Living in Spain

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Relocating to a different country is not just about finding a place to live.

If you are planning to move to the Costa del Sol permanently, there are practical issues that you will need consider from opening a bank account to becoming a resident or not.

Below you will find some basics to help you with your research about your new, exciting life in Spain.

NIE number

You will need to obtain a NIE (National Identity Number for Foreigners).
You can either do it yourself by going to the National Police station and filling in an application form, or if you prefer, you can obtain the services of a “gestor”, who can help you.

Social security

To receive state healthcare and to work you’ll need a social security number. Social Security numbers are obtained by going to your local social security office and filling in an application form. You will need your original passport plus a copy. If you are going to be employed by a company, they will usually pay your monthly contributions. If you are planning to work as self-employed (Autonomo), you will be responsible for your own payments.

Spanish Residency (Residencia)

If you plan to live in Spain permanently, you should consider applying for residency. Although this is not compulsory for EU citizens, it does offer a lot of benefits.

Bringing your foreign plated car to Spain

You can drive your car on the country of origin plates, but there are laws and rules that apply. For residents, you will need to change to Spanish plates within 30 days or your car can be impounded and you will be fined. Non-residents can use their car for 6 months during the year. As the rules change frequently, check what the current law on driving foreign plated cars in Spain is.

For more in-depth information, we have included some useful links to help you.