EXPLAINED: How to prove you need to enter or exit Madrid’s restricted zones

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EXPLAINED: How to prove you need to enter or exit Madrid’s restricted zones
A woman proves valid reason for crossing at a checkpoint in Madrid. Photo: AFP

With random police checks in place make sure you know what paperwork can prove the need to enter and exit Madrid's restricted zones.


The city of Madrid and nine other satellite towns have had new restrictions placed since Friday in a bid to curb the soaring rate of infections across the region.

The rules are not as strict as during the state of emergency which began in March and placed residents across Spain in lockdown and only allowed to leave the house for very limited reasons.

But the new rules are designed to prevent people entering or exiting a restricted zone unless they have good reason which includes work, study, to care for a dependent or to attend an appointment such as medical, legal or administrative.

Q&A: What you can and can't do under Madrid's new lockdown rules

With police checkpoints in place at busy exit routes on the roads and at transport hubs here’s what you need to know about the documentation required to prove the purpose of your journey.

To avoid problems at checkpoints, always carry some form of photo ID (which is required by law in Spain) and if that doesn’t have your current home address on it then carry something that proves your place of residence, such as padron certificate or at the very least an official letter with your address on it (such as utility bill or bank statement).

If you are not going home to a restricted area but entering one for another purpose then here are the various documentation that can help prove it.


Despite the strict lockdown conditions earlier this year, Spain has yet to introduce a nationwide document to provide “safe conduct” to those who require it.

However, when the region brought in restrictions across 45 health zones last month, Madrid health authorities did launch a form that justifies crossing restricted limits for the purposes of work and it seems that this is still the only way to prove that you are justified in crossing restricted perimeters

The form must be filled out with ID number, address, place of work and reason for movement and must be signed by one's employer. 

They can be downloaded HERE. or by clicking through on tweet below.


Crossing a restricted city limit for the purpose of study is allowed but you may need to prove it if stopped by pólice. Those who are studying at a university, college or school can show their student card -  “carné personal de adscripción”. If you are a parent taking or collecting your children then have a copy of their enrolment with you. Other places of study should be able to provide you with a certificate of enrolment on a course which will satisfy authorities.

Medical attention



If you have an appointment with a specialist at a medical centre either outside the restricted zone where you live or within one where you are not resident then you will be able to show a copy of your cita previa to prove it.

If you are going to visit a relative in hospital then you can request that the hospital send you a “certificado de hospitalización” of your relative which should be proof enough.

If however you are seeking emergency medical treatment and are on your way to an Emergency room (Urgencias) outside of your restricted zone then you just have to hope that if you are stopped at a random police check, the officer will recognize the emergency and allow you through as there is no paperwork for this eventuality.

Returning to your home

If you were away when restrictions were put in place then you will always allowed to return to your “place of habitual residence” and just need to be able to prove it.

Spanish people have their DNI to do this but foreigners will need photo ID plus something official that shows they are a resident within the restricted zone such as residency card or padron certificate. If you are a new arrival and haven’t had time to sort that out yet then do your best to prove it with a rental contract or utility bill.

Visiting a dependent or vulnerable person in your care



Those visiting their children who may live with another parent, elderly relatives who rely on their care or other dependents because of a disability should present whatever documentation they have to prove it. Police may accompany you to the address to check that your reason given was valid.

To visit a financial entity

One of the reasons permitted to breach restrictions is to visit a bank or financial entity that cannot be postponed and before you go to your appointment ask the bank to send you a “justificante” ahead of the visit.

Judicial or administrative appointments

If you have an appointment with an administrative office you can show your “cita previa” confirmation as proof and any legal process that you have to carry out should have a written confirmation of appointment that you can show to police if required. These can be on a mobile phone rather than printed out if need be.


If you have an exam or test to go to then show the documents confirming that it is taking place on that day and that should be sufficient proof

Force majeure

This exemption can cover any manner of issues and could be hard to prove. If you need to go an take care of someone, or look after animals or even tend to your allotment, it will fall under this category and can be hard to prove. Have your excuse prepared, carry whatever supporting documents you can and hope that if stopped, the police agent will be understanding.

And remember that any sanctions issues can be appealed.




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