How To Get A Visa To Visit Spain

Planning a trip to Spain? You may need a Schengen visa for up to 90-day visits. U.S. citizens will require an ETIAS. The process involves an application form, proof of accommodation, and funds.

Ali Jenning
Ali Jenning

Ali Jennings is a freelance writer, house sitter, and teacher currently residing in the UK.

How To Get A Visa To Visit Spain
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Imagine yourself walking along a sun-kissed beach, with the sound of waves gently lapping at the shore and the smell of salt in the air. As you wander through vibrant streets, you’re surrounded by colorful buildings and lively chatter in a language that exudes romance. The sun beats down on your skin, warming you to the core, and you feel alive in a way you never have before.

This is Spain, a land of passion, culture, and historical magic, where the rhythm of Flamenco echoes through the cobblestone streets and the smell of paella wafts from bustling tapas bars. However, for those not hailing from the EU, a visit to this captivating country necessitates a visa. So, read on and find out all the essential information about how to get a visa to visit Spain!

Before Anything Else: Check If You Need a VISA At All

Interior of Madrid airport, Spain - How To Get A Visa To Visit Spain

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Before you start planning your trip to Spain, it’s essential to determine whether you need a visa to enter the country.

If you are a citizen of a country within the European Union (EU), Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, or Liechtenstein, you do not need a visa to enter Spain. However, if you are a citizen of a country outside these areas, you may need to apply for a visa.

Before starting any visa process, check if you need one HERE.

Determine Your Visa Type

To start the visa application process, it is crucial to identify the appropriate visa type for your visit. If you are planning a holiday visit to Spain, there are various visa types available, and the one you select will rely on the length and intent of your stay. The next step is to choose your Visa.

Choose Your Visa Type

Spanish Schengen visa in a passport - How To Get A Visa To Visit Spain

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Spain has various types of visas, and the specific number of visa categories may change over time. However, here are some of the most common types of visas that Spain issues:

  • Tourist Visa: This is for people planning to visit Spain for tourism, leisure, or a short vacation.
  • Business Visa: for folks traveling to Spain for business-related purposes, such as attending conferences, meetings, or negotiating contracts.
  • Student Visa: for someone who wishes to study in Spain for a specific period.
  • Work Visa: for individuals who plan to work in Spain. There are different categories of work visas depending on the type of employment and the length of stay.
  • Family Reunification Visa: This Visa is for individuals who wish to join their family members already residing in Spain.
  • Transit Visa: This Visa is for someone traveling through Spain to reach their destination.

Please note that the visa application requirements and processes may differ based on your country of origin and the purpose of your visit.

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Checklist Before Applying

Visa Application Form - Spain

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Here’s a checklist of the most common documents and requirements you’ll need before applying for a Spain visa:

  • A valid passport
  • A completed visa application form
  • Passport-size photographs
  • Proof of travel arrangements, such as flight tickets and hotel reservations.
  • Travel medical insurance covers the duration of your stay in Spain.
  • Proof of financial means to support yourself during your stay.
  • An invitation letter or other relevant documents, depending on the purpose of your visit.
  • If you’re applying for a work visa, you’ll need a work contract, a residence permit, and other supporting documents.
  • For a student visa, you must provide proof of enrollment at a recognized Spanish educational institution.
  • Any additional documents required by your country’s Spanish embassy or consulate.

Remember to check the specific requirements for your country of origin and the purpose of your visit, as they may vary. It’s also advisable to submit your application well before your planned travel dates to allow processing time.

How to Apply for a Visa in Spain in 5 Steps

The Puerta de Alcala at sunset, in Madrid Spain

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Here are the general steps to follow:

Step 1: Determine which Visa you need

First, determine which type of Visa you need. You can find the requirements and application procedures for each visa category on the website of the Spanish embassy or consulate in your country.

Step 2: Collect the required documents

Collect all the documents required for your visa application, such as your passport, application form, photographs, travel itinerary, travel medical insurance, financial records, invitation letter, and other supporting documents.

Step 3: Schedule an appointment

Schedule an appointment with your country’s Spanish embassy or consulate to submit your visa application. Make sure to schedule your appointment well before your planned travel dates.

Step 4: Attend the appointment

After submitting your application, you’ll probably need to attend your appointment at the embassy or consulate, possibly providing more supporting documents.

You may also be required to provide biometric data, such as fingerprints or a photograph, during the appointment.

Step 5: Wait for the visa decision

After submitting your application, you must wait for the embassy or consulate to process your visa application.


It’s important to note that the specific application procedures and requirements may vary based on your country of origin and the type of Visa you’re applying for. Always check the website of the Spanish embassy or consulate in your country for the most up-to-date information.

If you think you might need help with the application process, you might want to use iVisa. They provide a service to directly order your visa and have it all ready within a certain amount of time without any hassle.

Order your visa with iVisa

Spain Visa Fees

Puerto de Mogan, Spain

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The visa fees for Spain vary depending on the type of Visa you’re applying for and your country of origin. Here are some general guidelines:

  • Short-stay Visa (Schengen Visa): The fee for a Schengen visa for adults is €80, while children aged 6-12 pay €40. Children under 6 are exempt from the fee.
  • Long-stay Visa: The fee for a long-stay visa is €160.
  • Reduced fees: Some individuals, such as students, researchers, and family members of EU citizens, may be eligible for reduced visa fees or exemptions.
  • Payment method: The visa fee can usually be paid in cash or by credit/debit card at the embassy or consulate where you submit your application.

Please note that the visa fee you will pay is non-refundable, even if your application was denied. Also, the visa fee may be subject to change without prior notice, so make sure to check the current fees with the Spanish embassy or consulate in your country before applying.

Visa Extension

woman dancing flamenco in a square in Seville, Spain

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If you’re already in Spain on a valid visa and need to extend your stay, you can apply for a visa extension. The process for developing a visa in Spain will depend on your visa type and the reason for your visit.

If you’re unsure about extending your Visa in Spain, it’s best to seek advice from the Spanish embassy or consulate in your country or a qualified immigration lawyer.

How Long Does It Take to Obtain Spain Visa?

Cala Figuera, old fishing harbor on Mallorca, Spain

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The processing time for a Spain visa can vary depending on several factors, such as the type of Visa you’re applying for, your nationality, and the embassy or consulate processing your application.

In general, the processing time for a Schengen visa (short-stay Visa) is up to 15 calendar days from the date of application. However, in some cases, the processing time may be extended up to 30 or 60 days, especially if additional documents or information are required or if your application is subject to further scrutiny.

For long-stay visas, the processing time can be longer, typically taking up to 60 calendar days from the date of application. Some visa types, such as student or work visas, may require additional processing time and documentation.

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How to get a visa to visit Spain

By following the guidelines and requirements set by the Spanish embassy or consulate in your country and submitting a complete and accurate application, you can increase your chances of obtaining a Spanish visa and enjoying a memorable trip to this beautiful country!

Remember to plan, gather all the necessary documents, and stay up-to-date on visa requirements or procedure changes. With some preparation and patience and closely following this guide on how to get a visa to visit spain, you can confidently and easily embark on your Spanish adventure.

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