How to get your NIE and Why

This blog post details Marco’s journey to obtaining a PADI Open Water Diver certification at Octopus Dive School in Denia, highlighting the engaging practical sessions, expert guidance from instructor Patrick, and the overall enriching experience of learning to dive.

Index
What is a Spanish NIE Number?
What Do I Need the NIE Number For?
Where Can I Get the NIE Number?
How long is a NIE valid?
Personal Experience
Useful links

What is a Spanish NIE Number?

The “Número de Identificación de Extranjero” (NIE) is an identification number for foreigners in Spain. It serves to officially identify foreigners and facilitate their transactions with Spanish authorities. Essentially, it’s an essential document for foreigners living or doing business in Spain. You even need it to accept a package!

What Do I Need the NIE Number For?

The NIE number is required for various purposes, including:

  1. Buying or selling property: If you want to buy or sell property in Spain, the NIE number is required to complete the process.
  2. Opening a bank account: Most banks in Spain require an NIE number to open a bank account.
  3. Tax matters: If you work or do business in Spain, you’ll need the NIE number for tax matters, including applying for a Spanish tax number (NIF).
  4. Registering for utilities: To register for utilities such as electricity, water, and gas in Spain, the NIE number is often required.
  5. Even if you need to accept a package, they will ask for your NIE!

Where Can I Get the NIE Number?

The NIE number can be obtained from local foreigner’s offices (Oficina de Extranjería) or certain Spanish consulates abroad. Typically, you’ll need to fill out an application, pay a fee, and possibly provide certain documents such as your passport and proof of the reason for applying for the NIE number.

It’s important to note that the procedure for obtaining an NIE number may vary depending on the region in Spain, so it’s advisable to inquire in advance about the specific requirements.

How long is a NIE valid?

The Spanish NIE (Número de Identificación de Extranjero), or Foreigner Identification Number, is essentially valid indefinitely.

Although the NIE number itself remains valid indefinitely, certain documents or cards that carry this number and contain additional information, like the TIE (Tarjeta de Identidad de Extranjero) for long-term stays, may need to be renewed. The validity of such documents varies depending on the type and circumstances of the stay.

Personal Experience:

It’s allegedly not a good idea to try to obtain the NIE number in Spain during the summer as the offices also have holiday periods. We, the Founders of Co-Co, applied for our NIE numbers at the Spanish Consulate in Hamburg. It was actually quite uneventful. You just need to make sure you have all the required documents with you. So if a copy of your ID is expected, make sure to bring your ID and the copy with you, and don’t rely on them to copy it for you. We received our numbers six weeks after the appointment. At the consulate, you also have the advantage that the staff there naturally speak your Language.