Algarve Expat Guide

Useful information on living as an expat in the Algarve

Welcome to our Algarve Expat Guide! Whether you are already living here or are planning to move to Portugal in the future, you'll find plenty of very useful information here. From info on local markets, to financial advisors, schools, home services, UK TV and satellite systems, pools and pool maintenance and more.

Financial Advice, Planning & Pensions in Algarve
Get advice and insights on how to manage your money affairs in Portugal. Find out about possible tax breaks, what your rights and obligations are and get help from those expert in making the transition to life in Portugal as smooth as possible. Find Financial Services in the Algarve. and find expert help to deal with Algarve bureacracy. There is a wealth of expertise available to you to help you find out about the Non-Habitual Residency programme (which can allow you to recieve your foreign pension tax free) and other ways in which you can save money on tax and build a financially secure retirement in the Algarve. Blevins Franks can provide some expert insight and they have published a useful tax guide for expats living in Portugal, which can be downloaded for free.

Home Services
Find professional services in air conditioning, landscaping, artificial and synthetic grass installation, home security, TV and satellite systems, including reliable UK TV solutions. Make your new life in the Algarve as comfortable as possible. Find Home Services in the Algarve.

Find quality furniture and design for inside and outside living at Simple Taste. And, to make life easier, Simple Taste offer furniture packs, linen packs and kitchen packs - ideal if you are setting up a holiday home or rental property. 

If  you want to find quality pre-loved furniture, take a look around Kit & Carboodle's large showroom in Almancil. Or, if you have home furnishings to sell, Kit & Carboodle are buyers too!

Pool Services
For private use or for a holiday rental property, the swimming pool is an essential component. Find the best people to install a new swimming pool, renovate an old pool, to heat and maintain an efficient pool or to fit an energy saving pool cover. Find Pool Services in the Algarve.

Property Services
Finding the right real estate agent can make buying property in the Algarve easy and enjoyable, with no nasty surprises along the way. They can also tell you about some of the best places to live in the Algarve. Find Property Services in the Algarve.

Builders and Construction
New builds or renovation projects, traditional or modern in design, finding a professional, reliable and high standard builder is vital. Find Builders in the Algarve.

Heating and Cooling
The wonderful weather in the Algarve is one of the big attractions for expats. However, when at home, you want optimal comfort - not too hot, not too cold. Euro Cooling and Air Con Algarve have a range of traditional and renewable heating and cooling solutions for your home, to keep them comfortable and damp free, even when you're absent.

Property Management and Rentals
If you do not live all year round in the Algarve you may need a property management company to take care of your home, pay the bills and deal with any unexpected issues on your behalf. Some companies, such as Blue Sky Villas  and Holiday Rentals in the Algarve are experts in renting out your Algarve villa to holiday makers. Others like Algarve PMR Services and ProQuinta focus on the maintenance and renovation of property be it for private use of for holiday rentals. Find Property Management services in the Algarve.

Local Deals, Travel Shop and Airport Transfers
Moving to the Algarve often results in a rise in your popularity - you'll have lots of people coming to visit you! Find the best airport transfers for your guests, including tours around the Algarve. Find Algarve Travel Services.
Check out our Algarve Travel Shop if you need to source flights, book hotels or airport transfers. And keep an eye on our local deals - special offers and discount from local Algarve businesses.

Removal, Transport and Delivery
Whether you're moving to or from the Algarve, or making a local move, and need transport for your wordly goods, you'll find a professional and efficient transport service at Algarve Express. Algarve Express can even arrange transport for your car, boat or loved pet! What's more, their weekly delivery service is perfect for those who don't want to go without their favourite treats from the UK.

Education and Language Schools in Algarve
Want to learn Portuguese? or looking for international schools for children? Get information on Education and Language Schools in the Algarve. Special mention for the fabulous Crash Courses in Portuguese at Faust Language School - and intensive 40 hour, 2 week course for those looking to get a fast-track handle on Portuguese.

Driving in Portugal
Detailed and practical information on driving in Portugal - tips on toll roads, exchanging your driving licence and buying a car in Portugal, as well as sugestions for the top scenic driving routes in the Algarve . Find tips on Driving in Portugal.

Registering your residency in Portugal
If you live in Portugal for more than 6 months of the year, you should obtain a residency certificate from your local Town Hall. After living here for 5 years, you should apply to SEF, the Immigration and Borders Service, for permanent residency.

With the UK leaving the EU in 2019, if you intend to live permanently in Portugal, and want to benefit from the advantages of living here, it is very important to obtain your residência in order to be properly integrated and registered. Check out this article on Brexit and UK nationals living in the Algarve.

For more information you can contact the British Vice Consulate in Portimão on (+351) 282 490 750 or via email 
Address: Edificio A Fabrica, Avenida Guanare, 8501-915 Portimão.

In the Algarve you can opt for private healthcare or, if you have registered your Residency in Portugal, you are entitled to join the state healthcare scheme (SNS), which provides a high standard of healthcare - on a par with that offered by the NHS in the UK.

There is a growing number of private healthcare providers in the Algarve offering a wide range of general and specialist health services, such as primary healthcare provider The Orange Medical Centre in Albufeira, run by Dr. Heino Folmer, well know in The Netherlands for his role in the hit TV series, “The Holiday Doctor”.  

Sports and Activities 
Whether you’re resident here, or just visiting, the Algarve is the perfect location to keep active and maintain a healthy lifestyle. There are many great walks, hiking and biking trails, and a wealth of sports and activities to suit all ages and abilities. Whether you’re a pro athlete or just looking to keep fit, you’ll find plenty of sports facilities and organised events all year round in the Algarve.
The Campus at Quinta do Lago is a superb sports facility, offering tennis, padel and biking, as well as an exceptional high performance centre, equipped for both elite athletes and enthusiastic amateurs. The Campus also hosts an outstanding programme of activities and summer camps for adults and juniors, including junior golf camps, rugby camps with professionals such as Brian O'Driscoll, soccer camps led by the likes of Rio Ferdinand and tennis camps run by first class coaches such as Judy Murray.
In Vale do Lobo, you’ll find Algarve Tennis and Fitness Club (ATF), an excellent tennis, padel and sports facility, offering expert tennis coaching, a range of fitness classes and holistic activities and treatments such as acupuncture. It’s a great facility for all the family, with a fun and relaxed kids club, fun sports, social tournaments, dance classes and kids parties. ATF is also home to Algarve Foot Golf yes, as the name suggests, it’s a combination of football and golf, and it’s tremendous fun for all ages.
The prestigious, five star Vale do Lobo Resort has plenty to offer those looking to keep active. Aside from championship golf courses, the Resort has its own gym and Royal Spa, as well as a Tennis Academy, where you can play both tennis and padel, or even opt for a Tennis Holiday with top level coaching by the resident pros.
If golf’s your game, you’ve come to the right place - in the Algarve you’re never far away from a golf course. Pestana Golf has five top class courses between Vilamoura and Alvor, and offers excellent Golf Resort Holidays, perfect for golfers, family breaks and groups. Oh, and if you’re visiting and don’t want the hassle of travelling with your golf clubs, check out, where you can rent top of the range golf clubs from the best brands.

Home and Pet Sitting
Living as an expat with pets in the Algarve raises the questions of what to do with your pets when you travel? Finding reliable home and pet sitting services can be tricky. Dog Hotel Algarve, also known as Hotel do Cão, is located between Portimão and Monchique and offers boarding for dogs, training, grooming and transport services for your four legged friends. Spacious and modern, this is doggy heaven. Next door is the Cat Hotel Algarve, for your feline friends. HouseSit Match is a reputable, managed network of owners and sitters, so you can travel knowing that your home and pets are in good hands. Or you can opt to send your doggy friend for a holiday too, at one of the Algarve's dog hotels - Iron Dog Algarve in Quarteira, is a dog hotel as well as a training school which can help with obedience, bahavioral issues and socialization.

More Useful Information for Expats in the Algarve