit more in terms of vibe, of kind of business, doing stuff opportunities, networking, that type of stuff. And so in history it is good and it was good, but I felt it was missing that. What about you?

Al
Yeah, I think totally agree. I think the temptation was always because we lived in this beautiful countryside and a very sleepy little village that got 6000 people in it in the winter and then the summer goes to like 30,000 when all the tourists come. It was far too easy to get and it was sunny, far too easy to at 03:00 in the afternoon, just go, should we have a beer in the garden? And we just felt that there wasn't that much structure and also the people, it's Jim Rohn, I think he says you are the sum of the five people you spend most time with. And obviously the end. I spend most time with each other, but all the other people I spent most time with were retired. They were like, oh, I'm going to go off and get my bike today and go for a bike ride and someone else. I'm going to go for lunch and whatever. Whereas when we went to Dubrovnik, we met up with a lovely lady called Barbara. If you are ever considering getting a visa in Croatia, you need to speak to Barbara Adriaticseechang.

Leanne
Yeah, that's right.

Al
Google it or email us or Instagram us. We'll put you in touch and she had a little meetup and there was only maybe eight people there. But we just felt so energised because each one of them had their own thing going on, their own hostel going on, and we came away from that. And to be fair, we weren't going to go because something else happened and neither of us were like, and both of us quite introverted, a bit like to have to go and meet new people. But when we got there and we went back, we were just like energised because they were doing things and they were kind of similar to our age or not. Well, Yan's age, not mine a bit older. I just felt that was. So why is it not good now in history? To summarise, is that the buzz? Am I right saying, I'm trying not to put stuff in your words, in your mouth, but Istria, why is it not good now? Is that we didn't necessarily have the buzz. We didn't have the network of people who were working, and it was just perhaps a little too sleepy at the wrong stage of their life, ten years down the line.

Leanne
Absolutely. I think that's the thing. It's right now, isn't it? Right now, I seem to be a bit lacking and then kind of broadening that out to Croatia as a whole. Why is it not good now? The visa situation ain't great. There isn't really a viable long term option for us to stay in Croatia to get permanent residency now, thanks to Brexit. And we looked every walkway from legal loopholes to slight dodgingess, which just isn't cool. It's not going to work, which means that we're stuck on the Nomad visa. For now, that might change. But for now, we are faced with the reality that we can spend about 15 months at time in Croatia and then have to leave for three months and come back. So in terms of setting up a permanent base, not great. And then the other downside of it as well, even if you look just like just Nomad, I'll use it as a base for the region. Well, no, because you can only have 30 days outside of Croatia on the Nomad visa. So it's massively restricting on that as well. You can't travel and you can't stay long term.

Leanne
It's kind of like, well, worst of all worlds.

Al
Absolutely. Okay. So now we've covered off that answer. Covered off. Who am I? Let's circle back and kind of pin in that one. So that's the answer to the question, why is it not good now in history? So the question next question would be and it's got two parts to this because we're currently sitting in Split in a little apartment in Split. Lovely apartment, but it is like I think our house is 3000 sqft. This might be 400 pushing it, one bed apartment sitting at the kitchen table as opposed to our podcast studio. So we've got two parts of this. We've got. How will it be different in a in splitting Croatia if we did come back to Croatia, but predominantly, we're going to concentrate on how it will be different in Portugal. So, Leanne, you've identified the problems with where we are in Austria. What would happen? How will it be different if we moved to Portugal?

Leanne
Well, I think in terms of people who work online who are potentially Nomads or experts, there is a high concentration of those types of people in Portugal. Portuguese are well established, as you I'm sure you will know for many years for both Nomads and Expats. It's got great visa options, which enables that. It's tax friendly situation that enables that. So we know there is a higher concentration of like minded people, business owners, entrepreneurs, even just people working in a corporate job. There is a high concentration of those in Portugal. So it's more likely we're going to meet more like minded people at a similar stage of their life in business.

Al
Absolutely. Weather is kind of more come on to this more in the future, but a bit later on. But weather is sort of similar. We do a sort of a top trumps of top temperature, lowest temperature, not a massive difference. So in terms of that, how will it be different? It's not much in terms of the weather. The other thing is that how will it be different? Is that the language we are Semi I wouldn't say fluent, but we know Spanish. We can get by we can get by in Spanish and Portuguese, although it's surprisingly different. It is still based on the romantic sort of root language, whereas Croatian and Croatia is based on Slavic. So it is a totally different language route. So we find that we think it might be easier to pick up the language in Portugal.

Leanne
Yeah. And we spoke to people as well who have spoken Spanish and then learned Portuguese and found it easier. They seem to have they felt like they had a bit of a head start on it. So, yes, that will be different. And I think the main thing that will be different is the visa situation. We will be able to have complete flexibility to apply for temporary residency after five years. We can apply for permanent residency in those five years leading up to that. You have to spend at least six months in Portugal. I think that's six months continuously, isn't it? Or if you hopping in and out, it needs to be a quick to eight months. So you've still got that flexibility of travel for us as third country nationals. It gives us Schengen residency, which then makes travelling in Schengen a whole lot easier. So it gives us options to either travel or to put down roots, which Croatia doesn't give us right now.

Al
Absolutely. Croatia, we are literally literally tourists who've got a year long visa to live. We've got no rights. It doesn't help us. Although Croatia will be moving into well, he's likely to move into the Schengen zone late next year, so we will talk about that in a second. But, yeah, how will it be different? I think it sums up the fact that it'll be more stable because we don't have to leave Portugal every year for three months, whereas if we stay encouraged, we'd have to do that.

Leanne
Exactly. Yes. That throws into all the sorts of things as well, doesn't it, in terms of having a long term rental or even looking to buy somewhere as an option or even just knowing that you don't have to kind of move your entire life every 15 months, which doesn't sound that frequent, but can you imagine if you had to do that and you had your dream set up? And we know people who have lived in Croatia for a long time, and now I face that situation. So it's not ideal. It's workable. Yes, but it's not ideal. So Portugal is attractive for that reason, because that is what's different.

Al
We might have touched on some of this already, but why can't you have what Portugal offers where you are right now?

Leanne
Well, I think in terms of visa situation, there's not a lot that we can do about that. We've done what we can in terms of with Barbara, we've sent letters to people in the government asking for back to back renewals on the Nomad visa or some kind of route to residency. But ultimately, as I said, we don't have rights here. We can advocate for it and support the right people who do have the power. But beyond that, we're kind of limited on what we can do right now to change it. I think in terms of why can't we have the other things we talked about, kind of visa aside, is why we've moved to Split to exactly answer that question. So we said it was a bit sleepy. We couldn't really find the right network of people or even just a balanced network of people. We had a magazine or friends, don't get me wrong, and we're going to miss them so much. But just that work more aspect of the people we met. So we have come to Split, which is kind of the hub of Nomads in Croatia. It's the second largest city after the capital that dark and no, Zagreb.

Leanne
So if we're going to find those people, we should be able to find them in Croatia, in Split.

Al
I think the beauty of this question is that it's saying why can't you have what you have now stops you from thinking, oh, it's going to be so good living on a beach and living like ten minutes from the beach and stand up paddle boarding. Not that we ever do anything like that. But I think what's interesting is it's asking you is there a way you can have what you want now. And that then means that, for example, when I'm saying when I'm assuming that it will happen that Croatia joins Schengen, then they can be less strict about their borders, because at the moment, they're almost like on probation for Schengens. They have to prove that they can protect the Schengen area because they're right on the very edge. They bought a Hungary Schengen, isn't it?

Leanne
Yes, but they also bought Bosnia. Montenegro.

Al
Yes, in Montenegro. So they're basically the first line of defence for Schengen. So they have to prove themselves. They're improvisation. Now, what might happen is that once they become Schengen, they relax these rules for the Nomad and go, yes, of course, you go back to back. We just have to show the Schengen guys that we were actually protecting our borders so that it kind of makes you go rather than thinking, oh, it can be so much better in Portugal. Actually, if I had the same opportunities, the same visa that Portugal has, would I stay here? And if you're sitting in the States right now and you're thinking, okay, I want to live in, let's use Portugal example, then you've got to think, okay, well, what happens if I had the same things that Portugal comes to offer in the States and you might be somewhere in Midwest? And you go, actually, what happens if I did move down to California? Would I have coastal, would I have whatever, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.

Leanne
Yeah, exactly. And I think that's the thing, isn't it? Let's say that we just thought, no, we can't have any of this in Croatia, and they never going to change the visa system. And Portugal is where it's got the highest concentration of Nomads. That's where we're going to go. And then the visa situation did change. We'd be like, well, Estria didn't tick all of our boxes, but it came pretty close. And then we didn't try anywhere else. And this is what this whole experiment is about. These next five weeks is to go, well, if the visa rules did change, does Split tick more of our boxes?

Al
That's a really good point. Actually, the reason we're in Split now for the last five weeks of our visa, rather than living it out, we did rent our house up until when the visa expired. Rather than doing that, we came to Split because exactly as question before we go, well, Split has got more of what we want in Portugal, but not everything. So we've got to be fair. Even if we're living in an apartment as opposed to a lovely house with a huge garden, we want to test that. Excuse me. I think that's why these three questions are great. So I'll just go through those again. We've just answered the stage one, why do you want to live and work abroad? Number one, why is it not good now where you live, how will it be different when you live and work abroad? And why can't you have what you want where you live right now?

Leanne
Yes. Summarise view, chef play.

Al
Right. Okay, so anything else to say before we move on stage two?

Leanne
No.

Al
Okay, so stage two should be relatively easy for us because we've already done it, but we'll still go through as if we were we'll answer all the questions properly. So the stage two is, how are you going to work and live abroad? Live and work abroad. How are you going to live and work abroad? Question number one, work, I suppose, really what we're talking about is money, because the question we might love work, but ultimately we do work because we need money. So how are we going to earn money?

Leanne
Yes. And I think when we talked about this episode a few weeks ago, it kind of came down to you get a gig, you get a job where you have a business, otherwise you have automated income, in which case that's not good for you. But otherwise, yeah, it's a gig. It's a job or it's a business. We've done all of them between us. I've had a job, I've had a gig, and now we have a business and you've had business all the way through. But is it just making sure that it's sustainable? So the time zone is that friendly? Yes, because the majority of our clients are in the UK. So being on somewhere on European time zone is fine, I guess, in terms of their view, do we need to think about that? Maybe they might have a more favourable view of Portugal versus Croatia potentially. But at the same time, the types of clients and businesses we work with, they're very progressive. They're on a Led. I don't think it would be that big a thing. And then it comes down to finding new clients. Well, thanks to the Pandemic, working remotely and connecting with people remotely and delivering services remotely is now very normal.

Leanne
So I think the only thing might be is if we did have a client who wanted us to be on the ground, and that's more than likely going to be in the UK. Well, the issue with, again, Croatia is that we're only allowed to be out for 30 days, so we don't have much flexibility. When you then kind of build in the time that you want to go and see friends and family at some point during the year, that doesn't give you that flexibility, whereas Portugal actually does because you can be out for six months. So maybe Portugal is a bit more friendly for that type of thing. What do you think?

Al
Yes, I totally agree. I think you've got to be really realistic about this. And we've said before that if your aim is to move abroad and start a business, particularly if you say, right, I'm going to go to Portugal and I'm going to start a travel agency for people in the UK who have dogs that want to live in Portugal. That's a fucking big ask because you're now completely upturning your life with no friends, no support network, and then you're also starting a business. Two of like, the most awful things you can do in your life. And we've done both of those. We've started businesses. I've started like four businesses, three of which didn't go well. And so I can tell you from experience, it's not a great experience. You tend to be working very long. It's very stressful. And if it's just you sitting in a room, it's not a great way to start. So you need to make sure you think how I earn money. And to be honest, the progression usually goes is the best one is a job. If you can keep your current job and continue and continue with that great.

Al
If you're already doing gigs, I want to say gigs. We talk about freelancer. So you might be doing sort of, let's say you're a freelance graphic designer, so you might do a job for clients, a in week one, the job for client being week two, et cetera, et cetera. And then if you already have a business, great. But that tends to be the most logical, I think, is that if you currently have a job, then start trying to get your job, try and do your job remotely. And if you can't, then go for a gig and then once you've done a few gigs, got a few gigs under your belt, then if you want to start business, great. But you can always fall back in your kick.

Leanne
Yeah. And as I said, we talked about that, a lot of you. So go back in and listen. But in terms of kind of applying the framework out, do you see any other issues for us in terms of how we'll work, Croatia versus Portugal?

Al
No.

Leanne
Okay, great. Do you want the next question?

Al
I don't, because I think we're just going to be doing the same thing and we've both got gigs we can fall back on if we have to. So I think that answers that question. Are you happy with that?

Leanne
Yeah.

Al
Cool. Question number two, how we cope with everyday life so that's things like hobbies, things like the lifestyle, just basically hobbies are a big one because hobbies need things. Usually we cart around an entire bag full of our podcasting kit. So how are you going to cope with everyday life? What do you think the everyday life is going to be like in Portugal compared to Croatia?

Leanne
I think the answer is I don't know, which is why we're going to go to Portugal and see basing on our experiences in Spain, I think it would just be a slight shift in our day because the siesta thing was real in Spain. I'm not sure if it is in Portugal, but if it is, then our working hours will change a little bit and therefore spare time will change a little bit. But in terms of hobbies, as you say, we've already figured out how to take all the stuff we need to do our hobbies with us and take it with us. In terms of other hobbies, I don't see any massive difference between doing them in Croatia versus Portugal, to be honest.

Al
No. And I think you're right. The everyday life is a bit more laid back on the Iberian Peninsula. So if you get really angry that at nine oh one, your tradesperson hasn't turned up and they said they'd be there at nine, then maybe Germany is more of a place for you than Portugal. But these sort of things you need to think about what's your everyday life going to be like across town. Can you cope with it? And I think that we would say yes, we absolutely could.

Leanne
Yeah, we think we can. But we're going to go see, we're going to go find out.

Al
Cool. Okay. So the third question that we ask in this stage two, how are you going to live and work abroad is how are you going to find friends? And there's a sub part of this is like how are you going to keep in connection with existing friends and family?

Leanne
I mean, in terms of finding friends it is difficult. And I think if you look at any kind of social media account or podcast or YouTube channel, one of the main challenges that will always come up for Expats or Nomads is meeting people, particularly for Nomads. If you're moving around quite frequently, I think for us what's always worked is going to events, joining the local Nomad or Expat groups, peanut, our dog is quite good for that as well. I think just saying yes to everything within the first few weeks that you're there, get on a site, find out what's going on, say yes. So we are going to our first event tonight for locals and Expats. We've got other things coming as well in the next few weeks in terms of dog walks and all those other things. So I think you just have to get yourself out there. In terms of Croatia versus Portugal, like we said, there is a higher well, there seems to be a higher concentration of experts and Nomads in Portugal. So it seems a bigger pool. And I think as well being closer to a city is going to make a big difference for us.

Leanne
So, yeah, I would imagine it might be slightly easier in Portugal.

Al
Yeah, I think you're right. There's a higher concentration certainly compared to Austria, much higher concentration of Nomads and Expats. But I think what the answer is saying is really important that you kind of need a strategy. This is like how do you find friends? Well, it's very unlikely that you're going to bump into people because the odds of bumping into someone who it doesn't even matter if they speak the same language as, you know, the common language seems to be English, who's very lucky for us, but it doesn't really matter because you've got to get on with them. And we met some people at an event a few weeks ago and the first thing they said to us was something like, oh, I'm Christian, of course. And then the one thing I don't like about Albania is all of the call to prayer. I think the way that we try and be inclusive is just feels that that was just a weird thing to say. So, you know, probably one in ten, one in five people you meet are not going to be your friends. So you have to make a strategic effort to go out there and meet as many people a week as you possibly can.

Leanne
Yes, definitely.

Al
Can we box that one off?

Leanne
I think so. I think we've both done well over the last twelve months in history, particularly since Pandemic kind of start to get a bit easier to manage. It's the first time a long time we've been in one place and yeah, we've made some friends that we're going to stay in touch with for a long, long time. So, yeah, I think we're okay on that. I think it's just a case of keeping up the effort.

Al
Okay. So we've now boxed off stage two, which is how are you going to live and work abroad? We answer the question, number one, how will we earn money? We talk about gig, job or business are usually the three ways we do it, how we cope with everyday life. Is it compatible with the way we live and how we find friends? Yeah, I think that's it, isn't it?

Leanne
Yeah.

Al
Are we ready for stage three?

Leanne
Yes.

Al
And this is going to be a bit of a weird one. This is where do you want to live and work abroad?

Leanne
Yes. I think when we were kind of coming to realise that what we really enjoyed about Croatia or we really enjoyed having a bit of a base and that's something that we want to try again, but we want to try it again, as we've said, with the possibility of having long term residency, when we realise that something that Crystal can give us right now, we start to think about, well, where else can we consider? And I think Portugal, for us came up for a number of reasons based on the three kind of main points we put into this category. So one, in terms of language, like I said, we're okay with Spanish. So we probably got some kind of basis to learn Portuguese. I'm sure it will be easier than Croatian. It's known as one of the hardest languages to learn, so language might be a bit easier. Culture we've been immersed in beer and culture for many years. We know we love it. Portugal will have its differences in its quirks, excited to find out what they are. But in terms of culture in general, I don't think it's going to be a massive culture shock.

Leanne
And like we said this before, I think going anywhere in Europe isn't going to be a huge culture shock. It's going to be variations and I don't think there's going to be anything like crazy. So, yes, that's in terms of culture, weather and lifestyle, I mean, the weather in Portugal, we like warm places.

Al
So just to give you a bit of context of your listing. So in the way, there are three more questions, which is how are you going to cope with the language and culture, or is the language and culture compatible? Is the weather and lifestyle compatible, and is the visa and tax situation acceptable? So those are the three questions. Liam was just talking about the language and culture there going on to question number two, the weather and lifestyle. Yes, exactly. I mean, the weather seems very similar to Croatia, perhaps it's a slightly warmer in the winter in Portugal, and it's slightly warmer in the summer as well, I think, in Portugal. But then it's also more rainy in Portugal than it is because you're on the Atlantic as opposed to the Adriatic. So we looked at that and we've been looking at all the different places that we wanted to potentially stay in Portugal. And generally there's not a massive difference in the weather.

Leanne
No, there's not.

Al
In terms of the lifestyle, this is very different, very similar to the culture. But the culture is more sort of what's established there. And the lifestyle is more like how are you going to live your life there? So in terms of the lifestyle, I think that we probably what we're testing out an apartment now, we might go back to apartment living like we did in Manchester, and that will come under the lifestyle. Is that compatible? Well, so far, four days into our apartment life and split, and he's like, yeah, it takes some getting used to, but actually one more bedroom, a little bit more space for work, and we could probably cope with this, couldn't we?

Leanne
Yeah, definitely. And I think maybe that's the thing to consider in terms of kind of that living situation as well, which is something that I've read about Portugal. That may be a downside for us, is that it is quite competitive to get places to live because it is so popular, because there is a high concentration of expats and Nomads, their prices have been pushed up and availability has been pushed down. So it's a challenge. It's going to be more of a challenge, I think, to find somewhere to live than it is. It has been in Croatia.

Al
Absolutely. So that's question number two, and the final question is where do you want to live and work abroad in terms of visa and money or visa and tax? I don't know whether we thought about this. When we were moving to Spain back in 2013. Did we think about a visa and tax situation?

Leanne
No, we didn't have to think about a visa situation because we were still EU members then and tax. We were both still tax residents in the UK, and it was covered by the double treaty. Kind of let's not go too much into that. Ultimately, having to be fully legal fiscally in Spain is one of the main reasons that we left because it's just too expensive. But in terms of visa, this is now a big consideration. If you are a third country national, if you're in EU sits in, then not as much. Tax is a big thing because it varies so much. I mean, comparing kind of Portugal with Croatia, as we said already, the visa situation, Croatia not great, but massive. Plus is you pay 0% tax on any money that you earn as a digital Nomad outside of Croatia during that twelve months. So happy freaking days. Whereas in Portugal, yes, you can get a long term visa. And in terms of tax, it's all right, it's fairly friendly, particularly if you have your own business. It's a bit kinder than the UK. It's a shed load better than Spain, but obviously it's not a present.

Leanne
So something to manage. And then the issue with Spain and might be the same in other countries as well. And things you need to think about is, okay, well, if it's do they tax on your Nomad income? They tax you on your pension, they tax you on automated income such as rental properties, crypto, crypto. Yes. Do they tax you on assets that you earn outside of or worldwide? Spain does. There's so many things to think about. It's not just a case of what's the percentage of income tax. There are lots of things to consider as well.

Al
Yeah. Property tax, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. So it is the last question, but probably once you've decided, okay, the way I see this is the final thing, where is you start off with language and culture and you narrow it down to a number of countries, then you go to weather and lifestyle, you narrow it down further, and then your final decision might be based on your heart. But you should consider the visa and tax situation, particularly the visa situation, because if you go right, I really want to live in Montenegro. It's like, great, but are you going to be able to get a visa to live there for a full time? Lots of people just go and duck under the radar and go and rent. But that's an issue if you get caught because like, for example, in Schengen, if the UK, someone from the UK went to Schengen and hid out for twelve months and then they tried to leave the Schengen zone, there's going to be some awkward questions at the border because they'd be like, why the hell have you been here twelve months? We only have three months.

Leanne
Yeah. And that can be anything from a fine. I mean, I don't know if they do anything.

Al
They do. They can ban you from going back.

Leanne
I know they ban you. Do they do any prison type string? But yeah, big bands, they can ban you from going back. So not a great idea.

Al
And in certain terms of tax, then you go, all right, well, let's look at the Nomad visa. Greece was on the table for us for a while, but then that's 50% off tax for the first year, and then I think it's full tax, and the full tax is somewhere around about the same as Spain, like 48%, 50% top rate. Whereas to give you an idea, with Portugal, you can earn up to now, we're not accountants or tax advisors, don't quote us on this, but we've been told you can earn up to £250,000 each, and you get taxed roughly about 22% on that because of some deductions, some set aside the way that you structure it. And that's reasonable. You'd be on a lot you'd be on a lot more tax in the UK for that, whereas in Croatia that was zero.

Leanne
Yes. And this is why we don't know. And I think if you're in a similar situation, whether you're similar to us and you're looking for a new base, whether you're nomadic, looking for a base, whether you're in your home country and looking to move abroad, I think the conclusion that we have come to that we're going to try now is just testing it. And I think that's such an important thing, if you can, to try and just test it, because to move everything and put it all on hope and a dream is quite big. So for us. Yeah. Test one. Can we take more of our boxes in splits than we could initiate test two, can Portugal take even more of our boxes? And then I guess if they're fairly equal, we're then going to have to come down to probably background to the why and think about what do we want right now? Do we want to settle down? Could we keep nomadding for a little bit? What if we go to Croatia, make advantage of the 0% tax situation for three years, and then see what changes? There's lots of different things we're going to have to think about and figure out before we come close to making a decision.

Al
So those are the nine questions you've asked. The plan for us is we've gone through each one of these and we have thought about them. The plan for us is just to go and spend maybe three months in Portugal, maybe a little bit in Spain as well, but spend that time and we're also going to spend hopefully going to spend a month in Lisbon and a month in a place called Evora or Ivora. I'm not sure how to say it yet, but learning how to say that, which in the countryside, it's not the countryside. It's like 50,000 people, but it's a smaller city than Lisbon, which obviously like half a million people or something and just try it. And in those times, we can have to make sacrifices. We're going to have to go and live in apartments that are either very expensive or very small or not necessarily in the area we want to live in. But we just got to experience, I think.

Leanne
Yes. And If You Heard That, That Is Peanut snoring. I Think He's Telling US We Should Start To Wrap It Up And Start To Sound A Bit Dull, maybe.

Al
Okay. So If You're Interested In Doing This For Yourself, Then Go To Asidewayslife. Comroadmap. You Will See That There Will Be Basically A Really Rough Image Of Our Roadmap And Then There Will Be An Opt In Form Saying, Give US Your Name And Your Email. And What Will Happen Is That Will Come To Our Email And We'll Email You Back. It'll Be A Live Email. You're Going To Get An Email Back From One Of US Going, Hey, Look, This Is Brand New. We Don't Know What We're Doing Here's What We've Got So Far. Will You Just Give US Your Feedback On It? And That's What We're Looking For. And Then At That Point, If You Look At It And You Go, Yeah, This Makes Sense. Then We Will Be Looking For Some People Who Are Going To Do Some Beta Stuff For US And Maybe Go Through A Challenge And Help US Develop Something That's Going To Help People. But At This Stage, It Is Very Rough And Ready Like You Talking To, which I'd Better Go And Get A Shave And Megacor Going Out, Too.

Leanne
If We Are For Our First Vent In Split. How Exciting. We'll Tell You All About Next Week. We Will Be Back Next Week. We're Going To Keep Up, Not Me Now. We're Going To Do A Weekly Thing Now Because This Is The Start Of Our And If You Follow US On Instagram, You Would Have Seen When We Left On Our House Next Year On Sunday. This Is The Start Of The Portugal Versus Croatia 22 Challenge.

Al
The Battle.

Leanne
The Battle Commences And Hopefully By The End Of The Year, We'll Be Able To Give You An Answer And Plot Twist. There Is A Small Part Me That Thinks It'll End Up Being Neither.

Al
You've Not Said That To Me, Right? Okay. We'll Leave It There As Ever. If You've Got Any Questions, Comments, Feedback Or Just Want To Tell US That We're Awful People, Then Go To A Sidewayslife On Instagram Or Just Go To A Site. Just Email US Sidewayslife@gmail.com. Love To Hear From You. Bye Bye Bye For Now. Bye.

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