Passport requirements to visit Spain

lucia lagunas reyes - Our Passport requirements to visit Spain lawyer expert

According to reports, at least 82 million people visited Spain in 2018 alone. Millions of tourists from different parts of the globe visit Spain for many reasons, such as to explore the historic cities, to soak up in the sun, look for business opportunities, and the list continues.

However, certain passport requirements must be met by everyone looking to visit the country.

Many non-Spain citizens can visit the country without using a passport. This is because it is more of a Schengen country. Some visitors are also required to seek a Schengen visa before they are allowed into the country.

Note that the Schengen permit only applies for short-term visits that don’t last more than 90 days. It is reported that by the end of 2022, members of at least 60 countries will be required to have ETIAS waiver for Spain and all other countries that are located in the Schengen area.

Passport requirements to visit Spain
passport expiry rules spain

The electronic travel authorization will be launched to ensure that the Schengen area is kept safe.

For a successful application, one will have to meet the ETIAS requirements, which include having a credit or debit card, a valid passport, and an email address. Spain has unique minimum validity requirements that must be met before one can gain access to the country.

Are you planning to visit Spain shortly? Here are some of the things you are supposed to keep in mind when looking for a passport.

How Much Should You Have Left on Your Passport Before Flying to Spain?

Passport requirements for visit Spain
passport validity for travel to spain

Whenever people plan trips, they tend to be too excited about the travel destinations that they forget to think about the visa requirements. Many people always forget to confirm that their passport is still valid. These mistakes are significant, and you might not be allowed to visit your ideal destination, even if you had prepared everything else.

In general, a passport is valid between a period of 5 to 10 years, and the validity requirements normally vary based on the country of residence. Suppose you intend to travel to Spain for a brief stay, your passport is supposed to be valid up to three months beyond your period of stay. Note that this is a mandatory requirement that you must meet.

If you are from the European Union, you only need to have a valid passport for the period stay with no extra duration. Also, EU citizens must not have a visa to travel to Spain, so the process is a little easier and straightforward for them.

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Interestingly, if you are a member of the European Union, you can travel visa-free within the region as long as you have a valid national ID card. But if you are a foreign national, it is a requirement that you carry a valid passport.

Furthermore, if you are a foreign national seeking a Schengen travel permit, you must have a valid passport. If you get the visa, you will be given a certain duration of stay, most of the time, this period will be 90 days (short term) and must not be exceeded. Even if you succeed at getting this visa, your other visa must have a three-month validity of three months beyond the actual period of stay in Spain.

Before you book a trip, even if you are moving to a different Schengen state apart from Spain, you must confirm your passport validity.

How Long Before You Renew Your Passport?

requirements visit spain
passport validity to travel to spain

The duration it takes before you can renew your passport will always vary from country to country. In the United Kingdom, for instance, when living in the country, you will need to have your passport renewed after every three weeks.

All citizens who currently don’t live in the UK must go to the nearest embassy to renew their passport, or rather be issued with new travel documents. Unless they do this, they won’t be able to leave the country.

The UK has put in place an online service that lets its citizens in foreign countries renew their passport online. If you are in the US, the passport renewal process will run for between four to six weeks, and everything can be done via email. If you go for the expedited option, you will incur an extra fee.

Another important thing to note is that when traveling from one Schengen country to another by car, you won’t be asked to show your national ID card or passport, you can just drive through and go where you want to. But airline and train operators will ask you to show your passport; this also happens when in a ferry company. They need your identification documents before you are allowed to cross to another country.

More about Visas and Types of Visas

We had already seen that you can travel visa free if your stay in Spain will not exceed three months. If that is your case, all you will need is a stay permit. Australians, Americans, Canadians, British, and individuals from other Schengen countries don’t have to carry their visas when going to stay for a maximum of 90 days.

These rules apply to those traveling to visit family, attend business meetings, see friends, or traveling as tourists.

If you are traveling for other purposes, you might have to get in touch with the embassy or consulate of Spain; you can also check with the high commission of your country of residence to confirm the nature of permit you will need.

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The Visa Note

If you need further detailed information, you can contact us. By the end of 2022, if you don’t belong to Schengen countries, you will be required to apply for ETIAS Spain travel authorization. You can check out this link for more information based on these changes that will soon become effective.

What Are The Types and Cost of Visas?

Schengen visas cost €80 for those who are twelve years and above and belong to the Schengen nations and costs around €40 for children who are twelve years old and below. Children who are less than six years old don’t need visas to travel to Spain. Russians, Armenians, and nationals from Azerbaijan will pay €35 to get visas.

What Are the Entry Requirements in Response to COVID-19?

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spanish passport requirements

Those traveling to Spain should expect some testing requirements and entry restrictions in response to COVID-19. Not everyone who tries to access the country through the borders might gain entry, and it is important to know what is expected of you.

Under the current travel restrictions by the ministry of foreign affairs, only legal residents and citizens of the EU, Andorra, Schengen states, The Vatican, Monaco, and San Marino, and those with essential needs can visit Spain. For more information, you can get in touch with Spanish Embassy, or rather the Consulate in your home country.

If you are a citizen or a resident of Spain, you must come with the documents to prove that fact. Make sure to carry your green paper EU residence certificate and or the new TIE. You are also required to carry your valid passport each time you are traveling.

In case you don’t have any of the required documents, check out this link for more information or contact us

What Are the Testing Requirements?

At the time of writing this guide, all airline passengers flying from Spain to the US who are two years old and above must issue negative COVID-19 viral test results within three days of travel. Moreover, those traveling to the US must provide documentation issued by a licensed healthcare facility of having recovered from coronavirus within 90 days before travel. For more information about this, be sure to peruse the CDC website.

If you are traveling from the US, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, you won’t be allowed into the country unless you meet strict requirements. Also, you can still get permission to enter Spain if you have permission from the government.

Also, if you are a US citizen traveling from your home country or a different one, you will have to show a negative PCR test that was taken within 72 hours before arriving in Spain. Besides that, you will have to fill up a Health Control Form before you are allowed in.

The COVID-19 related restrictions are set to remain effective throughout Spain, but they vary widely from region to region. Before you get to the country, you are supposed to know the restrictions based on the part you intend to visit.

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To avoid crossing the legal line, you must be sure to follow the guidelines put in place by the local authorities. Let us look at some of the most common COVID-19 restrictions in Spain.

The restrictions include, but are not limited to:

  • A night-time curfew
  • Private or public gatherings must not exceed six individuals
  • Limited movement from and to many locations unless it is for essential purposes and legitimate reasons, such as medical reasons, work, returning to the residence, education, and training, helping elderly, taking exams, legal and administrative matters, etc
  • The limited number of individuals during religious meetings and gatherings.

Additional points to bear in mind when travelling to Spain

requirements covid 19 spain passport
travel to spain passport requirements

Citizens from some countries are required to have airport transit visas when moving through international parts of various airports located with Schengen countries. There are some countries that if you come from, you are only needed to have a transit visa to move into and out of Schengen countries.

Suppose you don’t come from any of the Schengen countries, you might want to confirm with the nearest Spanish Consulate. Those who want to apply for visas are encouraged to contact the consulate, high commission, or embassy.

Note that Spain is one of the Schengen countries, which means it uses the Schengen visa schemes. If you are an EU national looking to stay in the country for more than 90 days, you will have to acquire a residence permit. Those who don’t come from the European Unions and are planning to stay for more than 90 days will have to apply for visas.

If you apply for a Schengen visa, you might have to wait for 15 days for the process to be complete. In some cases, it might take up to 45 days, but you should keep checking. Before you commence the application process, you are reminded to be aware of the national holidays in Spain since they will affect the processing period.

To avoid last-minute frustrations, it is important to send your Schengen travel permit application at least four weeks ahead of departure.

Conclusion about travelling to Spain passport requirements

Those who are planning to travel to Spain, especially amid the pandemic, will find this piece quite useful. Remember, the rules and regulations are subject to change, so you should keep checking periodically to find out if there are any changes you need to take note of. Otherwise, as long as things remain the same, be sure to use this guide so that you don’t cross the legal line. If you do that, you might pay some fees, and in some cases, fail a jail term. If you have any questions, suggestions, or concerns, let us know by putting your comment below.

If you want to stay longer in Spain you can obtain other types of visas such as the non lucrative visa or golden visa.

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12 thoughts on “Passport requirements to visit Spain

  1. Diane Taylor |

    My husband’s passport was issued on 3 Dec 2013 and shows an expiry date of 3 Apr 2024. We are booked to travel to Spain on 3 June 2023 returning on 17 June 2023. Does his passport cover Spain’s requirements for the return to the UK?

    1. My Spain Visa |

      We recommend that you speak to your country’s embassy in Spain to find out the valid dates for your passport for your trip to Spain.

  2. Catherine Gee |

    Due to visit Majorca April 2023 passport was for 10yrs 6months, it is not due to expire until May2026 will I be allowed entry. Our granddaughter (10yrs) has had a new passport issued.
    Thank you

    1. My Spain Visa |

      I recommend that you speak to the embassy of your country in Spain to find out the requirements you need to have your passport in order to travel to Spain.

  3. Hector Vaca |

    Is there anyway to travel from us to Spain with no passport or passport receipt.

    1. Anna |


      If you are traveling to Spain from the U.S. you need at least a valid passport.


  4. Karen Meyer |

    I am trying to find out how my 17 year old son can apply for a seasonal work visa to work for the summer to improve his Spanish skills.
    He plays padel tennis to a very good level and he has spoken to a couple of padel tennis clubs who would be happy for him to work there for the summer. We just need to organise the formalities. We will also be staying in Spain during this time so accommodation will be arranged by us.

    1. Anna |


      One of our lawyers will contact you to answer your questions.


  5. Wayne Evans |

    I have a UK passport which expires in 8 June 2022. I am looking to travel to Tenerife 9 – 16 Dec 2021. I understand this is ok as long as my passport has more than 3 months left on my passport from the date I return? Is this correct?

  6. Natasha Faye Morris |

    Please can you advise if greater than 3 months ( on the return date) validity for a UK passport is sufficient to holiday in Spain for a week?

    1. Anna |

      Hi Natasha,

      I’m sorry but I don’t understand your question, could you explain in more detail.


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