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Credencial Question

Time of past OR future Camino
September 2024
Hey folks,
I got my credential passport in the post today (Wohoo) looking forward to walking later in the year.

I was surprised by the amount of space. It says ‘you must have at least two stamps per day dated to validate your journey.’

If you walk all the way from SPJDP to Santiago de Compostela, I don’t think all stamps will fit if you get two each day… there are 42 spots. Do you get one stamp each day, and then two every day for the last 100k? Or do people literally only use the credential on the last 100k? Or something else…

Thanks for your help!
Jaya
 
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To qualify for a Compostela you only need two sellos per day for the final 100km of your walk. Anything more than that is optional. However if you stay in albergues then they will routinely stamp your credencial on arrival. If you do run out of space then you can find another credencial along the way or collect more sellos on blank paper and show them along with the original credencial in the Santiago pilgrim office on arrival.
 
As @Bradypus says.
I would just add, that if you want a distance certificate as well as a Compostela, it helps to have a stamp per day from your start point.

Yes it's a pity that those Pilgrim Credencials don't have much space for Pilgrims walking a longer Camino. On my last Camino I just stuck two together to allow for 60 days of walking.

The Credencials available in the Pilgrims Office at St Jean may have more space.
But it's a while since I departed from there.
Others can advise I'm sure.
 
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Yes it's annoying that those Pilgrim Credencials don't have much space for Pilgrims walking a longer Camino. On my last Camino I just stuck two together to allow for 60 days of walking.
The one that the SJPDP pilgrim office were issuing last year had space for about 70 or more sellos. I arrived in Santiago having only filled one side of it. But I am not an avid stamp collector and I wasn't worried about the "2 per day" rule either.
 
Thanks Robo and Bradypus! Ok cool, I’m starting in SPJDP, so I may get a second one there and attach it (I really like the idea of collecting the stamps for the memory of the places/stops). Can you also get stamps a private allbergues? And if you stay at a hotel occasionally, is there still somewhere in the town as you pass through that you are able to collect a stamp? Or is that more just for stopping at public albergues?

Thanks for your help!
 
Can you also get stamps a private allbergues? And if you stay at a hotel occasionally, is there still somewhere in the town as you pass through that you are able to collect a stamp?
Private albergues will almost certainly have a sello. As will many churches, bars, restaurants, hotels and other businesses along the way. You will find many places offering to stamp your credencial.
 
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Thanks Robo and Bradypus! Ok cool, I’m starting in SPJDP, so I may get a second one there and attach it (I really like the idea of collecting the stamps for the memory of the places/stops). Can you also get stamps a private allbergues? And if you stay at a hotel occasionally, is there still somewhere in the town as you pass through that you are able to collect a stamp? Or is that more just for stopping at public albergues?

Thanks for your help!
You can get a sello pretty much anywhere on the Frances: albergues, hostales, hotels, shops, bars, restaurants, museums and galleries, occasional fire stations, universities and roving Guarda Civil patrols- the possibilities are endless. Maybe pick up a couple of spares?
 
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You can get a sello pretty much anywhere on the Frances: albergues, hostales, hotels, shops, bars, restaurants, museums and galleries, occasional fire stations, universities and roving Guarda Civil patrols- the possibilities are endless. Maybe pick up a couple of spares?
Absolutely! Yeah that’s great to know thanks!
 
A wee diversion...I like to put the sellos in my written journal too. Noone has ever refused. This is more memorable for me than the credential itself.
A long time ago back before the pilgrim office insisted on people using only officially recognised credencials it wasn't all that unusual for people to collect their sellos in their daily diaries instead and present the diary when asking for a Compostela.
 
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On my last Camino, I filled two credencials getting to Santiago (and another, different one on the San Salvador and a fourth different one on the Camino to Finisterre and Muxia). I also filled two credencials on my 2016 Camino Frances to Finisterre. You can always get another one in towns on the way if it looks like you are going to run out. As others have said, you only need two stamps a day for the last 100 km. But there is no rule that you have to limit yourself to two stamps a day. :)
 
I like to get a 2nd one a glue it the the first, then a 3rd, 4th, 6th ... 8th. If I had needed to use the official Spanish one-sided model on my last ultra-long Camino, I would have needed I think 14 of them all glued together !! ... I really DO like the two models of the French double-sided ones, with a preference for the little cream-coloured one from the Diocese of Paris.

I do however walk very long Caminos, so that my Credenciales look more like little books than anything else ; but the principle is still a good one. Two or three glued into one provide a clearer picture than if they're in parts.
 
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Thanks Robo and Bradypus! Ok cool, I’m starting in SPJDP, so I may get a second one there and attach it (I really like the idea of collecting the stamps for the memory of the places/stops).
One cool thing is that each extra credencial = +2€ for the Pilgrims Office in Santiago.
 
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For a lot of us , our first credencial holds a fair amount of pride and the stamps that are collected are a great reminder of your camino, they will invoke the memories of the albergues, cafes , churches etc and also those other pilgrims you met there.

I'd advise some sort of protection, plastic cover type like mine and a small clip board to keep it flat and safe
 

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For a lot of us , our first credencial holds a fair amount of pride and the stamps that are collected are a great reminder of your camino,
I found my first credencial while clearing out my house a few months ago. I'd forgotten a few of the places where I stayed. The credencial was issued in Roncesvalles because the lady in SJPDP who usually issued them wasn't convinced I was genuine pilgrim material and told me to go and ask in Roncesvalles instead.

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I’m starting in SPJDP, so I may get a second one there and attach it (I really like the idea of collecting the stamps for the memory of the places/stops).
You may want to double the number of credentials then. Many like to frame them to show off the sellos. Half will be hidden then unless you only get one side of the credentials stamped.

Buen camino.
 
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A long time ago back before the pilgrim office insisted on people using only officially recognised credencials it wasn't all that unusual for people to collect their sellos in their daily diaries instead and present the diary when asking for a Compostela.
This is exactly what I'm doing come April...I'm not concerned about getting a compostela (in fact I don't even know if I'll make it to Santiago on foot), so I'm going to be making a nice little journal instead.
 
I like to put the sellos in my written journal too. Noone has ever refused. This is more memorable for me than the credential itself.
I think it's great to use them in more than 1 place. I got them on my credential and also on the inside of my hat, so I'd have my Camino hat as a souvenir. Sadly, most folks didn't have enough ink in their inkpad for the stamp to show up well in my hat. Still, it's a nice souvenir. :)
 
I found my first credencial while clearing out my house a few months ago. I'd forgotten a few of the places where I stayed. The credencial was issued in Roncesvalles because the lady in SJPDP who usually issued them wasn't convinced I was genuine pilgrim material and told me to go and ask in Roncesvalles instead.

View attachment 163608
I'm willing to bet that the lady you mention was none other than the redoubtable Mme. Debril. I met a bicigrina in Roncesvalles who said that Mme. Debril took a lot of convincing that her cycle helmet, hanging from her saddle, wasn't a small engine. She did eventually get her credencial stamped though.
 
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I'm willing to bet that the lady you mention was none other than the redoubtable Mme. Debril.
She was indeed Mme Debril. Amongst the reasons she gave me for the refusal were that I was not a member of a confraternity and had not brought a letter of introduction from a Catholic priest.
 
She was indeed Mme Debril. Amongst the reasons she gave me for the refusal were that I was not a member of a confraternity and had not brought a letter of introduction from a Catholic priest.
I had brought the big, garish, yellow credencial issued at the time by CSJ, and had walked from Chartres. This was deemed acceptable, thank goodness.
 
I had brought the big, garish, yellow credencial issued at the time by CSJ, and had walked from Chartres. This was deemed acceptable, thank goodness.
This one? That's certainly a dreadful piece of design!

Edit: two of my pilgrim friends have just told me that they have both used that version in the past and that it is still available exclusively for CSJ members.

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I think it's great to use them in more than 1 place. I got them on my credential and also on the inside of my hat, so I'd have my Camino hat as a souvenir. Sadly, most folks didn't have enough ink in their inkpad for the stamp to show up well in my hat. Still, it's a nice souvenir. :)
On the 88 temple pilgrimage circuit on Shikoku pilgrims usually collect stamps and temple calligraphy in a small book. But there is also the option to have the stamps placed on a fabric scroll for use as a wall hanging or on a white hakui pilgrim jacket. The book photo is my own - the jacket an image I found online.

IMG_20211218_195517_2.jpg 1707385445392.png
 
This one? That's certainly a dreadful piece of design!

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That's the one! I ordered a new one for my upcoming camino, and was happy to see that they've toned it right down. The upside of that old one was that it was impossible to lose, but the downside was that it was relatively large, and couldn't easily be carried in a pocket. Thank you for reviving old memories. I hope, like you, that I stumble across it one day, in one of the many places where I have stuff stored.
 
She was indeed Mme Debril. Amongst the reasons she gave me for the refusal were that I was not a member of a confraternity and had not brought a letter of introduction from a Catholic priest.
Mme Debril told me that she was forced to be overly selective because the Spanish (i.e. the priests at Roncesvalles) were providing her with nowhere near enough credenciales to have one for every pilgrim.

Personally, I had all of my stamps from Paris onwards in a notebook, mostly from parishes and monasteries and whatnot, and I had a letter of introduction from the archpriest of Notre Dame Cathedral, so I qualified !!
 
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Hey folks,
I got my credential passport in the post today (Wohoo) looking forward to walking later in the year.

I was surprised by the amount of space. It says ‘you must have at least two stamps per day dated to validate your journey.’

If you walk all the way from SPJDP to Santiago de Compostela, I don’t think all stamps will fit if you get two each day… there are 42 spots. Do you get one stamp each day, and then two every day for the last 100k? Or do people literally only use the credential on the last 100k? Or something else…

Thanks for your help!
Jaya
No one counts them at the end. You’ll be fine
 
No one counts them at the end. You’ll be fine
There is always someone who says this. And they always have their own personal experience to back it up, as well as the personal experiences of everyone they've talked to.

And it is true for most people. But unfortunately, we have had posts here from people who walked farther than 100 km and didn't get two stamps a day for the last 100 km of their Camino and were refused Compostelas in the Pilgrim Office. By far the majority of the time, with the majority of staff and volunteers, this will not be a problem. But I would never advise someone for whom the Compostela is important to count on being in that majority.
 
Hey folks,
I got my credential passport in the post today (Wohoo) looking forward to walking later in the year.

I was surprised by the amount of space. It says ‘you must have at least two stamps per day dated to validate your journey.’

If you walk all the way from SPJDP to Santiago de Compostela, I don’t think all stamps will fit if you get two each day… there are 42 spots. Do you get one stamp each day, and then two every day for the last 100k? Or do people literally only use the credential on the last 100k? Or something else…

Thanks for your help!
Jaya
The credential that you get at tge pilgrams office in St Jean Pied De Port have alot more space. If you run out you can use the front and back cover.
 
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The OP says 42 spaces but the official one has 54. From this very website "The credential has place for 54 stamps. This is the Official Pilgrim Credencial (Pilgrims Passport) issued by the Pilgrims Office in Santiago de Compostela."
 
As @Bradypus says.
I would just add, that if you want a distance certificate as well as a Compostela, it helps to have a stamp per day from your start point.

Yes it's a pity that those Pilgrim Credencials don't have much space for Pilgrims walking a longer Camino. On my last Camino I just stuck two together to allow for 60 days of walking.

The Credencials available in the Pilgrims Office at St Jean may have more space.
But it's a while since I departed from there.
Others can advise I'm sure.
The ones at the pilgrim office do have more space…I got two per day all the way from SJPdP, some sellos took more than two spaces, and I still had a few left over.

Buen Camino!
 
The OP says 42 spaces but the official one has 54. From this very website "The credential has place for 54 stamps. This is the Official Pilgrim Credencial (Pilgrims Passport) issued by the Pilgrims Office in Santiago de Compostela."
Ok great, I stop at the pilgrims office when I arrive to get one of the official double sided ones as well 🙂 ready for stamp collection mania 🥳
 
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The OP says 42 spaces but the official one has 54. From this very website "The credential has place for 54 stamps. This is the Official Pilgrim Credencial (Pilgrims Passport) issued by the Pilgrims Office in Santiago de Compostela."

The ones at the pilgrim office do have more space…I got two per day all the way from SJPdP, some sellos took more than two spaces, and I still had a few left over.

Unless my math is wrong, that would mean that you walked from SJPP in less than 27 days. Probably less than 25. You cover good distances each day.
 
Unless my math is wrong, that would mean that you walked from SJPP in less than 27 days. Probably less than 25. You cover good distances each day.
I walked from SJPDP to Santiago in 24 days on my first Camino. 33 years and a lot of wear and tear later it took me 28 days. Seems reasonable to me.
 
Unless my math is wrong, that would mean that you walked from SJPP in less than 27 days. Probably less than 25. You cover good distances each day.
Hi David.

32 days. Basically did the recommended stages, except at one spot I turned two stages into three days, so I could spend a night in a particular town (can’t get to the guidebook right now, so don’t recall the name). Maybe they’ve reduced the number of spaces in the credencial?
 
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Hi David.

32 days. Basically did the recommended stages, except at one spot I turned two stages into three days, so I could spend a night in a particular town (can’t get to the guidebook right now, so don’t recall the name). Maybe they’ve reduced the number of spaces in the credencial?
hi David.

Your question got me wondering if my memory was faulty…finally got to a computer where I have pictures of my credencial.

Front page with name etc, another page with a map of the Camino Frances, and 9 pages with 8 spaces each for sellos. Got one selling from the pilgrim office, two each for the 32 day walk, and had a few empty spaces left over.

Happy trails and blue skies (unless you’re a glider pilot), eric
 
hi David.

Your question got me wondering if my memory was faulty…finally got to a computer where I have pictures of my credencial.

Front page with name etc, another page with a map of the Camino Frances, and 9 pages with 8 spaces each for sellos. Got one selling from the pilgrim office, two each for the 32 day walk, and had a few empty spaces left over.

Happy trails and blue skies (unless you’re a glider pilot), eric
Autocorrect…one sello from the pilgrim office
 
hi David.

Your question got me wondering if my memory was faulty…finally got to a computer where I have pictures of my credencial.

Front page with name etc, another page with a map of the Camino Frances, and 9 pages with 8 spaces each for sellos. Got one selling from the pilgrim office, two each for the 32 day walk, and had a few empty spaces left over.

Happy trails and blue skies (unless you’re a glider pilot), eric
That would be 72 spaces for sellos. I was just going by what @David61 was quoting about there being spaces for 54 spaces.

This caused me to pull down my "official" pilgrim credencial as issued by the Officina del Peregrino and Cabilda de la Cathedral in Santiago. It was my second credencial for my Camino last year (the first having been issued by the Canadian Company of Pilgrims).

The pages come blank and don't have demarcated squares for stamps.

On the inside front cover, there is space for one stamp, the closing stamp. After that, there is a page of text, then the first page for collecting stamps. But the top third of that is for the first stamp or the issuing body ("EXPEDIDA POR.... FECHA....). I generally squeezed in 6 stamps/ page (4 on the first page). I completely filled it with 34 stamps (4 on the first page, 6 on the other 5).

I'm not sure which official credencial you were using.

20240224_194415.jpg

Buen camino!
 
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That would be 72 spaces for sellos. I was just going by what @David61 was quoting about there being spaces for 54 spaces.

This caused me to pull down my "official" pilgrim credencial as issued by the Officina del Peregrino and Cabilda de la Cathedral in Santiago. It was my second credencial for my Camino last year (the first having been issued by the Canadian Company of Pilgrims).

The pages come blank and don't have demarcated squares for stamps.

On the inside front cover, there is space for one stamp, the closing stamp. After that, there is a page of text, then the first page for collecting stamps. But the top third of that is for the first stamp or the issuing body ("EXPEDIDA POR.... FECHA....). I generally squeezed in 6 stamps/ page (4 on the first page). I completely filled it with 34 stamps (4 on the first page, 6 on the other 5).

I'm not sure which official credencial you were using.

View attachment 164912

Buen camino!
Buen Camino!

Got mine at the pilgrim office in SJpdp.

went in Sept/Oct of 22, thinking I’ll go may/June next time. Not brave enough to go July/august because I’m built for cold weather.

Would you happen to know if the Irache winery ships bottles? Thinking I’d like to help support them, for their gifts to pilgrims, and would like to send some to family. If it was later in the Camino I’d just carry them, but it’s a lot of miles with that much extra weight.

Thanks
 
Buen Camino!

Got mine at the pilgrim office in SJpdp.

went in Sept/Oct of 22, thinking I’ll go may/June next time. Not brave enough to go July/august because I’m built for cold weather.

Would you happen to know if the Irache winery ships bottles? Thinking I’d like to help support them, for their gifts to pilgrims, and would like to send some to family. If it was later in the Camino I’d just carry them, but it’s a lot of miles with that much extra weight.

Thanks
They have a website where they sell wines, so presumably they ship them. Google "Bodegas Irache".
 

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