HEALTHPLAN MAGAZINE

How To Renew Your UK Passports When Living In Spain Expat Tips

If you are living in Spain and your British passport is due to expire, there's no need to worry, because it's now possible to have it renewed while living here in Spain; in fact this has been the case for several years now.

As of the 13th of May 2013 the digital passport application process has been changed. Previously, applications were sent to the passport processing centre in Madrid. This is no longer the case as you will need to apply directly to the Identity and Passport Service in the UK. No need to panic though, you don't actually have to go there, you can do it all online and via post.

How to Renew an Adult or Child's UK Passport

There are two ways in which you can apply to renew or get a new passport online when living overseas. These are:-

Applying Online

Applying online is very straightforward and is the quickest way in which to get your passport. You will need to

  • Get a digital photo - This can now be done using your smartphone, go to a photo shop or use a photo booth. More information on the criteria for the photos can be seen at https://www.passport.service.gov.uk/help/photo-rules
  • Complete the application form online
  • Make payment online
  • Send your old passport

See the following page to start your online application https://www.gov.uk/overseas-passports  

Applying Via Post

The application process to apply via post is relatively straightforward although it will take around 4 weeks from when the documents have been received. There are three simple steps which are:-

  • Complete the online application form
  • Print and Make Payment
  • Sign and send old passport and application

See the following page to complete the process https://passportapplication.service.gov.uk/ips-olc/

Note that you can save the application online and you will be given a username and password. You will also need to have a printer and debit/credit card to make payment and print the application.

Important: If you are applying for a first child or adult passport the process is fairly similar, although you may have to attend an interview in person and provide identification and other supporting documentation.

To apply online you will need to go to the following web address.

https://www.gov.uk/overseas-passports

Further information on UK passports including fees can be found at

https://www.gov.uk/browse/abroad/passports

The Digital/Biometric Passport Processing Fee

The current fees for applying for a UK passport from Spain are:

  • Adult passport (32 page) - £86.00 + £19.86 courier fee.
  • Adult passport (48 page) - £96.00 + £19.86 courier fee.
  • Child passport (32 page) - £56.00 + £19.86 courier fee.

The Courier fees shown above are to cover the cost of returning the passport to you via a secure courier.

*** Prices correct as of 2nd of July 2018.

Supporting Documentation

You will need to provide the following documentation to accompany your application:

  • Your existing, or expired ten-year adult, or five-year child passport if appropriate. Please note that this must be an original as copies are not accepted
  • You will also need two photographs of yourself cut to passport photograph size. To ensure that the photographs are acceptable, you should follow the IPS rules, a link to which you will find below. But essentially they must be in colour; must be of identical size (45mm x 35mm), and must be of your head only, without any headdress or hat, and your facial expression should be neutral (no smiling, grimacing, or otherwise pulling a face).

Note that if you are applying via the online process, you will not need to send any photos via post.

See the following page for a complete list

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/applying-for-a-passport

Certifying Your Photographs

Please note that if you are renewing a passport, (not applying for a new one), then you do not need to have your photographs certified, unless of course your visual appearance has changed markedly from the photographs in the old expiring passport.

If your appearance has changed substantially, then your photographs will need to be certified, and you can follow the requirements and instructions as given on the website.

Further information on passport photo requirements can be found here https://www.gov.uk/photos-for-passports

How Long To Get My New Digital Passport?

The length of time it would take to issue your new are passport will vary depending on the time of year and how busy passport office is, but as a rough guide you should expect to receive your new passport in around 4-6 weeks from receipt of your application. If you are applying for a first passport, it can take up to 8 weeks.

When you receive your new passport you should check it through carefully to ensure that all the details are correct, as after six months, any change required to the information recorded will be deemed as a renewed passport application and charged accordingly.

Contacting the Passport Advice Line

If you are unable to find answers to any of your questions online, you can contact the passport advice line using the details below.

Telephone: +44 (0) 300 222 0000

Monday to Friday, 8am to 8pm (UK time)

Saturday, Sunday and public holidays, 9am to 5:30pm (UK time)

Lost, Stolen or Expired Passports

If you have lost your passport or if it has been stolen and you do not have time to get a replacement, you can apply to your local British Consulate or Embassy and obtain an Emergency Travel Document or ETD.

This allows you to travel through up to five countries. In order to get an ETD, you will need to report the loss to your nearest Guardia Civil or National Police office. They will then issue you with a report that you will need to show when applying for the ETD.

Applying for an Emergency Travel Document

You can now apply for your ETD online at the following web address

https://www.gov.uk/emergency-travel-document

You may need to attend an appointment in person at your nearest British consulate, Embassy or High Commission, but will be notified during the online procedure.

You can find your nearest British Embassy, Consulate or High Commission at https://www.gov.uk/world/organisations/british-embassy-madrid

The following documentation will be required:-

You can make a provisional police report in English by calling 902 102 112, then go the nearest National Police station to collect the final report.

Expat Health Insurance in Spain

Thanks for reading. If you are an expat in Spain and are looking for private health insurance with policies in English, please check out our range of expatriate health insurance products

If you found this article of use, please share with your friends and family using the social media buttons on this page

Updated: 2/7/2018