1. What is Permesso di Soggiorno?

When planning to relocate to Italy, one of the crucial documents you’ll encounter is the Permesso di Soggiorno. This term translates to “Permission to Stay” and is equivalent to the “Residence Permit” granted to foreigners who wish to live in Italy.

This document, much like the US Green Card, is a personal and non-transferable official document. It is primarily used in cases of recognition of Italian citizenship, granting the right to stay and legally reside in Italy.

Foreigners can stay in Italy for up to 90 days, but beyond this period, not only a visa but also a Permesso di Soggiorno is required.


  1. Types of Permesso di Soggiorno

There are several types of Permesso di Soggiorno, each tailored to the specific needs of the individual:

  • For study purposes (Permesso di Soggiorno per Studio)
  • For work purposes (Permesso di Soggiorno per Lavoro)
  • For family reasons (Permesso di Soggiorno per Motivi Familiari)
  • For residency (Permesso di Soggiorno per Residenza)


  1. Who Can Apply for the Permesso di Soggiorno?

Any non-European Union citizen with an Italian visa can apply for the Permesso di Soggiorno. Remember, a visa is required for entry into the country; for stays longer than three months, a Permesso is necessary.


  1. How to Apply for Permesso di Soggiorno in Italy

The application process for a Permesso di Soggiorno must be initiated in Italy. It’s important to note that it’s not possible to apply for this document before arriving in Italy, nor to convert a tourist visa into a Permesso di Soggiorno.

To apply, you must visit an Italian Post Office (Posta Italiana), where you will fill out a form and attach all the necessary documents.


  1. Required Documents for the Application

The following documents are necessary for the application:

  • Valid passport
  • Photocopy of the passport and the page containing the entry stamp into Italy and visa
  • Receipt of application payment
  • 4 photos
  • Proof of address


  1. Cost of the Process

The cost of applying for a Permesso di Soggiorno varies depending on the type of permit. As of 2022, the costs were:

  • €40 for durations between 3 months and 1 year
  • €50 for durations between 1 year and 2 years
  • €100 for the issuance of long-term residency permits

In addition to these costs, you will also need to pay for the official stamp and the mailing fee.


  1. Validity of the Document

The duration of the permit varies according to the type of Permesso:

  • Self-employment: 9 months
  • Study: 12 months
  • Subordinate or indefinite work: 24 months
  • Residence: 24 months

Fortunately, it is possible to renew the Permesso di Soggiorno. However, the costs for renewal are the same as for the initial issuance of the document.

After five years of continuous residence in Italy and an income of more than €6,000, you can apply for a Permesso di Soggiorno with an unlimited duration.



Relocating to a new country is a significant step, filled with anticipation and challenges. Navigating the legal intricacies, such as obtaining the Permesso di Soggiorno, is a crucial part of this journey. This document is not just a legal requirement; it’s your key to embracing the vibrant culture, rich heritage, and exciting opportunities that Italy offers.

The process of acquiring the Permesso di Soggiorno may seem daunting at first, but with the right information and guidance, you’re well on your way to making your dream of living in Italy a reality. This guide provides a solid starting point, but further consultation with immigration experts or legal advisers is recommended to tailor the information to your specific circumstances.

Remember, the Permesso di Soggiorno is more than just a piece of paper. It’s a passport to the la dolce vita – the sweet life that Italy offers. So, as you embark on this exciting journey, take each step with confidence and anticipation of the beautiful experiences that await you in Italy.