Living in Spain as a Non-Resident

Written by: David Scott

Did you know there are more than 1,500,000 Americans in Spain right now? This shouldn’t surprise you since after all, Spain is one of the cheapest countries to live in, even as a foreigner. A country that provides easy access to countries in the EU region and the United States and has some of the most beautiful cities you’ll ever set your eyes on – it’s no surprise that people are looking to retire and spend the remainder of their lives there.

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    If you, as an American, would love to move to Spain, either as a student or as an expatriate, then you’re reading the right article. In this article, we will discuss the practicalities of residing in Spain, including the benefits, job opportunities, and much more. 

    Why is Spain So Popular for US Expats?

    For many, what comes to mind when they hear the word Spain is the lovely scenery and mild weather. Spain is known for its Flamenco, food, siesta, arts, literature, Moorish heritage, wine, and of course, bullfights. Read on for some reasons why people choose to move to Spain. 

    High Quality of Life

    Spain’s active lifestyle is much more relaxed than some from the US are accustomed to. Instead, everything revolves around the Spanish spirit – one that recommends enjoying life as much as possible. You’ll leave behind the culture of hustle and rushing in the US for a slower, relaxed pace.

    In Spain, many typically enjoy an afternoon siesta. It is common for businesses to close during this time and many will nap or rest, taking a break from work. This happens during the hottest parts of the day, from around 2pm to 5pm. After this, people go out for dinner or continue their everyday routines. 

    Rich History, Art and Culture

    Many associate Spain with its rich history and culture, contributing to the quality of life there. With all sorts of excellent food and impressive architecture, the culture continues to thrive and attract new people. This manes Spain a popular destination for vacations and long stays alike. Tapas, bullfighting, night life, soccer games, historic architecture – there is truly something for everyone. 

    Many Expat Communities 

    Moving to a new country is complex, and it’s indeed a challenging process. Leaving behind families and friends ultimately means that all new residents must build a new social circle. However, it seems that this isn’t difficult at all in Spain. Since there are already pre existing groups of American expatriates, this assures many people that there will already be a community for them in Spain.

    Top Benefits of Living in Spain 

    So, what exactly drives people to stay in Spain, rather than just visit? This can be answered by looking into the country’s culture and comparing it to that of the US. When you choose to live in Spain, you join a vibrant expat community and rich culture and food scene.

    Retirement and Family Friendly

    When looking for places to retire, it is a priority for many that their family and friends are able to stay close to them and maintain family relationships. There are even visas in place, like the family reunion Visa, that allow loved ones to easily join their families in Spain. Without a doubt, Spain is a retirement-friendly country with a free top-notch healthcare system and low property costs. 

    Excellent, Dependable Healthcare

    Spain’s healthcare system is one of the best public healthcare systems in the world. And those that work and live in Spain also get free access to their general healthcare. Gaining access to their healthcare system isn’t as complex as one might think, and is significantly more straightforward than doing so in the US. 

    Easy to Acquire Visa 

    Getting a visa in Spain as an American is relatively easy. The Investor visa called the Golden Visa grants you and your entire family working access. All you have to do is invest a minimum of €500,000 in any property you choose. Meanwhile, the non-lucrative visa is another type of visa that lets you reside in the country under the condition that you have enough money to support yourself. 

    Ideal Jobs in Spain for Americans and Other International Citizens 

    Is it possible for expats to find legal job opportunities in Spain? The answer to that question is yes. While the job market is a bit complex and challenging, some job sectors and industries are constantly searching for skilled workers. So, if, as an expat, you need a job in Spain, make sure you’ve got the skills to do these jobs, and you’ll be a step closer to finding your preferred position. 

    IT Jobs 

    If you have the skills to work competently in the IT industry, there are lots of IT jobs available for you to try out. For example, you can find employment doing software testing, programming, coding, and iOS and Android development. Programming skills translate across languages and cultures, making them a good fit for work abroad. 

    Medical Practitioner Jobs 

    Medicine is another industry whose skill set translates across languages and cultures. Childcare professionals, elderly care professionals, and childcare professionals are some of the famous and in-demand medical jobs in Spain right now.

    Tourism and Hospitality 

    If you plan to travel to Spain as an expat, this is one industry worth exploring if you know that you’ll need an easy to acquire job during your travels. Restaurant, bartending, and catering are some options you have to explore as an American if you need a job in Spain. You’ll also have a high chance of finding these types of work in popular tourist destinations like Seville, Madrid, and Barcelona. This is a great fit for younger travelers or those who want a more flexible job.

    If you are contemplating traveling to Spain and would love to experience a quality life, Spain will give you most (if not all) of that and much more. Contrary to what you might have heard, living in Spain as a non-resident isn’t as hard as one might think. At the end of it all, you won’t regret that decision.

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