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Schengen visas

General information 

The Schengen visa is issued to third-country nationals listed in Annex I of Regulation (EU) 2018/1806It opens in new window. This visa allows the holder to stay in the Schengen area for up to 90 days (in any 180-day period) for the purposes of tourism, business, visiting family, medical treatment, studies, training placements or volunteer activities that last under 3 months, or for other non-gainful activities. It also allows transit through the territory and airports. 

The Schengen area encompasses 29 European countries without border controls between them: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland. 

The Schengen visa allows the holder to travel to any of the Schengen States and to transit through their territory, but it does not automatically entitle them to enter the Schengen area. The border authorities can refuse entry if the visa holder does not provide proof of the purpose and specifics of the trip, or if any of the other entry requirements are not met (please refer to the section “Conditions for entry into Spain").

Required documents 

1. Application form​Each applicant must complete and sign an official application form, filling in each of its sections. If the applicant is a minor, one of their parents must sign the application. 

2. Photograph. A recent, passport-size, colour photograph, taken against a light background, facing forward, without dark or reflective glasses, or any garments concealing the oval of the face. Photographs of minors must not show any part of the adult holding them.  

3. Valid, unexpired passport. The passport must be valid for at least 6 months beyond the planned departure date from the Schengen territory. It must also contain at least 2 blank pages. Passports issued more than 10 years ago will not be accepted.  

4. Photocopy of the pages that contain biometric data, previous visas from different countries and migration stamps of the current and the last passport.

5. Front page of travel medical insurance. The insurance must cover the costs of repatriation for medical reasons or death, as well as for urgent healthcare and/or emergency hospital treatment fo​r the entire stay and throughout the Schengen area. Coverage must be of at least €30,000 or its equivalent in local currency. If the application is for a multiple entry visa, the medical insurance must be valid for the first planned entry. The applicant must undertake to purchase insurance for future trips. 

6. Payment of the visa fee. Click here ​for more information.​

7. Documents corroborating the purpose of travel and the specifics of the stay, that the visa applicant has sufficient financial means, as well as the intention of the visa applicant to leave the Schengen area before the visa expires. 

​7.1. Details of the trip

    • ​​Cover letter (account of the purpose of the visit).
    • Flight bookings (roundtrip). It is advisable not to buy the air ticket until the visa has been granted.
    • Hotel accommodation for the duration of the stay or, if you are visiting family or friends in Spain, an invitation letter from the resident in Spain issued by the Spanish national police.

7.2. Evidence of economic means

    • ​Original, stamped and signed bank statements of the applicant and sponsor (if any) of the last 3 months.  
    • Original, signed letter by the sponsor detailing the concepts/amount to be covered and proof of the relationship of the sponsor with the applicant must be submitted, if relevant.
    • Income tax returns (ITR-V or Form 16) for the last two years of the applicant and sponsor, if applicable.
    • Salary slips for last three months, when available.​
    • Self-attested photocopy of the Permanent Account Number (PAN) card.

7.3. For business meetings: Original invitation letter from the Spain-based company/companies. Written in Spanish, the letter should refer to the purpose of the visit and, the existing commercial relationship with the applicant. His/her name, passport number and envisaged travel dates should also be mentioned.​

7.4. For participation in conferences, business fairs or sports events

    • Original letter of invitation from the organizers. The letter must clearly mention the name and passport number of the applicant, duration of the event, whether the expenses of the travel and accommodation shall be paid by the applicant or by the organizers, and involvement of the applicant in the event.
    • In case of corporate participation, also a cover letter of the applicants’ company. The letter should mention the names of its employees travelling to Spain.

7.5. For studying up to 90 days

    • Original or electronically certified letter from an officially recognized Spanish educational establishment (indication of contact details of the center, study programme and dates of beginning and end of course).
    •  A copy of the previous document.
    • Copy of previous academic records.​

8. Proof of residence in the consular district. For instance, recent (no older than 6 months) utility bills that clearly display the applicant's full name and current address; copy of lease or of house deed; etc.​ Please, be aware that this is not an exhaustive list.

9. If the applicant is under 18 years old and is applying alone or with/without both parents or legal guardians:

    • the application form must be signed by both parents or legal guardians.
    • it will be necessary to submit a notarized authorization letter signed by both parents or legal guardians.
    • it will be necessary to submit self-attested copies of the passports of both parents or legal guardians.

When necessary to assess the application, the Consular Office may request additional documents or data and may also ask the applicant to come in for a personal interview. 


This Consular Office is competent to accept visa applications from third-country nationals residing in the consular district who are travelling to Spain as their only or main destination. 

  • Who can apply for a visa: Applications must be submitted in person. If the applicant is a minor, the application must be submitted by their legal representatives. 
  • ​Place of submission: Applications must be submitted through any BLS VAC with prior appointment through the following link

  • Visa application period: Visa applications must be submitted between 6 months and 15 days before the scheduled date of travel. Seafarers may apply for the visa up to 9 months before the date of travel.  
  • Biometric data capturing: The applicant's facial image and fingerprints will be captured during the visa application procedure. Applicants under 12 and applicants whose fingerprints have been taken in the last 59 months are exempt from fingerprint taking. However, in the latter case, if the applicant's prints are of poor quality, the Consular Office will request that they come back in to have their fingerprints retaken. 
  • Rectifying the application: The Consular Office may ask the applicant to submit any missing documents, or to provide additional documents or data that are necessary for a decision regarding the application. The applicant may also be called in for a personal interview. 
  • Decision period: The legal period for reaching a decision is of 15 calendar days as of the day after the application submission date, but this period may be extended to 45 calendar days if an interview or additional documents are requested.
    Visa applications submitted by nationals of certain States require consultation with the central authorities that could affect the duration of the visa procedure. 
  • ​Return of passport and other documentation: The Consular Office or Visa Application Centre will inform the applicant regarding the procedure for the return of the passport and any other original documentation.  
  • Permission granted by the visa: A visa does not automatically entitle someone to enter the Schengen area. The traveller must meet all legal entry requirements (see section "Conditions for entry into Spain"). 
  • Visa refusal: Visa refusals will always be notified in writing, setting forth the grounds on which the decision adopted was based. 
  • Appeals
    • In case of refusal of a visa, the applicant can request reconsideration of decision by submitting in person an appeal letter at the Consular Section, as per the following instructions:  
      1. ​Appeal can be presented within one month from the date of notification of the rejection.
      2. Appeal letter must be written in Spanish or in Spanish and English and must be duly signed by the applicant. In case of minors, appeal must be signed by the parents/legal guardians.
      3. Appeal letter must mention a telephone contact and an email address.
      4. In case of multiple applications, each applicant must present an individual appeal letter.
      5. Original and one photocopy of the appeal letter must be presented in person in order to be properly registered.
      6. Appeal letter can be presented on any day, except declared holidays, from Monday-Friday, between 9.00-13:00 hours, without any prior appointment.
      7. Appeal letter cannot be sent by email or by post.
      8. Maximum processing period of an appeal is one month. During the processing period, no status queries or requests for expediting the procedures will be entertained.
      9. Once the appeal has been processed, the applicant will be contacted by email directly by the Consular office. 
    • An application for judicial review may also be filed with the High Court Justice of Madrid within the 2-month period beginning the day after the date on which the applicant receives notification of the visa refusal or of the dismissal of the reconsideration appeal. 

Complaints or suggestions about the service received or about the visa application procedure can be submitted online through this website. They may also be submitted in writing at this Consular Office.


Data protection​ 

The processing of personal data of visa applicants is done in accordance with the General Data Pr​otection RegulationIt opens in new window

Persons wishing to exercise their rights of access, rectification and erasure of their personal data in the Visa Information System (VIS) may do so by addressing the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the European Union and Cooperation: 

Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the European Union and Cooperation

Inspección General de Servicios

Postal address: Plaza de la Provincia, 1, Madrid, España

Email:​It opens in new window 

The following forms may be used to do so: 

Persons whose visa application has been refused because they are banned from entering the Schengen area may exercise their rights of access, rectification and erasure of their personal data in the Schengen Information System (SIS) by addressing the Ministry of the Interior.   

To obtain more information on your rights and duties and on how to exercise your rights of access, rectification and erasure of data included in the SIS, please refer to the website of the Spanish Data Protection AgencyIt opens in new window.

Basic legislation 

 Community Code on Visas 

  • Regulation (EC) No 810/2009It opens in new window of the European Parliament and of the Council of 13 July 2009 establishing a Community Code on Visas (Visa Code). 
  • Regulation (EU) 2019/1155It opens in new window of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 June 2019 amending Regulation (EC) No 810/2009 establishing a Community Code on Visas (Visa Code).

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