Stub it out in Spain

Published on 11/15/2006 in Spanish Culture

Every year thousands of people give up smoking, if not for the obvious health reasons but also because it burns a hole in your pocket. Some might be motivated by the thought of using the extra cash for flying back and forwards to Spain during the year. I am sure that some might even find that if they put away the money that they would have spent on cigarettes; within a few years they could have the deposit for another off-plan!

With careful planning and a bit of research by the end of February, you could use the funds to fly out to Spain to check up on the progress of your current off plan investment. However, for the newly ex-smoker, two months is still early days and Spain, whose national sport is smoking, might offer too much temptation.

We have all been there in a Spanish restaurant, savouring a great fish dish, when your swordfish is suddenly infused with essence of tobacco. It doesn’t matter how you position yourself on your seat, try moving but there’s no escape. Why? Because it’s all around. Everybody is doing it, puffing in synchrony. Cough and wave all you like, nobody cares. You’re in Spain where smoking is a “healthy” part of socialising and the unsociable, non-smoker freak is ignored.

However, times are changing. Or rather, new laws, which came into effect on the 1st January, are enforcing changes. For a start, after years of leaving the bank smelling like an ashtray, smoking has been banned in the workplace. Those of you bothered by smoke when eating out take your tape measure out with you and make sure you book tables in restaurants bigger than 100 square metres in size. It is in bars and restaurants of this size, that owners are legally obliged to create designated non-smoking areas.

Again, those of you disgusted by the stench of smoke which tends to be absorbed by hair and clothes will be relieved to know that the ban has been extended to lifts, cash machines, bus stations, trains and ferries.

The objective of the law is to protect the rights of those once ignored non-smokers and support those trying to quit. Those who break it face fines of up to 600 Euros. Nevertheless, this calls for a cultural change as smoking is an integral part of the Spanish lifestyle and is not yet considered unfashionable as it is in the UK and US. Also, bearing in mind that they lived under a dictatorship for many years, the Spanish are hardly going to take kindly to being told what to do again.

So, if you new ex-smokers are planning to come out in a couple of month’s time I can’t guarantee that Spain will be temptation free, although you might stand a better chance of avoiding it than in the past. Just don’t be tempted by the cheap cartons!

Written by: Susan Pedalino

About the author:

Women In Spain

Right arrow icon Send to friends   Right arrow icon Printer friendly version    Right arrow icon Submit your own article


Only registered users can comment on this article. Please Sign In or Register now.

Comment Using Facebook:

Related articles in this category

A Culture of Benidorm

A Guide to Almeria City

A Guide To The Festivals Of Murcia

A History Of The Spanish Civil War

All About Albarino Wine

All About Tapas

All About Tempting Tempranillo

All You Need To Know About Spanish Wine

An American's Perspective of Spanish Food

Avoiding Misunderstandings In Spanish When You Like Somebody

Books Set in Spain - Five Novels to Read Before You Travel

Celebrating New Year's Eve in Spain

Christmas in Spain

Christmas Shopping in Spain

Devotion - Spain Celebrates Easter

Do you speak Spanish? What do we mean when we ask if someone speaks Spanish?

Easter in Spain

El Grumpy Gringo - Arts & Crafts

El Grumpy Gringo - At the Butchers

El Grumpy Gringo - Get A Heater!

El Grumpy Gringo - Good Old Telefonica!

El Grumpy Gringo - It ain’t ‘arf hot chum!

El Grumpy Gringo - Labels Over Labels

El Grumpy Gringo - Manners Maketh The Man (or Woman)

El Grumpy Gringo - Signposts

Experience Barcelona's Festival Spirit

Exploring The World Of Spanish Wines

Expose Your Child To Spanish

Five Ways Not to Insult the Locals in Barcelona

Flamenco Music - Is it really from Spain?

Follow The Festive Fun Across Spain

From Colonisation To Loss Of Empire; Nationalism And Decline In 19th Century Spanish And Colonial Art

From the Morris Dance to the Flamenco

Gaudi - Barcelona's Most Famous Attraction

Getting Close To The Spanish

Guggenheim Museum Bilboa

Halloween In Spain

Housing Bubble - Underground Living in Lanzarote

How not to give up learning Spanish

How To Kiss A Spaniard

How to Make Spanish Chorizo Sausage

Jamon Serrano - Typical Spanish Ham

La Tomatina Tomato Fight, Buñol Valencia

Language Swap

Learning Spanish - You can do it!

Learning Spanish with Speekee - A Review

Menu of The Day - A Cheap Meal In Spain

Old Friends in New Spain

Pollo al Ajillo - How to Cook the Classic Spanish Garlic Chicken

Processions, Processions, Processions: Semana Santa

Salvador Dali: Son of Girona

Save the Duero

Sherry or Jerez?

Spain After Franco

Spain/UK – A Study of Cultures

Spanish Cava Wine - A Better Alternative to Champagne?

Spanish Culture Has Been Shaped by Numerous Civilizations

Spanish Lies – Book Review

Spanish Sparkling Wine - Four Things to Know About Cava

Sporting Traditions on Gran Canaria

Stub it out in Spain

The Benefits of NOT Learning Spanish

The Magic of the Flamenco Guitar

The Mediterranean Modernistes of Barcelona

The Most Famous Spanish Explorers

The National Art Museum Of Catalonia

The Sirens of La Gomera

The Three Kings - Los Reyes Magos

This Must be New Spain

Top Tips For Learning Spanish - By A 'Mature' Expat

Tortilla Española - Spanish Omelette

Travel, Culture and Study in Spain

Watching TV in Spain

What Makes Spaniards Spaniards?

What We Can Learn From The Spanish

When Cultural Characters Conflict

Why is Spain One of the Most Corrupt Democratic Countries in the world?

Why Spaniards Can Survive La Crisis

Zapping in Spain

Click here for a list of all the articles from our magazine 

Spain insurance services

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse you are agreeing to our use of cookies. More information here. x