The New Bermuda Work Visa: How Digital Nomads Can Spend a Year in Paradise
Digital nomads can now Live in Bermuda with the new one-year work visa.
The world has been shut down for months now in the wake of covid. In a surprising response to travel bans, some countries are opening their doors to foreigners who want to stay awhile. In an effort to rebuild their economy (which relies on tourism), Bermuda is now offering an incredible new work visa, which enables you to spend a year living in Bermuda.
This is great news for digital nomads who have been anything but nomadic in recent months.
P.S. Rumor has it Barbados is planning to launch a similar visa program for digital nomads.
Who Qualifies For the New Bermuda Work Visa?
In the world of (expensive and difficult to get) visas, the one-year Bermuda work visa, or officially the Residency Certificate, is easy to get. To qualify for the one-year Bermuda visa, you must be at least 18 years old and either enrolled in a full-time undergraduate or graduate program or employed full-time. In other words, if you’re over 18 and have a full-time remote job, then the Bermuda Residency Certificate has your name on it.
- Must be 18 or older;
- Enrolled in a full-time undergraduate or graduate program, or…
- Employed full-time (remote)
The Cliffs Notes version is that the one-year Bermuda work visa is for digital nomads. Pretty awesome.
How Much Will it Cost Nomads to Live in Bermuda?
The one-year residency certificate costs $263. In comparison, work permits in Bermuda used to cost $1,863, so the mere $263 is a steal. But to get a bigger picture of how much it costs to do the one-year Bermuda work visa, you need to also consider things like the cost of your flight and the cost of living in Bermuda.
Unlike, say hopping over to Southeast Asia or Central America, Bermuda is not the cheapest place to live. It’s actually one of the more expensive places to live. After all, living in paradise has its cost. Still, compared to places like Hawaii and Southern California, it’s not the most expensive place to be. But like those places, it’s beautiful and boasts gorgeous weather throughout the winter.
Here are the main costs involved with working remotely in Bermuda:
- Residency Certificate: $263
- Flight: Around $500 (from NYC)
- Rent: Around $2,00 to $5,000 per month
Tip: Your biggest expense of living in Bermuda is going to be the cost of living. Split the cost of housing with a fellow digital nomad to save money. Or, if you’re a super social solo traveler on a budget, stay in a hostel.
How to Apply for the Bermuda Residency Certificate
Applications open August 1st on the Government of Bermuda website, according to sources such as Insider. It’s currently unclear what is involved with the visa application process beyond the $263 fee. However, if you’ve ever applied for a visa before, you’ll know it’s not an easy or fun process. The reality is you’ll probably need to jump through some hoops, collect lots of random documents (your birth certificate, proof of employment, proof of ability to financially support yourself, etc…).
Still, unlike most countries where you can only get a work visa by landing a job in said country, Bermuda lets you get a visa while keeping your current position. This is a huge feat for digital nomads. Usually you’re stuck having to uproot every 90 days as most countries have a 3-month limit on holiday visas.
Where to Spend a Year in Bermuda
Ah and so we have the fun question: where to stay!? Bermuda isn’t a huge island by any means, but you still have a number of (great) options when it comes to where to stay. No matter what your preferences are, there’s a place for you in Bermuda. Most digital nomads on the one-year work visa, or residency certificate, will want to be in or near a city. This helps reduce the need for a car, while also providing more amenities like co-working spaces.
- Hamilton: Best for city life meets beach life.
- St. Georges: Best for historic town charm (perfect if you love Europe).
- Southampton: Best for stunning nature and pink sand beaches.
But don’t just take it from me. After all, I’m no expert on where to live in Bermuda. To find which area is right for you, check out what the experts say at The Crazy Tourist.
How to Find a Place to Live in Bermuda
There are so many different ways to find a place to live in Bermuda. Which is right for you will depend on what you’re looking for and how much you’re looking to spend. For example, if you want to get your own apartment (or even house), Airbnb will be your best bet. Whereas, if you’re a solo digital nomad keen to meet people, opt for a private room in a hostel.
Tip: On a super tight budget or looking to save as much as you possibly can? Try using HelpX to find free accommodation in exchange for work.
Book a flight on one of the best airlines (just be sure to choose a flexible ticket just in case!).