Madrid Embassy Steps Up For UK Residents Travelling Into Spain

The British Embassy in Madrid has released updated travel information aimed at UK citizens who were officially legal residents in Spain before the end of the Brexit transition period on 1st January 2021 when the UK left the European Union.

The information comes in the wake of multiple situations of UK Spanish residents who were denied boarding by airlines at UK airports for apparently not having the correct residency documents.

There were also instances of British citizens resident in Spain who were allowed UK boarding but were turned away on arrival arrival at Spanish airports.

In December the Spanish government banned all incoming passengers from the UK following the discovery of the British mutant variant of the Covid-19 virus unless they were Spanish nationals or officially resident foreigners in Spain.

The measures were initially to last for 2 weeks and have been extended several times. The restrictions are currently in place until March 2nd.

The statement said,“We are aware that some of you who were legally living in Spain before January 1, 2021 have faced difficulty returning to Spain from the UK, as you don’t yet have a residence document (green certificate or Tarjeta de Identidad de Extranjero – TIE).”

“If you are resident in Spain, you should carry your residence document (the green paper EU residence certificate or the new TIE), as well as your valid passport when you travel,” notes the embassy. “If you are not in possession of a residence document, the Spanish government has formally confirmed to the UK government that UK nationals who were legally residing in Spain before January 1, 2021, and as such are beneficiaries of the Withdrawal Agreement, can present other documents to prove their residence status when entering Spain.”

The list which has been sent to all airlines operating from the UK to Spain is below:

  • Residence card issued under Article 18.4 of the Withdrawal Agreement (the TIE – Tarjeta de Identidad de Extranjero)
  • Temporary or permanent EU residence certificate (Certificado de Registro de Ciudadanos de la Unión)
  • Receipt of application for the TIE (Resguardo de presentación de la solicitud de la tarjeta de residencia)
  • Confirmation of the positive outcome of your residence application (Resolución favorable por la que se concede la tarjeta de residencia)
  • In the absence of any of the above documents, other documents that credibly evidence your legal residence in Spain before January 1, 2021, such as a padrón certificate (issued by your local town hall), a work contract, a rental contract, or proof of property purchase
  • In the case of students, documentation that demonstrates enrolment in an on-site or in-person course and proof of accommodation

The list is in addition to valid passport ( now with a minimum of 6 months before expiry) and any documentation requirements, such as a negative COVID test.

“Additionally, all passengers (excluding children under the age of 6 years old) travelling to Spanish airports from ”risk” countries, which inlcudes the UK and are required to present a negative PCR, TNA or LAMP test taken within 72 hours prior to arrival.




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