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What is the £97 ‘daily rule’ in Spain and will British tourists have to pay it?

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UK tourists have hit out at Spain for introducing a new rule that could see travellers paying £97 per day to stay there.

The regulation could impact holidaymakers with less disposable income.

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British holidaymakers will need to have enough cash in their bank accounts to visit SpainCredit: Getty

What is Spain’s £97 ‘daily rule’?

Travellers have to have €113.40 (£97) on hand every day if they visit any area of Spain.

This is because Spanish authorities require UK visitors to show they can sustain themselves financially during their stay.

This applies to people travelling either to the mainland or the popular islands of the Canaries and Balearics.

However, Spain is far from the only country to enforce such rules – which are designed to ensure tourists have enough money for their trip and to return to their country of origin at the end of their stay.

The UK Foreign Office issued a warning to Britons heading to Majorca and other Spanish holiday destinations about the additional border checks.

The Foreign Office warning tells travellers: “If you enter the Schengen area as a tourist, you may need to provide additional documents at the border.

“As well as a valid return or onward ticket, when travelling to Spain you could be asked to show you have enough money for your stay.”

The rules have come into place since Britain left the EU and has begun to impact UK tourists travelling to countries in the European Schengen area.

These rules have been in effect since January 1, 2022, however when it was first introduced it was just £85 (€100) a day per person. 

What do I need to show upon my arrival to Spain?

Brits travelling to Spain for stays of up to 90 days must meet specific conditions of the Schengen Border Code.

Quaint Spanish seaside holiday town Calella with hidden coves seeing surge of interest from holidaymakers this summer

Holidaymakers would need to come through a valid checkpoint or border crossing with a proof of identity and a valid travel document.

The document must be valid for three months after leaving the country and must have been issued in the past ten years.

The Sun’s Travel Editor Lisa Minot previously warned Brits to check their passports now, as “Figures have shown up to 100,000 holidaymakers a year face being turned away at airports if their passport is more than 10 years old.”

New data suggests that the 32 million Brits who applied for a passport between March 2014 and September 2018 could be affected.

It’s also important to have a round-trip or return ticket in any case.

On top of this, they will need to provide evidence of possessing enough money for the duration of the stay.

Requirements from Spanish officials may include proof of accommodation for your stay such as a hotel booking confirmation.

If you’re staying at your own property, then you’ll need proof of address or an invitation or proof of address if you’re staying with a third party, friends or family.

According to Spain’s Exterior Ministry website: “Financial means may be accredited by presenting cash, traveller’s cheques, a credit card accompanied by a bank account statement, an up-to-date bank book, or any other resource that accredits the amount available, such as a credit statement regarding the card or bank account.”

They warned that bank letters or online bank statements would not be accepted.​

Have your purse or wallet to hand to show bank cards – it sounds like having a credit card could be a really quick way to show that you have access to money.

In 2023, Spain welcomed 17.3 million UK visitors while this figure is predicted to increase this year due to a significant rise in planned flights between the UK and Spain.

What would happen if I did not have £97 for each day of my stay? 

While it isn’t explicitly stated, Spanish authorities say that travellers who do not meet the requirements may be denied entry.

However, in 2022, the Ministry of the Interior told Which? Travel that this rule isn’t being applied to tourists and nobody has been refused entry for not having enough money.

Spain’s £97 ‘daily rule’ vs other EU countries

The rules are quite similar across the Schengen region, but the amounts vary.

If you want to visit a country in the Schengen Area you will need to prove you have means of subsistence.

This will prove you have the means to support yourself during your stay and are able to cope with any costs associated with your visit.

In France, you will need to show you have €120 (£102) to spend per day of your stay without pre-paid accommodation.

With pre-booked accommodation, this falls to €65 (£55), or €32.25 (£28) if you can show you have booked lower-cost accommodation.

For Belgium, you must have at least €45 (£38) if you are staying with your family or friends and €95 (£81) if you are staying in a hotel.

Tourists must have at least €45 (£38) per day for the duration of their stay in Germany.

A foreigner entering Poland must have around €66 (£56) if they stay for less than four days. 

For any longer, tourists have to pay €16 (£13) daily.

You do not need a visa for short trips to the EU or countries in the Schengen area if you’re staying for 90 days or less in a 180-day period, or if you’re a tourist.

The countries in the Schengen area are:

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

Bulgaria, Cyprus and Romania are not in the Schengen area. 

You can stay up to 90 days in a 180-day period in each of these countries without a visa.

You may also need to show a return ticket and that you have enough money for your stay for any of the European Union countries.

From 2025, UK travellers will be able to apply for an ETIAS visa waiver to enter EU countries. 

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