Moving to Cape Verde

1. What are the required visas and permits for moving to Cape Verde?

1. When moving to Cape Verde, there are several visas and permits that may be required depending on the purpose and duration of your stay:

– Tourist Visa: If you are planning a short visit to Cape Verde for tourism purposes, you will need to obtain a tourist visa before arrival. This can typically be obtained from the Cape Verdean embassy or consulate in your home country.

– Residence Permit: If you plan to stay in Cape Verde for an extended period of time, you will need to apply for a residence permit. This permit allows you to live and work in the country legally. The process for obtaining a residence permit can vary depending on your nationality and the reason for your stay.

– Work Permit: If you are moving to Cape Verde for employment purposes, you will need to obtain a work permit. This permit allows you to work legally in Cape Verde and is typically arranged by your employer.

– Student Visa: If you are moving to Cape Verde for educational purposes, such as to study at a university or other educational institution, you will need to obtain a student visa. This visa allows you to pursue your studies in Cape Verde.

It is important to check with the Cape Verdean embassy or consulate in your home country to determine the specific visa and permit requirements for your situation. Be sure to start the application process well in advance of your planned move to ensure that you have the necessary documentation in place.

2. What is the cost of living in Cape Verde compared to my current location?

1. The cost of living in Cape Verde can vary depending on the city or island you choose to live on. Generally, compared to many western countries, the cost of living in Cape Verde is lower. Items such as groceries, transportation, dining out, and accommodation can be more affordable in Cape Verde than in many western countries. However, it’s important to note that certain items like imported goods or electronics may be more expensive due to importation costs.

2. In terms of accommodation, rental prices in Cape Verde can be significantly lower than in many western countries. Utilities and internet costs are also generally lower in Cape Verde.

3. Dining out in Cape Verde can be affordable, especially if you choose to eat at local establishments. Grocery prices can vary depending on whether you buy local or imported products. Transportation costs, such as public transport or taxis, are usually lower compared to many western countries.

4. It’s worth noting that salaries in Cape Verde can be lower than in some western countries, so it’s essential to consider the local job market when assessing the cost of living. Overall, many expats find that the cost of living in Cape Verde is reasonable and offers a good quality of life compared to their current location.

3. How is the healthcare system in Cape Verde for expats?

The healthcare system in Cape Verde for expats is generally adequate but may not meet the standards of Western countries. Here are some key points to consider:

1. Public healthcare in Cape Verde is provided through a network of hospitals and clinics, but resources can be limited, leading to long wait times and shortages of medical supplies.

2. Private healthcare facilities are available in major cities like Praia and Mindelo, offering higher quality care and shorter wait times. Expats with private health insurance may opt to utilize these facilities for better service.

3. Expats are advised to have comprehensive health insurance when living in Cape Verde to cover medical costs, as some treatments may not be readily available in the country and evacuation to a neighboring country may be necessary for specialized care.

Overall, while the healthcare system in Cape Verde may not be on par with Western standards, expats can access adequate medical care by utilizing private facilities and ensuring they have appropriate insurance coverage.

4. Is it easy to find housing in Cape Verde as a foreigner?

Finding housing in Cape Verde as a foreigner can vary in terms of ease depending on the specific location and your individual preferences. Here are some key points to consider:

1. Rental Market: In popular tourist areas like Sal or Boa Vista, there are often more options available for short-term rentals catered to tourists. However, if you are looking for long-term housing options, it may be a bit more challenging, especially in high-demand areas.

2. Real Estate Agents: Working with a local real estate agent can significantly ease the process of finding housing as a foreigner. They can help you navigate the local market, provide you with options that match your criteria, and assist with negotiating terms with landlords.

3. Language Barrier: If you do not speak Portuguese or local Creole languages, communication with landlords or property owners may be a challenge. It is advisable to seek assistance from a translator or a real estate agent to ensure that you understand all aspects of the rental agreement.

4. Cultural Differences: Understanding the local customs and practices when it comes to renting accommodation in Cape Verde is essential. For example, in some cases, it is customary to provide several months’ rent upfront as a security deposit. Being aware of these cultural nuances can help streamline the housing search process.

Overall, while finding housing in Cape Verde as a foreigner may have its challenges, with proper research, assistance, and understanding of the local market dynamics, it is certainly possible to secure suitable accommodation that meets your needs.

5. What are the best neighborhoods to live in Cape Verde?

1. Mindelo: Located on the island of Sao Vicente, Mindelo is known for its vibrant cultural scene, beautiful beaches, and lively atmosphere. It offers a mix of traditional Cape Verdean charm and modern amenities, making it a popular choice for expats and locals alike.

2. Praia: As the capital city of Cape Verde, Praia is a bustling urban center with a range of residential options, from modern high-rise apartments to quaint colonial homes. It boasts a variety of restaurants, shops, and cultural attractions, as well as easy access to the international airport.

3. Santa Maria: Situated on the island of Sal, Santa Maria is a popular tourist destination known for its stunning beaches and crystal-clear waters. The town has a relaxed vibe, with plenty of beachfront properties and resorts to choose from.

4. Espargos: Located on the island of Sal, Espargos is a more residential area compared to Santa Maria, offering a quieter lifestyle for those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of tourist hotspots. It has a range of housing options, from traditional Cape Verdean homes to modern apartments.

5. Tarrafal: Nestled on the northern coast of Santiago, Tarrafal is a charming fishing village known for its picturesque beaches and laid-back atmosphere. It offers a more tranquil way of life, making it an ideal choice for those seeking a peaceful retreat away from the larger cities.

Each of these neighborhoods has its own unique charm and appeal, so the best choice ultimately depends on your preferences and lifestyle needs. Whether you’re looking for a lively urban environment, a beachfront paradise, or a quiet retreat, Cape Verde offers a variety of neighborhoods to suit every taste.

6. How is the job market for expats in Cape Verde?

The job market for expats in Cape Verde is relatively limited compared to other popular expat destinations. The economy of Cape Verde is primarily driven by tourism, agriculture, and fishing, which can create challenges for expats seeking employment opportunities outside of these sectors. However, there are still opportunities available for those with specific skills and expertise that are in demand in the country.

1. The tourism sector provides a significant number of job opportunities for expats, particularly in hospitality, tour operations, and language teaching roles.
2. The government is also focusing on developing sectors such as renewable energy, technology, and telecommunications, which could provide new opportunities for expats with relevant experience.
3. Networking and building connections with local businesses and expat communities can be helpful in finding job opportunities in Cape Verde.
4. It is important for expats to be aware of local labor laws and regulations, as well as any requirements for work permits or visas in order to legally work in the country.

Overall, while the job market for expats in Cape Verde is competitive and more limited than in some other countries, there are still opportunities available for those who are proactive in their job search and have skills that are in demand in the local economy.

7. What is the average salary for expats in Cape Verde?

The average salary for expats in Cape Verde can vary depending on various factors such as the individual’s occupation, level of experience, and the industry in which they are employed. Generally speaking, expats in Cape Verde can expect to earn a salary that is comparable to what they would earn in similar positions in their home country. However, it is important to note that the cost of living in Cape Verde may be different from what expats are accustomed to, which can impact the overall value of their salary. It is recommended that expats conduct thorough research on average salaries in their specific field and location in Cape Verde to have a better understanding of what to expect.

8. How is the education system in Cape Verde for expat children?

The education system in Cape Verde for expat children can vary depending on the region and the specific school they attend. Generally, Cape Verde’s education system is based on the Portuguese model, with schooling being compulsory for children between the ages of 6 and 14. Here are some key points to consider regarding the education system for expat children in Cape Verde:

1. Curriculum: The curriculum in Cape Verdean schools typically follows the Portuguese national curriculum, with a focus on subjects such as language, mathematics, science, social studies, and physical education.

2. Language: The official language of instruction in Cape Verde is Portuguese, so expat children may need to be proficient in Portuguese to fully participate in the local education system. Some international schools in Cape Verde may offer bilingual or English-language instruction.

3. International Schools: For expat families looking for alternative educational options, there are international schools in Cape Verde that offer different curricula (such as the British or American system) and language instruction in English or other languages.

4. Quality of Education: The quality of education in Cape Verde can vary between schools, with some institutions meeting international standards while others may have limited resources and infrastructure. It’s important for expat parents to research and visit potential schools to ensure they meet their children’s educational needs.

5. Support Services: Expat children may require additional support, such as language assistance or special education services. It’s recommended for parents to inquire about the availability of support services at schools in Cape Verde to ensure their children receive the necessary help.

Overall, expat children can receive a quality education in Cape Verde, but it’s essential for parents to research schools, inquire about language instruction and support services, and choose the educational option that best fits their children’s needs and preferences.

9. What are the transportation options in Cape Verde?

In Cape Verde, there are several transportation options available for getting around the islands. These options cater to both locals and tourists looking to explore the diverse landscapes and attractions the country has to offer. Some of the primary transportation modes in Cape Verde include:

1. Taxis: Taxis are readily available in major cities and towns in Cape Verde, offering a convenient way to travel short distances or for exploring within a specific area.

2. Rental Cars: Renting a car is a popular option for those looking for more flexibility and independence in their travels. It allows visitors to explore the islands at their own pace and convenience.

3. Public Buses: Public buses operate on most of the main islands in Cape Verde, providing a cost-effective way to travel between towns and villages. However, the schedules may not always be frequent or reliable.

4. Colectivos: Colectivos are shared minibusses or vans that operate on fixed routes and are a common mode of transportation for locals. They are a budget-friendly option for traveling around the islands.

5. Taxis Aluguer: Known as “Hiaces” or shared taxis, these are larger minivans that follow specific routes and pick up and drop off passengers along the way. They are a popular and affordable option for getting around, especially in rural areas.

6. Ferries: As Cape Verde is made up of several islands, ferries are essential for inter-island travel. They provide a scenic and relatively inexpensive way to explore different parts of the country.

7. Air Travel: For longer distances between the islands, domestic flights are available through various local airlines. This is the quickest way to travel between islands, although it can be more expensive than other options.

Overall, the transportation options in Cape Verde cater to a range of preferences and budgets, allowing visitors to navigate the islands conveniently and comfortably while experiencing the unique charm and beauty of the country.

10. What are the best ways to send money back home from Cape Verde?

There are several convenient ways to send money back home from Cape Verde. Here are some of the best options:

1. Bank Transfers: One of the most secure ways to send money back home is through a bank transfer. Many banks in Cape Verde offer international transfer services that allow you to send money directly from your account to another account overseas.

2. Money Transfer Services: Companies like Western Union, MoneyGram, and Ria Money Transfer have branches in Cape Verde and allow you to send money quickly and securely to various countries around the world. These services often have competitive exchange rates and fees.

3. Online Payment Platforms: Platforms like PayPal, TransferWise, and WorldRemit enable you to send money online to bank accounts or mobile wallets in other countries. These services are convenient and can often be more cost-effective than traditional bank transfers.

4. Mobile Money Transfer: In Cape Verde, services like M-Pesa or Express Union Mobile allow you to send money back home using your mobile phone. These services are fast and convenient for sending smaller amounts of money.

Before choosing a method to send money back home from Cape Verde, it’s important to compare exchange rates, fees, and transfer times to ensure you’re getting the best deal. Additionally, always make sure to use reputable and secure services to protect your funds during the transfer process.

11. What are the cultural norms and etiquette to be aware of in Cape Verde?

When moving to Cape Verde, it is essential to be mindful of the cultural norms and etiquette in the country to ensure a smooth transition and integration into the community. Here are some key cultural norms and etiquette to be aware of:

1. Greetings: Greetings are important in Cape Verde, and it is customary to greet people with a handshake, especially when meeting someone for the first time. It is also common to exchange pleasantries and inquire about one’s well-being.

2. Respect for elders: Respect for elders is highly valued in Cape Verdean culture. It is important to show deference to older individuals and address them with respect.

3. Clothing: Cape Verdeans tend to dress modestly, particularly in more traditional settings. It is advisable to dress conservatively, especially when visiting religious sites or rural areas.

4. Communication style: Cape Verdeans value politeness and indirect communication. It is important to be respectful and considerate in your interactions with others.

5. Personal space: While Cape Verdeans are generally friendly and warm, they also value personal space. It is important to be mindful of boundaries and not invade someone’s personal space.

6. Dining etiquette: When dining with others, it is polite to wait for the host to start eating before you begin. It is also customary to compliment the chef on the meal.

7. Religious respect: Cape Verde is a predominantly Catholic country, and it is essential to show respect for religious beliefs and practices. It is advisable to dress modestly when visiting religious sites and participate respectfully in religious ceremonies if invited.

8. Gift giving: When visiting someone’s home, it is customary to bring a small gift, such as flowers or a token of appreciation. This gesture is a sign of respect and goodwill.

9. Language: The official language of Cape Verde is Portuguese, so learning some basic phrases can help you navigate daily interactions and show respect for the local language and culture.

By being aware of these cultural norms and etiquette in Cape Verde, you can demonstrate respect for the local customs and traditions, which can help you build positive relationships and integrate effectively into the community.

12. How safe is Cape Verde for expats?

Cape Verde is generally considered to be a safe country for expats. The crime rate is relatively low compared to other countries in the region, and violent crimes are rare. However, like any place, it is important for expats to exercise caution and take basic safety measures to ensure their well-being. Some tips for staying safe in Cape Verde include:

1. Avoid displaying valuable items in public to reduce the risk of theft.
2. Be cautious when using public transportation, especially late at night.
3. Stay aware of your surroundings and trust your intuition if you feel unsafe.
4. Familiarize yourself with the local emergency numbers and the nearest embassy or consulate in case of any emergencies.

Overall, expats living in Cape Verde can feel relatively safe and secure, but it is important to remain vigilant and take necessary precautions to avoid any potential risks.

13. What are the best places to visit and things to do in Cape Verde?

1.Santiago: The most populous island, Santiago offers a mix of historical and cultural attractions. Visit the UNESCO World Heritage site of Cidade Velha, enjoy the vibrant markets in Praia, and explore the rugged landscapes of the interior.

2.Sal: Known for its stunning beaches and water sports, Sal is a paradise for sun-seekers and snorkelers. Relax on the white sands of Santa Maria Beach, go kitesurfing in the clear waters, or visit the Pedra de Lume salt crater.

3.Boa Vista: Another popular beach destination, Boa Vista is home to the iconic sand dunes of Deserto de Viana. Explore the charming town of Sal Rei, go whale watching or turtle spotting, and enjoy a laid-back island vibe.

4.Fogo: For a more unique experience, head to Fogo, home to the active volcano Pico do Fogo. Hike to the summit for panoramic views, visit the colonial town of Sao Filipe, and sample the local coffee and wine.

5.Maio: If you’re looking for a quiet retreat, Maio is the place to be. Relax on the deserted beaches, go birdwatching in the salt pans, and explore the rustic villages of Vila do Maio and Morro.

6.Mindelo, Sao Vicente: Known as the cultural capital of Cape Verde, Mindelo offers a vibrant arts scene with music, dance, and festivals. Explore the colonial architecture, visit the lively market, and enjoy a night of live music in one of the many bars.

7.Santo Antao: For nature lovers, Santo Antao is a must-visit with its lush valleys, towering mountains, and scenic hiking trails. Explore the Paul Valley, hike to the Cova crater, and marvel at the stunning vistas around every corner.

8.Cidade Velha: As the first European colonial outpost in the tropics, Cidade Velha offers a glimpse into Cape Verde’s history. Visit the old fortresses, explore the cobblestone streets, and learn about the slave trade at the Museum of Slavery.

9.Seafood and Local Cuisine: Don’t miss the opportunity to taste the delicious Cape Verdean cuisine, especially fresh seafood dishes like grilled tuna or lobster. Sample the national dish Cachupa, a hearty stew made with corn, beans, and vegetables.

10.Water Sports: With its crystal-clear waters and consistent winds, Cape Verde is a paradise for water sports enthusiasts. Try your hand at windsurfing, kiteboarding, or scuba diving in the pristine marine reserves.

11.Music and Dance: Immerse yourself in Cape Verdean culture by experiencing the local music and dance scene. Listen to traditional morna and coladeira music, watch a live performance of batuque or funana dance, and join in the lively celebrations during festivals.

12.Local Markets: Explore the bustling markets in towns like Praia, Mindelo, and Sal Rei to get a taste of everyday life in Cape Verde. Shop for fresh fruits, vegetables, handicrafts, and souvenirs while interacting with friendly locals.

13.Island Hopping: With its diverse landscapes and distinct characters, Cape Verde is perfect for island hopping. Take a ferry or domestic flight to explore multiple islands, each offering its own unique attractions and experiences.

14. What is the process for opening a bank account in Cape Verde as an expat?

As an expat looking to open a bank account in Cape Verde, the process typically involves the following steps:

1. Choose a bank: Research and choose a bank in Cape Verde that meets your requirements in terms of services offered, fees, and location convenience.

2. Gather required documentation: Prepare necessary documents such as your passport, proof of address (utility bill or rental agreement), proof of income (such as pay stubs or employment contract), and a reference from your current bank.

3. Visit the bank branch: Make an appointment or visit the chosen bank branch in person to start the account opening process.

4. Fill out forms: Complete the required application forms provided by the bank. These forms will require personal information, source of income, and purpose of the account.

5. Provide documentation: Submit the gathered documentation along with the completed forms to the bank for verification.

6. Identity verification: The bank may conduct identity verification checks such as biometric data collection, in-person interviews, or reference checks.

7. Initial deposit: Make an initial deposit as per the bank’s requirements to activate the account.

8. Wait for account approval: The bank will review your application and documentation before approving the account opening.

9. Receive account details: Once approved, you will receive your account details including account number, online banking access, and debit/credit card information.

10. Start using the account: You can now start using your newly opened bank account in Cape Verde for various transactions.

It’s important to note that the specific requirements and process may vary slightly between different banks in Cape Verde, so it’s advisable to contact your chosen bank directly for detailed information before proceeding with the account opening process.

15. Can I bring my pets with me when moving to Cape Verde?

Yes, you can bring your pets with you when moving to Cape Verde, but there are specific regulations and requirements that must be met. Here are some key points to consider:

1. Pet Import Regulations: Cape Verde has specific regulations for importing pets, including the requirement for a health certificate issued by a licensed veterinarian within a certain timeframe before the travel date.

2. Microchipping and Vaccinations: Pets must be microchipped and up to date on vaccinations, including rabies. These requirements ensure the health and safety of your pets as well as other animals in Cape Verde.

3. Quarantine Period: Depending on the country of origin, there may be a quarantine period for pets entering Cape Verde. It’s essential to check the latest regulations to comply with all requirements.

4. Airline Regulations: If you are flying with your pets, check with the airline for their specific regulations and restrictions on pet travel. Some airlines may have additional requirements or limitations on pet transport.

5. Pet-Friendly Accommodations: Before moving, ensure that you have pet-friendly accommodations lined up in Cape Verde. Some landlords or housing complexes may have restrictions on keeping pets, so it’s important to clarify this in advance.

By following these guidelines and ensuring all necessary documentation is in order, you can successfully bring your pets with you when moving to Cape Verde.

16. How is the weather in Cape Verde throughout the year?

The weather in Cape Verde is characterized by a tropical climate with temperatures fairly consistent throughout the year. Here are some key points to note:

1. Cape Verde experiences two main seasons: a dry season from November to July and a rainy season from August to October.
2. The dry season is characterized by clear skies, little to no rainfall, and warm temperatures, making it an ideal time for tourists to visit.
3. Temperatures during the dry season typically range from around 25°C to 30°C (77°F to 86°F).
4. The rainy season sees an increase in humidity as well as sporadic rainfall, particularly in the form of short but heavy downpours.
5. Despite being in the tropical region, Cape Verde is not prone to severe weather like hurricanes due to its location outside the typical hurricane belt.

Overall, Cape Verde offers pleasant weather throughout most of the year, making it a desirable destination for those seeking a warm and sunny climate for their travels.

17. What are the primary languages spoken in Cape Verde?

The primary languages spoken in Cape Verde are Portuguese and Cape Verdean Creole. Portuguese is the official language of the country, inherited from its colonial past, and is used in government, education, and business settings. Cape Verdean Creole, also known as Kriolu or Crioulo, is a creole language that developed through a mixture of Portuguese and African languages. It is widely spoken by the local population in their daily interactions and is an important aspect of Cape Verdean culture and identity. Additionally, some Cape Verdeans also speak French and English, especially in tourist areas or among the younger population.

18. What are the best ways to meet other expats and make friends in Cape Verde?

Meeting other expats and making friends in Cape Verde can enhance your expat experience and help you feel more at home in your new country. Here are some of the best ways to meet other expats and build friendships in Cape Verde:

1. Join expat communities: There are various online platforms and social media groups dedicated to expats living in Cape Verde. Joining these communities can help you connect with like-minded individuals, exchange tips, and even organize meetups.

2. Attend expat events: Keep an eye out for expat events and gatherings happening in your area. These events provide a great opportunity to meet new people, share experiences, and build relationships with other expats.

3. Participate in local activities: Engaging in local activities and cultural events can also help you meet other expats who share similar interests. Consider joining clubs, classes, or volunteering opportunities to connect with people from different backgrounds.

4. Explore expat-friendly bars and restaurants: Many expats in Cape Verde frequent certain bars, cafes, or restaurants that cater to an international crowd. Visiting these places can be a good way to socialize and meet other expats in a relaxed setting.

5. Get involved in expat groups or organizations: Many expat groups or organizations in Cape Verde organize regular social events, networking opportunities, and cultural exchange programs. Joining such groups can be a great way to meet new people and make lasting friendships.

By actively participating in expat communities, attending events, exploring local activities, visiting expat-friendly establishments, and joining expat groups, you can enhance your social life in Cape Verde and create meaningful connections with fellow expats.

19. Are there any specific customs or traditions I should be aware of when living in Cape Verde?

When living in Cape Verde, there are several customs and traditions that you should be aware of to respect the local culture and build positive relationships with the community. Here are some key points to keep in mind:

1. Greeting Etiquette: Greetings are an essential part of Cape Verdean culture. It is common to greet people with a handshake and maintain eye contact.
2. Respect for Elders: Respect for elders is highly valued in Cape Verde, so be sure to show deference and attentiveness towards older individuals.
3. Family Values: Family is central to Cape Verdean society, so demonstrating respect and consideration towards familial relationships is crucial.
4. Music and Dance: Music and dance are integral parts of Cape Verdean culture, so taking an interest and participating in local music and dance events can help you integrate better.
5. Dress Code: While Cape Verde is generally relaxed when it comes to dress codes, it is important to dress modestly, especially in more rural or traditional areas.
6. Food Customs: When invited to someone’s home for a meal, it is customary to bring a small gift or dessert as a token of appreciation.
7. Religious Observances: Respect the diverse religious practices in Cape Verde, with Catholicism being the predominant religion. Be mindful of religious holidays and observances.
8. Language: Learning basic Portuguese or Creole phrases can go a long way in fostering connections and communication with locals.
9. Community Involvement: Participating in community events and activities can help you integrate into Cape Verdean society and build relationships with your neighbors.

By being mindful of these customs and traditions, you can show respect for the local way of life and enhance your experience while living in Cape Verde.

20. How do I go about finding a job in Cape Verde before moving there?

1. One of the best ways to find a job in Cape Verde before moving there is to utilize online job search platforms specific to the country or region. Websites like, Jobartis CV, and LinkedIn can be valuable resources for exploring job opportunities in Cape Verde. You can create a profile, upload your resume, and actively search and apply for positions that align with your skills and experience.

2. Networking can also be incredibly beneficial when searching for a job in Cape Verde. Reach out to professional contacts, alumni associations, and industry groups to make connections and inquire about potential job openings. Attending events, seminars, and career fairs both in person and virtually can help you expand your network and learn about job opportunities in the country.

3. Additionally, considering reaching out to recruitment agencies and headhunters that specialize in placements within Cape Verde. These professionals can help match your skills and experience with relevant job openings in the country, increasing your chances of securing employment before you move.

4. It’s also essential to research and understand the local job market in Cape Verde, including key industries, in-demand skills, and cultural norms related to employment. Tailoring your job search strategy and application materials to fit the preferences of Cape Verdean employers can enhance your prospects of finding a job before relocating.