Student life Barcelona

  • Home
  • Student life Barcelona


Here you will find some key information related to your study period in Spain. Please note: this information is just indicative and subject to changes at any moment. LIVE students are expected to arrive in Barcelona according to the calendars; an information meeting will be held with LIVE Local Academic Coordinators.

Citizens of the Schengen area

Students who are citizens of the Schengen area (Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Croatia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland) can study in Spain, Belgium and France without visa.

Non-European citizens

Non-EU citizens coming to study / work (for a work placement) are required to obtain a Spanish-Schengen long-term student visa. Note that this also includes non-EU spouses and dependents. Despite the enlargement of the EU, the Schengen zone and general harmonization of regulations regarding movement within the EU, it is important to understand that most visa issues are under competence of national states, and therefore there are no single regulations and requirements for all European countries. Visas are managed by the Spanish Ministerio de Asuntos Exteriores, Unión Europa y Cooperación (Ministry of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation) through its consulates and embassies around the world.

You must apply for and obtain your visa through the Spanish consulate nearest to your residence before you travel. You can find your Spanish Consulate here.

Personal appearance at the Spanish Consulate is required in order to submit the documentation. Since visas are never issued in Spain, you must apply for it before you leave your country of residency. Do not attempt to enter Spain without a visa if you need one. There is no emergency procedure, your embassy in Spain can’t help and you will probably be refused to entry.

Generally, you should apply for the visa at least two months before the expected date of departure. We advise you have a passport valid for the entire period of your training in order to apply for your visa with your admission letter, so be sure to allow adequate time to obtain or renew both the passport and get the visa application processed. Don’t leave this to the last minute or you put your travel plans at risk.

For the application, you must contact the nearest Spanish Consulate to your residence. They will provide you information about the requirements for the student visa; this may change/vary depending on the country. It is essential to have an admission letter from the LIVE program. The visa provided will usually be Type D Student visa valid for 180 days.

Documents usually required for the student visa are (this should be confirmed by the Consulate before your visa application):

  • Official Form

  • Photograph

  • Letter of Admission from the LIVE consortium;

  • Passport (validity covering at least your stay in Spain) = original and a photocopy

  • Proof of financial means: Original and a copy of the documents proving that the applicant (or their legal representative or the family member supporting them) has sufficient financial means to cover the expenses of the student’s stay and return. In 2023, the minimum required amount is 600 €/month available during your stay in Spain.

In case you are an EMJM scholarship holder, your admission letter/student agreement will help justify future source of income.

The law on foreigners is constantly amended, and it is therefore very important to contact the UAB International Support Service before your arrival to be informed of possible changes to the law. For any queries, feel free to email them:

  • Public or Private Health Insurance (the insurance company must be authorized to operate in Spain – this is covered by the university institutional costs)

  • Proof of residence in the consular district.The applicant must provide proof of their legal residence in the consular district or that they are attending classes, in person, in the consular district

– The best way to find information on where to live in Barcelona is the LIVE alumni network

– You are encouraged to check the UAB residence: Vila Universitària UAB. More information regarding this can be found here

– You can also find accommodation by yourself in some real state websites or even in social media groups where people usually share renting advertisements.

– Barcelona is full of apartments for students and sharing an apartment with others students (from LIVE or not) is the best way to get integrated in the great University life of the city. Usually one person rents the flat and searches for the flat-mates.

– It might not be a good idea to rent an apartment without seeing it in advance. It is better to at least see pictures of it, know what appliances it has, check if the area is the most convenient for you, how close it is from the LIVE class venues, from the down-town, know who the landlord is, which other room-mates are in the apartment, if there are constructions nearby, if it is an apartment with a lot of natural light or just the contrary, if they are old flats without central heating, if it has a nice balcony or a terrace, if it has wireless connection, etc.

All these aspects have to be checked by yourself before reaching an agreement.

Citizens of the Schengen area

Citizens of the Schengen area who are going to stay in Spain for more than 3 months must be registered in the EU Citizens Register (Registro Central de Extranjeros) of the province where they will be residing. This Office will issue a registration certificate giving you the right to live in Spain for the duration of your study period.

Necessary documents:

– European register form EX18 (2 copies)

– Valid passport or ID (original and copy)

– Original and copy of the enrolment

– European healthcare card or medical insurance

– Sworn statement of having economics means during your stay in Spain.

Non-EU students

The non-EU students, who have obtained Type D Student visa valid for 180 days don’t need to do any other procedure upon arrival. However, please ensure with the UAB International Support Service regarding any further processing for registration (Empadronamiento – NIE – TIE).

Important note: always carry a copy of your passport and visa in force when abroad in case of police control.

For the enrolment at the UAB or UB, consult the International Support Service along with your coordinators. Usually you need to provide the School for Postgraduate Studies with the following documentation:

1) Copy of your Identity Card or Passport for non-EU students (EU identity cards will be accepted as long as they provide the main information generally stated on the passport: date and place of birth, sex, place and date of issue, date of expiry, etc.)

2) Certified copy of your Bachelor’s degree and transcripts (or equivalent)

3) Photograph

Last updated : June 28, 2023