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How to Be a Digital Nomad in Brazil

Clock 15 min read
Howdy Expert

By Howdy.com

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Content

    On top of its 2,095 beaches, twinkling cities, emerald rainforests, and party-loving locals, Brazil happens to be a stellar destination for digital nomads. Long popular among tourists and expats, South America's largest country is now seducing a growing number of remote workers with improved infrastructure and a new digital nomad visa.

    Do you dream of taking meetings on white sandy beaches? Posting up at a cafe with your laptop and a cup of Brazil's signature Arabia coffee? Winding up your workday by dancing up a storm at a sweaty samba club? You can bring your fantasy to fruition with the help of our guide, which leads you through the process of becoming a digital nomad in the land of samba, soccer stars, and sizzling meats.

  1. An overview of Brazil's Digital Nomad Visa (VITEM XIV)
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    Getting residency in Brazil was once notoriously difficult, but the nation's new digital nomad visa makes it simpler. Launched in 2022, the temporary residence permit — officially called the Digital Nomad Visa (VITEM XIV) — lets foreigners live in Brazil while working remotely for international companies. The VITEM XIV permits stays of up to one year, with the option of extending for another year.

    Keep in mind that if you live in the country over 183 days out of the year with a Digital Nomad Visa, you'll be considered a tax resident and owe taxes to Brazil on your international income.

  3. Brazil's Digital Nomad Visa eligibility requirements
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    Below, we've outlined the requirements needed to qualify for Brazil's Digital Nomad Visa:

    • Passport. You need a valid passport with two blank pages valid for the duration of your stay.
    • Remote work. You must be a remote worker, such as an employee, freelancer, or business owner, who earns income from a company or companies outside Brazil (like Howdy).
    • Income. You must earn a minimum monthly income of $1,500 or have $18,000 in the bank.
    • Health insurance. You need health insurance in Brazil that covers the duration of your stay.
    • Clean criminal record. You must have a clean criminal history in your home country.
  5. Application process for Brazil's Digital Nomad Visa
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    Next, we'll guide you through the application process for Brazil's Digital Nomad Visa, step by step:

    1. Gather the required documents.

    The necessary documents to apply for a Brazil's Digital Nomad Visa include:

    • A valid passport with two blank pages
    • A notarized birth certificate
    • A 6 x 47 mm (2 x 1.85 in) photo taken within the last three months
    • A remote work or freelance contract
    • Proof of remote income — employment contract, pay stubs, or bank statements for the last three months
    • A notarized criminal record certificate issued by your home country
    • A notarized declaration confirming you can carry out your work remotely
    • Proof of health insurance covering the entirety of your stay in Brazil
    • Proof of transportation to Brazil, such as a flight ticket
    • A return label to receive your Visa and documents purchased on the Posti website. (Get instructions.)

    Complete an application on the Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs portal. Note that you cannot submit your application online; you must deliver your application along with all the required documents to your local Brazilian consulate or embassy. You can send the application via the mail or drop it off in their mailbox during business hours.

    2. Pay the consular fee.

    Once your application has been received and validated, the Brazilian embassy or consulate will email instructions to pay the consular fee. The fee for the Digital Nomad Visa is around 130 USD for citizens of most countries.

    3. Wait for approval.

    The typical processing time for a Brazil Nomad Visa is around four weeks, depending on the embassy or consulate where you applied. If approved, you’ll be notified via email and receive your Visa and returned documents via the US mail.

  7. Why Brazil?
  8. A treasure trove of thundering falls, postcard-pretty sand beaches, rare species, and indigenous tribes, Brazil draws digital nomads for a reason. Beyond its diverse landscapes and infectious culture, the country offers the infrastructure and amenities remote workers need. Below, we share eight tempting reasons to make Brazil the next stop on your next remote work journey:

    Fast, reliable WiFi. Thanks in part to investment from the government, Brazil's WiFi has improved in recent years, with increased speeds, affordability, and ubiquity. You won't have trouble locating WiFi in major cities. If you plan on venturing off the beaten track, you can rent a "pocket WiFi" — a portable wireless hotspot — for a reasonable weekly price.

    Cafes and coworking. As Brazil welcomes more remote workers, laptop-friendly coffee houses have sprouted up in major cities like Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo. These modern cafes hook nomads up with fast internet, outlets, and air conditioning. In addition to cafes, you'll find plenty of coworking spaces with high-speed internet, private meeting rooms, and amenities like kitchens, swimming pools, and ping-pong tables.

    A growing digital nomad population. Getting into Brazil once involved navigating a tangle of red tape, but the Digital Nomad Visa has made it easier for remote workers to make Brazil their latest home base. Communities of digital nomads are popping up around the country, as remote workers flock to destinations like tech-forward Florianópolis and stylish São Paulo. Venture to the remote beachside town of Pipa, and you'll even find a "digital nomad village," complete with bungalows, swimming pools, and restaurants.

    Time zone alignment. The colossal country has four time zones, all of which overlap with time zones in the US, facilitating communication with Western clients. The four time zones include:

    • Acre Time (AT). Aligned with Eastern Standard Time (EST).
    • Amazon Time (AMT). One hour ahead of EST.
    • Brasilia Time (BRT). Two hours ahead of EST.
    • Fernando de Noronha Time (FNT). Three hours ahead of EST.

    Cost of living. Brazil might not be the cheapest country in South America, but the cost of living there is much lower than in the US and many European countries. Nomads who earn USD can live comfortably in Brazil for around 12,000 to 24,000 USD, according to recent data from investment migration firm Global Citizen Solutions.

    Diverse landscapes. Whenever you want to take a break from your screen, Brazil will keep you busy with its miles of golden coastline, thundering falls, lively cities, and biodiverse jungles. As a digital nomad in Brazil, you have infinite options for activities to fill your downtime: surf and samba all night in Rio, marvel at Modernist architectural gems in Brasília, splash in the glassy natural springs of Jalapão State Park, or eat your way through the Michelin-starred restaurants of São Paulo.

    Food. Speaking of restaurants — no roundup of reasons to visit Brazil would be complete without mention of the food. You can dig into “chefy” menus and international eats in major cities, but don't miss out on traditional specialties like moqueca (a fish stew served in a simmering clay pot), cachaça (a fermented sugarcane alcohol that gives Brazil's national cocktail, caipirinhas, their kick), and, of course, Brazil's legendary barbecued meats.

    Music and dancing. Rhythm permeates bars and live music venues across Brazil, a country celebrated for its diverse and passionate dancing. Samba might be the most famous, but there are many others — including Frevo (a solo dance involving wild acrobatics, kicks, and a lot of crouching), Forró (a two-step couple dance), and Afro Brazilian (a dance style reflecting the nation's African roots, characterized by spontaneous movement). Don't worry if you can't dance; willingness and enthusiasm go a long way.

On top of its 2,095 beaches, twinkling cities, emerald rainforests, and party-loving locals, Brazil happens to be a stellar destination for digital nomads. Long popular among tourists and expats, South America's largest country is now seducing a growing number of remote workers with improved infrastructure and a new digital nomad visa.

Do you dream of taking meetings on white sandy beaches? Posting up at a cafe with your laptop and a cup of Brazil's signature Arabia coffee? Winding up your workday by dancing up a storm at a sweaty samba club? You can bring your fantasy to fruition with the help of our guide, which leads you through the process of becoming a digital nomad in the land of samba, soccer stars, and sizzling meats.

An overview of Brazil's Digital Nomad Visa (VITEM XIV)

Getting residency in Brazil was once notoriously difficult, but the nation's new digital nomad visa makes it simpler. Launched in 2022, the temporary residence permit — officially called the Digital Nomad Visa (VITEM XIV) — lets foreigners live in Brazil while working remotely for international companies. The VITEM XIV permits stays of up to one year, with the option of extending for another year.

Keep in mind that if you live in the country over 183 days out of the year with a Digital Nomad Visa, you'll be considered a tax resident and owe taxes to Brazil on your international income.

Brazil's Digital Nomad Visa eligibility requirements

Below, we've outlined the requirements needed to qualify for Brazil's Digital Nomad Visa:

  • Passport. You need a valid passport with two blank pages valid for the duration of your stay.
  • Remote work. You must be a remote worker, such as an employee, freelancer, or business owner, who earns income from a company or companies outside Brazil (like Howdy).
  • Income. You must earn a minimum monthly income of $1,500 or have $18,000 in the bank.
  • Health insurance. You need health insurance in Brazil that covers the duration of your stay.
  • Clean criminal record. You must have a clean criminal history in your home country.

Application process for Brazil's Digital Nomad Visa

Next, we'll guide you through the application process for Brazil's Digital Nomad Visa, step by step:

1. Gather the required documents.

The necessary documents to apply for a Brazil's Digital Nomad Visa include:

  • A valid passport with two blank pages
  • A notarized birth certificate
  • A 6 x 47 mm (2 x 1.85 in) photo taken within the last three months
  • A remote work or freelance contract
  • Proof of remote income — employment contract, pay stubs, or bank statements for the last three months
  • A notarized criminal record certificate issued by your home country
  • A notarized declaration confirming you can carry out your work remotely
  • Proof of health insurance covering the entirety of your stay in Brazil
  • Proof of transportation to Brazil, such as a flight ticket
  • A return label to receive your Visa and documents purchased on the Posti website. (Get instructions.)

Complete an application on the Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs portal. Note that you cannot submit your application online; you must deliver your application along with all the required documents to your local Brazilian consulate or embassy. You can send the application via the mail or drop it off in their mailbox during business hours.

2. Pay the consular fee.

Once your application has been received and validated, the Brazilian embassy or consulate will email instructions to pay the consular fee. The fee for the Digital Nomad Visa is around 130 USD for citizens of most countries.

3. Wait for approval.

The typical processing time for a Brazil Nomad Visa is around four weeks, depending on the embassy or consulate where you applied. If approved, you’ll be notified via email and receive your Visa and returned documents via the US mail.

Why Brazil?

A treasure trove of thundering falls, postcard-pretty sand beaches, rare species, and indigenous tribes, Brazil draws digital nomads for a reason. Beyond its diverse landscapes and infectious culture, the country offers the infrastructure and amenities remote workers need. Below, we share eight tempting reasons to make Brazil the next stop on your next remote work journey:

Fast, reliable WiFi. Thanks in part to investment from the government, Brazil's WiFi has improved in recent years, with increased speeds, affordability, and ubiquity. You won't have trouble locating WiFi in major cities. If you plan on venturing off the beaten track, you can rent a "pocket WiFi" — a portable wireless hotspot — for a reasonable weekly price.

Cafes and coworking. As Brazil welcomes more remote workers, laptop-friendly coffee houses have sprouted up in major cities like Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo. These modern cafes hook nomads up with fast internet, outlets, and air conditioning. In addition to cafes, you'll find plenty of coworking spaces with high-speed internet, private meeting rooms, and amenities like kitchens, swimming pools, and ping-pong tables.

A growing digital nomad population. Getting into Brazil once involved navigating a tangle of red tape, but the Digital Nomad Visa has made it easier for remote workers to make Brazil their latest home base. Communities of digital nomads are popping up around the country, as remote workers flock to destinations like tech-forward Florianópolis and stylish São Paulo. Venture to the remote beachside town of Pipa, and you'll even find a "digital nomad village," complete with bungalows, swimming pools, and restaurants.

Time zone alignment. The colossal country has four time zones, all of which overlap with time zones in the US, facilitating communication with Western clients. The four time zones include:

  • Acre Time (AT). Aligned with Eastern Standard Time (EST).
  • Amazon Time (AMT). One hour ahead of EST.
  • Brasilia Time (BRT). Two hours ahead of EST.
  • Fernando de Noronha Time (FNT). Three hours ahead of EST.

Cost of living. Brazil might not be the cheapest country in South America, but the cost of living there is much lower than in the US and many European countries. Nomads who earn USD can live comfortably in Brazil for around 12,000 to 24,000 USD, according to recent data from investment migration firm Global Citizen Solutions.

Diverse landscapes. Whenever you want to take a break from your screen, Brazil will keep you busy with its miles of golden coastline, thundering falls, lively cities, and biodiverse jungles. As a digital nomad in Brazil, you have infinite options for activities to fill your downtime: surf and samba all night in Rio, marvel at Modernist architectural gems in Brasília, splash in the glassy natural springs of Jalapão State Park, or eat your way through the Michelin-starred restaurants of São Paulo.

Food. Speaking of restaurants — no roundup of reasons to visit Brazil would be complete without mention of the food. You can dig into “chefy” menus and international eats in major cities, but don't miss out on traditional specialties like moqueca (a fish stew served in a simmering clay pot), cachaça (a fermented sugarcane alcohol that gives Brazil's national cocktail, caipirinhas, their kick), and, of course, Brazil's legendary barbecued meats.

Music and dancing. Rhythm permeates bars and live music venues across Brazil, a country celebrated for its diverse and passionate dancing. Samba might be the most famous, but there are many others — including Frevo (a solo dance involving wild acrobatics, kicks, and a lot of crouching), Forró (a two-step couple dance), and Afro Brazilian (a dance style reflecting the nation's African roots, characterized by spontaneous movement). Don't worry if you can't dance; willingness and enthusiasm go a long way.