moving to Spain from USA

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Introduction

The beautiful weather, beaches, and culture of Spain make traveling there so amazing! The only thing better than vacationing there is to settle in this gorgeous country. It’s no wonder why Spain is one of Europe’s most popular tourist destinations.

Can Americans go to Spain? Of course, they can, and they should! With a rich history, amazing food, and fascinating culture, join the other Americans moving to Spain with this comprehensive guide on what to know and what to do in your exciting endeavor to move to Spain!

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What do I need to do to move to Spain from the USA?

In order to move to Spain from America, there are a couple of things you need to make a move successful. You might ask, “Do I need a visa to move to Spain from the USA?” And the answer to that is yes. You will need to obtain the appropriate visa to move to Spain! Chances are, you will opt for a permanent residency visa, although depending on your situation, other visas may be more appropriate.

To move to Spain in pursuit of a permanent residency visa, there are multiple leads that will make it smoother and easier in terms of emigrating to Spain. You can get an employment visa or a study visa if you are a student. However, be prepared if you plan to go down this path! 

You will need a signed work contract before you can enter Spain with an employment visa. Similarly, for a student or a study visa, you will need to show proof of enrollment and be in a Spanish college or university before you move to Spain.

Once you decide on a specific visa that can get you permanent residency, the next step is to make sure that you plan and make sure that your move is sorted. Have you found a way to move any of your belongings to Spain if necessary? Do you have a signed work contract if you are getting an employment visa? Where in Spain will you choose to live? 

These questions are important to answer before you move to Spain. To have a successful and stress-free time emigrating to Spain, figure out the details and be sure you have everything ready to move.

You’re probably wondering, “How long can a US citizen stay in Spain without a visa?,” and the answer to that is 90 days. This offers some flexibility when it comes to emigrating to Spain. The major take-away from this is first to understand what type of visa is best for you to obtain, and second, to figure out and plan the details of your move carefully!

How to move to Spain as an American?

How hard is it to move to Spain from the US? It’s actually quite a lengthy process; however, do not get discouraged! Obviously, you will need to obtain the appropriate visa depending on your needs, but that is only the first step. 

Once you sort the visa out, the next step is to find a place in the specific region you want to live in. When you are looking for a place to live, be sure to go there yourself to see what it’s like, as well as to meet your agent and, if you have one, your landlord. 

Be sure to be careful when you are signing papers, as certain landlords/agents in Spain are unfortunately known to scam or to overcharge. Look for reasonable prices and rates in the region you want to live in, such as Madrid, Barcelona, or Seville.

Additionally, you will need to find a way to ship your goods to Spain from America. It’s helpful to hire a professional moving company such as Earth Relocation that can assist you and take the stress away from your move.

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Cost of moving to Spain from USA

Before you move to Spain, considerations must be made as to how much it will cost. Fortunately, you have a few options. If you’re emigrating to Spain with everything you have, you most likely will need to move things via ocean freight.

When you don’t have enough goods to fill up your own container, we recommend “groupage containerization.” Partial container shipments are an economical solution for shipping overseas.

Earth Relocation has regular consolidation services from our New York & California locations to Spain through which you can save money on your ocean freight shipment. We pack your goods at your residence and transport them to our warehouse where we consolidate them with other cargo destined for the same area. Groupage containers afford the safety of containerization without the expense of a whole container. Prices start from $795 onwards and can vary depending upon the location & country you are going to.

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However, if you are an American moving to Spain with only the essentials, and you want them to arrive quickly, you might want to look into Air shipping, which is significantly more pricey.

Pros and Cons of living in Spain

When you are thinking about the move to Spain, it’s helpful to consider the pros and cons of living in Spain!

Pros
Cons
(1) Spain has amazing weather! Most people can agree that Spain has an amazing summer season, with warm temperatures and sunny skies. In fact, Spain’s average summer temperature is in the low 70’s Fahrenheit.
(1) Customer Service. Although not many people would think about this initially, it takes much longer to get service in Spain than it does in America. This doesn’t just apply to restaurants and shops, but also on the phone to agencies, consultants, and everything in between.
(2) Pets are welcome! If you are a pet-lover, you’ll be pleased to find out that Spain as a country is actually very pet friendly.
(2) Language Barrier! The majority of Spaniards do not speak fluent English, and so upon arrival, unless you know fluent Spanish, it may be tricky to get around and truly settle in.
(3) Easy to settle in! Spain has a fascinating and amazing culture, but it is very easy to get used to. There is not much of a culture shock moving to Spain.
(3) It can be loud. Spaniards, especially in urban areas are known to get very loud, sometimes going even past midnight. It’s important to consider getting a higher floor or soundproof walls.

Any US citizen who intends to get married in Italy must come to the Civil Registrar of the city with all the required documents, including a birth certificate, drivers’ license, authentic US passports, and an affidavit that states that the couple is free to marry. The couple must also bring two witnesses.

Buying property in Spain as an American

Before you move to Spain, you will need to have somewhere to live. Fortunately, buying a property in Spain is relatively simple, as the Spanish government does not have any specific requirements for foreigners. 

Americans moving to Spain will only need to get their financial number from a police station, provided you bring your passport with you. 

You will have to wait a few weeks to receive this number. After that, emigrating to Spain simply requires you to buy property, as if you buy a property with a price north of €500,000, you are eligible to receive a Golden visa, which grants you permanent residence status

Healthcare for retired expats in Spain ​

When you consider emigrating to Spain, the issue of healthcare should be something you think about beforehand. 

Americans moving to Spain are entitled to healthcare if they are working, are a visiting student under the age of 26, or are above the age of retirement. In order to claim health insurance from the government, after you move to Spain, you must register your address at the census at the local town hall, in order to receive a certificate of residency. 

Make sure you also have a social security number. Then, you will need to take both to the nearest social security office to apply for a health insurance card. 

Once you receive the card, you will be able to visit a doctor or pediatrician. However, you will need to be referred by your general practitioner to see a specialist. 

You will need to present this card whenever you see a physician and pick up prescription medicine in order to be able to use the public healthcare system.

The health insurance card covers care from doctors and hospitals, which means that it pays the fees for treatment from either of the two.

 It also covers treatment at home, which will be helpful to the elderly and disabled. However, it will not cover prescription medication completely. It will only cover 40-60% for most people, and 90% for pensioners. 

It also does not cover dental care. However, in Spain, charges for dental care are not very high, and dental coverage is not very expensive either.

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FAQs

Now, let’s answer some of the questions you may ask in the course of moving to Italy from the USA.

How to get a job in Spain as an American?

In order to get a job in Spain as an American, you will need to get a work permit, as well as have a residence visa, and ensure any references you have been translated into Spanish.

Following are the most popular jobs in Spain

  • automobiles
  • chemicals
  • food and beverages
  • medical equipment
  • metals and metal manufacturing
  • pharmaceuticals
  • ship building
  • textiles and apparel
  • tourism.

The average cost of living in Spain?

The cost of living in Spain is on average, 17% lower than the cost of living in America, and thus, is significantly cheaper. Additionally, rent is 42-50% cheaper than in America

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