Moving your big family to Spain: What to expect

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Moving your big family to Spain is a significant step, presenting both exciting opportunities and important decisions. Known for its vibrant culture and diverse landscapes, Spain offers a wonderful environment for families. There are plenty of components to understand about this move. Considering the cost of living and consulting with international relocation companies can help ensure a smooth transition. Here are some of the things you can expect for your family’s transition to a joyful Spanish life.

Know the necessary visa and residency requirements in Spain

Before you approach the relocation, familiarize yourself with the visa and residency requirements. US citizens planning to stay longer than 90 days need a long-term visa, such as a non-lucrative or family reunification visa. Applying for residency as a family unit might streamline the process, allowing for a smoother transition for all members. If you are moving from USA to Spain, in order to avoid unnecessary delays, it is crucial to ensure all documentation, including proof of financial means and health insurance. Remember that Spain has strict requirements that vary depending on the type of visa you are applying for. Regularly check with Spanish consulates for the most recent and detailed information, as regulations can change. Additionally, consider consulting with an immigration lawyer who is familiar with Spanish law to guide you through this complex process.

A grey passport with a small red toy plane
Have all the documents ready before moving your big family to Spain

Spain’s education system consists of primary, middle, and high school levels, with mandatory education from ages 6 to 16. Public schools are free and funded by the government, while semi-private schools are partially government-funded and may require a small fee. Private schools operate independently and usually have higher tuition fees. If language is a concern, international and bilingual schools are widely available, offering a curriculum in English and providing a smoother transition for your children. Music schools are also abundant in Spain. All these options are held to a high educational standard. If your family has special belongings, such as a piano, that you wish to bring to Spain, it might be worth contacting international piano movers for a safe and hassle-free relocation.

What can you expect when it comes to healthcare in Spain?

Healthcare in Spain is renowned for its quality and is consistently ranked among the best in the world. US citizens who move to Spain can opt for private insurance or, if eligible, benefit from the Spanish National Health System (SNS), which provides comprehensive and mostly free healthcare services. Note that Medicare and US-based insurance typically won’t cover you abroad, so it is vital to explore your options. Check whether your insurance company offers an international plan that could cover your family in Spain. Additionally, private healthcare in Spain is relatively affordable compared to the US, and many choose this route for shorter waiting times and wider choices of doctors.

Know about the cost of living and housing before moving your big family to Spain

Spain’s cost of living varies regionally, but it is generally lower than in the US. However, relocating your big family to Spain requires careful budget planning. Major cities like Madrid and Barcelona tend to have higher living costs, including housing, education, and daily expenses. Hire international moving quotes to help you calculate the cost of relocating your belongings. Here are some of the major cities in pain and their average rent costs, such as:

  • Barcelona – $1,720
  • Madrid – $1,642
  • Valencia – $1,405
  • Seville – $1,234
  • Malaga – $1,388
  • Tenerife – $1,305

Utility bills, groceries, and transportation are essential considerations as well. Smaller cities and rural areas typically offer a more affordable lifestyle with the added benefit of a more relaxed environment. Remember to factor in additional costs, such as health insurance, school fees, and leisure activities, as they can significantly impact your monthly budget.

Fun and entertaining activities in Spain for the whole family

Spain is brimming with family activities that cater to a diverse range of interests, from exploring historical sites like the Alhambra in Granada to relaxing on the beautiful beaches of Costa Brava. Consider visiting interactive museums such as the CosmoCaixa in Barcelona, where children can learn through hands-on exhibits, or exploring nature reserves like the Doñana National Park, which offers a unique opportunity for kids to connect with nature.

A seafood paella
Enjoy some amazing cuisine in Spain

Going on a gastronomic adventure and trying local cuisine, from paella in Valencia to tapas in Seville, can be both delicious and educational. Each region has its unique attractions, cultural festivals, and local traditions. Every single one of them promises fun, bonding, and memorable learning experiences for the entire family. Whether your family enjoys outdoor adventures, arts and culture, or simply soaking up the sun, Spain offers a rich array of options that can make moving here an enriching experience for all.

The best cities for your big family to live

Considering moving your big family to Spain? Research suggests Valencia, Zaragoza, and Málaga as top choices for families. Valencia, known for its beaches and arts scene, boasts a lower cost of living compared to major cities like Madrid and Barcelona. To assist you with your move, consider international relocation services that specialize in family relocations and can help make the process more convenient for you. Zaragoza, a historic and culturally rich city, is a significant educational center with numerous high-quality schools. Málaga, with its sunny climate and coastal location, offers an excellent quality of life and extensive healthcare services.

All three cities present abundant recreational activities, from local festivals to parks and museums. It’s important to review each city’s attributes in depth, considering factors like job opportunities, local culture, and safety, and to evaluate how they align with your family’s needs and lifestyle. Finding the right city is a critical step in successfully moving to Spain and ensuring that your new life abroad is as rewarding and enjoyable as possible.

Ways for your family to integrate into the Spanish society

Integration is key to enjoying your new life after the move. Spaniards cherish outdoor activities, especially in spring and summer. It’s common to see families leisurely socializing over tapas at local bars, engaging in outdoor sports, or partaking in the traditional evening stroll, known as the paseo. Encourage your family to participate, as it’s a delightful way to immerse yourselves in Spanish culture.

Soccer is a great way to enjoy yourself after moving your big family to Spain
Soccer is a great way to get to know the local culture

Join local community groups or clubs, whether they’re focused on sports, arts, or language exchanges. Above all, they offer excellent opportunities for your family to make new friends and feel part of the community. Enrolling your children in local schools, rather than international ones, can also enhance integration, as it allows your kids to form friendships with Spanish peers and helps the whole family become fluent in Spanish more quickly, deepening your connection to your new home.

Feel at home in Spain with your big family

Moving your big family to Spain is a life-changing experience, rich with opportunities for growth and exploration. From understanding the essential visa and residency requirements to choosing the best city that aligns with your family’s needs, being prepared will be the key to success. Embrace the vibrant culture, utilize the excellent services available, and integrate into the Spanish way of life, and you will find your family thriving in this beautiful country. Overall, you can expect this country to be the perfect home for your family.



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