#1 Making the decision
you want to settle in Spain either long or
short term then you have to have drive, determination
and patience. The hot weather may be a major
attraction to you - don't move for this reason
alone. The sun is nice for a while but if
you need to work in it to survive, it's not
quite so attractive. If you are one of those
who like everything done straight away then
Spain is not for you. Be prepared for a slower
lifestyle where things take a little longer
to get done. Living in Spain is not a holiday
in any way. Still convinced that you want
to move ? Then read on and do it ! Assuming
you have cleared up any mess and tied up
loose ends in your own country you are almost
ready to move.
you have a home to go to in Spain, maybe
you want to find one when you get there.
Maybe you have work to go to or maybe you
will look for work when you get there.
If you have no arrangements don't worry,
there are plenty of both, depending on
what area of Spain you are going to.
Step #2 Making the move
Once you have
decided on where in Spain you are going
to, you need to decide on how to get
there. You will decide which way is best
for you, depending on what you are taking
with you. If you decide to drive, make
sure you read the section on driving
You can catch a car ferry at many English ports and buy a one way
or return ticket. [we were once told that a cheap day return to France
can be bought cheaper than a one-way ticket]. A point to note is
that if you bring a caravan over with you, most ferries will not
sell you a one way ticket so you must use the tunnel. Consider carefully
the cost of a crossing to Calais and the additional cost of petrol
and tolls as opposed to a crossing to Santander or Bilbao. Driving
through France can be a long nightmare and very expensive on tolls.
Flying over is a cheap alternative if all you have are a couple of
cases. Cheap flights can be booked over the internet at as little
as £50 each ! But, consider how you are to get
about once you get here. Spain is a big country and a car is a must.
Whichever way you get here, there are several things you must bring
with you. Driving licences/Car insurance papers Birth/Marriage certificates
Passports Bank books/cheque and credit cards Enough money to get
home Important medication Form E111 and remember to make several
photocopies of all your documents !
#3 Travel documents
Spain is part of the EU, if you live
in an EU country, you do not require
a visa to enter the country. You have
almost equal rights in Spain as you
do in your own country. Make sure you
have a full ten year British Passport
well before you leave. Make several
photocopies of it and make sure you
keep at least one copy in a safe place.
Losing your original passport in Spain
would be a bad move. Losing all record
of it would be worse. Consider taking
out travel insurance for your journey
over. It's money well spent if your
luggage vanishes or your car is stolen
with all your belongings inside. Make
sure children have their own passports.
It's also a good idea to go the post
office in England and collect a form
for renewal of a passport and a form
for replacement of a lost/stolen passport.
These are forms you can't get in Spain.
Make sure you have all your birth/marriage
certificates with you and again, make
sure you have several photocopies of
each which you should keep separate
from the originals.
Step #4 On arrival in Spain
- N.I.E. No
a foreigner living and/or working in
Spain, the first thing you MUST do
on arrival is obtain an NIE number.
This is a simple process providing
you follow the guidelines. You can
get a Gestor to apply for you but it
will cost you about 100€. To do
it your self, go to the National Police
station and collect an application
form, or you can
the form here. You can complete
the form in English and it is FREE.
HOW TO FILL IN THE N.I.E. APPLICATION
DATOS PERSONALES means PERSONAL DETAILS
1er Apellido: Surname
2º Apellido : (Second Surname) Write three chiffons instead (---)
Nombre : Christian Name (make sure to use same as in passport)
Fecha de Nacimiento: Date of birth (use two digits for day and month)
Lugar de nacimiento: Place of birth
Sexo : Gender "H" for Male (Hombre) and "M" Female (Mujer) . X cross
the one applicable
Estado Civil: Status. S for single C for married. V for widow and D for
País de nacimiento: Country of Birth
País de nacionalidad: Current Nationality
Domicilio en España: Address in Spain (if you have one, otherwise
Reasons for application:
Economic, Professional or Social (Tick professional for work reasons
or social for house purchase)
DOMICILIO A EFECTOS DE NOTIFICACIONES
Sign the form at the bottom, under
'firma de solicitante'.
Complete the form and take it back
to the National Police station, along
with a photocopy. You also need to
provide your original passport and
a photocopy. That's it ! You will then
be told to return in approx. 4 weeks
time when your number will be ready
to collect. You need this number to
do anything fiscal in Spain such as
open a bank account [this can also
be done with your passport number].
Step #5 Looking for work
If you have not already found work
or intend to work for your self, you
will now need to start job hunting. See more about working
in Spain here
Step #6 Residencias
A residencia is a form of permit for those who intend to reside in Spain
on a permanent basis. It is NOT compulsory for EU citizens, however,
there are advantages. They are issued by the National Police dept.
You may wish to employ the services of a gestor for your application.
Failing this, visit your nearest police station and collect the application
application forms must be returned
to the Police along with several
important items, as a minimum these
will include; 3 photographs (passport
style - in colour) A full passport
(original and 2 photocopies) Title
deeds or a rental contract stating
where you live A work contract (min
6 months long - original and a photocopy)
The fee (aprox. £4.00)
is paid into the bank, as instructed
by the police. You then produce the
receipt as part of your application.
A certificate from a bank in Spain
may be required, proving that you have
sufficient money in the account, or
a regular income coming in to support
British Embassy's website -
For information on moving to and
living in Spain - medical cover,
employment, education, pets, cars,
benefits, getting married and so
A great site for anyone wanting a phone line installed, internet,
or information about tarriffs and products.
addresses in London:
Cultural Office, Tel 020 7201 5522 fax 020 7259 6487
Press Office, Tel 020 7235 7537 fax 020 7235 2263
Labour Office, 20 Peel Street, London W8 7PD Tel: 020 7221 0098 - email: email@example.com