European Countries easy to Get Citizenship

Searching for European countries where it’s easy to get citizenship? This article gives you the lowdown on where and how to acquire it, along with a simple comparison of policies, procedures, and prerequisites. We’ll walk you through the top options that streamline the citizenship journey, including investment pathways that deliver results. Prepare to navigate Europe’s citizenship terrain with confidence.

Key Takeaways

  • EU citizenship provides substantial benefits such as visa-free access to numerous countries, the right to live, work, and study anywhere within the EU, access to high-quality healthcare, and opportunities for business expansion within the single market.
  • The criteria for attaining EU citizenship typically include legally residing in the EU for a specified period, applying for permanent residency, adhering to the Member State’s naturalization conditions, and potentially obtaining citizenship through investment programs.
  • Countries like Malta, Austria and Turkey offer different pathways to citizenship by investment program options, each with specific financial and own criteria requirements.

Why Obtaining EU Citizenship is Beneficial

Obtaining EU citizenship carries with it a range of substantial benefits that extend far beyond the convenience of travel. Being an EU citizen is not just about holding a passport. It’s about being part of a community that offers a high standard of living, economic opportunities, and a comprehensive social security system.

Why is obtaining EU citizenship so advantageous?

EU citizenship

Here’s a closer look at why obtaining EU citizenship is so advantageous:

  • Global Mobility: An EU passport provides visa-free or visa-on-arrival access to over 175 countries, including major global business and travel destinations. This level of access is one of the most extensive available, making international travel for business or leisure significantly easier and more convenient.
  • Residency Rights: EU citizenship grants the right to live in any of the EU member states. This means you can choose to reside in any of these countries, benefiting from their unique cultures, lifestyles, and environments.
  • Employment Opportunities: As an EU citizen, you have the right to work in any EU country without needing a work permit. This opens up a diverse range of job markets and employment opportunities.
  • Retirement Benefits: EU citizens have the flexibility to retire in any member state. They can enjoy the same rights and benefits as nationals, including access to social security and healthcare.
  • Healthcare Services: EU citizens have access to high-quality healthcare services in their home country.
  • Reciprocal Healthcare: There’s also the benefit of reciprocal healthcare in other EU countries, which can be particularly advantageous for those traveling or residing in different EU nations.
  • Education: EU citizenship provides the opportunity to study in any EU country, often at the same tuition rates as local students. This opens doors to some of the world’s best universities and educational institutions.
  • Business Ventures: For entrepreneurs and business professionals, EU citizenship offers the opportunity to start and operate a business in any EU country. This includes access to various funding programs and the ability to tap into the EU’s single market, a significant economic area.
  • Stable Environment: The EU is known for its political stability, strong legal frameworks, and respect for human rights, providing a secure environment for citizens.
  • Participation in Political Processes: EU citizens have the right to participate in the democratic life of the EU, including voting in European Parliament elections.

The Criteria for Gaining Citizenship

Gaining EU citizenship is a process that requires meeting specific criteria, which can vary depending on the country and the chosen pathway. While the benefits of EU citizenship are numerous, understanding and fulfilling these prerequisites is a crucial part of the journey.

  • Duration of Residency: One of the most common pathways to EU citizenship is through prolonged legal residency in a Member State. This typically involves living in the country for a specified number of years, which can vary but often ranges from 5 to 10 years.
  • Permanent Residency: Before applying for citizenship, applicants usually need to obtain permanent residency status. This step comes after fulfilling the required years of residence and indicates a long-term commitment to the host country.
  • Integration and Compliance: Applicants must often demonstrate a degree of integration into the society, which can include language proficiency and an understanding of the local culture and legal system.
  • Adherence to Laws: A clean criminal record is essential, as it demonstrates the applicant’s adherence to the laws and public safety standards of the host country.
  • Economic Contribution: Some EU countries, like Malta, offer a citizenship-by-investment program. This pathway is ideal for high-net-worth individuals who can make significant financial contributions, such as investments in real estate, government bonds, or national development funds.
  • Due Diligence: These programs often involve rigorous background checks to ensure the legitimacy of the funds and the integrity of the applicant.
  • Economic Self-sufficiency: Applicants are generally required to demonstrate financial stability and a steady income to ensure they can support themselves without relying on public funds.
  • Varied Requirements: The financial thresholds and types of proof required can differ significantly from one EU country to another.
  • Professional Guidance: Given the complexity and variations in citizenship laws across EU countries, it is advisable to seek expert advice.

List of European Countries Offering Citizenship by Investment Programs

Securing EU citizenship through investment programs is an avenue that varies across European countries. Among the notable destinations offering citizenship by investment programs are Austria, Turkey, and Malta.

Let’s delve into what each of these destinations has in store.

1. Turkey

EU citizenship - Turkey

Turkey’s Citizenship by Investment Program, launched in 2017, offers a unique and expedited route to citizenship, primarily aimed at boosting foreign direct investment and promoting the growth of the country’s real estate industry. This program stands out for its swift processing time and the absence of a mandatory residency requirement, making it an attractive option for investors seeking quick access to citizenship.

To obtain citizenship, investors can choose from several investment paths. The most popular option is a real estate purchase with a minimum value of $400,000 USD. The program promises citizenship within 3-4 months, which is notably faster compared to many other citizenship programs. This rapid processing time is a significant advantage for investors looking to quickly gain the benefits of Turkish citizenship.

Turkish citizenship provides visa-free or visa-on-arrival access to 118 countries. This includes travel to various countries in the Americas, Europe, Asia, Oceania, Africa, and the Caribbean.

2. Austria

Austria stands out as one of Europe’s wealthiest nations, offering an exceptional quality of life and a pathway to EU citizenship through its Citizenship by Investment Program.

Austria’s Citizenship by Investment Program provides a unique opportunity for individuals to obtain Austrian citizenship through exceptional achievements in various fields such as science, sports, arts, or business, including philanthropy. With its robust economy, pristine environment, and vibrant culture, Austria is an attractive destination for investors seeking EU citizenship.

Applicants are required to make a substantial contribution to the Austrian economy, typically starting at EUR 4 million. The process usually takes between 12-36 months.

EU citizenship - Austria

Successful applicants enjoy visa-free or visa-on-arrival travel to approximately 190 destinations worldwide. Moreover citizens have the right to live and work in Austria and anywhere else in the EU. The Austrian passport offers comprehensive travel benefits, including access to Canada, Hong Kong, the USA, and Europe’s Schengen Area.

3. Malta

Malta, despite its small size, is strategically positioned in the Mediterranean and stands as a leading choice for straightforward EU citizenship through its program. The country offers a path to citizenship that is relatively swift and direct, catering to those who can meet its steps.

The Maltese citizenship program requires financial contribution of a minimum of €600,000, which is a significant financial commitment. This can be made in various forms, including donations to national funds, real estate investments, or other government-approved investment vehicles.

The Maltese citizenship program offers a relatively quick route to EU citizenship compared to other European countries. Once obtained, Maltese citizenship provides significant travel benefits, including visa-free access to over 180 countries, including the Schengen Area, the USA, and Canada. It also grants the right to live, work, and study anywhere within the European Union.

EU citizenship - Malta

Other benefits of EU citizenship

Obtaining EU citizenship offers a wealth of advantages that extend far beyond the immediate and tangible benefits. These advantages encompass not only the personal and professional realms but also have long-term implications for future generations.

  • One of the most profound benefits of EU citizenship is the ability to pass it on to future generations. This means that the decision to acquire EU citizenship is not just a personal investment but a legacy that benefits your descendants. Children born to EU citizens often automatically acquire citizenship, ensuring that the privileges and opportunities afforded by EU citizenship extend to future generations.
  • In many cases, obtaining EU citizenship does not require renouncing your original citizenship, allowing for dual citizenship. This provides a broader identity and cultural heritage for your family, enriching their global perspective and opportunities.
Benefits of EU citizenship
  • EU countries are known for their high standards of living, including excellent healthcare, education, and social services. Citizenship by investment programs can be a pathway to accessing these benefits, enhancing the quality of life for you and your family.
  • EU citizens have access to some of the world’s best educational institutions, often at favorable conditions, including lower tuition fees and access to student loans and grants.

Alternative Pathways to EU Citizenship

Pathways to EU Citizenship

Though Citizenship by Investment Program is can increasingly popular route to EU citizenship, alternative routes could be a better fit for some individuals. For instance, if you have ancestors who held citizenship in an EU country, you might be eligible for citizenship through descent.

Another alternative pathway to obtain citizenship is through marriage. If you’re married to, or in a registered partnership with, an EU citizen residing in an EU country, you may meet the criteria for applying for EU citizenship.

Navigating the Application Process

Navigating the application process for EU citizenship is a multifaceted journey that demands meticulous attention to detail and adherence to specific guidelines. Here’s a comprehensive breakdown of the steps involved:

  • Seeking Professional Assistance: Engage the services of reputable experts who specialize in citizenship matters. These professionals can provide invaluable guidance, ensure compliance with legal requirements, and streamline the application process.
  • Understanding Country-Specific Requirements: Each EU country has its own unique set of rules and regulations governing citizenship. Thoroughly research and understand the specific requirements of the country where you intend to apply for citizenship. Familiarize yourself with eligibility criteria, documentation requirements, and application procedures to avoid any pitfalls.
Alternative Pathways to EU Citizenship
  • Choosing the Right Pathway: Evaluate the various pathways available for obtaining EU citizenship. Select the pathway that best aligns with your personal circumstances, goals, and preferences.Consider factors such as investment thresholds, residency requirements, and eligibility criteria when making your decision.
  • Maintaining a Clean Criminal Record: A clean criminal record is often a prerequisite for citizenship in EU countries. Ensure that you have no history of criminal convictions or legal issues that could jeopardize your application. If necessary, obtain official documentation certifying your clean criminal record to include in your citizenship application.
  • Conducting Thorough Research: Conduct extensive research on the citizenship laws, policies, and procedures of your chosen EU country. Stay updated on any changes or updates to citizenship regulations that may impact your application. Seek guidance from reliable sources, consult with experts, and gather as much information as possible to make informed decisions throughout the process.

The journey to EU citizenship is a complex and multifaceted one, but with careful planning, thorough preparation, and the right professional support, you can navigate the process successfully and achieve your goal of obtaining citizenship in the European Union.

Securing Professional Assistance – Imperial Citizenship

Considering the intricacy and subtleties of the application process, obtaining professional help can be extremely beneficial. A company such as Imperial Citizenship can simplify the process and increase your chances of successfully obtaining EU citizenship.

Imperial Citizenship specializes in helping investors gain citizenship through investment in Europe. They offer families the chance to obtain an EU passport through investment programs.

5-star rating from 240 individuals on Trustpilot

Acknowledged as one of the top Expat Services providers in Dubai

Direct citizenship by investment programs without residence requirements in countries such as Turkey and Malta

By offering these services, we make the process more streamlined and efficient for investors seeking EU citizenship.

Role of Imperial Citizenship in Facilitating EU Citizenship

  1. Expertise in Citizenship by Investment: Imperial Citizenship is adept at guiding investors through the process of gaining citizenship in Europe.
  2. Streamlined Process: The company is known for its ability to simplify and streamline the application process. This efficiency is crucial in reducing the time and stress often associated with navigating the legal and bureaucratic hurdles of obtaining citizenship.
  3. Family Inclusion: Services extend to families, offering them the chance to obtain an EU passport, which is a significant advantage for investors looking to secure a future for their loved ones in the EU.


Obtaining EU citizenship is a worthwhile pursuit, offering a plethora of benefits such as visa-free travel, better healthcare, increased business opportunities, and the ability to pass citizenship to descendants. While the process can be complex and the requirements stringent, with the right knowledge and assistance, it’s an attainable goal. Remember, the journey to EU citizenship is not just about the destination; it’s about the richness of experiences, opportunities, and privileges that come with being an EU citizen.

Frequently Asked Questions

What benefits does EU citizenship offer?

EU citizenship offers a range of benefits including visa-free travel to over 175 countries, the right to live, work, study, and start a business anywhere in Europe, access to high-quality healthcare, and increased business opportunities. These advantages make EU citizenship highly valuable.

Which countries offer European citizenship through an investment program?

Securing EU citizenship through investment programs is an avenue that varies across European countries. Among the notable destinations offering citizenship by investment programs are Austria, Turkey, and Malta. These countries provide pathways for individuals to obtain citizenship by making significant investments in their economies. Each program has its own set of eligibility criteria, investment requirements, and benefits, allowing investors to choose the option that best suits their needs and goals.

Scroll to Top