Visa Application for Spain

How to Successfully Apply for a Visa for Spain

Applying for a visa for Spain and getting your head around its entry requirements might seem complicated. But there’s no need to get stressed – we’ve created a step-by-step guide to make the visa application process easier for you. So preparing for your trip to Tenerife will be a piece of cake.

Do I need a visa for Spain?

As Tenerife is a part of Spain, EU citizens can visit the island without any restrictions. Passport-holders from Iceland, Norway and Switzerland also don’t need visas.

If you don’t have a passport from one of the above-mentioned countries, then you will need to apply for a visa. There are some citizens however who can stay in Spain for 90 days within a 6 months time frame without a visa (check the list below if your country qualifies for that).

Albania *
Andorra
Antigua and Barbuda
Argentina
Australia
Bahamas
Barbados
Bosnia Herzegovina *
Brazil
British nationals (Overseas)
British overseas territories citizens (BOTC)
British overseas citizens (BOC)
British protected persons (BPP)
British subjects (BS)
Brunei Darussalam
Canada
Chile
Colombia
Costa Rica
Croatia
Dominica
El Salvador
Grenada
Guatemala
Honduras
Hong Kong Special Administrative Region
Israel
Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) *
Japan
Kiribati
Korean Republic
Liechtenstein
Macao Special Administrative Region
Malaysia
Marshall Islands
Mauritius
Mexico
Micronesia
Monaco
Montenegro *
New Zealand
Nicaragua
Northern Mariana Islands (passports from the US)
Palau
Panama
Paraguay
Peru
St. Kitts and Nevis
St. Lucia
St. Vincent and Grenadines
Samoa
San Marino
Serbia **
Seychelles
Singapore
Solomon Islands
Taiwan (only holder of passports which contain identity card number)
Tonga
Trinidad and Tobago
Tuvalu
United Arab Emirates
Uruguay
USA
Vatican City
Venezuela
Vanuatu

* Only when holding a biometric passport. If not, a visa is required.
** Only when holding a biometric passport. If not, a visa is required, excluding holders of passports delivered by KOORDINACIONA UPRAVA.

Afghanistan (1) (2*)
Albania
Algeria (1)
Angola (2)
Armenia
Azerbaijan
Bahrain
Bangladesh (1) (2*)
Belarus (1)
Belize
Benin
Bhutan
Bolivia
Bosnia & Herzegovina
Botswana
Burkina Faso
Burundi
Cambodia
Cameroon
Cape Verde
Central Africa Republic
Chad
China
Comoros
Congo
Cuba (2)
Democratic Republic of Congo (1) (2*)
Djibouti (2*)
Dominican Republic
East Timor
Ecuador
Equatorial Guinea (1)
Egypt (1)
Eritrea (2*)
Ethiopia (2*)
Fiji
Frandesspass documents (1)
Gabon
Gambia
Georgia
Ghana (2*)
Guinea (2)
Guinea-Bissau (2)
Guyana
Haiti (2)
Hong Kong (when it is not SAR)
India (2)
Indonesia
Iran (1) (2*)
Iraq (1) (2*)
Ivory Coast (2)
Jamaica
Jordan (1)
Kazakhstan
Kenya
Kyrgyzstan
Kuwait
Laos
Lebanon (1)
Lesotho
Liberia (2)
Libya (1)
Madagascar
Malawi
Maldives
Mali (1) (2)
Mauritania (1)
Moldova
Mongolia
Morocco (1)
Mozambique
Myanmar
Namibia
Nauru
Nepal
Niger
Nigeria (1) (2*)
North Korea (1)
Oman
Pakistan (1) (2*)

Palestine (1)
Papua New Guinea
Philippines (1)
Qatar
Refugee Travel Documents (1)
Russia
Rwanda (1)
Sao Tome
Saudi Arabia (1)
Senegal (2)
Sierra Leone (2)
Somalia (1) (2*)
South Africa
South Sudan (1)
Sri Lanka (1) (2*)
Sudan (1) (2)
Suriname (1)
Swaziland
Syria (1)
Tajikistan
Tanzania
Thailand
Togo (2)
Tunisia (1)
Turkey
Turkmenistan
Uganda
Ukraine
Uzbekistan (1)
Vietnam (1)
Yemen (1)
Zambia
Zimbabwe

The visa will take at least 2 weeks to be issued.

The visa will take at least 2 weeks to be issued.

(1) This visa will take at least 4 weeks to process.

Included in this category are: Palestinians, Refugees and Stateless Persons. Please note that certain documents are not recognised by the Spanish Authorities and are therefore not valid to travel to Spain. These include Certificates of Identity issued by the Home Office, which are not covered by the Geneva or New York Conventions.

(2) An Airport Transit visa is required if the person is not a permanent resident in: Canada, European Union, USA.

(2*) An Airport Transit visa is not required if resident in: Andorra, Canada, European Union, Japan, Monaco, San Marino, Switzerland, USA, Holders of Diplomatic and Service passports.

Find up-to-date information on visa requirements for Spain here.

What kind of visa types are there?

The most common visa for travelling to Spain is for the tourist visa, also referred to as Schengen visa, which is valid for the whole Schengen area. Most countries of the EU (22 of them) are part of the Schengen area – as are Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. It’s an area without border-controls and they have a common visa policy. With a Schengen visa, you can travel to all 26 Schengen member states – not only to Spain.

If you come to Spain for one of our language courses or for a digital marketing course you can either apply for a Schengen-visa or for a student visa.

For courses which last up to 90 days, a tourist visa is the right choice for you. If the course lasts longer, then you have to apply for either a short-term or a long-term student visa.

There are other types of visa, like working visa or non-lucrative visa which might be relevant for Digital Nomads who want to stay in Spain for a longer period of time.

Two types of student visa

1) Short term student visa: The short-term student visa allows you to stay in Spain between 91 and 180 days. Please note that the short-term student visa cannot be renewed once you are in Spain. You would have to apply for a new visa in your home country.

2) Long-term student visa: If you want to stay in Spain for more than 180 days, you can apply for a long-term student visa. Once you enter Spain on a long-term student visa, you have to apply for a student resident card within one month after your arrival. You have to go to the Immigration Department branch (Oficina de Extranjeros) to do this.

With a student visa, you can take language courses, university degrees, training and research without receiving a salary from the University. In case you receive a salary you should apply for Residence Visa with Work Permit Exemption. The student visa allows you to apply for a work-permit and, with this permit, you will be allowed to work part-time. This has to be compatible with your studies, of course.

If you want to work in Spain you must get a working visa. Before you can apply for that though, you need a work permit. You cannot apply for a work permit on your own though. It’s something your employer has to do.

Visa for Spain

Spanish Embassy / Photo: Kurt Bauschardt / Flickr

How to Apply for a Schengen or Student Visa?

Get in touch with the Spanish Embassy or Consulate closest to you. Make sure you have the information about the required visa type on hand as you book an appointment. If you seek a tourist or student visa, try to get an appointment at least four weeks before your trip is scheduled to begin.

At this appointment, you have to personally hand in all the required documents (see below which documents are required for a tourist visa, a student visa or a working visa).

The processing of the visa, which takes place after you’ve handed in all required documents, usually takes in about 2 to 4 weeks.

What to bring for your tourist visa application

    • Completed and signed Application form for Schengen Visa
    • A passport which is valid for at least 3 months beyond the completion of the trip. There has to be at least two blank pages left for the visa
    • A copy of the passport
    • 1 recent colour photo in passport format
    • Flight documents that confirm your travel dates and the dates of your stay. We recommend that you provide a confirmed flight itinerary or reservation so you won’t have to incur cancellation costs in the event that your visa is denied
    • Invitation letter from the person who is inviting you or information about your place of residence during your stay – such as booking documents of the hotel / address of accommodation
    • A cover letter stating the purpose of your visit to Spain and itinerary (i.e. a letter from our school stating that you study spanish here)
      If you are a student: A no-objections letter from your school or university confirming your leave, along with details about what you are studying and the year when you will finish your studies
    • If you are employed or self-employed: A document which proves employment or self-employment (issued by place of employment or finance office and addressed to the Spanish Embassy). Also, a no-objections letter from your employer confirming your leave, your position in the company and the termination date of your contract. If self-employed, you need a copy of your income tax return. These documents show that you will not overstay your visa and, though it is optional in many cases, it’s a good idea to have it since it will increase your chances of a successful application
    • Bank statements of the last three months and the balance of your bank account – which is supposed to prove that you have enough money to care for yourself during the time of your stay. A minimum of € 538 per month is required. Cash is not acknowledged as proof. The last three paychecks have to be visible in the bank statements. If you are supported by your spouse or parents, you have to present a proof of your civil status (marriage certificate or birth certificate) as well as the latest two bank statements of the person who is supporting you.
    • The fee for the visa in cash (the fee might vary depending on the country in which you are applying) and will be around € 60. You will find detailed information about the requested amount on the website of the Spanish Embassy of your country.
    • A Schengen Travel Insurance with a minimum of € 30.000 coverage.

Don’t forget: All documents have to be presented in Spanish or English.

What to bring for your student visa application

    • Completed and signed Application for a National Visa form
    • A copy of an official and signed letter that indicates the company, the position, and the reason for and duration of your stay
    • 1 recent colour photo in passport format
    • A passport which must be valid for at least one year. There has to be at least two blank pages left for the visa.
    • A copy of the passport including all pages – even the blank ones!
    • Copy of the employment contract submitted and stamped by the Spanish Immigration Department (Oficina de Extranjería)
    • The residence and work authorization issued by the Provincial Department of the Labour Ministry
    • A Certificate of No Criminal Conviction from every country that the applicant has lived in the last 5 years. Note that Certificates issued by local police stations are sometimes not accepted.
    • A Medical Certificate issued by your doctor stating that you do not suffer from any of the diseases which need quarantine under the International Health Regulation (2005).
    • The fee for the visa in cash (around € 60)

These requirements can vary from country to country so some Spanish Embassies or Consulates might ask you for more paperwork – others will be fine with less. Don’t get stressed out by this.

  • Completed and signed Application for a National Visa form
  • A copy of an official and signed letter that indicates the company, the position, and the reason for and duration of your stay
  • 1 recent colour photo in passport format
  • A passport which must be valid for at least one year. There have to be at least two blank pages left for the visa.
  • A copy of the passport including all pages – even the blank ones!
  • Copy of the employment contract submitted and stamped by the Spanish Immigration Department (Oficina de Extranjería)
  • The residence and work authorization issued by the Provincial Department of the Labour Ministry
  • A Certificate of No Criminal Conviction from every country that the applicant has lived in the last 5 years. Note that Certificates issued by local police stations are sometimes not accepted.
  • A Medical Certificate issued by your doctor stating that you do not suffer from any of the diseases which need quarantine under the International Health Regulation (2005).
  • The fee for the visa in cash (around € 60)
  • A completed and signed Application for a National Visa form
  • A copy of an official and signed letter that indicates the company, the position, and the reason for and duration of your stay
  • 1 recent colour photo in passport format
  • A passport that shouldn’t be older than 10 years. There have to be at least two blank pages left for the visa.
  • A copy of the passport – first pages
  • Documentation proving economic funds sufficient for the duration of residence or proof of a minimum reoccurring monthly income.  A minimum of € 538 per month is required. The minimum amount will increase for every additional member of the family. There must be proof of significant savings and proof of re-occuring, non-working income.
  • Proof of Insurance that covers Sanitary Assistance, Accidents, Emergencies, Evacuation, Medical Repatriation, Return of Remains with complete international coverage. It must be from a company that is authorized to operate in Spain. No other type of insurance will be accepted.
  • A Certificate of No Criminal Conviction from every country that the applicant has lived in the last 5 years. Note that Certificates issued by local police stations are sometimes not accepted.
  • A Medical Certificate issued by your doctor stating that you do not suffer from any of the diseases which need quarantine under the International Health Regulation (2005).
  • The fee for the visa in cash (around € 60)
Visa Spain

Spain Visa Application in a Nutshell

Plan way in advance

Getting your visa for Spain can take up to 6 weeks. You should never rely on the estimated processing times, however. Try to get an appointment at the Spanish Embassy at least 6 weeks before your departure.

Make sure you have all requested documents with you

Before heading to the Spanish Embassy, you should double-check that you have all the necessary documents with you. The list of requested papers for a visa to Spain is long. You can guarantee that the responsible administrators will thoroughly check that everything is there.

Since it is so hard to get an appointment at a Spanish Embassy, you do not want to be sent away again.

Double-check for correct spelling in all your documents

If there are spelling errors in your application, your visa might get declined. Therefore always double- or even triple-check to ensure that everything is spelled correctly. Make sure your name in your passport exactly matches how it is spelled on any other document, for instance.

When applying for a Student Visa the school you want to attend needs to be spelled correctly. The person in charge will check that as well. One minor spelling error could lead to your visa being declined. Therefore, we highly recommend you to go through all your documents thoroughly. For example, if want to study Spanish at FU International Academy Tenerife in Puerto de la Cruz or Costa Adeje, you have to write the full name of our school.

Be patient

For your own peace of mind – be patient. It can be difficult at times to meet the requirements and provide needed documents, then have to sit and wait.

Keep calm and bear in mind that it will be your gateway to getting to Tenerife and having a great time here.

One more thing: be empathic with the employees at the Spanish Embassy. They can’t speed up the process of getting your visa.

Now that you know everything about the visa requirements – go for it.

Come to beautiful Tenerife and become fluent in Spanish with our long-term language course.

We’re looking forward to meeting you soon.

2018-04-13T13:42:39+00:00
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