Explore Spain's Visa Photo Requirements [With Examples & Online Photo Tool]

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Explore Spain's Visa Photo Requirements [With Examples & Online Photo Tool]
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Body-camera distance

The distance between the face and the camera should be about 40 cm. Ideally the photo should be taken by the other person.


Posture: Straight ahead

Place your face in front of the lens. Hold the camera at eye level and keep neutral face expression.



Stand facing the light source, for example an exposed window. The background will be cut out, don't worry about it.

Spanish Visa Photo - Size and Requirements

Spain Visa Photo Requirements [Examples & Online Tool]
Width: 35 mm
Height: 45 mm
600 dpi
Is it suitable for online submission?
Image definition parameters
Head height: 34 mm
Top of the Photo to Top of the Hair: 3 mm
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Spain Visa Photo - All You Need to Know

Visa to Spain - photo requirements

Spain is one of the most popular destinations for tourists from all over the world. If you are not a citizen of one of the European Union, US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, Argentina, or Japan -  you need a Spanish visa to visit this country of amazing architecture, beautiful coast, and delicious food.

Visa to Spain is at the same time a Schengen Visa and allows its holder to stay for up to 90 days for tourism and business purposes in one or more Schengen Area countries. To get this document, you have to submit an application form together with 2 color passport-style pictures of yourself taken within the last 6 months.

Spanish visa photo Guide

If you want to enter the Schengen Area for any reason and at the same time you are not from one of the visa-exempt countries, you will be subject to the visa regime. Every country in the Schengen Area can grant you a visa which is the Schengen visa -  a document with a photo pasted to your passport. The important thing is that the photo must satisfy Schengen visa photo standards.

Read our guidelines to know all about them. In this way, you will be able to create a photo meeting all Spanish (Schengen) visa requirements. We gathered every necessary information about:

  • size
  • composition and crop
  • correct pose
  • background
  • colors and lights
  • allowed and forbidden items

Spain visa photo at home

The good news is that there is no requirement to take a Spanish visa photo professionally. It means that you do not have to pay for the photo session and go to a photography studio. It is absolutely ok if you take and adjust your visa photo by yourself. You do not need a studio or expensive equipment. You can use your smartphone to capture a photo and the smart visa photo generator to adjust the picture when it comes to the proper size, crop, and background. Just prepare:

  • smartphone, digital camera, or tablet (webcam are excluded)
  • tripod or ask somebody for help
  • list of the requirements for a Spain visa photo
  • Spanish Visa Photo App ready to download from the AppStore or the Google Play Store

While capturing the photo, remember that your photo must be sharp, focused, and properly exposed - otherwise it will be rejected.

Spain - visa photo dimensions (size)

If you're applying for a Spanish visa from the US, make sure to get your photo taken according to the required dimensions. The Spanish visa photo size is 35 mm x 45 mm, which is different from the standard US visa and passport photo size of 2 x 2 inches. You can save time and money by getting your US visa photo online, but make sure to use a reputable service to ensure your photo meets the necessary requirements.

If you want to be 100% sure that you attach to your application form a photo in the correct size, use the Spain visa resizing App which automatically resizes uploaded photos to the right dimensions. And you don’t even need to know them in mm or inches! Just let this App do it for you!

Spanish visa photograph right crop

The head of the candidate must fill in  70 - 80% of the image. The head image cannot measure less than 32 mm and more than 36 mm. 

The visa photo crop must show the candidate’s all face with hair from the tip of the chin to the top of the head, neck, and upper part of the shoulders. The face should be clearly visible and there must be a space left between your head and the photo’s edges. If you have voluminous hair, consider wearing it up as it cannot “touch” the upper edge of the picture.

To obtain this effect, do not use zoom in your camera and don’t cut out the head’s image from a larger picture. We advise you to keep a distance of 1,20 - 2 metres between you and a photographer or tripod. Or you can 

Background and colors in a Spain visa photo

You must provide 2 biometric, color photos taken on a light background. The biometric photo which the Spanish visa photo is - must show your natural skin tones and the real color of your eyes.  

The background should be grey. You may choose a shade of this color - if you have a dark complexion and/or hair, pick up the light grey and the other way around. In this way, you will obtain a satisfying contrast and you will not blend into the background.

It is obvious but we would like to remind you that no objects or people can be visible behind you. It applies to the doors, home decorations, landscapes, etc. The background must remain absolutely clear and plain, with no patterns or spots.

How to do it? The good news is that you don’t have to even think about the background in your Spanish visa photo! All you have to do is to upload your picture to the background remover photo app and this tool changes the wrong background into the required one in one second! 

Lightning in a Spanish visa photo

The first rule about light in a Spanish visa photo is not to use a flash lamp. It may cause glares and a “red eyes” effect which disqualifies the picture. The best idea is to use daylight and to pose facing the window. If you use lamps, make sure that they illuminate your face symmetrically because both sides of your face must be evenly visible.

Be also aware that the picture must be properly exposed. In order to make it not overexposed or underexposed adjust the brightness in your camera options. Adjust the contrast and focus functions too if they are not adjusted automatically. However, if you take a picture with a smartphone, your device will regulate all the parameters automatically.

Head covering in the Spain visa photos

There are different types of head coverings and some of them are allowed and some - not.

Hair and head covering used as a part of a religious attire (like hijab, turban or yarmulke, etc.) may be worn in the visa picture. So, you can cover your head for religious reasons but make sure that this item does not obscure your face. Your facial features including front and chin must be clearly visible in the photo. For a proper contrast, wear headgear in color contrasting to the background. Use a headscarf in a unique color. You may keep your head covered also for medical reasons such as a loss of hair or recent head surgery.

Glasses and accessories in the Spain visa photo

If you wear eyeglasses, make sure that light does not give a glare on them. It happens often when the photo is taken with a flash lamp, that is another reason not to use it.

If you do not take off your eyeglasses for the picture, remember that their frames must not cover your eyes and that their glasses must be transparent.

When it comes to accessories such as jewellery or hair decorations - massive earrings might obscure your face oval and in such a case your picture will be not accepted. Huge hair decorations and scarves are also “risky”. If you have facial piercing, you do not need to remove them for a photo, but these items must not give a shadow or glare on your skin.

Spain tourist visa photo quality requirements

As you know, you are obliged to submit 2 identical photos printed on high-quality paper together with your Spain visa application form. Applying for a Schengen (and any Schengen Area country including Spain) visa online is not possible at the moment so need to print your digital photo once you receive it at your email address.

You can do it in for example one-hour photo store or self-service photo point. Do not use your home inkjet printer as the print must be produced using dye sublimation and on he photo-quality paper.

More about technical requirements for the Spanish visa photo. The photograph must be:

  • ff resolution of a digital image ready to print must be at least 600 dpi
  • sharply focused in all areas, rich in contrast and clear
  • in natural colors (not black and white or with color filters)
  • printed on photo-quality paper in color
  • clear and in focus
  • unaltered by computer software
  • well exposed (not underlit or overlit)

Spanish visa - posing in the photo, facial expression, composition

In the picture you must:

  • be facing forwards 
  • be looking straight at the camera
  • not tilt your head
  • not smile or show teeth
  • keep your eyes open and mouths closed

A natural, relaxed facial expression is required. The photo must be a close-up, but not a selfie.

The head must be positioned centrally in the image, the camera lens must be situated on the eyes line.

If you are not sure if your photo is correct, use a Spanish Visa verifying photo app. This app instantly informs the user if their photo meets all the requirements set for a Spanish visa.  

7  candidates’ most commonly made mistakes while taking a Spanish visa photo

If you want your photo to be accepted and avoid the delay in processing your visa application, strive towards creating a perfect photo. Below we present the mistakes made by some candidates. Maybe it will be helpful for you to know them.

  1. Wrong size (especially candidates from the US attach photos 2 x2 inches)
  2. Smile, frowning or making grimaces
  3. Open mouths
  4. Tilted head or not an en-face view
  5. Quality problems (photos not focused, blurred, not properly exposed)
  6. Face not entirely visible because of head coverings or voluminous hair
  7. Computer software alterations (most commonly by Photoshop)

Spain visa photo near me

Did the question “where can I take a Spain visa photo near me?” crossed your mind? If so, the answer is very easy: 

You can take the Spanish visa photo there where you want! 

With our smart visa photo app, you are able to produce an absolutely correct visa photo in 5 seconds. Your photo will be resized, cropped, and adjusted to all demanding. 

Spanish Visa Photo Maker

Do you want to have a tool that adjusts the size, crop and, background of your photo in one second?

If yes, we would like to invite you to download our intelligent Spanish visa photo app. You can download it from the AppStore for iOS operating devices or from the Google Play Store for Samsung, Nokia, and many other smartphones. This App verifies every uploaded photo, so you will get feedback about your visa picture. And if the App marks it as a correct one, we guarantee you the acceptance of the Spanish embassy or consulate!

Last update: 10/2/23

About the document

Spanish visa or a Schengen visa

The Kingdom of Spain is a member of the Schengen Area also called Schengen Zone. This Zone comprises 26 countries in Europe which governments signed the Schengen Agreement in 1985 in Luxembourg city of the same name. Now, this is the largest passport-free travel area where passports and all other types of border control at their mutual borders are abolished. 

It means that Spanish citizens and every person holding a Spanish visa can freely travel between the countries belonging to the Schengen Area. In practice, that means that if the Spanish visa holder enters Spain, they may travel and leave the Schengen zone from any of the Schengen member countries. Each country that is a member of the Schengen Area can issue a Schengen visa to a foreign applicant. But if you have a Spanish visa, you must enter the European Union external border only in Spain.

Countries-members of the Schengen Zone

Once you enter Spain, you may travel without national visas and passports controls to:

Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Germany, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.

Be aware that States in the Schengen Area have strengthened border controls with non-Schengen countries. Before planning your trip to Europe, check which countries are in the Schengen Zone. For example, the United Kingdom is not and it may surprise you.

Tourist Spanish Visa

A Spanish tourist visa is a short-stay visa that allows its holder to travel to any member country of the Schengen Area.

If you hold a visa issued by the Kingdom of Spain, keep in mind that you can stay inside this country or one or more Schengen Area countries up to 90 days for tourism or business purposes but this is NOT a student, work, or permanent residence visa.

With the Spanish visa you can come to Spain by air, land or sea, stay there and travel inside the European Union only for one of the following reasons:

  • tourism, sightseeing, holidays 
  • visiting family and friends
  • business meetings, negotiations, conferences, fairs, etc.
  • medical reasons
  • official visit
  • sport or cultural events
  • airport transit/seafarers transit
  • research or short-term study (not regular full-term studies)

If you intend to live, get a paid job or study in Spain, you must apply for another type of Spanish visa according to the purpose of your stay. With a tourist visa, you cannot take any paid job.

Who needs a visa to Spain?

There is a list of countries that have a visa-liberalization agreement with the Schengen member states and which citizens have privileged with entering the Schengen visa-free zone. Planning your trip to Spain, check the information about your country on official websites informing you about the Schengen visa regime.

If your country is not on this list, you must apply for a Spanish visa before the arrival in Europe.

For example holders of the passport issued by the United States of America can travel to 26 European countries in Europe without having to apply for any visa. They can enter the Spanish border or whichever Schengen Area’s member country and stay inside of the Schengen Area up to 90 days for tourism or business purposes.

Entrance to Spain by air or sea

Spain does not have an external border with any non-European country, so you can enter it from outside of the European Union with the Spanish visa only by air or by the sea.

Regardless if you are not a Schengen country national, it doesn't matter if you are from a visa-free regime country or not, and at the Schengen port-of-entry, you are obliged to carry your valid passport issued within the previous 10 years and valid for at least 3 months after the date you are planning to leave the EU and a Spanish/Schengen visa. You may be also asked by a border official about the information and documents such as the purpose of your entry, sufficient funds, and the planned period of staying in the EU. Prepare your back ticket, travel insurance proof, proof of accommodation, invitation letter, etc.

A border officer will give you an entry stamp in your passport when you enter the Schengen area. Please be informed that without this stamp, you could be fined or detained in the case of control.

Spain visa requirements and application

As mentioned below, the Spanish visa is at the same time a Schengen Zone visa, so first of all figure out if you need a visa to European Union or not. It depends on the purpose of your visit and your nationality.

If you need a Spanish visa, you need to go in person to the Spanish embassy or consulate. At the moment application online is not available. Make an appointment and prepare the following documents:

  • a passport valid for at least 3 months after the date you are planning to leave Spain or the Schengen Area and issued within the previous 10 years 
  • two printed color photos taken in the last 6 months
  • itinerary including dates and flight numbers specifying entry and exit from Spain or the other country of the Schengen area
  • travel insurance policy
  • a hotel booking/rental agreement/letter of invitation to prove your accommodation plans
  • a bank account statement that you have enough money to support yourself financially throughout your stay in the Kingdom of Spain
  • a sponsorship letter if it is the other person that confirms to be financially supporting your trip to Spain including their bank account statement
  • a visa fee payment confirmation

At the appointment the official may ask you if you want to travel to another European country and which countries you are going to visit and for what reasons.

Spanish visa’s costs are the same as any Schengen visa cost and are

  • €80 for adults and teenagers older than 12 years
  • €45 for children from 6 to 12 years old. 

Frequently Asked Questions FAQ

How to resize the Spain visa photo?

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It’s easy! Just use a Spanish resizing visa photo App, upload the photo and it will be resized automatically.

What is the required resolution for a digital Spanish visa photo?

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The minimal resolution of a digital Spanish visa photo must be 600 dpi.

What happens if my photo doesn’t meet all the requirements for a Spanish visa picture?

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If your photos do not satisfy all standards, you will be obliged to provide a new photograph and all the process of your application will be temporarily stopped.

Yes. Every country in the Schengen Area has the same requirements for visa photos.

No. You are not allowed to wear the uniform or clothes resembling the uniform in your Spain and any Schengen Area country visa photo.

There are some photo studios or photo booths where you can capture your picture, if you live far away from the city center or you just do not want to waste your money for traveling and searching such a place - prepare your visa photo wherever you want with your smartphone and online visa generator. Not only to a Spanish visa! It works for all passports, many visas, and other official documents photos!

Are you looking for an online photo maker that easily crops, resizes, and at the end verifies your photo dedicated to a visa? You can download the visa and passport photo app from the AppStore or Google Play Store and install it on your phone, tablet, or computer.

This is not forbidden to wear eyeglasses in the photo for the UK Spanish visa if the glasses are not colored or tinted. Just make sure that frames do not obscure your eyes and glasses do not give glare.

No, it is not recommended. The image must be a close-up but do not use a zoom function. Just take a picture with standard camera settings and then crop it properly. With our smart visa photo editor, you will be able to correctly resize and crop your image in one second.

This must be an en-face view of your face, neck, and the upper part of the shoulders. The head with hair should fill in 70 - 80% of the image. To simplify: dimensions of the head must not be less than 32 mm and more than 36 mm.

You have the possibility to edit the background with the smart Spanish visa photo App. Do not do it with Photoshop because you risk in this way a rejection of your picture.

The light-grey color of the background is a must. Moreover, the background must be unique in color, free of shadows, patterns, and spots.

No. 2 x 2 inches (51 mm x 51 mm) is a standard US passport-style photo and this is not suitable for a Spain/Schengen Area visa. You need to take a new picture to attach to your EU visa application. Keep in mind that most photo booths in the US offer this photo sizing, so consider taking the photo by yourself. With our resizing and cropping photo App you can prepare a picture which in 100% satisfies the Spanish visa photo requirements.

Yes, but only if you wear one as a part of your religious attire. Remember that your head covering must not cover your face or drop a shadow on it.

No, don’t smile. A natural, relaxed face expression is a must. Keep your facial muscles relaxed and don’t blink.

It must be an en-face view with the head centred. In your photo, you must be facing forwards and looking straight at the camera with your mouth closed and eyes open.

No. You are not allowed to print it with an inkjet printer, the visa photo must be produced using dye sublimation and on photo-quality paper.

At the moment online application for a visa issued by Spain is not possible. Your photo must be printed in two pieces.

35 mm x 45 mm is the only correct size for the visa photo in Spain.

No. Your photograph must not be cut out from another image. You can capture it with a smartphone and adjust to the requirements with the Spain visa photo online app.

No. Visa photos must be biometrical and only color photos meet this requirement. So do not use filters and remember that a Spanish visa picture must reflect the natural tones of your skin.

Two identical and color prints must be provided.

The Spain visa photo must be:

  1. in color
  2. sized 35 mm x 45 mm
  3. taken on light-grey background
  4. With the head centered and visible from the crown to the chin (the neck and the upper part of the shoulders must be visible in the crop too)
  5. printed on a good quality paper

Yes, every country in the Schengen Area can issue an entrance visa which is at the same time a Schengen Area visa permitting to stay in other European Union countries.