Spain passport requirements: how long do you need on passport to travel to Spain from UK - and how to renew it

The UK’s departure from the European Union means more countries now require UK passports to have months left on them to be allowed entry

UK holidaymakers heading to Spain this summer are being warned to check the validity of their passport before travelling to avoid being caught out by new rules.

Changes introduced following the UK’s departure from the European Union mean that your passport’s issue and expiry date will be checked at border control, and it must have months left on it to be allowed entry.

UK holidaymakers are being warned to check the validity of their passport before travelling to Spain (Photo: Getty Images)
UK holidaymakers are being warned to check the validity of their passport before travelling to Spain (Photo: Getty Images)
UK holidaymakers are being warned to check the validity of their passport before travelling to Spain (Photo: Getty Images)

How long do I need on my passport to enter Spain?

Under Schengen area rules, it is a requirement for UK passports to be no more than 10 years old from the point of issue when entering an EU country.

Passports must also be valid for at least three months after the day you are due to travel home.

The Foreign Office has now updated its travel advice for 33 countries to help clarify the changes, with destinations including Spain, Greece and Italy.

The updated advice now addresses the changes for Spain and explains: "If you are planning to travel to an EU country (except Ireland), or Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Andorra, Monaco, San Marino or Vatican City, you must follow the Schengen area passport requirements.

"Your passport must be:

  • issued less than 10 years before the date you enter the country (check the ‘date of issue’)
  • valid for at least 3 months after the day you plan to leave (check the ‘expiry date’)

"You must check your passport meets these requirements before you travel. If your passport was issued before 1 October 2018, extra months may have been added to its expiry date.

"Contact the embassy of the country you are visiting if you think that your passport does not meet both these requirements. Renew your passport if you need to."

Travellers also have Covid restrictions to abide by as well, as strict entry rules are still in place. Spanish authorities have announced that existing rules will remain in place until at least 15 June.

This includes the requirement for all travellers entering the country by plane to wear a face covering, despite the European Union Aviation Safety Agency and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control dropping the continent-wide mandate from mid-May.

Under the Spanish government’s current measures, you can only enter Spain from the UK for tourism purposes if you can show proof of meeting the vaccination requirements, or you have a medical certificate certifying that you have recovered from Covid in the last six months.

This means that those who are unvaccinated cannot enter the country for holidays unless they can show proof of recovery.

At least 14 days must have passed since being fully vaccinated before arrival in Spain and the final dose must have been administered within 270 days prior to travel.

If it has been more than 270 days since your final dose of the primary vaccination course you will need to have received a booster jab. There is no requirement for 14 days to have passed between receiving your booster jab and entering Spain, this can be administered at any time.

Spain will accept the UK’sNHS Covid Pass or a recovery certificate issued by a relevant health authority or medical service to certify your Covid status.

Children aged 12 to 17 inclusive travelling for tourism can enter Spain by showing proof of a negative PCR test or a Covid recovery certificate. Those under the age of 12 years old do not need to:

  • show proof of being fully vaccinated on entry to Spain
  • take diagnostic tests prior to arrival
  • show proof of recovery from Covid in the last six months

If you are travelling to the Canary or Balearic islands from mainland Spain, you may need to show a negative Covid test depending on the region you are travelling from.

How do I renew my passport?

If you need to get your passport renewed, you can apply online via the government website. You will need a digital photo, credit or debit card and your current passport, and will need to pay £75.50 for the renewal.

You can renew your passport via a paper application from your local Post Office, or by using the Post Office Check and Send service, although this process takes longer. It is also £9.50 cheaper to apply online than by post.

If you need a passport urgently, it is possible to fast track your passport application. You will need to book an appointment at the passport office appointment and pay online. Appointments can be made up to three weeks in advance.

If you use the Online Premium service, you will get your new passport at your appointment, which lasts up to 30 minutes. It costs £177 (or £187 for a 50 page frequent traveller passport) for this option, and it can only be used to renew an adult passport that was issued after 31 December 2001.

The 1 week Fast Track service will deliver your passport to your home within one week of our appointment.

This service can be used to renew an adult or child passport, change a name on a passport, make changes to personal details, replace a lost, stolen or damaged passport, or to apply for a first child passport.

This service costs £142 for an adult passport (or £152 for a 50 page frequent traveller passport), or £122 for a child passport (or £132 for a 50 page frequent traveller passport).

If you cannot use the online services you can book an appointment and pay over the phone by calling the Passport Adviceline on 0300 222 0000.