Getting my pilgrim credencial (2017)

In addition to a government-issued passport, pilgrims require a credencial, a pilgrim passport that gets stamped at every stop on their Camino with sellos (carimbos in Portuguese) and serves as proof they walked, cycled or rode the required distances to earn the compostela upon arrival in Santiago de Compostela. If a pilgrim is on foot, they require a minimum of one stamp per day, and require at least two stamps per day for the last 100km.

For this Camino, I wanted to mix things up a bit and get the official Santiago de Compostela Cathedral credencial. Luckily, this was easy to obtain in advance, thanks to Ivar in Santiago and his online Camino shop. My Camino pal Lori put in an order well in advance for the credencials and for perfectly-sized plastic cover – an upgrade from the ziploc bag I used in 2014. A steal at €4, plus shipping to Canada.

camino de santiago credential credencial

Overall, I liked this credencial a lot. However, two things to keep in mind:

The spaces for sellos/carimbos are small. Too small, in fact, for a lot of normal-sized sellos. This leads to a crowded credencial. For most people, this will not be an issue, but I plan to make another credencial poster and this will greatly improve the degree of difficulty.

camino de santiago credential credencial

There overall amount of space is limited. I admit that I go sello-crazy and will get a stamp at almost every stop. For a 12-day Camino, I filled one credencial. Again, this isn’t really an issue, but, for a longer Camino, I would definitely need more than one credencial. I saw extra credencials all over the place, with many of the municipal albergues selling them for €2.

camino de santiago credential credencialFor what it’s worth, there would be a lot more space for sellos, but there are seven panels of maps. Interesting, but I could use that space!camino de santiago credential credencial

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