If you want to move to Spain to study, here are the 2024 Spain Student Visa requirements and types. Read on to see who needs a visa to study in Spain, which courses qualify, and how to apply.

Spain Student Visa Requirements

The Spanish authorities have clear requirements for foreign students to study in Spain. If you want a student visa for Spain, these are the requirements.

  1. You must have an admission letter from a recognized course of study in Spain. It is not enough just to have applied to the course; you’ll need an official offer of a place to study.
  2. The educational institution is authorized by the Spanish government for a Spain student visa.
  3. Proof of financial means. You’ll need to show you have at least €600 per month of study (100% 2024 IPREM). See below for more details.
  4. A Spanish private health insurance policy. (Not all policies qualify – use the link to choose the best medical insurance for a visa application.)
  5. Police records and a medical clearance document.

Financial Requirements For Your Study Visa Application

You’ll need to show that:

1) You have paid for your studies.

  • A receipt from your university or institution or a letter showing that a scholarship or endowment will cover fees.

2) You can support yourself.

  • You’ll need at least €600 per month of study, but each Spanish consulate has different standards. The amount is lower if you can show proof of accommodation or support, like a bursary.
  • If someone else is covering your costs (like your parents), you’ll need a notarized letter assuming financial responsibilities.

Note: Our Spain Immigration Lawyer partner explains, “The student visa is always issued for 1 year (and it is necessary to show 100% IPREM). Every year the permit has to be renewed and, in all renewals, he will have to show 100% of the IPREM.”

Raquel Moreno (LLB)

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Which Courses Meet the Spanish Student Visa Requirements?

A wide range of areas meet the requirements to apply for a student visa in Spain. Here are some examples.

Important: The course must be full-time to qualify for student visas. The Spanish authority defines full-time as a course of study at least 20 hours per week.

  • Spanish Language Courses (The most common course type for a Spanish Student Visa). The Cervantes Institute must accredit all Spanish language courses.
  • Other language courses.
  • Professional Training Courses.
  • Industry Specific Training (Like sporting or artistic training).
  • Tertiary Education, including undergraduate, Masters, and Ph.D. level study.

Note: The course should lead to an official qualification, diploma, or certificate of study at the end of the course.

Which Institutions Meet the Spanish Student Visa Requirements?

You must be accepted into one of these education or training programs to apply for your student visa in Spain. You are not restricted to just universities; public and private educational institutions are accepted.

  • Study with an approved Spanish education facility. Eligible courses include Spanish language courses and undergraduate and postgraduate degree programs.
  • Research with an authorized institution. These include Spanish Universities, public and private research institutes, and the Spanish Council for Scientific Research centers.
  • Unpaid training offered by a company or professional training center.
  • Student mobility programs, including student exchange and the Erasmus program.
  • Unpaid and, in limited cases, paid internships.
  • Unpaid volunteer work.
  • Language and Culture Assistants program. This program offers paid work to citizens of selected countries. You’ll help teachers in the classroom with English language instruction.

What Health Insurance is Required for a Spanish Study Visa?

The Spanish government has strict requirements for your Spanish private health insurance. There are three main requirements.

  1. Comprehensive Coverage: The health insurance policy must offer comprehensive coverage. This means it should cover any medical services you might need while in Spain, including but not limited to general doctor visits, emergency services, hospitalization, and surgical procedures.
  2. Validity: The policy must be valid for the entire duration of your stay in Spain as defined by your visa. If you plan to extend your stay, you should ensure that your health insurance can be extended accordingly.
  3. No Deductibles or Co-Pays: Your health insurance should not have deductibles or co-pays. This means you should not have to pay anything out of pocket for receiving medical services covered by your policy.

Tip: click here for specialized excellent value Spanish Student Visa Private Healthcare quotes.

Types of Spanish Study Visas

Study of up to six months.

  • Short-term Student Visa (Type D) called the “Visado D Estudios hasta 180 días”.
  • With this visa, you don’t need a residence card (TIE) or an Identification Number for Foreigners (NIE).

Note: You cannot extend this visa, but there is less necessary information to provide

Study of more than six months.

  • Long-term Student Visa (Type D) called the “Visado D Estudios, Investigación”.
  • You have three months to register as a resident in Spain and obtain a residence card (TIE) and an Identification Number for Foreigners (NIE).

Spanish Job Seeker Visa (Post-Study Visa)

This isn’t an actual study visa; it is a student residence permit that lets you live in Spain for one year. Once you complete your studies, you can find a job, start a business, or find another legal way to immigrate to Spain. It is essential if you want to live in Spain after your studies.

However, only specific courses qualify. So, if your long-term goal is to move to Spain permanently, ensure your course allows for the Job Seeker Visa.

You can use the Registro de Universidades, Centros y Títulos (RUCT) to determine if your chosen course is on the list.

Need help with your Spain visa?

Our Immigration Partners, Raquel and her team, offer our clients a 30-minute consultation. They will recommend the best visa path for you, explain all the steps involved, and answer any questions that you have.

Spain Student Visa Application Process

You can apply for your Spanish Student Visa either in Spain or your home country. In 2018, the national visa law was amended to allow some flexibility. If you apply in your home country, you’ll use the nearest Spanish consulate or Spanish embassy.

You can arrive in Spain on a SCHENGEN tourist visa, then find a course of study and apply for your student visa.

Advice from our Spanish immigration lawyer partner: “If you apply in Spain on a tourist visa, there is a time restriction. You must apply within 60 days of entering the SCHENGEN region, so you’ll have at least 30 days left on your visa. You can stay in Spain until your application is completed, even if it extends past the 90-day limit.”

Raquel Moreno (LLB)

You can apply personally. However, we recommend using a Spanish immigration lawyer to apply on your behalf, as the application process is complex. There are specific requirements for translations, certifications of authenticity, and the wording of the police and medical certificates.

The immigration department will reject or delay incorrect applications. You will lose your application fee in this case.

The Spanish immigration department says (with bold and capitals as used).

We cannot overstate the importance of paying the utmost attention to filling out the application and the accompanying information.  INCOMPLETE OR INCORRECT APPLICATIONS WILL BE REJECTED

Documents required for the student visa application

The documents required will vary depending on your specific circumstances and course duration. The exact process can also vary depending on which Spanish embassy or consulate you use. Please speak to your Spanish Immigration Lawyer to ensure you have everything you need. Required documents you need for your application may include:

  • Completed visa application forms (you can download the online application form).
  • Your acceptance letter and a course fee receipt.
  • Proof of funds to support yourself. Your parents may assume financial responsibility or your own bank account statement.
  • Your Spanish Private Medical Insurance or Expat Health Insurance policy.
  • Police criminal record clearance certificate.
  • Medical certificate.
  • Passport with validity to the end of the visa.
  • Two recent passport photographs.
  • Another form of ID (driver’s license or national ID card).
  • A current student ID card.
  • Proof of payment of the visa fee.

Note: There will be translation and certification requirements for some documents. Most Spanish consulates now require your medical certificate and a background check with Spanish translations and Apostille authentication,

Find out how to open a Spanish bank account as an International student.

Who Needs a Student Visa to Study in Spain?

Spain Student Visa Required By

  • Non-EU/EEA/Swiss citizen.
  • Your course of study is more than 90 days in duration.

Note: EU /EEA citizens do not need a visa to study in Spain.

Study Visa Not Required By

Study Course less than 90 days

  • Citizens of 60 countries don’t need a visa for short study visits. Eligible nationalities include Argentina, Australia, Mexico, Singapore, the UK, and the USA.
  • You need a short-stay SCHENGEN visa if your nationality is not on the list. There is a specific category of SCHENGEN visa for study and training.

Note: if you need to extend your short study course, you can apply for another 90 days to complete the course.

Note: International students can travel to the 26  SCHENGEN nations in Europe while your student visa is valid.

Are you ready for your Spanish Study Visa?

International students love studying in Spain. We know people who have used a Spanish student visa to study everything from Starter Spanish to an MBA. Now you know the Spain Student Visa requirements and types, what will you study?

FAQ – Spanish Student Visa

Is it hard to get a Spanish student visa?

The answer is no, but… While the requirements for the student visa are easy to meet, it is not that simple. The application process is where things can get complicated. You must ensure everything is perfectly organized, as timings can be tight. An experienced Spanish immigration lawyer can assist.
Remember, you’ll need your course to accept you before submitting your application. After that, there is a 4-week processing period. This can mean that you can be pressed for time to get to Spain to begin your studies.

What are the basic requirements for obtaining a student visa for Spain?

To obtain a student visa for Spain, you typically need proof of acceptance into a Spanish academic institution, proof of financial means to cover your expenses, medical insurance, and a clean criminal record.

How long is my Student Visa in Spain valid?

For courses under a year, your visa will be valid for the duration of the course.
For courses one year and longer, a one-year visa is issued. You can renew the visa as long as you continue to meet the conditions.

How long does it take to get a student visa to Spain?

Most Spain Student Visa applications will be processed within four weeks from the date of submission. Any omissions or issues with any of your documentation will cause delays or rejection.

How much does a student visa cost in Spain?

The fee for a Student Visa in Spain is €60. There may also be a processing fee charged.
This fee is non-refundable, and you’ll lose it if there is an issue with your application.

Are Internships covered by my Study Visa in Spain?

There are two streams of internship in Spain.
1) An internship is included in your course of study.
These internships are authorized and signed off as a course requirement for your studies. Your student visa covers this type of training.
2) An internship that is supplemental to completed studies.
You can obtain an internship in Spain, even if you have completed your studies in a foreign country. These internships require a separate Spain residency permit and are not covered by a student visa.

Can you work on a student visa in Spain?

Yes, you can work while in Spain on a student visa, but you need a Spanish Student Work Permit. There are conditions for any work.
You can only work a maximum of 30 hours per week. The job can be either part-time or in casual positions. This restriction includes holidays or vacations.
The work must not interfere with your studies.
Your employment contract cannot be for longer than your student visa.
An exception is an internship that is a part of your studies. For these roles, you do not need a work permit.

Can I study in Spain in English (and other languages)?

Many universities in Spain offer programs entirely in English, particularly at the graduate level. However, having a basic understanding of Spanish is beneficial as it can enhance your overall experience and help with daily life in Spain.

Is IELTS/TOEFL required for English courses on a Spain student visa?

You only need these qualifications if you are looking to study an English language course at a Spanish institution. The English language requirement may be a part of the course admissions process. You should find out any language requirements from your chosen educational institution.
The visa requirement is for a successful application to your choice of course. You meet the visa requirements as long as you meet the course requirements.

Can international students stay in Spain after graduation?

Yes, you have two options.
1) Spain Post-Study Work visa or Job Seeker Visa
Spain allows international students to remain in Spain after their studies. The Spain Post-Study Work visa is called the Job Seeker Visa.
It allows you to live in Spain for two years while you attempt to find work.
Be aware this is not a work permit but a bridging residency permit. This distinction means you cannot work on a Job Seeker visa. Once you find a job, you’ll need to apply for a Spain Work permit.
2) Find a qualifying job or business
While studying in Spain, you can apply for a Spanish work visa (there are 10 options) to stay in Spain.

Can I transfer my tourist visa to a Student Visa?

Yes, you can apply for a student visa while in Spain on a SCHENGEN visa. The Spanish government changed the law in 2018 to allow this. You need to apply with enough time left on your tourist visa to allow processing. It is advised to apply as soon as possible to ensure timely processing. We recommend a minimum of 60 days left on your visa to be safe. Using a good Spanish immigration lawyer will increase your chances of success.

Can my family come with me if I have a study visa?

Yes, the Student Visa Spain allows direct family members to be included on a joint visa application. You can also add family members to your visa while it is still valid.
This provision only covers direct family members (see below). You must submit a marriage certificate, civil partnership record, or birth certificate as appropriate.
– Your spouse.
– Your registered civil partner.
– Dependent children under 18 years.
You’ll need to show that you can support the family members. Your dependents cannot legally work on this visa unless they have a separate Spanish Work Visa.

Is a student visa a pathway to Spain PR and citizenship?

Yes, but not directly. For more details, please see the Spain Work Permit section and the Spain Post-Study Visa sections.
In short, you’ll need to spend five years in Spain before applying for permanent residency and five more for citizenship. Your time in Spain on the student visa will count, but only 50% – so two years of study is one year of qualification. 

Are there any scholarships or financial aid options available for international students in Spain?

Yes, scholarships and financial aid programs are available for international students in Spain. Try the Spanish government, educational institutions, or external organizations – all offer some form of support. We advise doing your research as soon as possible to apply for scholarships well in advance as there is often high demand for these programs.

35 Comments

    1. Hi Erwin – no, your spouse cannot automatically work in Spain and would need a work permit to do so legally. Regards, Alastair

      1. So, the accompanying spouse is legally allowed to look for a job and a company can legally sponsor a work visa for him/her? I hope I understood you correctly.

  1. If I applied for a student visa during my 1st 30 days of being in Spain, and my visa has not been processed before the 90 days end, do I need to return home or can I stay in Spain while it is being processed?

    1. Hi Susan – you can generally remain in Spain while the Spanish Immigration Department assesses your application. However, I’d suggest speaking with an immigrant lawyer to ensure no lasting issues with your immigration record. All the best, Alastair

  2. If I apply as an auxiliares for a year, can I switch my visa to a working visa if I get hired by a company in Spain? Or should the company be under the “shortage occupation list”?

  3. Hi Alistair, Can my children (under 18) apply to come with me for a short term study visa? Thank you

    1. Hi Christine. If your study is for less than 90 days, you’ll be applying for a Schengen visa and can include your dependent children on the application. All the best, Alastair

  4. Hi Alistair, my parents are funding my studies. Do they need to transfer money into a bank account, or can they just prove funds in their account and proof of a standing order for my monthly allowance

    1. Hi Sam. The money can stay in their account, but you’ll need a notarized letter saying they’ll cover your expenses and proof of your relationship. Our immigration law partners will happily help you with the wording and requirements to ensure no issues with your application. All the best, Alastair

      1. Thank you so much for your reply. Could you please forward your law partners details? That would really appreciated. Kindest regards, `Sam

  5. Hi
    How many month bank statements do I need to present for Spanish student visa and can my spouse obtain the rights to work in spain?

    1. Hi – your application should show that you can support yourself and your dependents for the duration of your studies. The exact amount of bank statements required depends on your overall situation. Unfortunately, your spouse cannot work as a dependent on your student visa -they’ll need to apply separately for a different visa or work permit to work in Spain legally. All the best, Alastair

      1. HI Alastair,
        This is a follow up question with regards to your answer. Is the work permit can be obtained once you reached Spain or must be applied separately before arriving in Spain?

        Thank you in advance.

        1. Hi Michael – in most cases, you can apply for a work permit once in Spain with a valid student visa. All the best, Alastair

  6. If my uncle is my sponsor what do I need to present to the embassy for the student visa

    1. Hi – You need proof of their financial situation, a notarized letter confirming their willingness to cover your expenses and evidence of your family links. Some documents need official copies, and some must be translated and Apostilled. Our Spanish immigration law partner can assist you with understanding the exact requirements. Regards, Alastair

  7. Hi, If I take my spouse with me on my student Visa, can he apply for a work permit there and be eligible to work?

  8. My husband and I just arrived in spain. I am enrolling in a Spain language course. I hoping to apply for a short term student visa less than 180 days. (Visado D Estudios hasta 180 dias). Can my husband be included on a joint application and stay for the duration of my studies?

    1. Hi Claudia. Your husband cannot apply for family reunification from Spain. He needs to apply at the consulate of your home country. Our immigration law partner can assist with this process. All the best, Alastair

  9. How early can I apply for a study visa? If my exchange starts in February 2025, can I apply during the summer and have the visa ready to go? Thank you

  10. Hi Alastair,
    If there is any age restriction for the Student Visa? In other words, how old can the student be – from…, to…

    Thank you,
    Andrei

    1. Hi Andrei. There is no age restriciton for applciants for a Spain student visa. Regards, Alastair

  11. Hi.
    1. Can a brother be a financial sponsor for a student visa?
    2. If I study a dgree of 3 years, as in a PhD, would I have to prove I can support myself for 3 years when I first apply for my student visa? So an estimated €750 × 36 months = €27 000 in my bank account?
    Thanks

    1. Hi Theo. Any adult with sufficient financial means and security can be your sponsor. The Spain Student Residence Permit is always issued for one year and must be renewed yearly. So, you must show 100% x IPREM each year for the three years you plan to study. All the best, Alastair

  12. Good day! Would it be alright to have my older brother as the sponsor for my student visa application? However, I am a middle-aged woman already. Would you advise my to just present my own bank statement (Though the money is totally less than 600 euros per month, probably just half), or it’s better to still ask my brother for sponsorship? Thanks!

    1. Hi Belle. In most cases, the sponsor for a Spanish student visa is a parent or guardian of a dependent child. If you don’t meet the financial requirements but your brother is willing to support you financially, I suggest speaking with our immigration lawyer partner. They’ll be able to help you decide if your situation is possible to apply successfully. All the best, Alastair

  13. Hola,
    We’re currently in Spain where my 2 kids (12&13) are studying abroad at King’s College, Alicante. We all currently have student visas expiring in July. We plan to return for another year of study, but only my kids will study this time. So my kids will apply for renewal student visas, however I won’t have time for a student visa this next school year. As the father of these two kids who will have student visa’s, do I still need a visa or do I qualify for something else as their father and obvious guardia?.

    1. Hola John. Unfortunately, you’ll need your own immigration permission to stay in Spain. You can check out the Spain long-stay visa types to find the best fit or chat with our Spain immigration lawyer partner for help choosing the easiest option. All the best, Alastair

  14. Hi Alastair,

    Do I understand correctly that the €1050 financial requirement for a couple for the Long-Term Student Visa is that much lower than the requirements for a Non-Lucrative Visa that start at 400% of IPREM for the visa holder and then an additional requirement for the spouse? I see that the health insurance requirement is the same.

    1. Hi Drexel. Yes, the student visa financial requirements are lower than those for the NLV. While the health insurance requirement is the same, there are specialist student visa offers – we’re about to launch a visa and healthcare student package in the next week or so, so look out for that. All the best, Alastair

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