Before leaving


An identity card or a valid passport is sufficient for travelling to Spain. If you have children, you might also consider taking your family record book (if you have one), showing your parentage. Your stay must not however exceed 90 days, otherwise you will need to obtain a visa.
For nationals of non-EU countries such as the United States, a passport or a visa will be required.


No vaccinations are required to enter the country.
However, you should still update your tetanus, diphtheria and polio vaccines.
In some cases, depending on your situation and advice from your doctor, hepatitis A and hepatitis B vaccines will be required.

Always make sure you have some cash as credit cards are not always accepted, especially in the south.
Take a hat for when the sun is very strong.
Make sure you have your European card for medical treatment.


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The currency used in Spain is the euro.
1 USD = 0.909277 EUR*
* Exchange rate provided as a guideline only

Where can you change your money?
You can change your money in banks and airports. The Bank of Spain is the only bank that offers currency exchange for residents outside the EU. However, many hotels and travel agencies also offer this service.

Service is included at all establishments in Spain; but it is customary to tip, with 5 to 10% left on the table.



Most trains are suburban and circulate around Spain's major cities. The Renfe Spain Pass allows non-residents to travel by train throughout the whole of Spain.
This covers all middle and long distance AVE trains. The pass can include between 4 and 12 trips. The underground railway is spacious and air conditioned. A 10 trip ticket will set you back just over €12 in Madrid, but less than €10 in Barcelona.
The bus is a convenient way to travel around the country from Madrid. Tourist buses are cheap and can be booked in advance.
Another option is a taxi. Easily identified by their white colour, they are plentiful and show their availability with a green light.
You can catch a boat if you want to go to the Canary or Balearic Islands, for example.

Key numbersKEY NUMBERS

In Europe, 112 is the number for emergencies of all types.
Police: 091
Ambulance: 061
Fire service: 080


The official language is Spanish, or more accurately Castilian.
The dialects are Catalan (Barcelona in particular), Galician, Basque.

A few phrases to remember :

Hello: Buenos días
Good evening: Buenas tardes
My name is: Me llamo
Goodbye: Adiós
Thank you: Gracias
Sorry: Perdón
Please: Por favor
What time is it?: ¿Qué hora es?
I don't understand: No entiendo
Station: Estación
The bill please: La cuenta, por favor
How much does it cost: ¿Cuánto cuesta?
Where are the toilets?: ¿Dónde está el baño?
Where is… ?/ How do I get to.. ?: ¿Dónde está...? ¿Cómo llegar a...? Left: izquierda
Right: derecha

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As of 12 November 2014, this visa facilitation covers the following countries

Afghanistan ; Albania ; Argentina ; Bahrain ; Bangladesh ; Benin ; Botswana ; Brazil ; Brunei ; Burkina Faso ; Burma (Myanmar) ; Chad ; Cambodia ; China ; Colombia ; Comoros ; Congo ; Cuba ; Djibouti ; Dominican Republic ; Ecuador ; Egypt ; Equatorial Guinea ; El Salvador ; Ethiopia ; Fiji ; Gabon ; Guinea ; Haiti ; Hong Kong ; Iran ; Iraq ; India ; Ivory Coast ; Jamaica ; Kuwait ; Laos ; Lebanon ; Libya ; Macedonia ; Madagascar ; Malaysia ; Mali ; Mauritania ; Mauritius ; Mexico ; Mongolia ; Morocco ; Nepal ; New Zealand ; Niger ; Oman ; Pakistan ; Panama ; Papua New Guinea ; Paraguay ; Peru ; Qatar ; Saint Lucia ; Salvador ; Senegal ; Serbia ; Seychelles ; Singapore ; South Africa ; South Korea ; Sudan ; Surinam ; Taiwan ; Tanzania ; Thailand ; Togo ; Tunisia ; Turkmenistan ; Uganda ; Uruguay ; Vanuatu ; Venezuela ; Yemen ; Zimbabwe