Hi. New guy here looking to move to Spain eventually

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26 Sep 2012 13:03 by orangecat Star rating. 10 posts Send private message


I am new to these forums and everybody seems so helpful. My Wife and I are looking to move to Spain in the future and are trawling the forums for as much information as possible as so how it's done, cost of living, jobs, location and culture. We're even going to learn Spanish before we go!

Speak to you all soon hopefully


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26 Sep 2012 13:17 by Sanchez1 Star rating. 853 posts Send private message

It's probably the worst possible time to move to Spain to be honest.  There are no jobs in Spain, so you will need a big savings pot if you want to survive here.

Cost of living is similar to the UK now, but salaries are around half the UK equivalent.


Read my blog: Spain Money Saving Tips and Offers 

Use TransferWise to send money abroad. A lot cheaper than the bank and other online currency exchanges!.



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26 Sep 2012 13:19 by cualain Star rating in Ireland. 1 posts Send private message

Bienviendo orangecat 

I'm thinking along the same lines as yourself and your wife.  Are you looking at any particular area?  I'm inclined towards the southern coast myself.

Wishing you all the best with your quest.

tropical fish


Bríd Ní Chualáin http://www.eyeonspain.com/blogs/feicim.aspxwww.feicim.com

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26 Sep 2012 13:24 by orangecat Star rating. 10 posts Send private message

 @Sanchez1 - We are looking to the future (maybe 1-2 years from now). The plan is to become as fluent in Spanish as possible and for me to get a TEFL Diploma. My Wife will probably look at working part time in a restaurant or bar. We are going to be bringing a nice chunk of saving which would keep up going for 2 years if we were both unemployed.

@cualain - Gracias, encantado! (I hope that translates to "Thank you, pleased to meet you"). We don't know any areas in Spain but we are starting to do the research now. We are both super excited to pack up and go but will definitely wait a good year or two before doing so. We need to research hard about everything! All the best to you too.


Employment will be a large factor in our search. Who can live without money right?

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26 Sep 2012 13:32 by Sanchez1 Star rating. 853 posts Send private message


Do you really think Spain's problems will be over in 2 year's time?  Unemployment is forecast to continue rising for the next 2 years.

Maybe try in 10 years time. 

There are also loads of TEFL teachers (and fully qualified teachers) in Spain, so you will have a lot of competiton.  You're only likely to get 10 euros per hour tops, which is the same as what cleaners charge.

Sorry to be so negative, but this is the reality of Spain today.


Read my blog: Spain Money Saving Tips and Offers 

Use TransferWise to send money abroad. A lot cheaper than the bank and other online currency exchanges!.



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26 Sep 2012 14:12 by orangecat Star rating. 10 posts Send private message


I appreciate times are bad but we wouldn't go unless we had employment first. TEFL is just one idea, like I say we are at the very first stages of planning so lots to soak up yet. There must be other people living out there and getting along fine. I understand you are just trying to help, thank you.

Between us I am an IT professional and my Wife is an Insurance professional. We are willing to retrain too. Lots to think about!

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26 Sep 2012 14:16 by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5247 posts Send private message

This is info from a news sheet which I edit:-   

Half a million over 55 unemployed

The Federation of Employment Agencies report that the number of unemployed aged over 55 has increased from 131,700 in 2007,  to 495,700 today.  Seven out of ten in this group have been jobless for more than 1 year.   42.7% of the long term, elderly, unemployed are women.

More immigrants leaving Spain

More and more foreign workers are leaving Spain.  The Social Security system reveals that 65,517 left in August, 81,631 above that of last year. There are now 1,748,415 foreigners contributing to the system, which include 283,141 Romanians, 65,037 Italians, 55,781 Bulgarians, 50,919 British and 44,848 Portuguese.

Forty percent of the immigrants live in Catalonia and Madrid, followed by Andalucía with 203,522, Valencia 179.218, Baleares 86.954, Murcia 78.035 and The Canaries 77.930.

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26 Sep 2012 14:43 by Harry07 Star rating. 205 posts Send private message

Good luck to you regardless.

A practical flexible approach & sound planning is important eg an open minded pre trip to Spain may be a good investment !!



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26 Sep 2012 14:44 by aly not in spain Star rating in Not far from Torre. 74 posts Send private message

Might I suggest that to cut down on 'forum trawling' - where you may be given wrong information - as another  thread today has shown - you go to your local Waterstones or similar and buy some of the books in the 'Survival' series - Buying a house in Spain, Making a living in Spain, etc. and get the most up to date editions. (You can usually get old editions at car boots!).

They will give you a good grounding in the basics and things to think about. You can then ask specific questions on forums, like opinions on a certain area, for example.

I'm not going to say you should not come to Spain, but be absolutely certain you are willing to spend that chunk of savings in the event of not getting work. And yes, you should definitely learn Spanish before you come.

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26 Sep 2012 14:53 by Sanchez1 Star rating. 853 posts Send private message


Between us I am an IT professional and my Wife is an Insurance professional. We are willing to retrain too. Lots to think about!

I think you would both stand a good chance of getting jobs in Gibraltar then.  So you may want to look at the western Costa del Sol and Costa de la Luz areas.


Read my blog: Spain Money Saving Tips and Offers 

Use TransferWise to send money abroad. A lot cheaper than the bank and other online currency exchanges!.



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26 Sep 2012 17:15 by floella Star rating in SE Spain. 789 posts Send private message

One Spanish friend, early 40´s, fluent in 4 languages and has a degree in IT and Business studies,  has had BIG trouble finding work . After 3 years of applying for everything and anything  he has ,through contacts, finally secured a 12 month only contract with the Ayuntamiento in Barcelona.

Another bilingual Spanish friend has finally been given a contract for a job she has been doing for a year. But to secure the contract her hours were extended from a 45 hour week to 60 !! with no increase in salary, which was peanuts compared to the equivilant in UK. To complain would mean sans job .

Things maybe hard in the UK but, sorry to be so pessamistic, here the situation is desperate and likely to get much worse.

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26 Sep 2012 21:43 by Nicky71 Star rating in Orihuela/Sussex. 37 posts Send private message

Nicky71´s avatar


Im thinking of doing the same as you. I already have a place here in near Orihuela. At the moment Im spending all the time I can here in Spain and I go home to work. I havent got any qualifications but i get offers of Spanish people wanting English conversation, cleaning. I dont speak a word of Spanish. I know people here that have made the move. One lady teaches arobics in the sports centre and her husband has a realy good job on a golf course. My friends here that are working are get up and go for it type people. It all depends on ypur attitude. When you come and visit make as many Spanish frends as possable. there are some very sad situations and some great ones too.

Cheers Luv

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26 Sep 2012 23:56 by maddiemack Star rating in Grantham, Lincolnshi.... 194 posts Send private message

After reading the thread, 'What are your thoughts on Spain's economic crisis?' I am really curious to know why any of you want to move to Spain?  Is it just for an adventure or are you expecting life to be much better in Spain than it is where you live at the moment?  By the way, I ask the question purely out of curiosity.  I am in no position to say whether it's a good idea or not! 


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27 Sep 2012 11:27 by orangecat Star rating. 10 posts Send private message

 It seems there is a lot of mixed opinions here ranging from doom and gloom to success stories. I understand about the economic situation but the whole world is suffering at the moment, not just Spain. Maybe different people have different situations and it's good to gather as much info as possible.

Thanks for the replies.

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27 Sep 2012 11:48 by AsturianDiary Star rating. 1 posts Send private message

Hi Orangecat,

Yes, economically speaking there is a LOT of doom and gloom here in Spain. But I'm guessing your decision to move here is not necessarily financially motivated. Spain has a lot of other positives to offer - for me it's about living somewhere truly beautiful and unspoilt with access to the great outdoors, a kind climate and with a lot less people, traffic and stress.

Sure, you need tobe realistic and to earn a living wage, whatever that may be for you - we are subsisting on a lot less than we were living on in the UK, but that's a happy choice for me. (We're also working less hours.)

TEFL is always a great idea -  learning English is still a boom industry here as many Spaniards see it as one of the only ways to make themselves more employable or to make emigration a viable possibility. With the increase in bilingual state schools there is also an increase in the need for extra tuition in English - there are a lot of students who need to take exams in all subjects through English, even though they are not being taught by native speakers or, in some cases, to a high enough level.

Good luck with your plans.



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27 Sep 2012 11:58 by maddiemack Star rating in Grantham, Lincolnshi.... 194 posts Send private message

You're absolutely right, orangecat.  Gather as much information as possible to ensure a move to Spain isn't any more difficutl than it needs to be.  As you've noted, there are some very knowledgeable folks on this site that frequently put forward their experiences to help others make decisions and to answer any questions you may have.  We're in the fortunate position of being newly retired and, from the information we've gathered on site and from personal experience, life in Spain should prove to be easier for us than for anyone that needs to work to make ends meet. Further news this morning concerning the marches in Spain in protest at the lack of jobs and opportunities for young people...it was mentioned that many Spaniards were going to make their way to the UK once the protest march is over 

Perhaps Gibraltar is a good place to concentrate a move towards, for anyone looking for work, as previously mentioned on this thread. The last time we stayed in the Duquesa area, there was only one other person living in the small block of apartments where we stayed.  He had the best of both worlds.....a secure (as secure as it gets) job in very busy Gibraltar and a quiet place to come home to in the evening on a beautiful complex....at a very low rent. The fact that the complex is rarely more than 25% occupied at any time is, as far as he was concerned, a real bonus!


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27 Sep 2012 12:34 by orangecat Star rating. 10 posts Send private message

 Hi AsturianDiary - Thanks for the response. You're right, it's not a financial move at all. My Wife and I have good job and earn great salaries and live a comfortable lifestyle but we are bored and yearning for some change. We want to be able to live a slower paced, relaxed lifestyle without all the worries of modern living. To be able to sit outside of an evening or visit the local town restaurants. We don't want to be anywhere touristy and want to make a permanent move to a simpler life where "things" are not the be all an end all. Just to live happily and have a few euro for dining out at the end of the month will make us happy.

Like I say, we have savings and would be looking to get work (at least one of us) before making the permanent move. I am looking to get the TEFL Diploma and would happily work in a language school, maybe teaching commercially and/or private lessons too.


Hi maddiemack - Thanks for the response. Like I said, we are looking at a 2 year plan at the moment. No rush at all hance why we are researching early. It's a sad situation in Spain at the moment and hopefully things will work out for them. But then, look at Greece! Also isn't Britain currently in recession still? Where you stayed in Duquesa sounds amazing. Exactly what we're looking for! Somewhere quiet and peaceful to come home to.

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27 Sep 2012 14:22 by floella Star rating in SE Spain. 789 posts Send private message

It is not doom and gloom but people giving a realistic perspective on the situation in Spain and I wonder why people are so willing to give up good jobs , with all benefits that entails, in UK,on the chance of finding some work in a country that is in crisis. With worse ,I fear, to come.

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27 Sep 2012 14:42 by georgia Star rating in Algorfa (As seen on .... 1835 posts Send private message

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 Floella....doesn't that speak volumes of the state of the UK rather than the state of spain??

I find people do anything to escape the UK......the moral crisis in the UK is far greater than the finacial crisis here.

Dont for get you have two economies here...expat and indigenous.

www.taylorlandandpropertygroup.co.uk still here after all these years!

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27 Sep 2012 19:19 by tamaraessex Star rating in Colmenar, Malaga. 508 posts Send private message

tamaraessex´s avatar
Looking back at the original question, l am amazed at answers that say "This is the worst time to move to Spain".

When people move to a different country, there are the PEOPLE in that equation, as well as the COUNTRY. There have been lots of answers about Spain's economic situation, which is of course dire but don't forget that the UK is not great just now (and no l'm not so naive as to compare the two).

But the big variable in this is surely the people. And do you know, we all have hugely different and unique situations! So what might be a good time for one, is a bad time for another

I moved this summer. It was a GREAT time for me to do it. Because a few things all came together - my savings pot reaching the level needed to buy a little casita as the prices fell to meet my budget. My Spanish language reaching the level l felt confident in any situation without a dictionary. The exchange rate turning back in the right direction. My freedom from caring responsibilities and reduction in required income. And finally, the finding of the perfect home that suits me and my planned lifestyle.

So in what way could Forum members not knowing that context, announce that it would be the wrong time to move to Spain? For someone in a different situation, it might be. But it cannot be a blanket pronouncement.

My question to Orangecat therefore, is "What do you hope to gain from the move, and will you have an escape route if unforeseen obstacles arise in the first couple of years? Do keep coming back here, follow the relevant threads, follow the relevant blogs (mine is on the Eye on Spain blog list and is about the first faltering steps into my new Life amongst my new Spanish neighbours, called A Foot in Two Campos), and keep asking questions.

Good luck - the right time is when it's the right time for you and when the right property comes up.



 Blog about settling into a village house in the Axarquía. http://www.eyeonspain.com/blogs/tamara.aspx

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