Belize: Country and Foreign Investment
Entry and Residence
TThe following information was correct at the time of writing, but travellers to Belize should check with their local embassy or Belize Immigration Department prior to travel since visa requirements are subject to change.
USA citizens and citizens from the European Community do not require visas for travel to Belize; citizens of Bangladesh, Bolivia, Columbia, China, Angola, Brazil, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Cuba, India, Libya, Pakistan, Peru, South Africa and nationals of the former USSR require previous approval for a visa from the Ministry of Human Resources, Department of Immigration. Visitors are permitted to stay in Belize for a period not to exceed thirty (30) days. Extensions may be granted upon application to the Immigration Office, Corner Pickstock and North Front Streets, Belize City, at a cost of BZ$25.00. Travelers should show that they have sufficient funds for their visit (US$50.00 per person per day), as well as a ticket to their onward destination.
Any individual can apply for permanent residence after one year of legal residence in Belize on a continuous basis. The permanent residence fee is BZ$100.00 and a deposit is needed which can range from BZ$100.00 to BZ$1,200.00 depending on the applicant’s nationality. This deposit may be refunded three years after residency is granted. Applicants must enclose two passport photographs of each family member wanting to travel to Belize; the back of one photograph should be endorsed with his or her name and signed by a Justice of the Peace. Applicants should also attach personal bank statements and current medical and police records to the petition.
To acquire nationality status an applicant must have permanent residence or have resided legally in Belize for at least 5 years. For additional information contact:
Immigration and Nationality Department
The Retired Persons' Incentive Act
The Retired Persons’ Incentive Act is designed to attract the retired to Belize. Passed by the Belizean legislature in early 1999, it resembles the popular but now defunct pensionado programme in Costa Rica. Those who qualify are able to live full time tax-free in Belize and bank there, under a 'permanent' tourist visa. To be designated a qualified retired person under the programme, applicants must have a monthly income of not less than US$2,000 through a pension or annuity that is generated outside Belize.