Coming to live in Barcelona. What paperwork do you need?

When you move to another city you have to carry out several administrative formalities and we know that can be a complex process. Here you will find clear and practical information so you can comply with all the necessary bureaucratic requirements.

We will address essential formalities for entering and living in Spain, and other formalities when you settle in Barcelona.

Immigration: procedures for entering and living in Spain


The first thing you must take into account when you move to Barcelona is your nationality, as paperwork and how complex it is will vary depending on it:

  • If you are a citizen of the European Union, the European Economic Area (Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) or Switzerland, the initial formalities are simple.
  • If not, you must follow immigration procedures. But the good news is that there is specific legislation to make the arrival of international talent easier.

Choose your case:

Other procedures for living in Barcelona

Below is a list of other necessary or interesting formalities if you want to live in the city of Barcelona. Some are compulsory, others are optional depending on your personal circumstances, preferences or objectives.

Also take into account that we are showing you how to complete some of the formalities specific to the city of Barcelona. Therefore, we recommend you validate the information if you are moving to another town or city in the Barcelona area. In other cases, the formalities listed are valid throughout Catalonia and Spain.


The procedures tend to change frequently. Therefore, only what is provided by the regulations in force at the time of carrying out the procedure in question is applicable.