Spain Explained

A guide for foreigners on every aspect of safe property ownership in Spain

Posts filtered by Life in Spain

Changes to British passport applications

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. For British National residents in Spain it used to be possible to obtain a new British passport from Madrid. Since the 13th May, this option has been removed. All applications now need to be sent directly to the Identity and Passport Service (IPS) in Belfast. Although […]

Read more

Health care entitlement in Spain

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. Ensuring you have access to health care in Spain is at the top of every Spanish property owner’s agenda. We are aware that there is a lot of confusion around entitlements and what Spanish health care you can access with which card. There are three main […]

Read more

Who’s the most depressed in Europe?

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. There is no doubt that it is harder to scowl than to smile when the sun is shining. The wonderful weather makes such a difference to your outlook as well as your way of life.  But is this just an impression we get or is there […]

Read more

You can’t beat Benidorm

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. For as long as most people can remember, Benidorm has been a household name. Unfortunately its reputation isn’t always a desirable one. For many, this Costa Blanca seaside town is the epitomy of bad behaviour abroad, with a variety of nationalities throwing caution to the wind […]

Read more

Valencia – something for everyone

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. Valencia has had some bad press. Most people now have heard about the extravagant years when money was no object and bizarre buildings and projects were springing up all over the city. But to only see Valencia in this light is to do it an injustice. […]

Read more

Hospitals in Spain

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. Experiences will always differ. However, by and large, the health care in Spain is good. The Spanish hospitals are clean, the service efficient and the investigations into whatever your ailment is, are thorough. However, there are differences in the approach taken here that are worthwhile you […]

Read more

Spanish traffic fines (multas de trafico)

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. Probably everyone has been caught out at some time whilst driving in Spain. Sometimes you know you’ve taken a risk and perhaps allowed your attention to  drift from the speed dial. Other times it’s a genuine lack of awareness. This can be particularly common when you’re […]

Read more

The meaning of Ábaco

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. Learning another language isn’t easy. There are all those verbs to learn, tenses to navigate, masculine and feminine to commit to memory and many words that sound so similar but one wrong vowel and it could change the whole meaning. So any little help along the […]

Read more

What to do if your electricity is cut off in Spain

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. We rely so much on our services that when they are cut off it comes as something of a shock. If you lose your electricity in Spain, in particular, you suddenly realise just how much you rely on it. There’s no television, internet, phone line. You […]

Read more

The Camino de Santiago

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. There are many wonderful holiday destinations in Spain, and they don’t just involve lying on a beach. A fantastic holiday experience I have had was walking the ´Camino de Santiago’. To walk the ‘Camino de Santiago’ or the Way of St. James is included on the […]

Read more

Spain – rich in cultural heritage

Last updated on April 22nd, 2020 at 01:33 pm. When you tell people that you live in Spain or have a house there, their first thought is usually of hot weather and beaches. The Spanish coastline is famous and people from across the world like to holiday here for just that reason – it’s hot […]

Read more

The trains in Spain

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. Spain has a good reputation for the construction of its Spanish high-speed trains. Its AVE are the fastest trains in the world with a speed of up to 300 km/h (186 mph). Spain manufactured the first high speed train in the middle east and has been […]

Read more

The blanket trip

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. The subject of blanket trips in Spain seems to attract very different opinions. For some people these ‘free’ trips with a hidden agenda are something to be avoided. For others they are a good way of spending a day at someone else’s expense. In case you […]

Read more

Improving safety on the roads

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. Ideally, every driver should have to have an induction into the main rules operating in their new terrain. In practice this doesn’t happen and foreign drivers find themselves dropped in at the deep end in a system that can be quite different from the one they’re […]

Read more

Prepare for higher Spanish electricity bills

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. When asked about the cost of living in Spain, most people will reply that in most respects it is cheaper than they are used to in their home country. The cost of food, drinks, even taxes, can be significantly lower. However, one cost that seems to […]

Read more

It’s Christmas!

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. What does Christmas mean to you? Is it a time to reflect and remember, a time to look forward and plan or a time – just to get over? The yuletide season has a habit of bringing out the best and worst in people. Families squashed […]

Read more

Burst pipes in Spain

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. There’s one story that keeps cropping up every so often in the free paper. The story goes like this. Someone receives a water bill for an extortionate amount of money and hasn’t got a clue why. Burst pipes are a common problem in Spain. It’s a […]

Read more

Abaco service in seven languages

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. Being able to communicate well is very important, no matter what your job. However, if you work in an international organization like Ábaco Advisers it’s not only important to communicate in your native language but in other languages too. We’re quite a multi-lingual lot! Between us […]

Read more

Life’s A Beach

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. Just because you live in Spain does not mean that you don’t need a holiday! That’s one of the reasons why the Spanish Imserso holiday programme has been so successful. Imserso is subsidised by the Spanish Government and enables resident pensioners in Spain to access affordable […]

Read more

Save the children

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. You might not expect a legal and tax form to have much to do with children. Generally we don’t – except for looking after our own! However, we do recognise that not all children across the world are as privileged as our own offspring. ‘Save the […]

Read more

Ábaco visits your clubs and societies

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. Difficulties with communication is a major issue for many foreigners in Spain. It is a wonderful country but you can feel confused by legislation, documentation and procedures. People often don’t know who to ask or trust. We know that. This is one reason why we are […]

Read more

Almería

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. The variety of landscape in Spain as you travel from one region to another never fails to amaze me. From the greenery of the north to the deserts of the south, you’ve got every shade in between. The southern province of Almería is certainly inspiring with […]

Read more

Cinema in Spain

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. If you live in or near a major town or city, there should be a cinema within your reach. The difficulty for many non-Spanish residents, is, as you might expect, that the films will be in Spanish. If you are lucky some cinemas do show English-speaking […]

Read more

The ‘Dama de Elche’ comes home

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. Everyone recognises how important it is that historical artefacts are preserved and displayed for as many people to see, enjoyed and learn from as possible. But when one is taken out of the country from under your noses only days after discovery, it’s no wonder that […]

Read more

Theme parks in Spain

Last updated on September 13th, 2019 at 09:11 am. Spain has accrued, over the years, its own small selection of theme parks. Terra Mitica in Benidorm and Port Aventura in Tarragona are perhaps the best known. It looks like there are plans for them to be joined by possibly three more parks across the country. […]

Read more