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Hello! + a few questions
Hi! I'm an Australian moving to Portugal, after 8 years in the UK, to start a job as a researcher at the University of Lisbon. I'll be moving next January with my partner (Polish-Australian) and two cats. We're hoping to base ourselves in Setubal, as I don't need to be in the office every day and we prefer somewhere a little bit quieter and closer to nature (plus there's a great, direct train link to the university).
I've already found these forums enormously helpful in guiding my way through complicated Portuguese bureaucracy, especially around the visa process. But I have a couple of questions I haven't been able to fully resolve, maybe some of you might help!:
1. Pet transport: Does anyone have any advice on the best way to get our two cats from UK to Portugal? We have been trying to work this one out for weeks now. We don't drive and so we really would prefer door-to-door service for the cats. Most of the companies that transport by air only seem to manage the UK-side of things, which really is only half of the problem (and, to be honest, probably the bit we could manage ourselves). The cost is also exorbitant - seems to be twice what we paid to have them transported to the UK all the way from Australia! I don't mind paying, but only if it was for a full door-to-door service. I know that land transport is an option, but it seems like a very long time in a truck for two middle aged cats. I'd be keen to hear experiences of others that might have taken that option, though.
2. Registering for SNS: How easy is it to register for a numero de utente prior to the SEF appointment? As a non-EU national, I have a visa which allows me two entries in the country prior to end of February. But my SEF appointment is not until end of June!! I will need to see a specialist fairly soon in order to receive prescription medication. I have read that having proof of a SEF appointment should be enough, but what are others experiences with this?
Thanks in advance for any advice and apologies if I have missed the right posts that might answer these questions!
Can't help with the pets question but for SNS you can apply before your SEF appointment and they will accept proof of appointment. You go to your local SNS center (centro de saude) with SEF appt proof, NIF and passport (and poss proof of accomodation). They will then issue you an SNS temp number. (You wont be able to access SNS 24 or do much with it until it is made permanent) Once you have had your SEF appt and got your residency permit you can then go back and they will make the number into a valid permanent one. You will still be able to see a GP or specialist with the temp SNS number but it won't show up on the SNS system and so you will be paying full price for everything, unless you have private insurance and are past their normal waiting period (usually 3 months for most insurers)
There are some other threads that discuss the pet transport options, but not sure from UK on the blog, and you can do a search and they will come up, and hopefully, more info will be gleaned from those that have done this before, or recently.