Mauritius attracts Expats from around the world. They come for the natural beauty and the relaxed lifestyle. And, it is not just nature; the island nation has a strong economy and a welcoming population. The government has viewed Mauritius immigration policy as a way to strengthen the economy and build the country. As a result, those looking to immigrate have a wide range of Mauritius visa and residency options to live and work in the country. We’ll explore all your options and cover each visas application process and fees.
- Mauritius Visa and Residency options
- Short term visas
- Mauritius Student Visa
- Mauritius work permit or occupation permit
- Professional Mauritius occupation permit
- Young professional Mauritius occupation permit
- Self-employed Mauritius occupation permit
- Investor Mauritius occupation permit
- Mauritius retirement visa
- Mauritius residency by investment visa
- Can I transfer my Mauritius visa, work permit, or residence permit?
- Mauritius permanent residency permit (PR)
- Mauritius visa and residency application process
- Mauritius welcomes Expats, and it has the visas and residency permits to show it
- Appendix 1
Mauritius Visa and Residency options
Your visa and residency options are split into five groups.
- Short term recreational visits. This visa is for tourism and travel.
- Short term business trips. This permit covers attending conferences, seminars, training, and meetings.
- Mauritius student visa. This study visa covers education, training, and internships.
- Long term work permits. The Mauritius Occupation Permit allows you to live and work in the country.
- Long term residence without working. These residence permits are perfect for retirees and people with an income from outside the country.
We’ll look at each of these in the sections below.
Short term visas
Mauritius tourist visa
There are different entry requirements depending on your citizenship. Please see this link to see which category your nationality is.
- The majority of countries can visit for 90 days without a visa. This group includes the SCHENGEN area states, the European Union, South Africa, the UK, and the USA.
- Sixty nationalities are eligible for a 60-day visa on arrival.
- Five nationalities are eligible for a 14-day visa on arrival.
- There are 16 countries whose nationals must apply for a visa before travelling to Mauritius. You’ll need to apply for this visa in the Mauritius embassy or consulate in your home country.
This map shows the countries eligible for each tourist visa category. We have also listed each category in Appendix 1 below.
All travelers must have:
- A valid passport with at least six months validity.
- A return ticket that shows you leaving while your visa is valid.
- Enough money available to cover the cost of your stay in Mauritius.
You can only visit Mauritius on repeated tourist visas or business visas for a maximum of 180 days in a calendar year.
There is no fee for the tourist visa or a tourist visa extension.
Mauritius business visa
You’ll need this visa if you are visiting for professional purposes. You can’t be working to earn money in Mauritius. Acceptable activities include:
- Training courses or activities
The visa is issued on arrival to the citizens of most countries. You’ll need a letter or invitation from the organizers that explains the reason for travelling. On arrival at one of the airports in Mauritius, show this to Mauritius immigration official. They’ll issue the business visa on the spot.
The exception is citizens from visa-restricted countries. If you are from one of the restricted countries on this list, you’ll need to apply in advance. The application must be to the nearest Mauritius embassy or consulate in your home country.
The business visa has the same restrictions as the tourist visa, namely:
- A current passport with at least six months validity from your arrival date.
- A return ticket that shows you leaving the country while your visa is valid.
- Enough money available to cover the cost of your stay.
You can only stay in Mauritius on repeated tourist visas or business visas for a maximum of 180 days in a calendar year.
There is no fee for the business visa or a business visa extension.
Mauritius Student Visa
Mauritius has a history of investment in education. Education is free for citizens of Mauritius. The standard of a Mauritian education is very high.
There are two universities, the University of Mauritius and the University of Technology. In addition, there are a range of colleges and Technical and Vocational Educational and Training (TVET) institutions offering tertiary study.
Mauritius welcomes international students for degree, diploma, and technical certification courses.
Any non-citizen can apply for a Mauritius student visa. There are two parts to the program.
Education student visa
To qualify for this residence permit you just need a place on an approved course. The course must be offered by appropriate educational institutions.
Studies that qualify include:
- Courses (of at least one academic year) leading to a certificate or diploma.
- Undergraduate or postgraduate degrees (including Masters, MPhil or Doctoral level).
- Postdoctoral research.
- An exchange program with a recognised tertiary education institution. There is a one-year limit on the student visa for exchange programs.
Experience residency visa
For this Mauritius student visa, you must secure an unpaid position (but a stipend to offset expenses). The work must build your experience in your career or profession. Positions could include:
- Practical training.
- Industrial placements (“stage”).
- Unpaid internships.
You must already have a degree to qualify for this residency permit.
Mauritius work permit or occupation permit
The Occupation Permit (OP) is a work permit and residence permit. It allows you to live and work in Mauritius.
With all occupation permits, your dependents are also eligible for Mauritius residency. Dependents who are eligible include:
- Your spouse.
- Common-Law Partner of the opposite sex
- You child or children under 24 years old.
- Your parents.
However, if they want to work, they’ll need their own occupation permit. The residency permit application fee for dependents is MUR5,000 per dependent.
There are four separate categories of work permit available to you.
Professional Mauritius occupation permit
This work permit is for skilled professionals with an employment contract from a Mauritian employer. You can find the job yourself or using a recruiting agent.
For most sectors, you must earn a basic salary of at least MUR60,000 (or around USD$1,500) per month.
Selected industries have a lower threshold. The minimum salary is MUR30,000 (or around USD$1,500) per month for these sectors:
- Information and communication technologies (ICT)
- Business process outsourcing (BPO)
- Pharmaceutical manufacturing and food processing
The professional occupation permit is for three years (or the contract length). You can renew this work permit when it expires.
The visa application fee for the Professional OP varies by contract length. For contracts of up to two years, it is MUR15,000. For contracts of up to three years, the visa application is MUR20,000.
Young professional Mauritius occupation permit
Mauritius has a Post-Study Work visa. It is called the Young Professional Occupation Permit (YPOP). This visa is for international students who have completed at least an undergraduate degree in Mauritius.
There are conditions for this work permit.
You must have a contract with a Mauritius company. Your employer of record must be in one of the following sectors:
- Artificial Intelligence
- Financial Services
- Information Technology
You must also apply for the work permit with six months of completing your study in Mauritius.
The visa is valid for three years. It is not renewable, but after three years, your employer can apply for a Professional Occupation Permit on your behalf.
The visa application for the Young Professional OP varies by contract length.
- Not more than one year – MUR5,000
- Between one and two years – MUR7,500
- Between two and three years – MUR10,000
Self-employed Mauritius occupation permit
To be eligible for this visa, you must work for yourself in a one-person business. Only people working in the service sector are eligible.
You’ll need to transfer the equivalent of USD$35,000 into your local bank account before you apply.
The visa is valid for ten years. It is renewable, as long as you can show that your business is successful. To do this, you’ll need to show you made more than MUR800,000 (around USD$20,000) per year. The first two years are excluded, as the government recognizes that it takes time to start up a business.
The application fee for the Self-Employed OP is MUR20,000.
Investor Mauritius occupation permit
If you intend to invest in a new or existing business in Mauritius, this work permit is for you.
To be eligible for the work permit, you must:
- Be a shareholder or director of a company incorporated in Mauritius under the Companies Act 2001.
And meet one of the following four options.
- Invest the equivalent of at least USD$50,000 into the business. This amount must be transferred from a personal bank account in your home country to the company account in Mauritius.
- Be the founder of an innovative business. You’ll need to submit a plan to the EDB or be accepted into a Mauritius incubator. There must be a significant portion of expenses budgeted for R&D, but there is no minimum investment amount.
- You have invested at least USD$50,000 into a business over the last three years. Also, the company must show an accumulated turnover of more than MUR12,000,000 (around USD$300,000) over the previous three years.
- You inherited a share in a business in Mauritius. The company must have had an accumulated turnover of more than MUR12,000,000 (around USD$300,000) over the previous three years.
The visa is issued for up to 10 years. You can renew the residency permit after ten years, as long as you can show the company has been successful. To do this, you’ll need to show revenue of at least MUR4,000,000 (around USD$100,000) per year. Again, the first two years are excluded, so the requirement is from the third year of the visa.
Multiple investors in the same company can apply for individual occupation permits. To do this, each must have individually met one of the investment criteria above.
The application fee for the Investor OP is MUR20,000.
Mauritius retirement visa
For many, retiring in paradise would be a dream come true. There is a residency permit that makes retiring in Mauritius possible for lots of people.
The Mauritius Residence Permit as a Retired Non-Citizen is available to anyone 50 years and older.
To be eligible, you must transfer at least the equivalent of USD$1,500 to support yourself. The transfer must be from your personal account in your home country to your personal account in Mauritius.
The visa is valid for ten years. You can renew the visa indefinitely as long as you meet the financial criteria. You must show that you regularly transferred money to Mauritius. The minimum amount is USD$18,000 each year for the last ten years of your retirement in Mauritius.
The application fee for the Mauritius retirement visa is MUR20,000.
Mauritius residency by investment visa
Mauritius has a very simple residency by investment scheme. The program is managed by the Economic Development Board. There are two options:
1) You can acquire residency in Mauritius by merely buying a property. To be eligible, the property must be:
- From an approved Property Development scheme (PDS). The PDS has replaced the Integrated Resort Scheme (IRS) and Residential Estate Scheme (RES).
- Have a purchase price of at least the equivalent of USD$375,000.
This residency by investment visa is valid as long as you own the property.
Be aware: you cannot work in Mauritius under the terms of this program. If you do want to work, you’ll need to apply for one of the Mauritius work permits detailed above.
2) You can get a 20-year Mauritius permanent resident status by investing in a business. The investment must be at least USD$375,000 in a qualifying business. The sectors that are eligible include:
- Agro-based industry
- Cinema and Communication
- Environment-friendly and green energy products
- Financial Services
- Fisheries and Marine Resources
- Information Technology
- Marina development
- Tourism and Warehousing
- Initial Public Offerings.
For both these Residency by Investment programs, your dependents are eligible for Mauritius residency if your application is successful.
Mauritius is just one of many Residency by Investment (RbI) scheme around the world. Each Golden Visa offers different opportunities. Please see our in-depth article on Investment Visas for more details.
Can I transfer my Mauritius visa, work permit, or residence permit?
Yes, but you must meet some conditions depending on your current permission.
From a tourist visa
For many occupation permits and residency permits, you must enter Mauritius on a tourist visa to complete the application in person. Once your residency permit is granted, you’ll transfer from the tourist visa to your new immigration status.
This process means you can come to Mauritius on the tourist visa, and then select a residency permit that suits.
From an occupation permit
If you are transferring from an existing occupation permit, you’ll need documents showing cancellation of your old permit.
These could include:
- A cancellation letter from the investor, self-employed person, or the retiree.
- A cancellation letter from your old employer. You’ll also need a letter from them stating they have no objection to your new occupation permit.
If one of your dependants wants to work in Mauritius, they can transfer to an appropriate work permit. You’ll need to write a cancellation letter for their dependant residency.
You can also transfer form an occupation permit or a retirement visa to Mauritius permanent residency (PR). Please see the Mauritius PR section below for more details.
Mauritius permanent residency permit (PR)
Existing visa and residency permit holders can apply for Mauritius permanent resident status. The permanent residence is not exactly permanent. Instead, the immigration department issues the permit for 20 years, but you can renew it indefinitely.
You can apply for a transfer from these OP programs:
- Investor Occupation Permit. You need to show that your investment has been successful for at least three years. To do this show a total turnover of at least MUR45,000,000 for a three-year period.
- Professional Occupation Permit. Show at least three years of a salary of more than MUR150,000 in your sponsoring job.
- Self-Employed Occupation Permit. Your occupation permit business must be successful. This requirement means showing a turnover of at least MUR3,000,000 for three consecutive years.
You can also qualify for permanent resident permit from a Mauritius retirement visa.
To qualify you must have transferred at least USD$54,000 per year to Mauritius for three years.
You can also access Mauritius PR through the residency by investment program. Please see the section above for details.
Mauritius visa and residency application process
In general, you’ll apply for your visa or permit pre-approval online. At this point, you’ll upload copies of all your documents.
Once your pre-approval comes through, you’ll need to travel to Mauritius. You’ll enter Mauritius on a tourist or business visa.
Once in Mauritius, you’ll meet with Mauritius department of immigration to present your application and documentation in person. Once your application is processed you are legally resident in Mauritius.
There are some standard requirements for most long-term visa and residency permit applications.
- A completed application form.
- A valid passport.
- Your birth certificate.
- Medical clearance certificate issued in Mauritius and less than six months old.
- Certificate of Character /Police Clearance covering the last ten years (less than 6 months old).
- One recent colour passport size digital photograph of 3.5 cm (413 pixels) x 4.5 cm (531 pixels) (less than six-month-old).
- Your visa or residency permit processing fee.
Mauritius immigration requirements are very specific. We strongly recommend using a trusted Mauritius immigration lawyer to assist.
Using an experienced professional can save you time and money. The support will ensure that your application has the best chance of success before you book flights to Mauritius.
Mauritius welcomes Expats, and it has the visas and residency permits to show it
Your tropical island fantasy can become your reality. Thousands of Expats have moved to Mauritius and love their new life. Expat feedback agrees with the US Department of State assessment. The State Department ranks the country at the safest level for travel.
The Mauritius government recognizes the value that Expats bring to the local economy. They have created an immigration policy to encourage people to move to the country.
There are immigration programs to suit everyone, from student visas to retiree residency permits. Entrepreneurs, investors, and working professionals all have programs that fit the bill.
The Mauritius immigration department does its best to help out. But, their job is also to ensure that only valid applications are accepted.
The visa and residency permit application process can be complicated. To give your self the best opportunity of a successful first-time application we suggest using a quality Mauritius immigration lawyer. It is the path that has the best chance of getting you to your island paradise to start enjoying the rest of your life.
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Countries that do not require a Tourist Visa
- Antigua and Barbuda
- Congo (Brazzaville)
- Democratic Rep. of Congo
- Hong Kong
- Brunei Darussalam
- Cape Verde
- Czech Republic (ex Czechoslovakia)
- Estonia Republic
- The Gambia
- Korea (South Republic)
- Macau SAR
- New Zealand
- Papua New Guinea
- Russian Federation (Russia)
- Samoa (Western)
- San Marino
- Saudi Arabia
- Sierra Leone
- Solomon Islands
- South Africa
- St Kitts and Nevis
- St Lucia
- St Vincent & Grenadines
- Trinidad & Tobago
- United Arab Emirates
- United Kingdom
- United States of America
Countries that are issued a sixty day visa on arrival
- Bosnia & Herzegovina
- Burkina Faso
- Central African Rep.
- Costa Rica
- Cote D’Ivoire (Ivory Coast)
- Dominican Republic
- El Salvador
- Equatorial Guinea
- Guinea Bissau
- Kyrgyzstan Rep.
- Macedonia (ex Yugoslav Rep.)
- Marshall Island
- Sao Tome & Principe
- Sri Lanka
- Timor Leste
- Yugoslavia (Serbia & Montenegro)
Countries that are issued a two-week visa on arrival
- Myanmar (Burma)
Countries that need a visa prior to travel
- Korea (North)
- Palestinian State
- Saharawi Republic
- South Sudan