driving to Spain from the UK

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06 Feb 2012 00:00 by rover1 Star rating. 2 posts Send private message

Hi all, any advice on driving a car to Spain, The good news is that i retire in May 2013 and we want to drive to our villa but are not sure which way to go about it, do we buy a car registered in the UK or buy a Spanish registered car in the UK and what about insurance UK or Spanish? any advice would be helpful.





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07 Feb 2012 06:31 by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5247 posts Send private message

Hi Rover 1
 
                       in order to get replies which will best answer your concerns, more info would be useful
 
Why do you want to drive to Spain?
 
Are you intending to reside in Spain ?
 
Do you intend to keep the vehicle in Spain ?





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07 Feb 2012 10:33 by bobaol Star rating. 2256 posts Send private message

bobaol´s avatar

 

Hi Rover 1.  Firstly, you will get so much conflicting advice on registering a car, the procedures and the best way to do it that you will end up more confused than ever.  Even the so-called "expert" and "professional" websites give conflicting advice on how long you have to do it, how the procedure works etc that it will give you a headache.  There are also many myths and stories about it that you will be in a whirl and tizzy on what to do. 

We drove our car over from UK simply because we had a load of stuff to bring over and it was very convenient.  I inquired about putting it on Spanish plates and it would have cost in the region of €1,000 to do so.  That included new headlights and having the fog light put on the other side. It would have required temporary plates to get an ITV (Spanish MOT) and trips (with the inevitable queuing) to Traffico. In the end, we drove the car back to UK and I gave it to my son-in-law and bought a new (ish) car in Spain.  This is where the myths come in:

1.  Second hand cars in Spain are more expensive than UK.  True up to a point.  A fairly new car (up to 4 years old) will cost about the same in Spain in UK.  For example, we bought a 3 year old Ford Focus at €7100 with 25,000 miles on the clock, on the exchange rate that was £6,038.  Looking at similar cars from UK dealers that was actually around 500 to 1000 cheaper than UK.  It's when the car is 5 years old or more that the anomaly kicks in.  A 10 year old car, for example, worth about a grand in UK will cost about 4 grand in Spain.  Finding an old runaround in Spain at a cheap price is very difficult.  Have a look at the local papers 

2.  Insurance is more expensive in Spain.  No it isn't.  My insurance in UK went up to £370 last year and that was the best price from the comparison sites..  My insurance in Spain, which includes breakdown cover, is €374 or £320.  That is fully comp, any driver over 26.  Road tax here is €79.27.  UK was £260.  AA breakdown cover in UK £84 (basic package) and I had to pay a further £96 to cover the car for breakdown cover in Spain for the 5 weeks we kept it.  European breakdown cover is included in the Linea Directa insurance.

3.  I never looked into bringing a Spanish registered car over so I can't give any views on that.  Again, websites and chatsites will give tons of conflicting and confusing advice.

4.  First thing to do when you come over is apply for the so-called "residency" card.  It makes things so much simpler as it includes you address and NIE number and you don't have to carry round a copy of your deeds, your NIE certificate or utility bills.  The padron certificate is also a must.  

Have a look at some of the local papers online to see car prices.  This website http://www.autoscout24.es/CustomerArticles.aspx?cid=2142660  is where we bought ours from and will give you some idea of dealer prices.  

All in all, buying the car in Spain was much less of a headache than reregistering the UK car, plus the steering wheel is on the right side (or left, to be pedantic).  





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07 Feb 2012 11:00 by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5247 posts Send private message

Bobaol
 
QUOTE “First thing to do when you come over is apply for the so-called "residency" card.  It makes things so much simpler as it includes your address and NIE number and you don't have to carry round a copy of your deeds, your NIE certificate or utility bills”
 
 
 
Just so as not to confuse a newcomer. 
 
The registration you mention  is on The EU Citizens Central Register (REGISTRO DE CUIDADANO DE LA UNION).
 
 Residencia, applies still but only to Non EU citizens, say Americans, Australians, Canadians,  etc..  So to use the word Residencia in another context is misleading and often leads to confusion.
 
AND, for the sake of clarity,   the registration certificate says very clearly on it that is NOT an ID   
(AVISO.  DOCUMENTO NO VALIDO ACREDITAR LA IDENTIDAD NI LA NACIONALIDAD DEL PORTADOR)
 
So to be legal (I know lots of us do other things) but one MUST carry their original Passport. Or a copy which has been certified by the Passport Office or a British Consulate,   at all times. Nothing else is valid ID for British Citizens.





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07 Feb 2012 11:18 by bobaol Star rating. 2256 posts Send private message

bobaol´s avatar

 Which is why I put "so-called "residency" card".  I am aware it is not ID but, so far, the car dealer, the padron office, the banks and the solicitors have all accepted the "residency" card. which they still call it.  But, yes, you should also carry your passport as well.  

Without the card, the car dealer wanted NIE certs, copy of deeds, passports, padron and utility bill.  With the card, just the "residency" and passport.  I used the padron to show the correct and full address for the SUMA road tax.

 





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07 Feb 2012 11:44 by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5247 posts Send private message

Bobaol
 
But it is not a "so-called "residency" card".     Except by those who do not know the difference.
 
The NIE certifícate is the Numero de Identificación de Extranjero (a non Spaniards ID number).
 
The same number stays with us. So if one get the NIE cert first and applies for the Registration Cert later, the Cert shows the same ID number. Because is it one’s ID number.  (It also becomes one´s driving licence nu,ber too). It is number by which the Hacienda can trace all our investment and bank accounts in Spain.
 
You say, 
                            With the card, just the "residency" and passport.  
 
This where you make it complicated by using the word card. 
 
What card and what residency? 
 
We don’t have a ‘residencia card’  unless we come from outside the EU.    So lets not confuse newcomers, lets call a spade a spade !





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07 Feb 2012 13:14 by bobaol Star rating. 2256 posts Send private message

bobaol´s avatar

 Now you're just being pedantic.  All the people I have spoken to still refer to it as a "residencia".  I agreed with you that it is not so I can't see why you are being so argumentative.  And, yes, I have a card.  It's credit card sized and, yes, it doesn't say resident of Spain but:

If I go to the bank and they ask me for my resident card, that is what I show them.  And they accept it.

If  I go to the doctors and they ask for my resident card, that is what I show them.  And they accept it.

If I go to the solicitors and they ask for my resident card, that is what I show them.  And they accept it.

If I go to the town hall and they ask for my resident card, that is what I show them.  And they accept it.

If I want to buy a car and they ask for my resident card, that is what I show them.  And they accept it.

I haven't been stopped by the police but I'm pretty sure they'd accept it, too.

Sometimes, if it waddles like a duck, quacks like a duck and craps like a duck, it really is just a duck.

i will, however, not show you the card but, then, I can see no reason for why I should.  The card gives your NIE number and your address and that seems acceptable to anyone that actually matters.

 

 

 





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07 Feb 2012 13:41 by guslopez Star rating in Lorca, Murcia.. 745 posts Send private message

bobaol you're wasting your time :

just for info ,

if I go to the bank and they ask me for my resident card, I show them my spanish driving licence.  And they accept it.

If  I go to the doctors and they ask for my resident card, I show them my spanish driving licence..  And they accept it.

If I go to the solicitors and they ask for my resident card, I show them my spanish driving licence.And they accept it.

If I go to the town hall and they ask for my resident card, I show them my spanish driving licence.  And they accept it.

If I want to buy a car and they ask for my resident card, I show them my spanish driving licence.  And they accept it.

When I've been stopped by the police I show them my spanish driving licence. And they accept it.

I've never used the piece of paper for anything apart from changing over car paperwork & the I.D . was the spanish d/l again.

Car tax varies from council to council. Here , your focus would cost around 150-160€ in road tax a year!

Around here a car up to 4 years old will only be about 4k less than it's original new price, unfortunately. Makes More sense to buy a new one !

To the OP , if you buy a spanish car in the UK you'll have to insure it here unless you can find someone in the UK with a tie-up to a spanish firm.

 



_______________________

Todos somos Lorca.




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07 Feb 2012 14:32 by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5247 posts Send private message

Guys, I did say “So to be legal (I know lots of us do other things) but one MUST carry their original Passport. Or a copy which has been certified by the Passport Office or a British Consulate,   at all times. Nothing else is valid ID for British Citizens.
 
I have been a volunteer translator with the National Police for 15 years. I am embarrassed when victims are told they must go back to their hotel / home, to get their passport when other forms of ID have not been accepted.
 
The same usually applies to Notaries.
 
 So why lead people into thinking that they can use something else (which we know SOMETIMES they can)  and then maybe cause them additional grief ?
 
Don´t shoot the messenger.





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07 Feb 2012 21:17 by rover1 Star rating. 2 posts Send private message

Hi all rover 1 here, first of all thanks for all your replies, we thought it could be a little confusing but not as much as it looks now. We own our property and have NIE numbers but as we have quite a few things to bring over when i retire we thought driving over would be the perfect way to see a bit of France and Northern Spain but not so sure now so will give it a bit more thought,  Cheers.





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13 Feb 2012 22:05 by rayann Star rating in Terreros & South Shi.... 79 posts Send private message

Hi Rover1,

We are a few months ahead of you, not the retiring bit as we have a while to go, the driving bit ! We bought our house here (Spain) a few years ago and generally just came to Spain for week or two, so we hired cars. Then my job changed and I am now  fortunate to work 2 weeks on and 3 weeks off. I spend most of my time off here in Spain, so renting was going to be expensive. I bought a cheap runaround Spanish car but it was not cheap and cheerful. It didn't have the comforts my car had in UK, so we decided to sell it and drive the UK car over. Loading it up with personnel things. We stopped off in Tours, France and Sarragosa, northern Spain. Had a great time on the way and seen a lot of differing countryside and cultures. I now have my car here and I am seeing how things turn out before I make a decision on what to do ie,  register it here after 6 months, take it out the country after 6 months and bring it back or sell it and buy a "decent" one here. Time will tell, and my advice, for what it's worth, is enjoy the drive down, take your time to see things, then see how you go over the first 6 months. You can then also make enquiries about re-registering or buying.

Best of luck, Ray 





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03 Mar 2012 08:22 by norm2002 Star rating. 19 posts Send private message

Just to add one other thing to consider. If you were thinking of buying a new car, don't forget that car companies, such as Audi, will sell you a new LHD car tax free which you then take to Spain within two months and pay IVA and CO2 based registraton tax. It's not a simple process but it MAY be quite a bit cheaper than buying new in Spain. 

Good luck whatever you do.





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03 Mar 2012 13:00 by stuffit Star rating. 2 posts Send private message

 

Hi Rover1   

Wehave been in Spain now for over 6 years , living near to Ayamonte. We also have a property in UK which we visit about two or more times a year. We travel over by ferry with our dog and drive through France and Spain ,enjoying the sights and hotel stops. ( we treat it as our holidays)At the beggining we had a car with UK plates which we understood can be used for up to 6 months before having to be out of Spain- now we have a Spanish bought car.Taking a car out of spain could be taken to Gibralter(as part of a holiday) so it may not be a problem.

We have found that getting a Spanish car was no problem. The insurance is cheaper than Uk- not a lot,but still saves .The insurance covers the car for any driver over 26 so you wont have to do separate insurance per person.We have used this after an accident that was  our fault and we kept our no-claims and were supplied with  a free coutesy car and taxi to collect and return .

Just try and see how easy it is and  I,m sure that you will enjoy the experience. - not all Brits'  argue the toss' as it may seem from earlier postings !!!





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03 Mar 2012 18:23 by PablodeRonda Star rating in Ronda (Málaga). 73 posts Send private message

A couple of points for clarification:

1. The A4 green sheet (commonly referred to - wrongly - as a residence certificate). As of a few months back you can now get a credit card sized version (10.20 euros) from the policía local. I object to paying for it, but got one anyway as it's much easier to carry round than the A4 sheet which gets dog-eared and tears eventually.

2. Carrying ID. It's is no longer a legal requirement to carry your passport, but not all police officers know this! So, it's advisable to do so, just to make life easier.

In practice, I invariably use my UK driving licence for ID. As for my NIE I rarely have to show proof of it, as I know it off by heart and just quote it to whoever requires it.



_______________________
We have a couple of rental properties, Villa Indiana in Ronda and Casa Rita in Montejaque. Take a look at www.secretserrania.com



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04 Mar 2012 00:56 by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5247 posts Send private message

Pablo. 
 
Great to see you repeating the point about the EU  Citizen Residents Cert not bein g a Residencia !  (I have had a lot of stick when I have tried to make that clear).
 
I am in Malaysia at present so cannot check.
 
 Is the credit card sized version now being issued everywhere in Spain ?     It was on trial at only a few places.
 
.Carrying ID.  
                                           How has the credit card sized version been amended to come legal ID ?   As you say the green sheet was marked that it was not.
 
And
             You say,  from the policía local.  
 
Are you saying the government have changed their system and that it is no longer the Policia National who deal with registration ?





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04 Mar 2012 01:09 by PablodeRonda Star rating in Ronda (Málaga). 73 posts Send private message

Just to clarify - the green card is NOT valid as ID, just like the A4 sheet wasn't. I got mine in Andalucía. I assumed it was country-wide but may not be.

Sorry, my error, I meant policía nacional.



_______________________
We have a couple of rental properties, Villa Indiana in Ronda and Casa Rita in Montejaque. Take a look at www.secretserrania.com



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04 Mar 2012 01:50 by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5247 posts Send private message

Thanks Pablo,
 
I don't think that even in Andalusia the credit card sized is issued everywhere.
 
So we are as we were on the ID requirements.
 
Only a Residencia which is still VALID (not expired) and in the case of UK nationals, where we have no national ID card, ONLY the original passport or a copy which has been authenticated by the British Consulter (no where else) are legal IDs
 
 
I know that we all get away with other bits of paper( Excuise but I will say that again, before I get attacked:   I know that we all get away with other bits of paper)  but if one goes to the Court, the police, a notary to sign an official document, then it is most unlikely that anything other than the legal ID will be accepted.





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