Many people mull over obtaining dual citizenship and embrace all the advantages it brings from visa free travel to thriving businesses. Like most people, you might be wondering whether you can have more than one citizenship. Luckily, you have come to this post where you’ll know how many citizenships you can have, the benefits of dual citizenship, and how to get a second citizenship.
Let’s get started!
This is a common question for most people planning to become citizens of another country. The truth is, not all countries will allow you to have more than one citizenship. Fortunately, countries like Dominica established a citizenship by investment program which allows people from all nationalities, including Iraqis and Jordanians and others, to obtain dual citizenship. You can obtain a Dominica passport through the program in only four to six months.
When you have a dual citizenship, you become a citizen of two countries with more than one passport. There are many powerful passports with a high rank to choose from, and the Caribbean is one of the most affordable and powerful ones to choose from.
Now that we are on the same page, let’s dive into the central question of this post; “how many citizenships can you have?”
Individuals can become dual citizens depending on their home country and the countries they choose to have as a second citizenship.
Dual citizenship will allow you to become a citizen of two or more countries simultaneously and legally. Of course, not all countries can enable you to hold dual citizenship, and those that do, have different policies that govern the process, so be sure to check that out.
Middle Eastern nationals, such as Lebanese and Syrians and others, do not have to renounce their current citizenships in order to obtain dual citizenship in either European or Caribbean countries.
Many benefits come with dual nationality, including:
More than One Passports
Dual citizens have two passports. For instance, if you are a Maltese citizen and a citizen of the United States, you will have a U.S. passport and a Maltese passport, meaning you’ll have fewer challenges when traveling between the two countries.
Having a citizen’s passport will significantly minimize the customs process as there will be less questioning about the purpose of your trip.
Besides, dual citizenship will allow you visa-free travel to many countries, especially if you are a citizen from a developing country. If you have a powerful second passport, such as a Saint Kitts and Nevis passport, you can travel with ease to over 155 countries including Schengen countries, the United Kingdom, Hong Kong and Singapore.
New Business Opportunities
Being a citizen of more than one country grants you privileges and a second home, you can choose to work and live in the country of your choice and become a global citizen. Hence, businesses would thrive as you will be given an opportunity for great expansion while tapping into the international market.
What’s more, you can own land in your host country and your home country as a dual citizen. This will make it convenient for you to travel and do business along with witnessing an increase in income.
We live in uncertain times where political, economic, and social unrest are common occurrences. Therefore, having a powerful second passport could significantly improve your life and grant you freedom.
Dual citizenship gives you access to social security from both countries. Healthcare security is another reason why you might want to consider having more than one citizenship. As expected, when there is a health crisis, like we are witnessing now with the COVID-19 pandemic, most countries will close their foreign embassies and halt the application process for non-citizens. But if you hold a dual citizenship, your chances are better.
Being a dual citizen allows you to learn and enjoy different cultures in the respective countries. Moreover, you will learn the history of the two countries and even promote the cultures of your home country and learn those of your new home.
As a dual citizen, you will experience new ways to live and learn new languages, which will improve your knowledge of life and people.
A Wider Variety of Education Opportunities
Education is another thing that parents are eager to benefit from when they have a second citizenship. As a dual citizen, you can choose a school from various learning institutions from the countries you are a citizen. Besides that, you can get great scholarship opportunities for your child in your new country. For instance, Antigua and Barbuda offers a one-year free scholarship to one member of the applicant’s family at the University of the West Indies.
Now that you know how many citizenships you can have and the benefits of having dual citizenships, let’s look at how to obtain citizenships.
You gain citizenship of a country automatically by birth. Nevertheless, there are many other ways to obtain a second citizenship, including:
Some countries offer citizenship to people who can provide proof of ancestral ties in the country. That means you may qualify for citizenship even now if you can prove family ties in your preferred country if they allow so.
For instance, you can obtain Maltese citizenship by descent as follows:
Other countries that allow citizenship by descent include Grenada, Greece, Portugal and Montenegro, among others.
Naturalization refers to a process through which a non-citizen of a country is able to obtain its citizenship. To qualify for citizenship by naturalization, you must meet the set criteria of that country.
In most cases, you need to have spent some time in the country and build up legal residence in the country. Then, depending on the country of your choice, it may take between two to thirty years to get a second passport.
Some countries will only require you to have set foot in the country once or twice per year, while others will require you to be in the country more frequently.
The U.S. Government, for instance, requires a person seeking U.S. citizenship through naturalization to be a holder of a U.S. green card and be an American resident for at least five years. The U.S. naturalization process will take slightly over eight months.
Another way to obtain a second passport is through investment. Applicants could invest in real estate, bonds, hotels, depending on the country of your choice. This process takes a shorter time to get your passport and is the most guaranteed one.
Furthermore, citizenship through investment gives applicants a variety of countries to choose from and most do not require you to reside or learn the language of your host country to obtain citizenship.
Each country has its investment scheme for obtaining a second passport. For instance, Saint Lucia has three investment schemes:
You will, however, need the help of an authorized agent when submitting your application documents to better guarantee getting a second passport effortlessly. It will take three to six months to obtain St. Lucia citizenship after application. St Lucia second passport grants numerous benefits, including visa-free travel to over 130 countries.
Getting multiple passports is one thing; managing them is entirely another. In this section, we look at how you can make good use of your citizenships.
Diversify Your Passport Portfolio
The primary goal for getting a second citizenship is to become diversified. The easiest way to achieve this is by applying for citizenship by investment as it offers fast-processing time and provides many advantages as well as allowing you to become a global citizen.
Ideally, your first passport should not cause you problems or restrict you from service obligations or prove challenging when trying to open a bank account.
Ask yourself whether your second passport can provide a better option when things get tough in your home country. What travel opportunities come with your new passport? Do you need to renounce your home citizenship? Consider all factors to ensure you have diversified your passport portfolio.
What Kind of Passport is Right for You?
Another critical thing to remember when diversifying your passport portfolio is the type/amount of diversification you want. Think about the available options and consider when and where you will want to travel and the number of passports you need.
It is more of how many citizenships you need as opposed to how many citizenships you can have. For example, two passports would be enough for most people; they can obtain citizenship by birth and get another through investment to create a strong profile.
What Passports Will You Want to Keep?
Now that you have your portfolio passport strategy, you need to decide which passports you want to keep. You don’t need to get rid of your passports unless they impact your strategy.
When determining what passports to keep, think about the available options and whether you can be better off without a particular visa.
Where Do You Want to Live?
Diversification aside, you need to determine where you want to live. Which country do you love the most? Then, decide where you want to have permanent residency and obtain citizenship because a residence permit won’t be enough.
Apart from your personal preferences, it is imperative to check other things like taxation that would affect your stay in a particular country as well as business opportunities, education and healthcare services.
Depending on your home country of course, one might wonder how many should they have? While there’s no straight answer to this question, a minimum of two passports are just enough for most people.
In any case, ensure to diversify your portfolio and cover your bases to determine how many citizenships you should have.
Finally, we recommend that you refrain from waiting until bad times or restrictions occur in order to start applying for a second passport. The right time is now. As you have seen, there are many benefits of having multiple citizenships in today’s world.
Luckily, you don’t have to wade through this process on your own. Instead, let Bluemina Citizenship & Residency lead the process of diversifying your citizenship status and become an international citizen. Contact us today for a free consultation.