Customs regulations and required documents
Personal effects import regulations
Free import to passengers arriving in mainland Spain (incl. Balearic Islands) from non-EU Member States (incl. Canary Islands, Ceuta and Melilla, Channel Islands, Gibraltar and other similar territories) or to passengers arriving in the Canary Islands:
Tobacco products, for passengers aged 17 and older:
Alcoholic beverages, for passengers aged 17 years and older:
Medicines in proportion to the traveler’s needs;
Other goods (for air travellers), up to a total value of:
Free import to passengers arriving in mainland Spain (incl. Balearic Islands but excl. Canary Islands) with goods purchased within the EU which are for personal use only:
Products of animal origin, not originating from an EU Member State, Andorra, Liechtenstein, Norway, San Marino or Switzerland, are not permitted to be imported into an EU Member State, with the exception of limited amounts from Andorra, Faroe Isl., Greenland, Iceland and small amounts of specific products from other countries.
For full details, please see or refer to the website of the European Union, http://europa.eu/.
For full details please see Terms & Definitions, section 5. Customs, or refer to the website of the European Union, http://europa.eu/.
Certain plants and plant products entering the EU must have an original phytosanitary certificate (see www.ec.europa.eu/food/plant/plant_health_biosecurity). These items must be declared on arrival and are subject to phytosanitary checks.
No free import of technical drawings, plans etc.
free export of moderate quantities of tobacco products and alcoholic beverages. For the Canary Islands: no restrictions.
Crew members customs regulations:
same regulations as for passengers apply.
Cats and dogs are subject to Regulation (EC) No. 998/2003 and Regulation (EU) 576/2013 and birds are subject to Decision 25/2007/EC
Pets arriving from Gibraltar may comply with the same regulations as pets arriving from EU Member States .
Import measures apply if importing 5 or more pets. All animals are subject to examination by Customs Veterinarian. The airport of final destination has to be an authorized point of entry (otherwise the controls need to be done in an authorized airport of transit). Clearance of animals may be delayed after working hours and at weekends. For transportation of cats and dogs in passengers cabin, it is advisable that pets are carried inside a stiff carton box or similar.
For detailed information contact the Ministry of Agriculture (www.magrama.gob.es/es/ganaderia/temas).
Pets arriving from Turkey or any other third country outside the EU can only enter via the following airports: Alicante (ALC,) Almeria (LEI), Barcelona (BCN), Castellon de La Plana (CDT), La Coruna (LCG), Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (LPA), Madrid (MAD), Malaga (AGP), Palma de Mallorca (PMI), Santander (SDR), Santiago De Compostela (SCQ), Tenerife Norte Los Rodeos (TFN), Tenerife Sur Reina Sofia (TFS), Valencia (VLC) or Vigo (VGO).
Entry via other airports is not allowed. In addition, the airport of Bilbao (BIO) specifically does not allow the entry of service animals.
Currency Import regulations:
Same regulations as for Export apply.
Currency Export regulations:
Local currency (Euro – EUR) and foreign currencies: no restrictions if arriving from or traveling to another EU Member State .
If arriving directly from or traveling to a country outside the EU: amounts exceeding EUR 10,000.- or more or the equivalent in another currency (incl. banker’s draft and cheques of any kind) must be declared.
No airport tax is levied on passengers upon embarkation at the airport.
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U.S. citizens traveling to Spain are subject to COVID-19 entry restrictions. Please visit the Embassy’s COVID-19 page for more information on the specific entry/exit requirements.
Spain is a party to the Schengen Agreement. This means that U.S. citizens may enter Spain for up to 90 days for tourism or business without a visa. Your passport should be valid for at least three months beyond the period of stay. You must have sufficient funds and a return airline ticket. Visit the Embassy of Spain website for the most current visa information.
Traveling Through Europe: If you are planning to visit, transit and/or travel through European countries, you should be familiar with the requirements of the Schengen Agreement.
Students and athletes: Students, prospective students, and athletes should visit the Embassy of Spain website for additional information on entry requirements. You should not travel to Spain as a student or for an athletic/study program without the appropriate Spanish visa. U.S. citizen students and athletes have been denied entry and held in immigration detention at Spanish airports awaiting return flights to the United States because they lacked the appropriate visa. If your coach or sponsoring program says that you do not require a visa to study, play for a sports team, or participate in a sports training program in Spain, you should confirm this information with the nearest Spanish consulate in the United States before you travel.
U.S. citizen minors living in Spain: Spanish law mandates that all Spanish minors traveling internationally without their parents or legal guardians must have written notarized permission from a parent or guardian. The law also applies to foreign, minor residents if their country of nationality also requires parental permission. While U.S. law does not require minors traveling without a parent/guardian to have the parents’/guardians’ written permission, Spanish authorities and airlines have occasionally misinterpreted the law and stopped U.S. citizens minors from departing the country. Therefore, parents/legal guardians should consider preparing a notarized, written permission for their U.S. citizen minor children to travel abroad unaccompanied or with a third party.
HIV/AIDS restrictions: The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of Spain.
Terrorism: Terrorist groups and those inspired by such organizations are intent on encouraging or conducting attacks worldwide, including within Europe. Terrorists are increasingly using less sophisticated methods of attack – including knives, firearms, and vehicles – to more effectively target crowds. Frequently, their aim is unprotected or vulnerable targets, such as:
Spain’s open borders with its Western European neighbors allow the possibility for terrorists to enter and exit the country anonymously. Additionally, Spain’s enclaves in Melilla and Ceuta on the North African coast allow for entry into Spain from the African continent. Spain has taken robust actions to guard against terrorist attacks, including arrests of suspected extremists allegedly involved in terrorist plots. Credible information indicates terrorist groups continue to plot potential attacks in Europe, including Spain.
For more information, see our Terrorism page.
Crime: Street crimes against U.S. citizens usually occur in the principal tourist areas across Spain. U.S. citizens have reported pickpocketing, theft, and sexual assault, and occasionally other violent attacks. Some attacks have required the victim to seek medical attention.
Demonstrations occur frequently. They may take place in response to political or economic issues, on politically significant holidays, and during international events.
Tourism: The tourism industry is generally regulated, and rules [with regards to best practices and safety inspections] are regularly enforced. Hazardous areas/activities are identified with appropriate signage, and professional staff is typically on hand in support of organized activities. In the event of an injury, appropriate medical treatment is widely available throughout the country. Outside of a major metropolitan center, it may take more time for first responders and medical professionals to stabilize a patient and provide life-saving assistance. U.S. citizens are encouraged to purchase medical evacuation insurance. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.
Internet romance and financial scams are prevalent in Spain. Scams are often initiated through Internet postings/profiles or by unsolicited emails and letters. Scammers almost always pose as U.S. citizens who have no one else to turn to for help. Common scams include:
Victims of Crime: U.S. citizen victims of sexual assault are encouraged to contact the U.S. Embassy or the nearest consular office for assistance. Report crimes to the local police at 112 and contact the U.S. Embassy at (34) 91-587-2200. Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting crime.
See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.
Domestic Violence: U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence should call the toll-free emergency number in Spain, 016, for assistance, and the U.S. Embassy in Madrid at (34) 91-587-2200 or U.S. Consulate General Barcelona at (+34) 93-280-2227. Remember that the local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting crimes. For more information, see https://violenciagenero.igualdad.gob.es/.
Criminal Penalties: You are subject to local laws. If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned. Individuals establishing a business or practicing a profession that requires additional permits or licensing should seek information from the competent local authorities, prior to practicing or operating a business.
Arrest Notification: If you are arrested or detained, ask police to notify the U.S. Embassy Madrid or U.S. Consulate General Barcelona immediately. See our webpage for further information.
Counterfeit and Pirated Goods: Although counterfeit and pirated goods are prevalent in many countries, they may still be illegal according to local laws. You may also have to pay fines or have to give them up if you bring them back to the United States. See the U.S. Department of Justice website for more information.
Faith-Based Travelers: See the following webpages for details:
LGBTI Travelers: There are no legal restrictions on same-sex sexual relations or the organization of LGBTI events in Spain.
Travelers Who Require Accessibility Assistance. Spanish law mandates access to buildings for persons with disabilities. The Spanish government generally enforces these provisions; levels of assistance and accessibility vary across Spain.
Students and Athletes: Follow the tips below and exercise caution and good judgment to make your study-abroad experience a positive and safe one. If you are coming to Spain to participate in a sports program, please check with the Embassy of Spain that you have the correct visa.
Women Travelers: See our travel tips for Women Travelers
Sexual Assault: The U.S. Mission in Spain has received numerous reports of sexual assaults affecting U.S. citizens, especially younger travelers, students, and exchange teachers. Please see more information under Safety and Security.