Getting a Cita Previa Appointment in the Spanish System

Is a pain in the ass.

I’ve already written about the fucking Spanish appointment system. All bureaucracy sucks, but I’m here now so let me rant about this bureaucracy.

If you’re reading this it’s because you’re having trouble getting an appointment in the Spanish system, a cita previa on the website of the Secretary of State’s Public Administration page. I had to get an appointment to renew my TIE/NIE. It took me two full weeks of trying to get an appointment until I finally got one.

The trick to getting that appointment

The trick? Just keep trying. Refresh, refresh. Delete your browser history. Do it again. Try especially at midday , 11:59 on the nose. Start early, well before your expiration date, for whatever it is you’re looking to deal with. Getting an appointment (cita previa) looks something like this:

How to get a cita previa in Barcelona

This is the first page of the process


Getting an appointment cita previa

For renewing your NIE at least, you eventually get to this page, with patience

No appointments available on the Spanish appointment system

Most of you will encounter this, many… many times.

No appointments, locked out of Spanish appointment system

Barcelona appointments to renew NIE ugh

Or you’ll get lucky and see a selection of three possible appointment times

Confirm of cita previa

Confirm your cita previa

Justificante cita previa

This is the last page that you’ll have to print, the justificante of cit previa



There’s nothing else to this

That’s it. Just some screens to give you some insight. This is not all the screens for any process, just some of them to give you an idea of the system, and so that you know you’re in the right place. The Spanish appointment system is annoying because they don’t post enough appointments, and there’s nothing you can do about it.

So even if you’re not getting a cita previa now, this is useful information for the future: reserve your appointment well in advance, and if there are no appointments, just keep trying.


Here are some other articles about NIE processes in Barcelona:

16 Responses

  1. Garey Mills says:

    Using this system on the 11th of December, I just got an appt. for the 21st of January. Should I cancel the appointment I have made and try to get one with an earlier date?

    • Velabas says:

      If you need an appointment earlier because of legal reasons, yes. For example, if your ID card expires before the 21st, you need an earlier date. But if not, definitely keep the appointment you have.

  2. james says:

    im trying to cancel an appointment and its asking for a JUSTIFICANTE DE CITA PREVIA. what do I put in this box? I tried putting the number on the form I got and it says theres no appointment with this number?

  3. ben says:

    Confussing. In the end I used a company because I just wasn’t able to get an appointment? they charge £20 but worth every penny

  4. Neil says:

    Omg, thank you for this. After literally weeks of frustration I came across this page and read your “just keep trying” advice. I thought, fine, I’ll just keep trying and the very next attempt got me the cita previa. You are my lucky charm. Meanwhile if I had to do it over I would use a company as suggested in Ben’s comment and I would start two months in advance minimum — not the one month in advance that I had thought would be plenty of time. Good luck to all.

  5. Esmeralda Santos says:

    Hi I feel your frustration ive had issues of waiting trying to make an appointment for over a month until I went there personally and told them after being searched how the hell do you make an appointment its a joke you treat people who are not even Spanish and don’t speak the language appointments and leave the actual Spanish citizens on the street without advise or anything. they told me to book online on the consulate website early in the morning like 6/7am so I did that and managed to book an appointment for next month (2months in advance). I hope that helps for you guys in future. book early in the morning.

  6. Ryesher Dsouza says:

    Does anyone know what happens if you exceed the 30 days deadline? Because I’m running out of time and don’t know what to do. I’m not getting an appointment.

  7. No name says:

    This is frustrating, I marry a Spanish man more than 2 years ago, and I move to Madrid, I already apply for NIE in 2 years and couldn’t get it, actually now I’m illegal, but I have Spanish family book.
    I still try to apply every hour, everyday and everytime, I feel like what the hell is this, even in my country will not be this difficult to apply.

  8. HUMAIRA AKOL says:

    I am need fingerprint Cita

  9. Moeex says:

    If any budy want any type of Cita contact me on my whats app +34602873225

  10. Sohail anwar says:

    When open asylum electronic cita in the googal page I can try two hundred time but it’s closd

  11. I came from Georgia and I have to get NIE cita previa.

  12. Hello beautiful people. I want to have cita previa please.

  13. Ron says:

    We have been busy with that very frustrating specially coming from the Netherlands where it is close to perfect. Its a system made to fuck you not to help you. Cant get a date. Are they fully booked untill the end of the year? We went there in the hope they helped us but its impossible to get past the guard. A olderly Spanisch man was giving the guy hell. Swearing and screaming. I fully understand this poor fellow.
    So ill be sitting and trying untill somebody or something is giving a date.

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