Chicago Visa Checklist

You’ve gone through all the steps. Now it’s time to triple check everything before mailing your application.

Make sure to double check everything with the official Chicago Consulate website. Small changes can be made to the requirements, and it’s important to get the information straight from the source before sending anything.

Chicago Consulate Official List of Requirements

Chicago Consulate Contact Page

National Visa Application Form (Original and copy)

2 recent, passport-size, color photographs (do it professionally). Photographs must be glued to the National Visa Application Form (Original and Copy).

Valid, unexpired passport and a photocopy of the page or pages of the passport that contain biometric data must be submitted. The passport must have a minimum validity period of 1 year and contain two blank pages. Passports issued more than 10 years ago will not be accepted.

Photocopy of this page

Carta de Nombramiento (School placement letter original and copy) This letter must provide information on the school the applicant has been appointed to (address, phone number, contact email). It must also contain information about the grant, the duration of the program and the insurance policy.

FBI Background Check (Original and copy of FBI background check apostilled and translated by a certified translator only) As for the copies, include your background check, apostille, and translation, and then a copy of that group of documents. Reminder! Don’t remove the apostille when making your copies. You can just fold the corner where it is attached instead. If you have stayed in another country other than Spain for over 180 days within the last 5 years, you are required to provide a background check through that country as well. (I stayed in Germany for a year, and even though I applied for a German background check, it never came. My application was accepted anyway). I got lucky. I don’t recommend it.

Medical Certificate (use the template) Send the original and a photocopy of the medical form.

Proof of residence in the consular district Provide a copy (not the original) of US Driver’s license or US State ID or Voter´s Registration card.*

*I highly recommend you use a US Driver’s License or US State ID if possible.

Payment of the visa fee ($160 money order)

Prepaid USPS express mail envelope that is self-addressed

Disclaimer form

Evidence of Immigration Status in the US, for non US passport holders only

Type and print on a piece of paper the following applicant´s information Name, last name, email and cell phone number to contact the applicant during business hours if necessary.

In general, paperwork in Spain requires the original along with a copy, so it’s a good idea to always check if you need a copy.

Once you have triple checked everything, make sure to carefully and in an organized fashion, place all of the documents in your USPS express mail envelope that is addressed to the Spanish consulate in Chicago. Save the tracking number, and immediately afterwards, save all of your visa documents you collected to a flash drive and the cloud, google drive, or whatever you use. You will need these documents in the future.

Visa Office – Consulate General of Spain
180 North Michigan Ave., Suite 1500
Chicago. Illinois 60601

Collecting the visaYou must check the status of your visa using the receipt sent by this Consulate in the envelope provided by you. Use the following link http://sutramiteconsular.maec.es, when your visa status shows “RESUELTO“, means that is your visa is ready to pick up.

You can pick your passport up in person at this consulate from Tuesday thru Thursday from 10:00 a. m. to 12:00 p. m.

Make sure to frequently check your status after receiving your application receipt.

Upon entry to Spain and within the first thirty days, applicants must apply* for a Foreigner Identity Card or TIE where the applicant is located. The TIE will be valid for as long as the auxiliary is enrolled in the program in Spain.

*You only need to start the TIE process within the first 30 days. Do not worry about receiving the TIE within 30 days of arriving.

When you receive your visa, it should look like the following picture. Included in the visa page is your personal information, visa type, entry date, visa duration, and sometimes your NIE. The visa duration will be 90 days for this type of program. Do not worry. Once you arrive in Spain, you will apply for a TIE which is a type of residency card. This will allow you to stay for the entire duration of the program. The NIE is an identification number, similar to a social security number, that comes with your TIE.

I highly recommend you enter Spain after your entry date on the visa. Although rare, some bureaucrats will deny your application for a TIE if your passport was stamped before your visa´s stated entry date. You would be required to leave the country and re-enter.

The Spanish visa will be stamped to one of your passport pages.

Once you are approved for your visa, you will be assigned a NIE. Some consulates will include your NIE in the visa itself, but others will not. You will receive this number when you receive the TIE. If you received your NIE in the visa, great! The NIE is useful for getting an apartment, opening a bank account, and getting a phone plan with a Spanish phone number. If you didn’t receive your NIE in the visa, you will have to use your passport number until you get the TIE, and it might be more difficult to complete the previous steps. Everything will be covered later.

Once you are approved for your visa, you will be assigned a NIE. Some consulates will include your NIE in the visa itself, but others will not. You will receive this number when you receive the TIE. If you received your NIE in the visa, great! The NIE is useful for getting an apartment, opening a bank account, and getting a phone plan with a Spanish phone number. If you didn’t receive your NIE in the visa, you will have to use your passport number until you get the TIE, and it might be more difficult to complete the previous steps. Everything will be covered later.


Before leaving for Spain, check out the NALCAP Webinar for 2022. It includes important information for all NALCAP participants, new and returning. Also, make sure you aren’t missing anything before your flight!

Last minute preparations. What to bring and what to do before you get on that plane.

Before Your Flight

July 28, 2022 – NALCAP Webinar hosted by the consulate of Spain. Includes key information and updates for the auxiliary program.

NALCAP Webinar 2022 – highlights

You are so close now! Start looking at flights, but I wouldn’t purchase anything until you have a visa in your hand.

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