Visas in Spain

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Spain's Visas and Residency for Retirees, Expats and Digital Nomads

Visas and Residency in Spain

Getting a visa for Spain depends on the purpose of your stay, as there are different types of visa. For those looking to move to Spain as a retiree, an EU/EEA citizen does not need a visa or residence permit. However, if you are not an EU/EEA citizen, you will need to apply for a non-lucrative visa, also known as a residence visa. This visa is valid for one year and can be renewed every two years.

Summer in Spain in Tenerife
Coastal road in Tenerife

If you are planning to invest in Spain and move there, the golden visa or investor visa is the way to go. To qualifiy for this visa, you must invest at least €500,000 in real estate or other assets such as investments in Spanish companies. When granted this visa, it entitles its holder to move freely within all other EU/EEA countries.

For those wishing to live and work in Spain on a more permanent basis, then there are several categories of visa that you could apply for. These include visas for self-employed persons (autónomos), employees (empleados) and business owners (empresarios). Each category of visa has different requirements that must be met in order to qualify; some require proof of income or sufficient funds in bank accounts while others may require you to take specific language tests or obtain certifications related to your profession or trade.

In addition to the abovementioned categories of visa, some people may qualify for special visas such as student visas which allow them to study in Spain, research visas which allows foreign researchers conducting scientific research projects at Spanish universities and religious worker visas granted by the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation which entitle holders to work with religious communities based in Spain but authorised by their country’s government or religious authority.

No matter what type of visa you wish to apply for – whether short-term or long-term – it is important that you familiarise yourself with the latest regulations listed on official websites such as the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Cooperation website where all relevant information regarding visa requirements and processes can be found. Additionally, there may be additional local requirements depending on what region of Spain you are planning on living so it is recommended that these be researched beforehand too.