Is anyone from Vancouver, Canada? Why did you move to Spain?


Is there anyone from Vancouver BC? Why did you move to Spain? (Besides the cost of living, what other factors influenced you? )


These are the answers of some Facebook group members:

”Easier commute. (Was already flying back and forth between Vancouver and the EU.) Weather. People. Higher quality of life (EU work-life balance is exponentially better than Canada) Wanted to live in a place with mountain and beach access like Van Accessibility to travel to other places I love”

”I’m from Vancouver. I’ve been on the Costa del Sol for about 9 months. Besides what you’ve already mentioned add culture to the list. It’s country of pride and celebrations for its past”

”From Vancouver… definitely the weather. Unless you go north, usually no rain or snow. Everyone talks tapas… You will get sick of them in a while, however, having a 1.5-3€ beer with some kind of appetizer, is cheap. Yes life in the EU is usually way better and more relaxed. People work to make their expenses and enjoy social time… not many|much future plans. You earn less in a mid-class job, but somehow we always have time to enjoy a beer, a bite, or a meet-up… and you can do free things beyond nature stuff. Museums, street art, food/drinks events, cheap and free concerts, travel in Europe (can be as cheap as 15€ if you catch those flights) Is another life. America (continent) lives to work, and Spain and many EU countries work to live”

”Quality of life better here. But I don’t have to work if I had to work I’d never move here at my age lol”

”We are from North Van and our family of 4 moved here in November of last year, albeit for an undetermined amount of time. I’m sure everyone will differ in regards to what they will appreciate, and find challenging, in the Spanish lifestyle vs. Vancouver. I know we haven’t been here that long but for me personally, the benefits are substantial! (Other than the cost of living and obviously the weather) First and foremost – culture! It’s everywhere, all the time, and I can’t get enough. Celebrations, parades, and festivals are ongoing – here it is clear life is meant to be celebrated.

Work/life balance is very apparent – Most stores close on Sundays, for siesta time during the weekdays, and shut down early Saturday – this takes a WHILE to get used to! Still, forget sometimes 9 months in. The ease of travel to other European destinations is quick and cheap! As Diego mentioned above, if you can be flexible with travel dates, 15 Euro flights are not uncommon. The people are amazing. Our kids started in public Spanish school back in January and although they couldn’t speak the language, all the kids, teachers and staff have been more than keen to help them as best they can to integrate. There are challenges too, for sure. But for me so far I love the change of pace from Van”

”Going back to Vancouver after one month of holidays and I can’t stand it. A few more years to retire here. Weather, cost of living, culture, and food. Friendly people, the Mediterranean, sort distance to anywhere in Europe”

”Moved here initially to study and work short term, and been here 13 years now! I’m on the north coast so in theory it’s green and wet like Vancouver, but with climate change, it is much less rainy than before. As others have said, everyone is here for different reasons and there are always pros and cons, depending on your personal situation. But it’s definitely more affordable here even if salaries are lower”

”I am. Moved 7 ago. For the same money or less way better quality of life, food, medicare, climate”

”I am in Alicante right now, exploring the area to retire here! I live in Vancouver and I feel very good here! There are certainly lots of differences but for me, the most important factors are that things are more affordable, people live here and enjoy the moment with friends! Vancouver is expensive and not friendly! I have explored areas and really like Campello and Mucha Vista! I also liked Santa Pola”

”I hear that weather in Spain is a pro for many ex Vancouverites but I think that it is not as straightforward as it seems. Many places in Spain don’t have proper heating and insulation during winter months and for some, it is a problem in their homes. But summer heat can be an even bigger issue for quite a few people. People should consider these factors too when they make plans to move to Spain”

”We’re in the process of moving over as well. We hope to be there full-time next summer. I knew it when I had a big lump in my throat (teared up) about 6 or 7 years ago after spending 3 months there that it was the place my heart was. Quality of Life… I like to write and I wrote a journal the first time we spent 3 months in Fuengirola and called it “Quality of Life”.

The produce is consistently fresh as most of it is grown in Malaga. Even though the Euro is higher than the Canadian dollar, the Euro goes so much farther in comparison. Every Spanish person we have met has been friendly and welcoming to us. For instance, in May my husband did part of the Camino with a group of seniors who were all Spanish. Most of them didn’t speak any English and yet they made us feel part of the group just like the others. Seniors are treated with respect. It is not about capitalism in Spain as it has become in Canada but rather an enjoyment of life for all”

”I’m from Vancouver Island. I came after high school for a year off as an Aupair…ended up meeting someone and now have kids, a career, etc. I’ve been here 18 years! However, I would love to live in Canada again to be close to family. Pros here are the cost of living, culture, there are so many things to do. This week are the festivals of the village I live in tapas, music and things to do every day and night”

”Me! I am from North Van and was in Madrid for four years. I liked the independence it gave me, even on a low English assistant’s salary I was able to find and afford a room in a place which in Vancouver even seems difficult lately. I was able to learn Spanish, I loved the affordable grocery prices, especially for fresh produce and olive products and just cheap healthy food in general. You dont need to be able to drive which as a non-driver was a big draw. The weather of course too. The nightlife and ability to meet people more easily. I also loved the affordable travel opportunities. I moved back this year to be closer to family and some other family health-related issues but I would have stayed longer if that wasn’t a factor. If you have kids I feel like Spain is very kid friendly, if I had kids I would prefer to raise them there, childcare seems much more affordable compared to Vancouver”

”A one bedroom in Vancouver starts at $3000 per month now. Hard to have a good quality of life in a place where people have to spend the majority of their income just on shelter”

”Spent 3 years in Vancouver and consider it home (originally from Montreal). I still prefer Vancouver over Barcelona but Spain over Canada. I find people focus more on quality of life here. Lots of vacation days unlike the measly 10 days in Canada. I also love that it’s easy and cheap to fly to another European city. I love the idea that you can just hop on a plane and spend the weekend in Paris if you want. Also, another thing that is small but that I LOVE is the prices of everything already have the taxes included. So if it says 5,99 on the tag, that’s what you’re paying in cash”

”People in Spain speak their minds, virtue signalling is not part of the culture. They also don’t apologize every 5 minutes, time off is sacred, life is way less stressful and family is more important than work”

”I want to move to Spain but neither my husband nor I are European, and we won’t be sponsored by work as we freelance. Seems like it’ll be too difficult/near impossible for us as a young family”

”I don’t understand how people keep saying that the cost of living is lower. Housing may be lower but only in some areas. Gas, food, clothing, energy, good schools, and taxes to name some are even more expensive in spain. Not to mention that salaries are way lower”

”It was quality of life, mild climates in Andalusia, extraordinary food quality, friendliness, support and encouragement. As you learn Spanish instead of making fun or criticizing, easy access to the rest of Europe in the world via Malaca’s huge range of Airlines and routes”

”I have been away from Canada for almost 20 years, but just came back from a holiday in Vancouver. I could not believe how expensive it is now. It feels more American than Canadian. Even the Liquor store asks for a tip!!! My partner went alone one day for brunch and was told that he could not have a table for one, but could sit on someone else’s table. I really feel like greed has taken over in Vancouver especially”

”I live in there Jesse! It has been amazing lately! I would of liked to meet with you in Alicante and we traveled opposite! I am planning to come back to focus more on properties and places I would like to leave! If you have any suggestions or observations please send them my way! I have a dear realtor friend in Valle D’aran and she has given important information our housing”

”€500,000 gets you a 1 bedroom basement apartment in BC or a villa with swimming pool in Spain”

”I have 892 days till retirement (but who’s counting?). I’ve lived in Vancouver for 33 years and love it, but it is too expensive to retire here, and the streets are feeling unsafe these days. My criteria for choosing Spain as my future part-time retirement destination were 1) Spanish language, 2) Affordability in a coastal community 3) Ease of travel to further explore new places and cultures. I am currently exploring cities of Spain to see which one I want to be my home base when I live there part-time, post-retirement. Last year, I spent two weeks in Alicante, and I probably could have stopped exploring, right there. Perfect location, size, and vibe.

But, I’m forcing myself to keep exploring. In October, I will be on a cruise and have stops in Barcelona, Valencia, Playa de Mallorca, Málaga, and Cadiz. I know it will only be a tiny taste of each, but enough to let me know if I could feel at home there. I’m most excited about Valencia and Málaga (overnight stay there). Next year’s exploration MAY be a driving tour of northern Spain. After that, I should have a pretty good feel for which city I want to call home”

”After 17 years on Vancouver Island, I just couldn’t stand the rain any more–10 months out of the year for each of 2019-2020-2021. There was just no way to be able to afford to retire in Canada, but here I can live debt-free and drunk on all the sunlight. The health care on VanIsle was almost non-existent, my recent experience with health care here was top rate, that alone is worth the move”

”I am from Vancouver. Apart from the weather, the culture, and arts in general, are great here! Much better quality of life, People here do enjoy life! I have been here for over a year and a half and living it”

”I’m from Victoria. I moved because of housing prices vs. salaries because I was tired of being forced to take vaccines to keep my hospitality jobs, I was tired of the local government aiding old-growth forest logging despite the massive protests and destruction to our ecosystem and evidence that it is causing huge forest fires and landslides and will eventually cause a catastrophe in the cities as well when people are needing to evacuate and relocate and demand will cause an even bigger housing crisis. I was tired of looking for a family doctor for years and still not being able to have one despite it being free… lack of doctors and nurses. I was tired of the lack of culture and tired of the rain, despite it being the mildest weather in Canada… winters are miserable and grey. I was tired of the cost of a flight to fly cross country or out of the country”

In conclusion, according to Spainguru Facebook group members, many Vancouver residents have moved to Spain for reasons like better weather, a higher quality of life, cultural richness, and affordable travel options in Europe. The appeal also lies in Spain’s healthcare system, affordability, and a more relaxed lifestyle. However, individual preferences and circumstances vary, making the decision to relocate a personal one, driven by the desire for a different and more affordable way of life.