What is the difference between Spain visa and Schengen visa? Do they have the same value, and can travelers visit multiple countries in Europe with both? Visitors to Spain use different types of visas issued to them depending on the purpose of their visit, but not all visitors need visas; some who hold passports issued by visa-free countries don’t need visas to enter Spain.
This article explores the differences between a Spain visa and a Schengen visa.
What Is A Spain Visa?
A Spanish visa is a national visa issued by the government of Spain through its embassies to visitors coming from countries where it doesn’t have an active visa-friendly policy. This visa is only useful for trips to Spain alone and not any other country.
Different visas fall under this category, most of which are long-term visas. We have a Student Visa for international students schooling in Spain, a work visa for foreigners working in the country, and a residency visa for those who have temporary or permanent residency visas. Residency visa holders are eligible for a residency card to prove they qualify to stay in the country for an extended period.
The average validity of a national visa is 1 year, but they can extend for up to 4 years or more.
Those on a permanent residency visa do not have to renew theirs after the fourth year.
A Schengen visa is a common visa issued by all 27 Schengen countries in Europe to visitors from non-visa-exempt countries. This is a short-term visa for visits lasting no more than 90 days. Spain issues Schengen visas by virtue of its membership in the Schengen zone, and it is a multiple entry visa. Schengen visas are valid for 180 days and are mostly used for tourism, transit, family visits, and business engagements.
A Schengen visa holder can use it to visit not only Spain but the other 26 countries in the Schengen zone, including non Schengen countries like Bulgaria, Romania, and Cyprus. Visitors can also visit Microstates like Andorra, Monaco, and the Vatican in Europe.
Also, note that the visa is issued by the Embassy and must be used to visit the primary destination before traveling to any other country.
What Is The Difference Between Spain Visa And Schengen Visa?
So what, then, are the differences between both visas? Let’s have a look.
Recognizability: Schengen visas are recognized by almost all European countries, excluding The Republic of Ireland. The normal Spain visa, on the other hand, is only recognized by Spanish immigration. This means while holders can only visit Spain with a national visa, holders of Schengen visas can visit multiple European countries.
Validity: The validity period of both is different. Spain visas are mostly long-term visas, with the exception of tourist and transit visas. Holders can stay for over 90 days and are valid for one year and above, and Schengen visas are short-term visas valid for just 180 days.
How To Apply For A Spain Visa?
Those interested in visiting Spain must submit their visa applications to the Spanish Embassy in their home countries. The Embassy will fix a date for an interview after booking an appointment with them. During the interview, questions will be asked regarding their trip, and their travel documents will be collected for processing. The processing timeline depends on the volume of applications.
How To Apply For A Schengen Visa?
Schengen visa applications can be submitted at the Embassy or online, depending on your nationality.
Some nationals can apply online, so they don’t have to visit the Embassy. However, those who must visit the Embassy can follow the same process when applying for a Spanish national visa.
Those who qualify for online applications can visit VisaHQ to submit their application. Here are the required steps.
Log onto VisaHQ
Choose your destination
Choose your citizenship
Choose a Schengen visa as your option
Fill out the visa application form
Attach required documents
Pay the visa application fee
Submit for processing
The application fee for a Schengen visa must be paid using a credit or debit card. Fees vary depending on the applicant’s age, as those between 6-12 years pay €40, and those between 18-80 pay €80. This above 80 years of age and below 6 years do not pay this fee.
The documents for both visas are similar, but additional documents may be required depending on your unique circumstances.
Completed application form
Two recent photos
Proof of accommodation
Proof of funds
Travel medical insurance
Two-way flight ticket
Civil Status proof if a minor is involved.
In conclusion, what is the difference between Spain visa and Schengen visa? The former can only be used for trips to Spain, while the latter can be used to travel to any Schengen country.