D7 travel issues – Visas, Residency & Citizenship – Expats Portugal Community Forum
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D7 travel issues

3 Posts
2 Users
Posts: 6
Community Member
Topic starter
Joined: 2 weeks ago

Hi I do a lot of travel in Europe for business, usually 1 or 2 nights away. I am applying for a D7 visa and wonder if the following idea might be possible. I am trying to hold on to as many Schengen days as I can to allow me to keep travelling until I receive the residence permit. The dates below are all notional, based on what seems to be delivery times in Portugal.

1st March - D7 visa appointment

1st May - visa approved 

15th July - Travel to Portugal

22nd July - return to the UK

22nd August - return to Portugal

31st August - SEF appointment

If residence is approved at the SEF appointment is it possible to travel in the Schengen area using the document that is given to you at this appointment?

I may be worrying about nothing. This would probably only be an issue if the SEF appointment came in really late (eg If I were to move to Portugal on 15th July and the SEF appointment was after mid-October this would make it impossible to travel in the Schengen area - 90 day limit)

Thanks for your help with this.


2 Replies

Posts: 1988
VIP Member
Joined: 2 years ago

Hi Peter and welcome to the forums! My advice is do not plan. The D7 approval and then the SEF appointment date are random and cannot be forecasted. 

Once you go to the SEF appointment you need to wait for your resident permit to arrive before leaving the country for long periods of time. If you do not receive it and it gets returned, then that is a dilemma. 

We had VFS D7 appointment on Dec 15. We flew to PT on Dec 31 and awaited our D7 approval in our apartment in Lisbon. We returned to the US before our tourist time was ready to expire and got our D7. We then returned to PT.

Our D7 was issued in March and expired in July. Our SEF appointment was at the end of August so we could not leave PT until our SEF appointment and we had our residents' cards in our hands. We were lucky to get the cards in a week after our SEF appointment. 


Posts: 1988
VIP Member
Joined: 2 years ago

@misticjeff is maintaining a spreadsheet of immigration times for visas and SEF appointments here: d7-sef-process-spreadsheet You can get a feel for what people are experiencing in times and the variations.


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