a white buildings with blue domes and a body of water with Santorini in the background

In just about every way possible, the world is changing. Not all for the worse, either. As people become less physically tied to their working roles, opportunities to define home become broader, and in some cases, even exotic. How does working remotely from Greece sound, with a 50% tax break for the first 7 years?

Greece is the latest country to quickly adapt to the ever changing world, offering a new digital nomad visa, and with relatively low cost of living, where a nice apartment with a view is about $600 per month and all the heavenly greek food and wine is cheap too, it might not be a bad look…

Rise Of “Work Anywhere” Digital Nomad Visas

Greece is the latest in a flurry of countries offering digital nomad visas designed to lure remote workers with already gainful employment. The visas remove the long standing grey area between traveler and country, work and pleasure, where someone enters as a tourist, but undergoes work activities for their job based abroad.

The idea is that these are people who already hold employment from another country, and wouldn’t be taking away work from locals already in the country. Allowing them to live and work remotely brings in vital revenue for local businesses from apartments to things like restaurants, coffee shops and retail.

It’s good to have employed tourists spending longer amounts of time and discovering more genuine areas of any country, so countries are finally offering a legitimate way to stay longer, without grey area and complicated tax issues.

a white buildings with blue domes overlooking the ocean with Santorini in the background

Details: Greek Digital Nomad Visa

Greece voted in favor of the new digital nomad visas in Parliament this week, with a campaign titled “if you can work from anywhere, why not Greece?”

Vietnam, Thailand and a slew of Baltic countries have always been popular with digital nomads, but with many countries closed off to outside visitors, and others absolutely freezing for half the year, many nomads are heading for Southern Europe. These visas are also a way for Americans to enter a given Europe country, despite current EU travel restrictions.

To woo longer term nomad visitors, hopefully beyond the few months most nomads spend in any given country, Greece is offering a 50% tax break for the first 7 years of your digital nomad status. This means currently employed people with flexible work locations could head for Greece, receiving a 50% break on income tax, which allows half the salary to remain tax free.

A relatively upscale 1 bedroom apartment in Athens, or many surrounding areas, and even dreamy islands can be secured for around $600-$750 per month, and food costs are traditionally much lower than the USA, or much of Western Europe.

Even 5G is coming! With only 50% of income counting towards payable local taxes for the first 7 years in Greece, there’s a lot to love!

Athens, Greece. After sunset. Parthenon and Herodium construction in Acropolis Hill

Greek Digital Migrant Visa: When And Where?

With the Parliamentary approval of the new visa, it’s only a matter of time before full details are hammered out and an application link is live. For now, Greece joins Dubai, Barbados and a handful of others as newcomers fully embracing the digital nomad scene.

If you’re going to be working remotely for years, and are looking for a change of pace, there’s never been a more exciting time in travel.

The world is finally coming around to the realities of jobs in the modern age, and sipping some lovely assyrtiko from a breezy balcony while watching the sunset in Greece isn’t a bad way to replace Friday night work happy hours in the big city.

Gilbert Ott

Gilbert Ott is an ever curious traveler and one of the world's leading travel experts. His adventures take him all over the globe, often spanning over 200,000 miles a year and his travel exploits are regularly...

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  1. It depends on the industry you work in and the type of data you have access to. My wife works in finance and no data is allowed to be accessed outside the UK. GDPR is also a consideration. I worked with NHS data and to access to data outside the UK was a very complex process and could be accessed via a stand alone server in the UK with special levels of security. It’s a nice idea but lots of people wouldn’t be able to do this.

    1. Of course, opportunities are rarely for everyone. But for many in IT, web design and digital creative industries, or even day traders, there’s huge opportunities right now to legally move around the globe, and that’s very exciting stuff.

  2. Is it 50% off just income tax or also ocial security and all the other strange Greek tax like solidarity tax I have been told that some freelancers in greece pay around 70% even if you half that it’s not a good rate of tax

  3. This is great intel! Thank you for sharing. How does a US citizen get started on the process? I am considering moving out to Santorini or Athens for about 6 months. Any further details will be helpful.

    1. hI lILY,
      Apply online for a Greek visa. You will be given an appointment to the Greek consulate.
      Pick up a city you would like to live and book a place.
      Best luck

  4. My wife and I are looking for recommendations from travelers to find hotels/apartments with great Internet connections in Greece. Is it only in Athens or are they some islands with good connectivity?
    Are they any guides especially for ONLINE workes for Greece?

  5. Umm…..im not sure i get the “50% tax break” thingy…..if im already paying full income tax to the US, im surely not moving anywhere that is going to make me pay ANY kind of income tax on my online work…..my “tax” to them is spending buckets of money in their economy!….

    1. Yes, I am also super confused by this. Typically, my understanding of U.S. taxing of “ex pats” is that I get US credit for any tax I’ve paid to the country where I’m living … then the rest is due to the U.S. If this is true, than a 50% tax allowance in Greece does me no actual good, since I’m still paying 100% of my U.S. tax overall. Maybe I’m missing something?

      1. Yes, this threw me off too but if I were to work remotely in Greece, I wouldn’t declare it and just apply as a tourist that way you’re not getting double taxed for income.

      2. If you live in Greece more than half the year you have to have your tax residency in Greece. For US people, that means you still have to pay in the US but with dual tax treaties then what you pay in Greece can be subtracted from what you owe in the US.

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