Know that song “Weather with you”? Well, today we’re gonna change the lyrics a bit and sing: “everywhere you go, always take your NIE with you.” Yes, if you’ve decided to stay in Valencia for a while, getting your NIE number should be on top of your to-do list. Maybe you’re even thinking about buying property or starting a business – whatever the case may be, trying to get through the application process can seem like a really daunting task, but we’re here to help you with this step-by-step guide on how to get your NIE number in Spain.

efore you start reading this blog post, please note that Spanish bureaucracy can be a bit crazy. The application of the rules can vary from office to office and if the person in front of you is in a bad mood, you might not get through the process (yes, this happened to a bunch of people). That’s why we recommend talking to a consultant once you’ve read this guide.

What is an NIE number?
You might not know what an NIE number is, so let’s talk about that first.
NIE (Número de Identificación de Extranjero) is the foreigner’s identification number.
The immigration office or the Spanish consulate assigns NIE numbers to people who are living in Spain but don’t have Spanish citizenship.
You only have to go through this process once, the number doesn’t expire.

When do I need an NIE number?
If you’re an EU citizen and decide to stay for longer than 3 months, you need to apply for an NIE number. 
Are you a non-EU citizen? The NIE application process usually goes hand in hand with your citizenship application. 

We’ve all felt the frustration at some point, but luckily there are plenty of useful tips. Photo by Elisa Ventur on Unsplash.

Why do I need an NIE number?
Getting your NIE number will make your life in Valencia a lot easier because you’re gonna need it for everything that involves an official process. Think of opening a bank account, buying property, setting up utilities, starting a business, and paying your taxes. It keeps track of your financial and legal activities in Spain.

How do I get an NIE number?
Now, let’s get down to business. How do you get an NIE number in Valencia?
If you’re gonna work for a Spanish company, they sometimes offer help with the application process.
In any other case, you can either apply for an NIE number yourself or reach out to a consultant, which we would highly recommend.

When May had to sort out some documents, she contacted an agency called NIE services. This agency offers many relocation services in English, French, and Spanish.  You can contact them through Whatsapp, Telegram, e-mail, or phone. Just tell them what you need help with and they’ll explain exactly how it works, ask for the necessary documents, do a double-check and make an appointment for you. 
Another great bonus is that they accompany you everywhere, so the only thing you have to do is make sure you have all the right documents, show up to your appointment and pay.  It’ll save you a lot of stress and time – trying to schedule an appointment can take weeks or months if you do it yourself, but the people from NIE services usually get it done fast. Besides, they’re really friendly, which is important too!
Conclusion: we believe it’s absolutely worth the money. If you decide to contact NIE services, remember to tell them you've been sent by Friends of Valencia (no spon, yet).

Wanna do it yourself anyway? Then you should know there are two ways to apply for your NIE number:

Once you’ve made your decision, it’s time to take action. Keep in mind that you should be able to speak Spanish. However, if that's not the case, just ask a Spanish-speaking friend to accompany you.

If you wanna get your NIE in Valencia, you always have to make an appointment at the immigration office. This appointment is called cita previa and you can schedule it here.
This is what you have to fill in: 

1. Provincia seleccionada: Valencia.

2. Oficina: CNP comisaria de Bailen.

3. Trámites Cuerpo Nacional de Policía: Policia-certificados y asignacion NIE.

You'll then get an overview of all the documents you have to bring with you. If you don't speak or understand Spanish, just copy and paste it into a translator such as Spanishdict.

It can be difficult to get an appointment because there’s a limited amount of spots available every week. A good tip is to try and book your appointment on Friday mornings between 9:00 and 9:30, because that's apparently when they put new ones in their system.

Here are the general steps you’d have to take to meet the requirements (but again, keep in mind that this can always change, so make sure to check it beforehand):

  • Fill in the NIE application form (EX-15) and print it out. This should always be done in Spanish.
  • Fill in and sign form 790-012. With this form, you have to go to the bank and pay a fee (in cash). The fee is usually somewhere between €10,- and €15,- 

I also had to bring the following:

  1. Original passport and a photocopy.
  2. Proof of the reason for the request.
  3. Two small passport photos.
  4. Proof of income or employment contract.
  5. Proof of housing / rental contract.

We hope you'll get through the process with all this information. Once you've done it, you never have to do it again! Time to enjoy your new adventure in Valencia :-)  

Un abrazo,


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