Do you need a visa for Spain?

The short answer is maybe, depending on which country your passport is from. Spain is part of the Schengen Area – the world's largest visa-free zone made up of 26 European countries – and nationals from Schengen countries can move around freely without a visa. There are no border checks, but it's important that travellers carry a national identity card or passport in case you are required to prove you're from a Schengen country.

What are the 26 Schengen Area countries?

Below are the countries in the Schengen Area:

Austria Liechtenstein  
Belgium Lithuania
Czech Republic   Luxembourg
Denmark Malta
Estonia Netherlands
Finland Norway
France Poland
Germany Portugal
Greece Slovakia
Hungary Slovenia
Iceland Spain
Italy Sweden
Latvia Switzerland

Visa-free travel to Spain for non-Schengen and non-EU nationals

Spain has visa-free travel agreements with a number of non-Schengen and non-EU countries including Australia, the USA, New Zealand, Brazil, Japan and the United Kingdom. Nationals from these countries can visit Spain (or anywhere else in the Schengen zone) for 90 days within a 180-day period without a visa, as long as it's for short-term tourism, business travel, or transit purposes. Travellers will need a valid passport to present to immigration officers upon arrival and must also meet a few other requirements (we'll get to this shortly).

Be sure to check that your trip will not exceed the 90-day period if you have travelled to other Schengen countries within the last 180 days – if so, you’ll need to apply for a visa or you may be fined or banned from entering the Schengen Area. If you plan on staying for longer than 90 days or intend to find work, you will also need to apply for the relevant visa.

Which countries need a visa for Spain?

Passport holders from over 100 countries will need to apply for a Schengen visa at their local Spanish consulate or embassy before travel, including Cambodia, Ecuador, India and Nepal. This can take at least two weeks, so make sure you're organised and don’t leave it to the last minute. And remember – visa and entry requirements can change at any time, so it's always best to check for the latest information before your trip.

Spain visa requirements for non-Schengen / EU nationals

If you’re a non-Schengen or EU national, you’ll need to clear immigration upon arrival and must meet the following requirements:

  • Hold a valid passport that was issued less than 10 years prior to the date of travel and is valid for three months after you depart
  • Have confirmation of onward or return travel plans, such as a flight or train ticket
  • Show proof that you have enough money in your account to support yourself while you’re in Spain

Border control officers will stamp your passport and check to make sure you haven’t overstayed your time in the Schengen zone. Always make sure your passport has been stamped or else immigration officers might think you have overstayed your visa or visa-free period. It’s handy to keep records of your return/onward travel tickets or boarding passes for this reason.

Visa and entry requirements can change at any time, so make sure you check for the latest information before you set off. If you have any questions or concerns about Spain's visa or entry requirements, get in touch with your nearest embassy or high commission for the latest advice.

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