Relocating to a new country is an exciting, albeit intricate, undertaking. This relocation plan is tailored for individuals or families considering a move to Spain, ensuring you have a comprehensive blueprint to guide your transition. The following steps will help you manage the intricacies of moving to Spain, from initial research to settling into your new home.

Pre-Departure Planning


Legal Requirements

Understand the visa and residency requirements for moving to Spain. Apply for the appropriate visa depending on your circumstances (employment, retirement, investment, etc.).

Area Selection

Identify which part of Spain suits your lifestyle, job opportunities, and climate preferences. Popular expat regions include the Costa Blanca, the Costa del Sol, and major cities like Madrid and Barcelona.

Housing Market

Research the housing market; whether you intend to rent or buy, become familiar with the local real estate norms.

Healthcare System

Familiarise yourself with Spain’s healthcare system, including public health services and the need for private health insurance.

Financial Preparation

Create a budget for the move, including transport, accommodation, and living expenses. Also, research the cost of living in various Spanish regions.


If relocating with children, investigate international schooling options or the local education system. Contact schools for availability and requirements.


Travel Arrangements

Book your one-way flight to Spain, keeping in mind the best time to move with regard to weather and employment cycles.


While not essential, learning Spanish will greatly enhance your experience. Consider taking language classes or using language-learning apps.


Ensure all passports are up-to-date and gather the necessary documents for Spain non lucrative visa, work permits, housing, and setting up bank accounts.

Financial Arrangement

Set up a Spanish bank account and organise an initial transfer of funds. Investigate how to transfer your savings to Spain in the most cost-effective way.

Health Insurance

Decide whether you’ll use private health insurance and secure a policy that meets visa requirements.

International Movers

Compare quotes from international moving companies to ship your belongings and decide on what to take or leave behind.

Settling In

Upon Arrival


Secure temporary housing while you look for a permanent home.


Register with the local town hall (ayuntamiento) and obtain your foreign identity number (NIE), essential for all formal activities.


Open a local bank account and start setting up direct debits for utilities, rent, or mortgage.

Health Care

Register with the local healthcare centre and get acquainted with how to access medical services.

Ongoing Tasks


Visit properties and neighbourhoods to find permanent housing.


Familiarise yourself with the local public transport system or purchase a vehicle if needed.


Join local expat communities and social groups to make new friends and get support.

Utilities and Services

Set up your internet, mobile phone, and other utilities.

Cultural Adjustment

Immerse yourself in the culture by participating in local customs and events.

Legal and Administrative Matters


Understand your tax obligations in Spain and beware of tax treaties that might exist between Spain and your home country.


Complete your residency registration and understand the path to permanent residency or citizenship if desired.

Driving Licence

Check the validity of your current driving licence in Spain and the process for obtaining a Spanish licence if necessary.

Final Notes

The key to a successful relocation is planning and research. Regularly monitor updates regarding legal requirements, as these can change. Be flexible and patient as you adjust to your new home. Moving to Spain will present challenges, but with thorough preparation, your relocation will be as smooth as possible, opening the door to the exciting lifestyle that Spain offers. Buena suerte (good luck)!

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