Visa, NIE, Registration of Residency and Health Insurance
Probably the most boring thing to do before going to study abroad is bureaucracy, specially if you need to stay more than three months. But we will try to simplify it for you so you can study in Barcelona easily.
The main goal for a student staying more than three months in Barcelona is getting the TIE (Identity Card for Foreigners) and the NIE number (Tax Identification Number). This card will allow you to stay in Barcelona and move around, also in every EU country.
Unfortunately, getting the TIE is not that easy, and that procedure takes time.
Visa and NIE
First step: Student Visa (before your arrival)
The first step for a non-EU country citizen is getting the student visa. At first you would need to get the acceptance of your studies center (University, Business School, Language Academy, etc.). Usually universities and Catalan Business Schools have a specific department for international students that can guide you to know which kind of paper work you need to do to get that acceptance.
Once you have that approval, you need to go to the Spanish embassy or consulate in your country to deliver the student visa application for Spain, along with the following original documents and a copy:
- The official student visa application already filled.
- Passport valid for all the duration of your studies (original and copy of every page).
- Photos for the visa (you need to check how many you need to bring).
- Acceptance letter from your Studies Center (original and copy).
It can be a public or private center, but official. It is important to verify that the center fits the requirements before doing any payment. It is important to have the date of starting and finishing of the course and it must have more than 15 hours of lectures per week. Bring with you the receipt of the payment for the registration.
- Student qualifications (original and copy).
It must be related with the studies you are going to do in Spain.
- Health insurance valid during all of the studying period (original and copy).
Basically it needs to cover medical care for injury or illness, and also repatriation if necessary.
- Proof of your economic resources for your stay in Spain (original and copy).
Depending on your personal situation, you need to deliver some documents or others. The most typical are the payslip of your parents, the schoolarship or bank loans, but a residential property or the accounts of a company that provides you some income can also work.
- Proof the accommodation disposal for the time of studies, or the economic resources to have it (original and copy).
Generally you won’t have any accommodation unless you are certain you are going to go, or until you get your visa. If you proof you have economic resources to live for all the time you are staying there (around 1,000 € monthly), that would be enough.
Besides, for staying more than six months, you also need to deliver:
- Medical certificate of being healthy (original and copy). You can also get it from a private institution.
- Certificate of having no Criminal Record (original and copy).
IMPORTANT: The foreign documents issued by public institutions must be legalised and apostilled (certified).
*Here we explain to you the “basic” and common documents you might need to get the visa, but this changes with every law and every country might require different requirements. So IT IS IMPORTANT TO CONFIRM THE INFORMATION with the embassy or consulate of your country.
Second step: TIE Card (during your first month of stay)
Once you are here, it means you are already in Barcelona, so CONGRATULATIONS! Unfortunately, we haven’t finished the paper work, but it is almost done. If your studies last more than six months, you will need to get your TIE (Identity Card for Foreigners), so you can be in any country of the European Union all the time you are studying.
To do so, you need previous appointment to the Police Station located in Rambla Guipúscoa, 74 in Barcelona. You can get the appointment in the following link.
You need to provide the following documentation:
- The official TIE application form already filled. You can download the application form here.
- Passport (original and copy).
- Student visa (original and copy).
- Proof of admission in the studies center (original and copy).
- 3 recent photographs.
If you have the nationality of any of the European Union countries (Germany, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Croatia, Denmark, Slovakia, Slovenia, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Holland, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Czech Republic, Romania and Sweden) or from Liechtenstein, Iceland, Norway or Switzerland, you have right to freely go and live in Spain up to three months. Afterwards you need to apply for the NIE.
You need to apply in the Police Station of Guipuscoa St. 74, Barcelona, with previous appointment.
The documentation will be the following:
- Official application form completely filled.
- Passport (original and copy).
- Admission proof from your students center (original and copy).
- Health insurance or European Health Card (original and copy).
- Sworn declaration of having the economic resources to live for the period of studies.
After that you just need to wait to get your card, but from the very moment you deliver the paper work you can relax during your studies time, so… WELCOME TO BARCELONA!
Registration of Residency
If you are going to study and live in Barcelona during more than six months, it is mandatory to be registered in the city hall. Some studies even require to have a registration of residency to do them.
It is also useful for:
- Applying for the working or residence permission (basic if you plan to stay after your studies).
- To use any kind of social service (for example medical assistance).
- Getting a Social Security number (mandatory for working).
- Getting or ratifying the driving license.
- In some cases to open a bank account.
How do you get the Registration of Residency?
It is better if you get a previous appointment on the internet to any hall, to avoid queueing, but you can do it without previous appointment. You need to provide the following documentation:
- Application form already filled an signed.
- Original identity card (usually the TIE) and a copy of it.
- Residence justifying note. If you are living in a rented room or apartment, you need a contract or a permission by the owner (original and photocopy) and a photocopy of his/her identity card. This is important if you intend to rent a room, because NOT every owner is willing to work on the registration of residency to foreigner students.