3 easy steps for EU citizen to get the NIE number in Barcelona


One of the biggest challenges you will face when moving to Barcelona is without a doubt getting your NIE number. Here are 3 steps which can hopefully get you one step closer to your NIE number.


But first let’s answer a few doubts🤔

What does NIE stand for?

The NIE stands for Número de identidad de extranjero or Foreign Identity Number.

What is the NIE number?

The NIE is the unique identification number for foreigner in Spain. Basically your personal ID number in Spain.

Why do I have to get my NIE number?

All EU visitors who will spend three months or more in Barcelona (or Spain) are legally required to sign on to the Registro Central de Extranjeros or Central Registry for Foreigner.

What can I use the NIE number for?

Having the NIE number will without a doubt help you settle in Barcelona. You will need the number when you will sign contracts or other documentation. With the NIE you will be able to:

  • Open a bank account

  • Apply for Social Security Number (Seguridad Social).

  • Apply for health care card at Cat Salut

  • Go to the doctor for the first time

  • Go to Hacienda (Agencia Tributaria) to provide the right documents and become a fiscal resident

  • Get the Empadronamiento – register your residency in the Ayuntamiento (City Hall)

  • Sign a work contract – NIE is both your personal ID and Tax Fiscal number (also called NIF)

  • Sign an Internet or telecommunications services contract (including pre-paid sim cards).

  • Get a gym membership

  • Registering for the local Bike service provider - Bicing.  

Now let’s get that NIE number 💪🏽😝

1) Make an appointment online, cita previa

Here is the link to get the appointment and remember to print it out. NOTE - There are many people struggling with getting an appointment, we recommend you to apply Mondays between 8:00-8:05 am.

  • Select “Barcelona” and “Certificados UE”

  • On the next page, you will find a list of the documents needed and click “Entrar”

  • Fill in your data and click “Aceptar”

  • Then click “Solicitar cita” on the left to “Make an appointment”

  • Make sure to select the most convenient office and date.

Remember to be patient, it might take everything from 1 week - 3 months for an appointment. For shorter queues we would recommend you to select another town nearby Barcelona - Sant Cugat, Sant Adria de Besós or Badalona.

2) Make sure you have all the documents in place

  • You need to fill the NIE form, in this case, Modelo EX-15 in Spanish. Remember to bring 2 - 3 copies.

  • You will need to bring your valid Passport. Remember to have 2 -3 copies.

  • You will need to bring the original and a copy of the document which justifies why you need a NIE. The reasons may vary depending on your situation. Here are some examples: property purchase agreement, mortgage contract, employment contract, international studies or any other official document which certifies that you have a financial or a professional interests in Spain.

  • Remember that you will need to pay between 10 - 15 euro in taxes for you NIE number. You will therefore need to fill a second form online, Tasa Modelo 790. Make sure to print it, bring it to the bank (they will know what to do) and pay.

3) Showtime - Take all your documents to the appointment

Remember to bring all the documents mentioned above to the appointment and you are good to go. Your NIE number might be ready for you the same day or within a few days, just make sure not to lose it once you have it.

Good luck 🤞