Why Move to Saint Lucia?
Saint Lucia promises countless, paradisiacal beaches, brightened by year-round sunny weather as well as a variety of rich and fresh foods. The country further brims with its people’s vibrant, diverse culture, which can be experienced throughout the year with numerous festivals and events. There are plenty of reasons to visit Saint Lucia and many more to move there, and this can become a reality through the Citizenship by Investment Visa, which enables you to become Saint Lucian. The Caribbean way of life, visa-free travel to over 150 countries, and a myriad of tax benefits. Why would you not want to move to Saint Lucia?
Saint Lucia is the only country on Earth named after a woman, Saint Lucy of Syracuse.
Due to its strategic location, Saint Lucia was once a highly disputed territory. England and France wrestled for control of the island, and its rule changed over 14 times between both countries. This infamous historical period has nicknamed her The Helen of the West, in reference to Helen of Troy.
The British finally conquered the island in 1844, but the French culture became so intrinsically involved in the population’s life that its influence is still heavily present today, in the rising importance of the Saint Lucian Creole, and the country’s many festivals.
- Population: 181.000 (2023 est.)
- Capital City: Castries
- Climate: Basking in a tropical climate, Saint Lucia enjoys warm temperatures year-round, with a distinct, dry, cool season from December to May, and a rainy, humid season from June to November.
- Time Zone: AST (Atlantic Standard Time)
- Language: Officially English, Saint Lucian Creole is the local dialect.
- Country Code: +1-758
- Currency: XCD Dollar (Eastern Caribbean Dollar)
- Economy: Tourism, agriculture
- GDP Per/Cap: USD $9,824
- Borders: Maritime borders with Barbados, Martinique (France), and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Having been fought over by colonial powers has left an indelible mark on the island. This has reverberated across all aspects of the Saint Lucian way of life. Parades and festivals celebrating the country’s heritage occur every other month. The Carnival, the Jazz Festival, and the Creole Heritage Month are just a few examples of this. All this, plus the relaxed tranquillity of the Caribbean makes moving to Saint Lucia the perfect choice.
Cost of living
As one of the most sought-after Caribbean countries, you will find large expat communities. Relocating to Saint Lucia will be slightly more expensive than its Caribbean siblings, but the country remains quite affordable. A family of four should be able to live comfortably in the country with around USD $3.000,00, including rent and utilities.
Tourism is the country’s economic engine, and as such, the government has made significant strides in ensuring the country is safe for everyone, including citizens, expats, and investors. The U.S. Department of State classifies the country as Level One, recommending everyone exercise normal precautions when traveling or relocating to Saint Lucia.
When it comes to healthcare in Saint Lucia, it is advisable to obtain private medical insurance. There is a National Healthcare System, which does not cover everyone on the island, and over thirty medical institutions. However, the country is committed to strengthening its healthcare system and infrastructure.
Education is public and universal in Saint Lucia from ages 5 to 15, which has produced a literacy rate of around 90%. Tertiary education is also available and accessible to Saint Lucians. The country’s main university is the Sir Arthus Lewis Community College, and there are also close ties to the University of the West Indies.
Even though English is Saint Lucia’s official language, there is also a local dialect, the Saint Lucian Creole. In recent years, it has increased in importance, becoming standardized and taught at schools. If you relocate to Saint Lucia, you will be able to feel this for yourself, especially in October, as the entire month is dedicated to celebrating Creole Heritage.
Money and taxes
The Eastern Caribbean dollar (XCD) is the official currency, and it is shared with other member states of the Organization of the Eastern Caribbean States.
In order to bolster its economy, attract investors, and remain competitive with other Citizenship by Investment visa programs across the Caribbean, the Saint Lucia government offers a broad range of tax benefits. Its progressive system does not tax capital, wealth, and inheritance. To find more on how relocating to Saint Lucia can personally benefit you, contact our team of specialists at Investment Visa.
Do I Need a Visa to Move to Saint Lucia?
Yes. Saint Lucia is part of an EU-like entity, the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States, and there is freedom of movement and work between these allied countries. If you are a national from another country, you will need a Visa. If you aim to emigrate to Saint Lucia, the Golden Visa is the path to choose. Through this program, you can become a Citizen and freely relocate to Saint Lucia in as soon as 6 months and enjoy the many benefits associated with holding this powerful passport.
Moving to Saint Lucia as an EU citizen
Even though the ties between Saint Lucia and the European Union are recent, they have proven strong and fruitful. In 2015, both parties entered an agreement allowing visa-free travel to nationals of both entities for up to 90 days in any 180-day period. While the main purpose of this visa is for tourism, it facilitates the process of relocating to Saint Lucia, allowing the investor to visit the island, and feel and experience its culture and way of life before deciding to emigrate. As such, there are no restrictions on applying for Saint Lucian Citizenship by Investment to an EU national.
Moving to Saint Lucia as a non-EU citizen
If you hail from a country not within the EU, entry for tourism-based purposes is more limited. The maximum number of days Saint Lucia allows for many nationalities around the world is 42 days without a visa. These include, but are not limited to citizens from Argentina, Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, Ireland, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Regardless, Saint Lucia poses no further limitation to these nationals if they intend to become a Citizen through the Golden Visa program. For a full analysis of your profile and the best recommendations, contact our expert advisors at Investment Visa.
Moving to Saint Lucia Through Investment Visa Programs
Saint Lucia is the most recent country in the Caribbean to establish a Golden Visa program. Officially known as the Citizenship by Investment program, Saint Lucia has created this enticing Golden Visa program to attract investment and bolster its economy. As a holder of the Saint Lucian passport, the world is at your feet. Travel visa-free to over 150 countries, including those in the Schengen Area, Hong Kong, the United Kingdom, and Singapore, and bask in numerous taxation benefits, such as no tax on capital gains, inheritance, gifts, and worldwide income.
How can I gain Citizenship in Saint Lucia?
You can acquire the Saint Lucian passport in three ways:
- The lowest cost option is to donate USD $100,000 to the National Economic Fund. This amount applies only to the investor but can be extended to other people. It provides no return, as it is a donation.
- One can also invest in the National Action Government Bonds. The minimum requirement is USD $300,000, plus a government fee of USD $50,000. It does not bear any interest and the bonds are required to be held for five years.
- Purchasing government-approved Real Estate proves the best investment, allowing the investor to become Saint Lucian in 6 months. The minimum investment amount is USD $200,000, plus a variety of due diligence fees.
How to obtain Permanent Residency in Saint Lucia?
Residency by Investment programs are not common in the Caribbean and Saint Lucia proves no different. There exists a path to permanent residency via naturalization, but it is a time-consuming process since it requires the applicant to have been living continuously on the island for the past five years. Even so, this does not entitle you to work on the island, as the right to work concerns a separate permit. However, the Golden Visa allows the investor to bypass all these bureaucracies and become a Citizen, earning broad tax benefits, and full rights to live, work, and relocate to Saint Lucia.