Auxiliares • How To Apply for Your Spanish “Student” Visa

Spanish (Student) Visa - What You Need & How to Apply | HOLE STORIESAuxiliares de Conversación Extranjeros en España  How to Apply for Your Spanish “Student” Visa

What you’ll most likely need differs slightly from state to state, so be sure to check with your region consulate to make sure you’re doing everything perfectly.  But to help you get started, here is a list of what you’ll need, as most accurately as I can tell you – and I ordered them in terms of priority (basically, do them in order… the ones that take the longest I have listed first so that while you’re waiting, you can do others on the list).  Start this process as soon as you can!

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Needed for Your Visa Application


1. An appointment at your embassy/consulate

OK this differs a lot from state to state.  I know that the WA, OR, and Northern CA area is SUPER easy – all you have to do is mail it in (no appointment necessary)!

UPDATE: NY is now like this as well! Probably the same for NJ, CT, PA, and DE as well, but I would call and double check.

Here’s, what used to be, the appointment page for NY, NJ, CT, PA, DE 

However, if you live the other 95% of America, you will most likely need to make an appointment… DEFINITELY CHECK THIS INFORMATION ASAP!!

If you DO need to make an appointment, DO THIS FIRST. Ignore all the emails the program sends you saying “you must wait to make an appointment AFTER you receive your offer letter.”  WRONG! I waited, and waited, and waited, and emailed requesting they resend it, and waited, and when I FINALLY got my offer letter, the first available appointment was for 4 months later!!!

My recommendation is to make an appointment as soon as you know you’re accepted (because, most likely, the earliest appointment you’ll find is a few months later).  This will buy you enough time to round up the other documents (below), and it’ll be perfect timing!

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2.  Background Check (and “Apostille of the Hague” approved)

First of all, get the background check in whatever way you can for your state…  I put this as the #2 thing you should do because the verdict of your background check could take awhile (any where from 2 weeks to 3 months).

Second of all, what the hell is “Apostille”?!!  I had to research this because I had never heard of this before (I think only people in this program have).  Basically, it’s just a fancier way to notarize something for use of the document in a foreign country… It’s just instead of an ink stamp (like a regular notary), mine was a pretty gold seal <<gasp>> … other people’s was a triangle in the corner of the paper with an official staple (and don’t friggin’ mess with that staple, dude, it’s official!).

Find out where you can get an Apostille stamp… I was in PA at the time, and there’s only one building in the entire state of Pennsylvania (no joke) – in the capital.  It wasn’t difficult though (no appointment necessary) – just walk in, hand them your papers and ID, wait 10 minutes for them to read it, they slap on a fancy stamp, and BAM, you’re done!

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3.  Doctor’s note stating you’re in “good health”

Either in English OR in Spanish (Not both.  I got both only because the emails said I needed both… Making things more difficult is just a fun little game this program likes to play with you).

The letter needs to be (1) on your doctor’s letter head, and (2) signed and dated by your doctor.

My doctor’s note said exactly this:

“This medical certificate attests that Ms. Lindsay Summers does not suffer from any illness that would pose a threat to public heath according to the International Health Regulations of 2005.”

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4.  Two Application Forms (& Passport Pictures)

The application forms each need a passport picture attached.  When you go to get these, get a few (more than 2), because you’ll need more pictures later when you’re in Spain (more on that later)…

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5.  Offer Letter from your school in Spain

Sometimes referred to as “Carta de nombramiento”

Also, print a few of these (4 is plenty) because you’ll need more copies when you get to Spain…

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6.  Copy of ID page in Passport

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7.  $160 Money Order made out to “Spanish Consulate of (your state)”

Double check who to make the money order out to and how much it should be… each state is probably different…

Also, I totally forgot about the money order when I went to the consulate and they were completely fine with me paying in cash (so I ran down to the ATM)…

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8.  Passport & State ID card

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9.  A self-addressed, prepaid UPS label

This is so your visa (in your passport) can be mailed home to you.

Or, you can go back to the consulate to pick it up in person (which is what I did)

Why did I not have it mailed?  Because I was traveling through South America over the summer, so I needed my passport with me (instead of leaving it at the consulate). My visa was still process just the same, but they just kept it on its own.  Within the hour of my flight landing (back home), I went back to the consulate with my passport in hand so that they could put the visa in it… it took no longer than 3 minutes.

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10.  1 extra copy of everything

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Important to Note


  • You’re applying for a STUDENT VISA (even though you’ll be teaching classes) – this is just how the program is designed.
  • Make sure that you get your ORIGINAL Apostille stamp back from the consulate. You need to show this again when you get to Spain and only the original will be accepted.

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Did this post help you with your paperwork? Do you have any suggestions that I might have left out (or have changed for this year)? Please comment below to spread the knowledge and to help fellow Auxiliares de Conversación :)

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4 comments

  • Lillian Krovoza

    Hey! At the very beginning you say for NorCal you don’t have to apply in person. This site is the first one I’ve seen that says this. Could you provide your sources? Or where it says that officially?

    Thanks in advance,
    Lillian

    • Lindsay | HOLE STORIES

      Hey Lillian! Sorry for the late reply! Did you find out if you could just mail in your application (that’s how it was when I was in the program)? Let me know so that I can keep this updated for others! Thanks a bunch and I hope all is going well with applying =)

  • Hey! Just a heads up that the Spanish consulate in NY doesn’t do appointments for student visas anymore. You can either mail all your docs in or drop it all in a box at the consulate. Hopefully this speeds up the processing time but I’ll kind of miss having an appointment this time around!

    • Lindsay | HOLE STORIES

      Whoa! Thanks for the info, Sam! I think this new change will really help the process to be less of a headache!

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