If you are in the market to buy a passport, 2020 may be the best time to purchase that economic citizenship…
Why? Because several Caribbean citizenship by investment (CBI) programs have gone ON SALE, due to the devastating economic effects the coronavirus lockdowns have had on tourism.
New in 2020, Antigua’s option to donate to its University of the West Indies fund is currently one of the cheapest and fastest citizenship-by-investment programs in the Caribbean for entire families.
Below, we’ll go into the benefits of buying a second passport, what the requirements are for an Antigua and Barbuda passport, plus which of Antigua’s four options is the best (and least expensive) way to buy a second passport.
In this In-Depth Article...
Compare ALL Citizenship-By-Investment Options At A Glance...
It could potentially help you save tens — or even hundreds of thousands — of Dollars by picking the best passport for your personal situation at the lowest price.
Inside, you’ll find…
A second passport is the ultimate insurance policy.
Like with any other insurance policy, you might not ever need it, but having one means you can sleep easy knowing you won’t go broke if disaster strikes.
But you don’t wait until a house is on fire to get fire insurance for your home.
The same goes for citizenships. Having a second citizenship gives you the freedom of knowing that no matter how bad things get in your home country, you’ll always have at least one other place to go to live, work and prosper.
In 2020, Americans are more restricted than ever with a global pandemic, extreme lockdowns and travel restrictions.
And as riots and civil unrest spread across the US, now more than ever is when you need travel options.
A foreign passport allows you to get on a plane and go… no questions asked. These countries may not be allowing Americans in, but they still allow their own citizens and legal residents in.
Unfortunately, the riots and covid lockdowns of 2020 could only be a taste of the extreme unrest to come.
That is especially true if the economy or US currency suffers from the trillions of dollars being printed, and the massive debts of the US government.
But there is still time to take advantage of the second passport deals that are available now.
Then, if you decide to move overseas, you can stay for as long as you like, work, start a new business or even retire there. Generally you can even purchase foreign property without much red tape.
Citizenship By Investment programs allow foreigners to invest money in, or donate to, a country in exchange for citizenship and a passport.
Depending on the country, the donation amount can vary from $100,000 (St Lucia and Dominica) to over $2.5 million (Cyprus), plus applicable processing and due diligence fees.
It’s more accurate to refer to most of these programs as “citizenship by donation.”
Although these programs are collectively referred to as “investments”, in many cases you will not actually get your investment back.
In other cases, however, you can get some or most of your money back and potentially even generate an investment return.
Citizenship by investment is often the easiest and quickest way to a second passport, but also the most expensive.
But some of the passports on sale are MUCH better than others. So, you should know exactly what you are getting for your investment or donation.
And by the way, you can apply for Antigua and Barbuda citizenship by investment from the comfort of your own home. That’s something productive and super useful you can do if you are stuck at home on lockdown.
The history of many CBI programs aligns with the history of storms. Not only do these storms cost these island nations a lot of money to rebuild, but they also stop the flow of tourism dollars.
After a particularly bad hurricane season in 2017, more Caribbean island nations realized that citizenship by investment programs could help them raise much needed funds.
This spurred competition among these small countries’ citizenship by investment programs.
As Covid-19 caused worldwide lockdowns and travel restrictions in 2020, these countries were once again forced to drop prices to remain competitive.
Now, for families of six or more, Antigua and Barbuda’s second passport cost is the lowest in the world.
For a $150,000 donation to the University of the West Indies Fund (plus $17,800 in government fees that we explain below), Antigua and Barbuda will grant citizenship to six members of the same family.
Plus, free one year tuition to the university for one member of the family is one of the Antigua citizenship benefits included in this option.
Even without this new option, Antigua and Barbuda citizenship by investment was still the cheapest route for families.
A family of four donating $100,000 (plus a $30,000 processing fee, as well as local agent filing fee) to the National Development Fund is the cheapest option for citizenship by investment in Antigua and Barbuda.
For one thing, the cost of Antigua and Barbuda citizenship (not to be confused with Barbados) is currently one of the lowest among the Caribbean citizenship by investment programs.
Unlike standard naturalization programs, which require wait times of several years (plus lots of hurdles to clear), investment citizenship programs can provide citizenship in just a few months.
If you are considering buying a passport, citizenship in Antigua and Barbuda could be a great choice for you…
Why? Not only do you get your second citizenship within 3 or 4 months, but you can include dependent children who are attending college up to age 28 (!) and dependent parents and/or grandparents over age 58.
This makes it currently the cheapest option for families.
Antigua citizenship benefits:
The Antigua and Barbuda citizenship by investment program used to be one of the most expensive in the Caribbean, reflecting the high-end nature of the country’s properties.
(Richard Branson, Oprah Winfrey and Eric Clapton all have purchased homes in Antigua, which is the larger of the two islands.)
But now, citizenship by investment in Antigua is THE cheapest program in the Caribbean if you’re applying with dependents – if you choose the route we describe below.
That makes emigrating to Antigua especially attractive if you have a family and are trying to acquire passports for yourself and your dependents.
An Antigua passport also is a decent travel document, allowing for visa-free (hassle-free) entry into 129 countries.
It includes access to the UK, Hong Kong and all countries in the Schengen area, which is a part of Europe consisting of 26 member countries that have officially abolished border controls.
Antigua & Barbuda is not your only option…
There are many more citizenship by investment programs both in the Caribbean and around the world that might be more suitable for your personal situation.
That’s especially true if you are a single applicant or are looking to use a government bond investment option.
That’s why we created a comparison sheet that will give you a birds-eye view of the most important things you need to know about each citizenship-by-investment program…
It could potentially help you save tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars by picking the best passport for your personal situation at the lowest price…
There are three routes to gaining St. Lucia investment citizenship:
As one of the newer (started in 2013) programs in the Caribbean, Antigua and Barbuda’s citizenship by investment program offers a direct route to dual citizenship that cherry picks the best aspects of older CBI programs in the Caribbean.
(There are currently five countries in the region that offer citizenship by investment. You can find an overview and comparison of all available programs in our in-depth citizenship-by-investment article.)
There are three routes to gaining Antigua and Barbuda investment citizenship – donate to the government, invest in a business, or purchase property.
Keep in mind, however, that additionally you’ll have to pay a commission to a local agent that will lodge your citizenship application to the government.
You can choose to work with a world-famous service provider and pay tens of thousands of dollars in fees, or work with a much smaller firm and pay a fraction of that. The end result, however, will generally be the same – second citizenship and a passport.
In any case, budget $10,000 or so in additional fees for the service provider doing the work.
This is the best and cheapest second passport option for families– especially larger families– right now in the Caribbean.
You can either donate to the National Development Fund or to the University of the West Indies.
You only donate $138,300 for the single applicant (all processing and due diligence fees included), or $147,200 (all-in) for a family of four to the National Development Fund.
Note that professional fees are an additional cost which can add another $5,000-$30,000 to the price.
And in May 2020, Antigua introduced a new donation option to make the deal even sweeter for large families.
Any family of six members or more can make a donation into a fund dedicated to the expansion of the University of the West Indies.
The donation amount is $150,000, and it increases by an additional $15,000 for each additional family member past the sixth one.
The government even omits its usual $30,000 processing fee if you choose the University option.
Other fees, like the due diligence fee that covers Antigua’s vetting of applicants, brings the grand total for this citizenship by investment option to $167,800.
For a family of six, that is less than $28,000 per passport.
Plus this option entitles one member of the family to free tuition for one year at the University.
This makes buying citizenship in Antigua and Barbuda the cheapest in the world for large families.
You can include dependent children up to 28 years old if they are still in college, and parents as young as 58 if they are supported by the main applicant.
Antigua’s donation option is the least expensive program in the Caribbean if you apply as a family.
In most cases, CIP programs in the Caribbean would require you to purchase an overpriced, government-approved property if you choose the real estate investment route.
You are not allowed to buy just any property you like. To obtain a passport, the property must be in a special CBI-approved development.
Oftentimes, it might be difficult to sell it at a profit later, so if you consider this option, be aware of all the risks involved in the purchase.
To qualify for Antigua and Barbuda second passport via real estate purchase, the rules currently state that you must invest $200,000 in a government-approved real estate project on the island and hold it for five years.
There are other costs you will need to consider, too – real estate brokers fees, for example, don’t count towards the $200,000.
You also have to pony up application fees of $50,000 for the main applicant with up to 3 dependents; plus, another $15,000 for each dependent if there are more than three.
Those are the minuses. The plus is that you may be able to sell the property at the market price five years after you get your second citizenship. (Just don’t expect to break even or make a profit.)
This requires the most money — $1.5 million directly into an eligible business as a sole investor; or via a joint investment involving at least two persons totaling $5 million or more, with each investing at least $400,000 individually.
As you might guess, currently, we find this to be the least compelling option of the three. Don’t attempt to go this route unless you really know what you are doing.
Meaning: You’ve researched the financial condition of the underlying investment, you’re comfortable with the business owners and the management team, etc.
Are you looking for the lowest cost citizenship by investment program?
Then perhaps our highest-end membership, Total Access, could be right for you. This is where I share the best private opportunities I come across, as well as other information that is just too sensitive to put into print.
For example, we help Total Access members, obtain a fantastic second passport from St. Lucia or Antigua at the lowest price you can find anywhere, and save up to $36,000 compared to what other providers are charging.
But, we only offer this service to members of Total Access.
One of the reasons we are able to provide such a big discount is that we don’t earn a single penny from fees, commissions, etc. from these passport programs.
We do this to add serious value to the Total Access membership.
But access to the lowest cost citizenship by investment program is just one of many benefits we offer…
One of the most popular benefits of Total Access is our private investment service. Inside, we present opportunities to invest in early-stage businesses that have explosive potential.
We cover a wide range of fields– such as cannabis, AI, developing markets, etc.
As an example, in 2015 we introduced our members to a small private company, and people were able to invest at 50 cents per share. The company went public in 2019 — and the stock price quickly rose to nearly $10, a return of nearly 20X.
Several of our members have re-invested the profits they made from our private investment deals into our citizenship-by-investment service and have saved tens of thousands of dollars.
If this sounds interesting to you, I encourage you to learn more about Total Access…
In this section you'll learn how a St. Lucian passport stacks up against other options...
There are many ways to determine if the passport is good.
The size of the economy, the number of visa-free countries you can access, the country’s geography and even its climate can all play a role.
Antigua and Barbuda is the only country in the Caribbean that requires its new citizens to spend at least five days on the ground within five years after receiving citizenship.
But considering the location, it is hardly a deal breaker.
If you decide to immigrate to Antigua and Barbuda we have good news for you:
However, the most important criteria is the number of visa-free countries you can visit with an Antiguan passport.
The Antigua passport ranking is solid in this regard. It provides access to 129 countries visa-free, including the UK, Brazil, and Schengen area (common European borderless area), but not to the US or Canada.
To put into perspective, the US and Canada grant their citizens visa-free travel to 170 countries or more. And the world’s worst passports provide visa-free access to 60 countries or less.
Does "More Visa-Free Countries" Equal "Better Passport"?
The answer is “it depends”… on which additional countries you get and how likely you are to visit them.
For example, a passport may offer 10 additional countries, but also cost tens of thousands of dollars more. Therefore, we encourage you to think it through carefully and consider whether these additional visa-free countries are worth the cost.
To help you do this, we created a detailed Citizenship By Investment Comparison Sheet that shows you the differences in visa-free travel between all citizenship-by-investment passports.
Use this sheet to ensure you don’t overpay for a passport that doesn’t provide significantly more value.
We have an in-depth article covering all currently available citizenship by investment programs that will give you a complete overview of all the options available to you.
But for this article, we want to highlight one other option in the Caribbean and compare it to Antigua’s program…
Saint Lucia’s program is definitely the best value option for single applicants.
Created in 2016, Saint Lucia’s CBI program offers several options to obtain their passport (which has visa-free access to 123 countries, including the Schengen area and the UK).
First is a donation to their National Economic Fund (NEF). A single applicant will spend $109,500 all-in for this second passport route. And a family of four will spend $167,500, all-in.
(Again, you will need to add the local service provider’s commission to these numbers.)
And for the more expensive citizenship by investment options, you can invest either in real estate or government bonds.
Real estate requires a $300,000 minimum investment and is limited to high-end branded hotels and resorts and high-end boutique properties. All-in costs with fees is $452,500 for a family of four.
New option through the end of 2020: Covid-19 Relief Bonds
Since Saint Lucia depends on tourism, it was hit hard by Covid-19 lockdowns and travel restrictions.
That is why for the rest of 2020, Saint Lucia is offering a new citizenship by investment option.
You can invest in Covid-19 Relief Bonds. This means purchasing a bond of at least $250,000 for a term of at least five years– the cost and timeframe increases for families.
The bond does not pay interest.
You do, however, get your money back at the end of the five (or six or seven) years (unlike the donation option).
But you should keep in mind the risks. It is possible, however unlikely, that Saint Lucia defaults on its obligation, and is not able to pay back the bond.
Also, having $250,000 tied up for five to seven years might not be worth it, due to other opportunities to invest the money, or the toll that inflation will take on the value of that cash.
But it might still be worth it. After the $250,000 bond is returned, a single applicant could buy citizenship from Saint Lucia for a total cost of $37,500– just the cost of filing fees.
And for a family of four, that’s $42,500, or just $10,625 per passport, after the bond is returned.
These Covid-bonds are a much cheaper alternative to the traditional government bond options from St. Lucia ($500,000 no-interest 5-year bond for a family of four).
Plus in 2020, requirements for dependents have been loosened. Certain children up to 30, as well as parents as young as 55 can qualify as a dependent of the main applicant.
Or, you can get more details on Saint Lucia’s official citizenship by investment website.
As you can see, St. Lucia is a fantastic alternative to Antigua if you are a single applicant. You could potentially save $30,000.
The Antigua passport does offer 6 more visa-free countries, but you should consider whether the additional countries matter to you and are worth an additional $30,000.
Economic citizenships are not for everyone.
They may be just too expensive for you. If that’s the case, consider three other ways to obtain a second passport & citizenship:
1. Ancestry: If you are lucky enough to have parents, grandparents or even great-grandparents from the right country, you may already be eligible for a second citizenship, by descent.
This option oftentimes is the cheapest and the quickest way to qualify for a second passport. You can learn more about citizenship by descent in this in-depth article.
2. Time: If you are willing to pick up and move to a new country, this option may be for you. After you obtain permanent residency in a country, you can become eligible for a second passport through naturalization.
This option usually takes several years, but its main advantage is that anyone can do this. And in some countries you don’t actually have to spend much time to become eligible for a passport (but it is also not guaranteed that you will get one).
3. Flexibility: There are unconventional ways to get a second citizenship and passport, such as giving birth in a foreign country, marrying a foreign citizen or even changing your religion…
If you don’t have ancestors from Europe (citizenship by ancestry), or a few years to spare in a new country (citizenship by naturalization)… and if donating around $150,000 won’t make a severe dent in your budget, then you should consider economic citizenship.
Antigua’s citizenship program is a solid option. You should especially consider it if you are married – Antigua is the cheapest donation option in the Caribbean for families, especially larger families with six or more members.
Having a second passport as part of your Plan B is critical. A Plan B ensures that if things get bad in your home country, you can still live, work, conduct business and travel, no questions asked, no delays at the airport, no snafus.
Think of a Plan B as a crucial insurance policy… and the passport element one of its cornerstones. Diversifying makes as much sense in life as it does in investing. That’s why it makes a lot of sense to think about your international options and take action… now (before the rules and/or fees change).
And even if nothing happens and you never “need” your Plan B, you’ve got a second passport from a tropical paradise, where every day of the year… you can visit a new beach.
Caribbean passport donations from only $100,000.
Contact us now to request a free professional consultation.