What is NIE?

It is an identification number
for foreigners in Spain

NIE is the only residency requirement. When you move to Barcelona or any other Spanish city, getting a NIE should be one of your first steps

You need a NIE to:

  • Work
  • Be self employed
  • Open a bank account (with some exceptions)
  • Buy or sell property
  • Arrange a loan or mortgage
  • Start a business
  • Apply for a driver’s license
  • Registration in social services, receive benefits
  • Open utility accounts
  • Apply for Bicing

NIE Number vs NIE Card

For the EU passports holders there are two types of
NIE. You can get a NIE «number» or a NIE «card»:

A NIE number is just a number assigned for
administrative purposes: purchase property, investment,
tax payment

A NIE card is a little green card also referred to as a
residency certificate or residency card for life in Spain. This residency certificate is equivalent to a NIF — the ID card for Spanish citizens