I read with interest a piece in the Tenerife News about just this subject, and thought I would answer some of the points they made .
Every person I have translated for at the South Police station since the first week in April when the new system came into force has come away with a green residencia paper certificate there and then (see a copy of the document above), and it is by far the simplest system so far in my opinion.
There is no request for information about a person's financial situation whether they are employed, not employed - whatever.
Yes the queues are long but at least there are now three officers dealing with this subject so there are 150 people seen every day rather than the 50 every day who are seen from those wanting NIE numbers.
They make a point about the help line, but in truth a person needs to visit the help desk (the queue for that is not that long at whatever time of day you go) to pick up the form to pay the "tasa" fee and an application form. I help my clients as much as I can by saving them that trip to get the application forms and also save them a trip to pay the "tasa" in the bank. I get there early to hold the queue and then clients can arrive later on if they want to as long as its before 9 am.
Is it a pain? well yes I suppose it is, but less so than the trip to Santa Cruz pensioners had to undertake before and less so than the all the trips that younger people had to make under the old system ( social security for vida laboral, twice to police station etc)
In any case we can moan all we like, the law has been passed and if we want to remain in our adoptive country for more than 3 months at a stretch then we have to abide by its requirements.
I personally mourne the demise of the residencia card because it was a handy size, but then its only us Brits who don't have an ID card from our own country, French, Italian etc cards are perfectly valid here now provided they are supported by the new certificate.
I have also been advised by several companies that Spanish picture driving licences will be acceptable as ID for discount, so that is an option as wellhttp://www.diana-mcglone.com