What travel insurance do I need when visiting Spain?
Spain travel insurance: make the most of your stay in one of Europe’s top travel destinations
Due to its stunning beaches, rich cultural history, and cities like Barcelona, Madrid, and Bilbao that are artistic centers as well as full of lively nightspots, Spain has been a favorite destination for visitors to Europe for almost as long as tourists have been able to easily travel the globe.
If you live in a country outside the Schengen Area, you will need a visa for your stay in Spain.
Discover Spain with your Schengen Visa
In order to obtain a Schengen Visa, which allows you to travel freely within Spain and in the whole Schengen Area, you must contact the first country you enter. You will find further useful information by clicking here : exteriores.gob.es/Portal/en/Paginas/inicio.aspx
A form must be completed and you will need to provide a valid passport as well as additional information proving the reason for your trip, itinerary and accommodation plans. You will also need a travel insurance policy covering you in Spain.
A travel insurance policy for Spain is a mandatory requirement for the issuing of your visa. It must cover both repatriation and emergency medical expenses for a minimum amount of €30,000. You can take out a basic insurance policy or add additional protection.
For instance, by choosing to add extra coverage, such as the repatriation of other insured individuals accompanying the policyholder or the urgent early return of an insured person, your travel insurance policy for Spain will protect you effectively and you will leave without worries.
How do I get to Spain?
By plane: There are excellent air connections between the major Spanish cities. All flights are shorter than two hours (except the ones to the Canary Islands). The main Spanish airports according to passenger traffic are Madrid, Barcelona, Palma de Mallorca, Málaga – Costa del Sol, Gran Canaria, Alicante/Elche, Tenerife Sur. You should, however, check where airports are situated in relation to the city center as some may require a transfer.
By bus: Buses are the most popular form of public transportation for traveling around Spain. They provide an affordable way to reach every major city and region, usually with journey times comparable to those of trains and flights.
By boat: With miles of coastline and several major ports, ferries or cruise ships are a great and cheap way to travel to Spain - with its northern coast accessible from the U.K., and cruise ships regular visitors to its Mediterranean coast.
By train: Trains in Spain give you the chance to explore one of the most vibrant and colorful destinations in Europe. Great weather and a stellar high-speed railway operated by national operator Renfe make train journeys an enjoyable way to get around Spain.
By car: Spain has more than 16,000 km of motorways, some with tolls. Like many countries in Europe, it has a good road network, but the roads may be worse in rural areas.
Advice on health and vaccinations
There are no compulsory vaccinations. The CDC and WHO recommend the following vaccinations for Spain: hepatitis A, hepatitis B, rabies, meningitis, polio, measles, mumps and rubella (MMR), Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis), chickenpox, shingles, pneumonia, and influenza. It’s classed as a moderate risk country.
Consult your doctor for advice. You may also consider getting vaccinated against rabies if you plan to travel to remote areas.
There are various climate zones in Spain, due to its large size. Visitors can generally expect a Mediterranean climate, which can get very hot in summer. The vast central plateau, or Meseta, has a continental influenced climate, with the mountains surrounding the plateau, including The Pyrenees, having a higher rainfall and often experiencing heavy snowfall in winter - perfect for skiing.
Madrid: Spain’s capital is a great destination for a city break, with art galleries holding some of Europe’s most famous works, from Picasso’s Guernica to Velázquez’s Las Meninas. The city is also home to the Royal Palace, Europe’s biggest palace in terms of area, and is full of churches, shops and, of course, tapas bars.
In Granada, you'll be visiting the Alhambra no matter what. This palace and fortress of the Moorish kings, with its stunning Islamic architecture, is not to be missed.
San Sebastian and Bilbao are jewels of the Basque Country, with the former a must for food lovers. The pintxo – a Basque version of tapas that usually includes delicious morsels balanced on crusty bread - is particularly worth seeking out.
Seville, the capital of Andalusia in southern Spain, is famous for its thriving flamenco culture and its intimate bars are the perfect place to spend an afternoon.
Spain’s second city Barcelona is an eternal favorite with visitors for its stunning Mediterranean location, iconic architecture and cosmopolitan atmosphere; it’s a sporting and cultural hotspot where you can take in works by Picasso, or the Camp Nou, the home of FC Barcelona and the site of the 1992 Olympic Games.
Although located off the coast of west Africa, the Canary Islands are one of Spain’s top tourist spots and all boast stunning volcanic landscapes. Tenerife is full of beautiful beaches popular with package holiday tourists, as well as breathtaking landscapes and volcanic peaks. Lanzarote, meanwhile, has its own more secluded spots like Papagayo Beach.
Spain is one of the safest European countries to visit and there is little serious crime - but be alert for pickpocket theft in the metros and in crowded places in big cities. At night, as with anywhere, you should take care and try and avoid being on your own in areas you do not know well.
The currency of Spain is the Euro. Exchange rates are often less attractive at the airport.
Although in many tourist areas the locals will likely speak English, if you are heading off the beaten track or to the Pyrenees mountains, it’s best to bring a phrasebook. Basque and Catalan are separate languages that are also spoken in those regions, while some other areas have strong dialects.
Someone who needs a visa to enter Spain needs to show they have around €70 per day of their trip to support themselves.
How can AXA help?
AXA can help by providing you with Low Cost Schengen Area travel insurance that meets your visa requirements when traveling to Spain from as little as €0.99 per day - a fee that will cover you for medical expenses up to €30,000 in all Schengen countries. A certificate proving you are insured will be available immediately, meaning you can get on with your application.
AXA is the number one brand and offers assistance 24/7, as well as other options and tailor-made products. Other coverage available includes our Europe Travel insurance, costing €1.50 per day, or Schengen Multi Trip insurance, which is perfect for regular travelers and available for €298 for a year’s coverage.
Frequently asked questions about travel insurance to Spain
Will my Schengen travel insurance cover me in Portugal or France as well as Spain?
Yes. It covers all countries in the Schengen Area.
Will my travel insurance fees be refunded if my visa is refused?
Yes. If your visa is refused, AXA will refund your insurance fees - but you will need to provide documentation specifying the reason for refusal.
Will my insurance cover me for multiple trips to Spain?
This will depend on the type of insurance you buy - our Low Cost or Europe Travel insurance will cover you for trips within the Schengen Area for up to 90 days. If you are planning multiple trips over the course of a year, you may, however, be better off with our annual Multi Trip policy.
Practical information on Spain
Spain travel insurance