How To Retire To Spain After Brexit With Minimal Stress

Retiring in Spain has long been a popular choice for Brits due to its sunny climate, low cost of living, and laid-back lifestyle. However, post-Brexit, there have been significant changes to the landscape of retiring in Spain.

It’s important to navigate these changes with minimal stress to ensure a smooth transition into retired life in Spain. In this article, we will provide an overview of retiring to Spain after Brexit, discuss the legal and financial considerations, and provide tips for settling into your new life in Spain.

Key Takeaways:

  • Retiring in Spain after Brexit requires careful consideration of legal and financial requirements.
  • Choosing the right location for retirement in Spain can impact your overall retirement experience.
  • Staying connected with the UK and exploring alternative retirement options in Europe are important factors to consider.

 Retire To Spain After Brexit

Understanding the Post-Brexit Retirement Landscape in Spain

Retiring to Spain after Brexit can be a daunting prospect, especially with the significant changes that have occurred. Before December 31, 2020, UK citizens had the right to retire to any European country and access the same benefits as locals. However, now that the UK has officially left the EU, this has changed.

UK citizens can still retire to Spain, but there are new rules and regulations that need to be followed. Unlike before, they will no longer be able to access all the benefits that EU citizens can, such as the right to work and live freely in Spain. Instead, they will need to apply for residency status and meet certain requirements to remain in Spain long-term.

Despite these changes, retiring to Spain after Brexit still has its advantages. The warm weather, rich culture, and affordable cost of living make it an attractive option for many. However, it’s important to understand the new retirement landscape and plan accordingly.

To retire to Spain after Brexit, UK citizens will need to apply for a visa for long-term stays or a residency permit if they plan on living in Spain permanently. This process can be time-consuming and require extensive paperwork, so it’s important to start early and seek professional advice if needed.

post-brexit retirement in spain

Image description: post-brexit retirement in Spain

Additionally, UK retirees will need to consider their healthcare options as the UK’s National Health Service will no longer be available to them. They will need to pay for private health insurance or enroll in Spain’s public healthcare system.

Overall, retiring to Spain after Brexit is still possible, but it requires careful planning and preparation. By understanding the new retirement landscape and meeting the necessary requirements, UK citizens can still enjoy their dream retirement in Spain.

Navigating Legal Requirements for Retiring in Spain

If you are considering retiring to Spain after Brexit, it is important to understand the legal requirements and paperwork involved in the process. Moving to Spain after Brexit will require you to follow new rules and regulations, including those related to visas, residency permits, and healthcare. Here are some key points to keep in mind:

Visas and Residency PermitsHealthcare
Visas: As a British citizen, you will be able to stay in Spain for up to 90 days without a visa. If you plan to stay longer, you will need to apply for a visa or residency permit.Healthcare: Before Brexit, UK citizens were able to access the Spanish public healthcare system. Now, UK pensioners who are not registered for Spanish healthcare and do not have a UK S1 form may need to pay for healthcare costs. It is recommended to check your eligibility and make arrangements for private healthcare in Spain.
Residency Permits: If you plan to stay in Spain for longer than 3 months, you must apply for a residency permit. You will need to provide proof of sufficient funds, health insurance, and a clean criminal record. You will also need to pass a language and culture test to obtain long-term residency.S1 Form: If you are a UK state pensioner or receive another type of UK benefit, you may be eligible for a UK S1 form. This will entitle you to Spanish state healthcare coverage on the same basis as Spanish citizens. You will need to apply for this before moving to Spain.

To make the process of relocating to Spain after Brexit smoother, it is recommended to seek the assistance of a professional advisor who can help you navigate the legal requirements and ensure that all paperwork is in order. This can save you time and reduce the stress of the transition.

Relocating to Spain after Brexit

Image description: retirement options in Spain, retiring abroad after brexit

It’s important to note that the rules and regulations regarding retiring to Spain after Brexit are subject to change. It’s recommended to stay up to date with the latest developments and seek professional advice when needed.

Financial Considerations for Retiring in Spain

Retiring to Spain after Brexit can be a great way to enjoy a relaxed lifestyle in the sun, but it’s important to consider the financial implications of such a move. As a British retiree in Spain, you will still be eligible for your UK state pension, but you’ll also need to think about other sources of income to support yourself.

One of the key financial considerations when retiring in Spain is taxes. You’ll need to understand how taxation works in Spain and what your liabilities are. Generally speaking, you’ll be taxed on your worldwide income in Spain, including any rental income or capital gains from UK property. However, there are tax treaties between the UK and Spain that can help to ensure you don’t pay tax twice on the same income. It’s important to seek professional advice to ensure you’re complying with all the relevant tax regulations.

Taxation Tip:If you plan to work in Spain after retirement, you’ll need to register with the Spanish tax authorities and obtain a foreigner identification number (NIE). This will enable you to pay taxes and make social security contributions in Spain.

Another financial consideration for retiring in Spain is healthcare costs. As a British retiree in Spain, you’ll still be eligible for state-funded healthcare in Spain, but you’ll need to register with the Spanish healthcare system. You may also need to consider taking out private health insurance to cover any additional costs.

Managing your finances effectively is crucial when retiring in Spain. You’ll need to budget carefully to ensure you can cover your living costs, including accommodation, food, and utilities. The cost of living can vary significantly depending on where you choose to live, so it’s important to research different locations and compare prices.

british retirees in spain

Image description: retiring to europe after brexit

Finally, it’s important to consider your pension options when retiring in Spain. If you have a private pension, you’ll need to decide whether to leave it in the UK or transfer it to a Spanish scheme. This can be a complex decision with significant implications for your finances, so it’s important to seek professional advice before making any decisions.

Retiring in Spain after Brexit can be a smart financial move if you plan carefully and seek professional advice. By understanding your tax liabilities, healthcare costs, and pension options, you can make the most of this exciting new chapter in your life.

Choosing the Right Location for Retirement in Spain

If you’re considering retiring in Spain after Brexit, it’s crucial to choose the right location that suits your needs and preferences. Spain is a diverse country with many regions and cities to choose from, each with its own climate, culture, and lifestyle options. When making your decision, consider the following factors:

  • Climate: Do you prefer a warm Mediterranean climate or a cooler Atlantic one?
  • Cost of living: How much are you willing to spend on accommodation, dining, and leisure activities?
  • Healthcare: Is there easy access to quality healthcare facilities and services?
  • Lifestyle: What kind of lifestyle do you want? Are you looking for a bustling city or a quiet rural retreat?

Some of the most popular retirement destinations in Spain include the Costa del Sol, the Costa Blanca, and the Balearic Islands. These areas offer a wide range of amenities and attractions, including beaches, golf courses, historic sites, and cultural events.

LocationClimateCost of LivingHealthcareLifestyle
Costa del SolMediterraneanMediumHighBustling
Costa BlancaMediterraneanLow to MediumMediumRelaxed
Balearic IslandsMediterraneanHighHighVaried

Keep in mind that living in Spain after Brexit may come with certain challenges. It’s important to research and understand the local culture and customs, as well as any legal and administrative requirements such as visas and residency permits. With careful planning and preparation, retiring in Spain can be a rewarding and fulfilling experience.

Retiring in Spain

Settling into Your New Life in Spain

Retiring to Spain after Brexit can be an exciting new chapter of your life, but it’s important to prepare for the transition. One of the key aspects of settling into your new life in Spain is to learn the language. While many people in Spain speak English, it’s essential to have a good grasp of Spanish to communicate with locals, navigate paperwork, and fully immerse yourself in the culture. Consider taking a language course or hiring a tutor to help you get started.

Integrating into the local community is another great way to make the most of your retirement in Spain. Joining social groups, attending local events and volunteering can help you meet new people, learn about the culture, and build a support network. You can also consider using online platforms like Meetup to find like-minded expats in your area.

living in spain after brexit

Furthermore, finding social activities that interest you is key to enjoying your retirement in Spain. From hiking and golfing to cooking classes and book clubs, there are plenty of activities to suit all tastes. Keep an eye on local newspapers, community boards and social media for upcoming events and activities in your area.

Finally, it’s essential to take care of your mental and physical health while living in Spain after Brexit. Make sure that you have access to adequate healthcare and consider joining a gym or fitness class to stay active. Practicing self-care, such as reading a book, taking a long bath or treating yourself to a massage, can also help you adjust to your new life in Spain.

Maintaining Strong Ties with the UK

Although retiring in Spain after Brexit can provide a peaceful and enjoyable retirement, it is essential to maintain strong ties with the UK. As a British retiree in Spain, staying updated with UK news and managing finances and healthcare arrangements can be challenging. However, several measures can help you stay connected with your home country.

One effective way of staying in touch with the UK is by subscribing to a British newspaper or news website. This can help you stay updated on current events and news from the UK, including changes to policies affecting British retirees living in Spain.

Financial management is also crucial when living in Spain after Brexit. It is essential to stay informed about your pension and other financial arrangements, such as taxes and investments. If you are unsure about managing your finances, consult with a financial advisor who specializes in international financial planning.

It is also crucial to maintain any healthcare arrangements that you had in the UK before moving to Spain. British retirees in Spain can access Spanish public healthcare, but it is also possible to maintain private health insurance arrangements in the UK. This insurance can cover you during visits to the UK or for medical treatment that is not available in Spain.

By keeping up-to-date with UK news, managing your finances, and maintaining healthcare arrangements, you can stay connected with the UK while enjoying your retirement in Spain after Brexit.

british retirees in spain

Exploring Retirement Options Beyond Spain

While Spain remains a popular destination for retirees, some may be considering other options in light of Brexit. Fortunately, there are still plenty of retirement destinations in Europe that offer a high quality of life and attractive cost of living.

Portugal is a neighbouring country that shares a similar climate to Spain. It offers a lower cost of living, a strong English-speaking community and excellent healthcare. Portugal’s non-habitual resident (NHR) tax regime can also offer significant tax savings to retirees.

France is another popular option for retirees, particularly those with a love of culture, wine and cuisine. Although the language barrier can be more challenging than in Spain, there are many English-speaking expat communities throughout the country. France also has an excellent healthcare system and a high standard of living.

The warm climate, stunning coastline and low cost of living makes Greece an attractive retirement destination. However, it may not be as easy to navigate as other European countries, particularly with regards to bureaucracy and healthcare. Nevertheless, Greece offers a rich cultural experience and is an affordable option for those on a tight budget.

For those considering retirement outside of Europe, countries such as Mexico, Panama, and Costa Rica offer warm climates, low living costs and the potential for significant savings on healthcare and taxes.

retiring abroad after brexit


Retiring to Spain after Brexit can be a wonderful opportunity to start a new chapter in life. While there are certain legal and financial considerations to keep in mind, with the right planning and preparation, the transition can be made with minimal stress. It is important to research the options thoroughly, choose the right location, and make an effort to integrate into the local community.

For those who may be considering retirement options beyond Spain, there are many other European countries that offer attractive alternatives. However, Spain remains a popular destination for British retirees who are drawn to its warm climate, relaxed lifestyle, and affordable living costs.

Regardless of where you choose to retire, maintaining strong ties with the UK and staying informed of any changes that may affect your retirement plans is essential. With careful planning and a positive attitude, retiring to Spain after Brexit can be a fulfilling and enjoyable experience.


Q: What are the legal requirements for retiring in Spain after Brexit?

A: The legal requirements for retiring in Spain after Brexit include obtaining a visa, residency permit, and healthcare coverage. It is important to consult with the relevant authorities and seek professional advice to ensure compliance with the necessary paperwork.

Q: What financial considerations should I keep in mind when retiring in Spain after Brexit?

A: When retiring in Spain after Brexit, it is essential to consider financial matters such as pensions, taxes, and healthcare costs. Understanding the implications of these factors on your retirement income and seeking expert guidance can help you manage your finances effectively.

Q: How do I choose the right location for retirement in Spain after Brexit?

A: Choosing the right location for retirement in Spain after Brexit involves considering factors such as climate, cost of living, and lifestyle options. Researching different regions and cities, visiting potential locations, and seeking advice from local experts can assist you in making an informed decision.

Q: What practical tips can help me settle into retirement life in Spain after Brexit?

A: To settle into retirement life in Spain after Brexit, it is beneficial to learn the language, integrate into the local community, and find social activities. Engaging in language classes, joining local clubs or organizations, and participating in cultural events can enhance your experience and facilitate a smooth transition.

Q: How can I maintain strong ties with the UK while living in Spain after Brexit?

A: Maintaining strong ties with the UK while living in Spain after Brexit involves staying updated with UK news, managing finances effectively, and ensuring healthcare arrangements are in place. Utilizing online resources, maintaining regular communication with family and friends in the UK, and seeking advice from professionals can assist in maintaining connections.

Q: Are there retirement options available in other European countries after Brexit?

A: Yes, there are retirement options available in other European countries after Brexit. While this guide primarily focuses on retiring in Spain, it is worth exploring other destinations as well. Each country has its own regulations and advantages, so it is essential to research and consider your individual preferences.

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