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Retirement in Spain/in our 60's/from US

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kathianddennis
2/13/2015 15:45 EST

Reading a lot in this forum but not much on people like myself that are soon to retire and believe they have chosen Spain. Would love to hear more about how the transition was, how they chose a place to live, did they visit it first, what their daily days are like, how are they dealing with missing family and the budget they have each month, etc.

So far I have seen very little on this forum.. People post but don't get much response. Love to hear from people that really retire at retirement age, in their 60's, on social security or similar and take the plunge and move abroad. Was it scary, exciting, stressful. Love to hear it all.
Thanks! Kathi & Dennis

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Anciana
2/13/2015 17:29 EST

Ok, Kathi. I guess I am not typical, as I was born and bred in Europe and moved to the USA in my late 30s. I took an early retirement at 60 and decided to go back to Europe. I started in my home country of Sweden and after less than three months went to Almunecar, a picturesque pueblo blanco (white village) on Granada's coast. I liked it there: a happy blend of charming old Spain and modern global expat destination. I enjoyed it very much, but in less than a year my daughter suddenly got seriously ill while going through a divorce, so I decided to go back to States to be near her. She got well in about another year, but I got an offer of an assignment in Puerto Rico, so I unretired for several years and moved to that tropical part of USA. I love tropics. A couple of years later got tempted with another assignment, to Belize, so I went there. First fairly recently I decided to retire again and again came to Europe, planning on spending summers in Sweden and winters in Spain. I probably should mention that I had many shorter and a few longer overseas assignments as part of my professional life, so I am used to living in different countries, speaking different languages (I am fluent in five, but conversant in a few more), accustomed to various customs, habits, lifestyles. Thus no culture shock anywhere, no fears, just excitement, though there are always some minor annoyances, like the infamous Spanish bureaucracy. Budget: I am fairly flexible and Spain is relatively inexpensive comparing to Sweden, which is one of highest cost of living countries in the world - on average 30% cheaper. I do enjoy EU health care and the humane cost of it - but that applies to EU citizens. non EU citizens need health insurance. A minus with Spain for Americans is an inconvenient tax treaty, while neighboring Portugal offers now 10 years of tax freedom, which makes more and more people move there from Spain - and other places.

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AlPavarotti
5/2/2015 22:20 EST

Of course, the first thing you have to do is visit the country. The differences in culture that may not bother other people may very well bother you, and so forth. The winter in the northen part of Spain can be compared to the USA. But around Malaga the winter time is relatively mild. So, if cold weather is a deciding factor then you should plan a trip to a city in southern Spain. You're not saying but I hope your retirement income would be more than just your social security pension.

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courtclerk56
5/11/2015 13:30 EST

My husband and I will be moving to Spain this summer. We're both 58 and retired. Just making and committing to the decision is a big step. Going through all our possesions, selling our house and car, and applying for a visa was difficult and all consuming at times. Ask yourself if you're prepared to go through all that it will take to make a Spanish life for yourself.

As for Spain itself, we did a lot of on-line research into the country, and read a lot of books. We narrowed down our choices of where to live, and then took a trip to just those cities. Though we did some sight-seeing, we spent most of our time just doing regular things. We went to a laundromat, a supermarket, a hardware store. I got my haircut. And by doing so, we realized we could make it work. A trial run will give you the confidence that you're up for the challenge.

I'll let you know when i get there and how the move went.
Dru

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GMorrell
5/12/2015 06:54 EST

Yes thank you I'm sure that many will be interested. By the way, where did you choice to live?
Graham

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GMorrell
5/12/2015 08:12 EST

Choose to live......sorry!

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pmaxfield
7/3/2015 08:58 EST

Kathi and Dennis, We are asking the same questions. Perhaps we can share information. Paul and Brenda

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AFTexan
7/10/2015 09:28 EST

Kathi & Dennis...we are probably right where you are in looking/planning/deciding on a good retirement place. We are now only three years from full social security retirement and we intend on making our transition at that time. We love travel and have been evaluating a couple of places. We visited Panama recently and ultimately ruled it out. We have travel goals and favorite destinations that make the European theater more attractive. So we are starting with the Iberian peninsula!

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Snorkler
7/14/2015 15:10 EST

We are in our sixties and on a similar path. We have chosen Barcelona to retire in (2017). After many visits it is easily one of the best big cities one could retire in. Parks, benches everywhere. Lots of fun. Consider. But I want to address the nuts and bolts of your query. I am in correspondence with an American couple living in the southern part. Our topic was insurance.
I quote the husband, "To satisfy our Visa requirement of having a full year of health care before we got approved to go we had to use a sort of travel insurance product. It was quite handy as we prepaid for the whole year and could then just download the specific paperwork in Spanish that is needed to submit to the consulate. Once here, we got onto a full real insurance program that only costs 1000 Euros per year for both of us. That is with dental, no deductible and 8 Euro co-payments. We then cancelled the old one a got our money back for the difference. If you want the specifics I can look it up."
I wanted more specifics and he wrote, "Ok...we worked with (name withheld) at eGlobalHealth Insurers Agency, LLC. He is out of Missouri but they have a strong web presence. Like I said, we paid just over 2K up front for the years worth of their product and that allowed us to download all the right documentation in Spanish. Really easy. Then, once we got our private insurance set up we emailed him to cancel what we hadn't used (we were here about two months before we got to this) and they refunded our money minus those two months."
How's that for information? I also feel like there is not enough stuff like this on expatexchange. These things are so important. Cheers and good luck.

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kathianddennis
7/14/2015 16:40 EST

Snorkler, thank you for this great information! 2017 is probably our retirement time. But I can't wait! Just getting all the info. I can.

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Snorkler
7/14/2015 16:58 EST

Thanks. I can't wait either. You can't have too much info. Let's stick together. While I was there In April I researched rents (why buy?) and between 1200 and 1600 euros got you a fully furnished 2 bedroom place in a good neighborhood in Barcelona. Food was incredibly affordable, in fact I took a little adjustment after my six weeks there. Our stores seemed like such a ripoff. In smaller towns rents are cheaper. Depends on what you desire. Let's keep in touch.

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prigotkulow47
7/15/2015 09:46 EST

My husband and I recently retired to New Jersey to plan a one-two year retirement to Spain. Current plan is to go to start in Barcelona and move in a southernly direction and decide if living in Spain Dec-May and in the states June-Nov will be workable for us. Our daughter lives in London and we all love Spain so the idea of spending part of the year there is appealing.

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anlgza
8/6/2015 13:07 EST

We are planning to live in Barcelona. Made our appointment for the consulate to submit our visa application. Depending on the consulate or embassy, you can apply no earlier than 3 or 4 months from your date of arrival in Spain. You will have to look at other forums for information on living in Spain, and the transition. Regarding staying in touch, it is recommended to get internet access or even use public wireless to take advantage of Skype or FaceTime. These seem to be the best ways to feel like you are still with your loved ones.

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dawnstarr
8/16/2015 06:38 EST

I am a 58 year old single female who retired to Spain last year. I love the quality of life, great food, café culture, the arts, and good friends. I think it is important to know some Spanish, the more the better. I did it through a series of computer courses. I write extensively on my blog about the confusing and frustrating visa application process, as well as my experiences re: my new life here on the Costa Blanca on my blog. www.starrtreks.com

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womanpower
8/16/2015 10:25 EST

hello, thats interesting , as I`m a single female a wee bitty older, but I`m starting out on this adventure - it`s quite daunting but very exciting.I already find my lack of language skills quite frustrating, and will work on it as soon as poss.Working through a maze of legal and essential admin , tax and identity card, is taking a lot of attention, and any input/opinions of other people`s experience is most welcome.I`m in love with the country and have been for a while.But I want to be completely resident, and work if there is an opportunity , in spite of being retired.Thank you , I will have a read of your blog.
teresa

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Snorkler
8/16/2015 16:24 EST

Hey Teresa.I really want to begin with your first blog about the Residency process, but could only find the second one, the July 2015. Which date was the first in this series? We will be following in your footsteps in a year. Barcelona is our target.

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Snorkler
8/16/2015 16:56 EST

Hi again. Which insurance company was the qualifying one? You are our pioneer!

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Snorkler
8/16/2015 17:21 EST

Hi Dawn.
What a great, informative blog. And what a subject. I couldn't find your first post about getting prepared for a Spanish Residency. I had to begin with the July 2015 one. Anyway, I wondered what insurance you finally got that DID qualify.
We are going to follow your footsteps in a little over a year. Barcelona is our target. (I think I asked these questions to the wrong person, to the Teresa, who you were responding to. Oops) Thanks again.

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anlgza
8/16/2015 18:44 EST

We used Beacon Travel Insurance because full medical is very expensive if you are accepted. They do consider Preexisting conditions. If you have a PPO plan here, it may cover you outside the country. Our HMO plan does not.On the other hand, the ACA apparently does not require coverage here if you stay out of the U.S. for a minimum of 330 days. You might want to clarify that for yourself.

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anlgza
8/16/2015 18:54 EST

I don't have a blog but I did respond to another thread on a similar forum about the same time as the first one I posted here.

We paid for 3 months which can be extended, but didn't want to pay for a full year and then food with a refund later. I hope that doesn't hurt our chances. You can only stay in the Schengen area for 3 mos out of 6 so I guess we could have paid for a longer period to cover us if we have to move to a non-Schengen country like UK/Scotland.

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womanpower
8/17/2015 00:03 EST

hi, Snorkler, sorry it wasn`t me wrote the blog. teresa

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dawnstarr
8/17/2015 06:50 EST

For my initial Spanish visa application, I got my policy through Insubuy. Remember the policy has to have a zero deductible or as they say in Spain, "No copago," (no co-pay.) For my first renewal I got a policy through a bilingual insurance "seguros" company here in Altea. I think you have to already have your NIE (your personal identification number on your Spanish visa) before you can get it.

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dawnstarr
8/17/2015 07:03 EST

If you go to my blog www.starrtreks.com you can select July to see my first two posts on applying for a retirement/non-lucrative Spanish visa. They were posted July 9 and July 26. Also I shared the post of another blogger on his application experience in Chicago. Let me know if you can't find the posts. They describe some of the unexpected and ridiculous things you will encounter in dealing with the Spanish bureaucracy. Just consider it practice for the future. I assume it will always take at least three times to get anything accomplished here in Spain, whether with the government, getting internet, etc. In the rare event, something takes less than three tries, I find that cause for celebration. Best of luck. Keep my posted.

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dawnstarr
8/17/2015 07:06 EST

One more thing, I forgot to mention that International Living published one of my articles on my move to Spain in this year's June issue, and a few weeks later, featured my daily lifestyle, in their online "Daily Postcards."

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Snorkler
8/17/2015 11:36 EST

Congratulations. You deserve it.

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AngelesC
8/27/2015 13:10 EST

Can you or anybody tell me about that Tax treaty between United stats and Spain? Thanks

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gypsy1951
8/31/2015 12:27 EST

I too am retired from the US and currently live in Ecuador but plan a move to Spain or Portugal in 2016. I am curious about whether Spain taxes social security?

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AlPavarotti
8/31/2015 19:35 EST

I've never said anything about expats have to pay taxes on social security. Because I didn't know that. But believe it or not, it appears that's the case if you live in spain for more than 183 days of the year. I suggest you read this blog
http://www.consultingdms.com/derecho-fiscal/la-carta-de-hacienda-que-asusta-los-jubilados-que-cobran-pensiones-extranjeras/
If you want to read the agreement itself, just google "double taxation convention between the USA and Spain.

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gypsy1951
8/31/2015 20:10 EST

thank you for the link about whether we pay taxes on social security in Spain.

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gypsy1951
8/31/2015 20:36 EST

Is there a way to get a visa for 180 days without all the hassle of the retirement visa

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dawnstarr
9/2/2015 06:57 EST

Sorry, I am under 60, and do not know

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anlgza
9/7/2015 08:21 EST

I dont believe that you can get a tourist visa for 180 days or more people would be doing that instead of applying for a residency visa.

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AlPavarotti
9/7/2015 16:56 EST

I agree with the previous poster. According to everything I've read on the spanish consulates webpage, there is no such a thing.

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AngelesC
11/8/2015 14:05 EST

Thanks so much !! That was very helpful :)

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vnazaire1
8/1/2016 10:41 EST

Did you retire as a couple or living a single life ?
If as a single, how do you make friends part of your stay in Spain or Belize ?

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OldPro
8/1/2016 11:27 EST

Retiring to any country has a great many similarities. Those interested in this thread may find the following thread worth reading through as well.

http://www.expatexchange.com/expat/index.cfm?frmid=260&tpcid=3407026

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prigotkulow47
8/1/2016 18:21 EST

My husband and I have our visas and plan on leaving for Spain on Sept 14th. First stop will be Madrid then to Barcelona and on to Malaga. Anyone in any of these places.-we would live to talk to you about your experiences. Thanks Pat

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dawnstarr
8/2/2016 09:36 EST

I have written quite a bit about transition from US to Spain on my blog: www.starrtreks. com. After you read the relevant parts, I would be happy to answer any remaining questions, as your query is quite broad and would require an extensive response

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Dhw
8/12/2016 10:23 EST

Kathi and Dan. I also am in my 60s and planning a move to Seville in early 2017. Where do you live now? I would love to connect directly with others in the same exciting and probably confused state of mind. So many questions and so few answers! Yes, lots of online info but sometimes a conversation is much better. I live in the US so visa questions are highest on my list right now. Email me directly at dhw11427@gmail.com if interested.

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leagle
8/20/2016 10:32 EST

We are a Canadian couple (wife a UK citizen) living in Ecuador planning a move to Spain. Can we compare notes?
Len and Tricia

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prigotkulow47
10/7/2016 11:03 EST

We retired last year. Moved to Spain last month. Getting our visas was relatively easy through the New York office. Applying for residency proved a bit more complicated than we were led to believe but have finished that process and now just waiting for residency card. Opening a bank account seems to be an issue as our income is in the US. After visiting four banks, we have an address of another one that may be of help. Next on our to-do-;list is replacing the basic health insurance we purchased to get our visa with better, private coverage here. I would be glad to keep you posted on our journey. You can reach me at patkulow@prodigy.net. Hope I have been of some help:)

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anlgza
10/7/2016 11:35 EST

We opened our bank account at Sabadell after our residency facilitator acted as our reference.
Our health insurance is with Atlantida. They were much more helpful regarding preexisting conditions as others refused to give any coverage much less something with a higher premium. In most cases, you CAN forget to mention preexisting conditions but that is a risk. After being refused coverage for depression I changed it to anxiety. And for many health issues like hypertension and anxiety, pharmacists will give you what you are already taking without a prescription. "Seguros Medicos" don't cover medications in general because they are already so cheap here. Today my doctor gave me a prescription for generic Ativan to help me sleep and 50 tabs cost less than $2 (1.40 euros.)

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Snorkler
10/7/2016 11:57 EST

Great information for those of us just right behind you in the process. We are looking into Atlantida right now thanks to your recommendation.

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prigotkulow47
10/7/2016 14:36 EST

Would you share what health insurance company you used once you got to Spain? Thanks, Pat

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prigotkulow47
10/7/2016 14:39 EST

Would you share what health insurance company you used once you got to Spain? Thanks, Pat

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GayleStone
10/17/2016 11:46 EST

Hi Dru,

Just saw your post from last year. I'm thinking of retiring to Spain next summer 2017. So, I'm really interested in hearing any follow-up to your first post. Where did you move to in Spain? Any tips for new immigrants to Spain?

Thanks,
Gayle

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NemesisDBA
10/17/2016 13:25 EST

My wife and I are also looking into retiring in 3 years so we have time to look around for a place to settle down.

I will be 55 and my wife 53. We willl have between 5-6.5K USD a month to live on which in most places should be enough.

I heard that Barcelona is a a very nice place and aside from tourists, it's a great place to live. When I mentioned tourists I only meant that there be a lot of tourists going to Barcelona.

We are open to other countries & cities so we don't have any one place locked down yet.

Suggestionshelp are welcome. Post or PM are fine.

Thanks

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NemesisDBA
10/17/2016 13:25 EST

My wife and I are also looking into retiring in 3 years so we have time to look around for a place to settle down.

I will be 55 and my wife 53. We willl have between 5-6.5K USD a month to live on which in most places should be enough.

I heard that Barcelona is a a very nice place and aside from tourists, it's a great place to live. When I mentioned tourists I only meant that there be a lot of tourists going to Barcelona.

We are open to other countries & cities so we don't have any one place locked down yet.

Suggestionshelp are welcome. Post or PM are fine.

Thanks

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somberg
10/17/2016 16:52 EST

Hello All,

I was happy to find this post because my wife and I are also considering Spain in a year or two. We're pretty early in the research process, so things clearly could change. Currently, though, I am really stuck on the health insurance issue. At the outset, this seemed to be a positive factor and I read about people for whom that was virtually the sole reason for their move. However, although we both are healthy, like most people of our age, my wife and I both have some pre-existing conditions and I hear that it is awfully hard (and expensive) to get them covered. At the moment our conditions are controlled via medications which we probably could afford---but who knows how things could change. Any advice in this domain is greatly appreciated!

It is good to hear the stories of others who have posted here.

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anlgza
10/17/2016 17:48 EST

We have been living on a similar amount each month very easily in Barcelona and we love it here. The only complaint I have is the humidity which is tolerable with A/C. Let me know if you have any other questions.

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dawnstarr
10/18/2016 12:11 EST

I made a list of all the things I was looking for, e.g., type of weather, cultural events, access to Mediterranean, type of community, etc., and then checked out those areas.

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dawnstarr
10/20/2016 11:51 EST

Got my insurance (Cosalud) from PlusUltra Seguros in Altea, around 85 Euros a month. I had 2 minor pre-existing conditions and am 59

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OldPro
10/20/2016 18:13 EST

Seems a few people in the process of looking at retiring have revived this old thread. Sometimes it is better to start a new one guys but anyway.

You might want to take a look at the general forum here for 'general' topics as well. A lot of people seem to by-pass the general forum.

There a couple I have started their recently that might be of interest to you.

Where to Retire.

How exchange can affect you.

Best place to retire vs. best place to grow old.

You may find some points in those you have not considered yet.

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HFOsle52
10/31/2016 03:16 EST

Hi, we moved to Spain in Sept/16 after 10 months in Spain. We are in our 60's, american and retired (I still do some work). We settled in the Javea area (Alicante). I did some research based on weather, language (I wanted a place where english was common), mountains, sea, food, concentration of tourism (I didn't want much), etc.
Javea is not an overblown tourist destination although, like all of the Costa's, there is a lot. There is also a huge expat community here, mostly Brits but also German's, Dutch and a smattering of everything else. Javea is just over 50% expat and english is spoken so much that in some places no one speaks spanish. We are an hour south of Valencia (the third largest city in Spain) and an hour north of Alicante, both have excellent airports although I prefer Alicante.
There is always something to do here and we have joined a local British organization that will keep you busy all week long if you like. Restaurants here run from moderate in price to very economical and their quality reflects their price. I must admit that generally they are better than the US with ample if not larger variety.... just don't look for mexican food (they have no idea here) or steak houses (so far I haven't found any that match anything in the US... but I have only been here two months).
Let me know if you have any questions.

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EcuadorDean

From: Ecuador
10/31/2016 09:13 EST

Hey why not just go to Spain and live? If you have an ATM card you can just withdraw Euros and live. People don't hassle you here or demand ID. Just over-stay your tourist visa, keep a low profile and stay out of trouble. But as someone with both US and Canadian passports I just leave the Euro zone to England or Morroco and re-enter every 89 days.

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vnazaire1
10/31/2016 09:58 EST

First, thank you for an interesting text !
Why did you choose Javea over Valencia or Alicante ?
How much snow falls from December to March ?
What is the ratio, to your guess, of Americans to Brits ?

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tos223
11/1/2016 07:22 EST

How do you cope with the insurance & medical matters? I believe that as tourists, you´d have a much higher cost, should an event occurs...

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EcuadorDean

From: Ecuador
11/1/2016 10:17 EST

Life is a gamble, if your health is not good stay in your native country,,,,

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NemesisDBA
11/1/2016 11:15 EST

So the question was HOW does someone cope with costs of medical insurance.

I was watching this thread and I was looking into medical coverage for travelingliving abroad as well. Things happen and you can get sick no matter if you are in good health OR need something more.

My wife and I always get travelers insurance for any emergency that may come up. Yes we are in good health, but it would be very foolish to take a gamble on your health. Maybe it works for some, but I think the majority of people would rather have some type of insurance.

I looked at Cigna, Pacific Prime and a few others. I found that Pacific Prime looked pretty good and the costs were rather reasonable. I compared it to the medical coverage I currently have at work and this is by far less money annually.

I hope this helps a bit. We are planning on retiring in a few years and living in different places every 2 years. We will be 53 & 55 so with all traveling some type of insurance is a must.

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NemesisDBA
11/1/2016 11:15 EST

So the question was HOW does someone cope with costs of medical insurance.

I was watching this thread and I was looking into medical coverage for travelingliving abroad as well. Things happen and you can get sick no matter if you are in good health OR need something more.

My wife and I always get travelers insurance for any emergency that may come up. Yes we are in good health, but it would be very foolish to take a gamble on your health. Maybe it works for some, but I think the majority of people would rather have some type of insurance.

I looked at Cigna, Pacific Prime and a few others. I found that Pacific Prime looked pretty good and the costs were rather reasonable. I compared it to the medical coverage I currently have at work and this is by far less money annually.

I hope this helps a bit. We are planning on retiring in a few years and living in different places every 2 years. We will be 53 & 55 so with all traveling some type of insurance is a must.

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HFOsle52
11/1/2016 12:11 EST

I can't advise you on what might happen 10 years from now if you are only in your mid 50's. (If I could, I'd be rich) But before I first moved to Europe, one year ago, I was afraid that our excellent USA medical care was a sacrifice I wasn't willing to make. So I took out a very expensive insurance policy (about $ 15M per year) and "damned the torpedoes". Since then I've learned that France has better medical care, and that Spain is pretty much up there too. My insurance costs are down to under $ 300 per month which is below what I would have paid with Medicare + excess coverage.
I would suggest that you check carefully what hospitals, and what rating these hospitals have in the city/area you want to live. then I would check which national insurance will cover you and what requirements they have.
We are in Spain and are using SANITAS. So far, so good. The medical care in Switzerland, France and Spain, in which we have lived over the past 12 months, has been good to exceptional.

I hope this helps.

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HFOsle52
11/1/2016 12:15 EST

it is much less expensive in the US. The insurance works just as well. The big difference is that in the US the doctor bills the insurance company and here, commonly, you pay the doctor and then file a claim with the insurance company and they pay you. We have had no problems with this system so far.
The doctors here, again so far, are excellent. We have lived in Switzerland, France and Spain and are very satisfied.

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dawnstarr
11/1/2016 13:27 EST

travel insurance the first year (if you are getting residency) will cover you and meet visa residency requirements, like Insubuy or other similar companies.




second year if applying for residency, you need insurance in your new home country (mine now being Spain) which costs me a little over 1000 Euros a year with no copay, which does not include prescriptions or other treatments. This is considerably less money than my monthly private medical insurance in California which was $333 a month, with over $3500 annual deductible.

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pgfontaine
11/10/2016 21:32 EST

Hello from Pam and Mark in Washington, DC. We are also retired and are thinking about relocating to Spain. We plan to go there in March for about a month to look at cities along the Costa del Sol. I am completely new to this forum and I have the same questions as you. Have you gotten any new info?

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HFOsle52
11/11/2016 03:15 EST

Hello Pam and Mark
It all depends on what you are looking for. But I'll give you some insight. We don't live on the Costa del Sol. We live on the Costa Blanca. It is a little cooler here in the summers (not much) and rights now it's sweater weather although you can be comfortable in a polo shirt at mid day. We live in Javea. It is a mix of very spanish (old town) to very british and then mixed german/dutch. There are three distinct areas to Javea: 1) the port which is lively and has nice shops and restaurants 2) old town, very spanish with great tapa bars an shops 3) Arenal which is the beach and is very much like Miami Beach (if you like that stuff), more family oriented but very touristy. There are lots of towns around here to visit, farmers markets, etc. and airports are about an hour away. There are tennis clubs, bicycling, paddle tennis, golf courses and many beaches and coves. Hospitals are nearby and pharmacies are plentiful. Rents and real estate here are high but nothing like Madrid or Barcelona. You can get a very nice house for around $ 450,000 or rent a very nice place for about $ 1,000 to $ 1500 depending on if its a house or an apartment. Food here is relatively cheap, wine is great. So you might want to drive up this way. Javea reminds me of Arizona/New Mexico. Let me know if you have any further questions.

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dzharris
11/12/2016 08:26 EST

I am retiring in Spain also, I spent 4 years in Spain in the 80's and fell in love with the country. I have visited several times to narrow down where we would like to settle.
We love the beach and know that what we want. The Malaga area is best for us, we can fly in and out very easily from there.
We are looking in the Estepona area, it's not a heavy tourist area, so you can get more of the Spanish influence, it does have a good percent of Expats, mostly Dutch and English, not too many Americans though.
I'm retiring next year, but depending on that timing i may spend 1 or 2 years in Costa Rica before making the final move to Spain.
Hope this was a little helpful.

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dzharris
11/12/2016 08:35 EST

Great information, i am starting to pull my information together for the Visa process, what were some of the difficulties you faced as an American going through this process?
The Tax on world income is also a concern, I believe from what I have read that you may be paying tax in Spain, there is some relief from US taxes that off set this.

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vnazaire1
11/12/2016 11:00 EST

Good info on Malaga area !
Tell us why you prefer Spain to Costa-Rica .

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AlPavarotti
11/12/2016 12:21 EST

Spain is a much better country to live with modern trains, `modern highways to move all over the country and almost no crime which you don't see in Costa Rica. You can still find good real estate deals in Spain. Cost of living in general is very affordable in Spain. Costa Rica is like Belize, lots of advertising but more and more disappointed expats moving out every day.

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vnazaire1
11/12/2016 13:26 EST

Thank you for your candid view of life for an American expat in Costa-Rica versus Spain.
I would not put Costa-Rica on par with Belize when it comes to roads and highways and medical care.
How does Spain compare with Costa-Rica for real estate in cities of 200 000 + population , like San Jose ?

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pgfontaine
11/12/2016 15:12 EST

We are also interested in Malaga. Both of us are retired and have been in Barcelona, Madrid and I went to Malaga over 30 years ago and, of course, loved it. We're planning a month-long trip in March and April to see a number of cities along the Costa del Sol. Could anyone suggest other places that are must-sees. Also, I've seen conflicting reports about tqxes. All our retirement income is from social security plus IRAS. If this is money earned only in the states is it subject to Spanish taxes. Also, can anyone tell me the benefits of renting vs. ownership? We would, of course, rent at first to make sure we love the area but wanted if anyone had knowledge in these areas. Thanks.

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HFOsle52
11/13/2016 03:35 EST

Never been to Costa Rica but I agree Spain is a great place with fantastic food, elegant cities, very friendly people and affordable (although we are still looking for the best place to live)

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HFOsle52
11/13/2016 03:35 EST

Never been to Costa Rica but I agree Spain is a great place with fantastic food, elegant cities, very friendly people and affordable (although we are still looking for the best place to live)

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HFOsle52
11/13/2016 03:51 EST

Harris
Why Malaga (Estepona)? We moved further up past Alicante to Javea but are still looking around. Let me know
thanks

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Macmarill
11/13/2016 20:15 EST

Very helpful thank you. My husband and I are looking into retiring in Spain as well. He is French born and myself American. We have lived together in France and for the past 30 yrs in the US. He still has family in France so we are hoping to split our time in the US and Spain. I want to be where it is warm in the winter. We plan this summer to start the first serious trip to Spain to see where we like. All the nuts and bolts info is helpful. We do not know what questions to even ask at this point.

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HFOsle52
11/14/2016 03:17 EST

Javea, spain... France is about 6 driving hours away. Geneva is 12 hours. it's too hot in the summer months but the rest of the year you averaging 70 degrees =-

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HFOsle52
11/14/2016 03:17 EST

Javea, spain... France is about 6 driving hours away. Geneva is 12 hours. it's too hot in the summer months but the rest of the year you averaging 70 degrees =-

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drpmr1
11/22/2016 06:09 EST

What's a residency facilitator??

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