The credencial or Pilgrim Passport is the all-important document you must carry to prove your pilgrim status.

It serves two principal functions:

  • It entitles you to stay in the pilgrim hostels along the route.  They will ask to see it when you arrive.  It also means you can take advantage of the "Pilgrim Menu" (Menú del Peregrino) - a cheaper alternative to the Menu of the Day, which many hostels and restaurants serve; and it may even get you discounts in shops as well as cheaper entry into cathedrals and museums.
  • You use it to document your journey by collecting stamps (sellos) from the places that you pass through.  These can be from hostels, churches, cafés, town halls, tourist offices, hotels, petrol stations etc along the way.  This then serves as a record of your camino and is what you present to the volunteers at Santiago Pilgrim Office to prove that you have undertaken the minimum distance to qualify you for a compostela (if you state a religious/spiritual motivation) or certificado (if you state cultural, sporting or touristic motivation). Note - if you're only walking the last 100km, you need to collect two stamps a day in your credencial.

If you know where and when you're starting, you can apply for yours now!