Travel Visa Requirements & Safety

Spain is part of the European Union’s Schengen Area. The Schengen Area is comprised of 26 European countries which have abolished passport and any other type of border control at their common borders. Once a traveler has entered a country that is part of the Schengen Area, they are granted freedom of movement within the 26 member states of the area.

United States citizens do not require a visa to visit the European Union or Spain. This visa exception allows stays of up to a total of 90 days within a 180 day period. Stays of longer than 90 days will require a residence permit from Spain. Entry into Spain using the visa exception for United States citizens requires the following:

  • A valid passport with at least three months validity beyond the planned departure date from the Schengen area.
  • Two blank passport visa pages.
  • Documents showing a travel itinerary (i.e.: airfare receipt showing entry to/from the EU) and proof of a confirmed hotel reservation.

For more information, read the article on European Visa requirements and the Schengen Area.

Travel Safety & Advisories

For the most up to date and detailed information on the safety of travel to Spain, read the country report authored and released by the United States Department of State at

Resources in an Emergency

If you encounter a medical emergency or are a victim of a crime in Madrid, contact the local authorities immediately. Although 9-1-1 is the emergency number in the United States, that is not true in the majority of other countries. Read this FAQ article I wrote to locate the appropriate emergency contact numbers: What Number Do I Call To Reach Police, Fire or Ambulance Services In Other Countries?

The U.S. Embassy in Madrid can also be a resource to American Citizens. It is located at:

Calle Serrano, 75
28006 Madrid, Spain

Contact information is listed below:

Phone:  +34 91 587 2240
Phone (24-hours/Emergency):  +34 91 587 2200

The nearest wheelchair accessible Metro station is within 700 meters, about five blocks away from the Embassy. This Metro station, Gregorio Marañón, is served by lines 7 and 10. The station is barrier-free, and can be accessed from the street by elevator.