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Our Guide To Living In Ibiza

So you have been to Ibiza on holiday but are thinking about the next steps and planning to move for the summer, the year or even forever. Our handy guide explains how this is possible and if the move is for you!

The expat community in Ibiza is plentiful. The magnetic attraction of the island seems to draw people in, making a lasting effect on their lives. Some will come to work a season, others may have just booked a holiday; but many of these people end up living in Ibiza.

Moving to a different country can however, be a daunting prospect and if you decide to permanently make the move; there are a range of things to consider. However, Ibiza is only a two and half hour flight from the UK and these obstacles can easily be overcome by those dedicated to living the dream.

Accommodation and Location

One of the most important decisions you will need to make if you want to live in Ibiza, is where to base yourself. The seasonal nature of the island, means that if you want to be involved in the community; you will need to either stick to certain locations or have transport readily available. San Antonio and the bay easily boast the largest all year round English community, whereas Playa D'en Bossa can become a bit of a ghost town. Much of Ibiza Town remains open yearly, but it is generally favoured by the Spanish.

If you will have your own transport, the options available to you are much wider. You can peruse the quieter areas or opt for a beautiful villa in the hills. Santa Eulalia and Santa Gertrudis are also worth a look, particularly for families living in Ibiza. There are both international and Spanish schools to choose from; although getting your child into a Spanish school can depend on where you are based. If you have the capital, you could look to buy. Alternatively, you will find that renting a property all year round is much more economical than seasonal renting.

Ibiza in Winter

Choosing to live in Ibiza will mean you are one of the privileged minority to experience to beauty of the island in winter. As the clubbers go home, you will discover that there is far more to Ibiza than meets the eye. You could find yourself on Cala Bassa without another person in sight, or soaking up the sunset from totally new vantage point. The temperature rarely dips below 10 degrees, so you will find it comfortably warmer than the UK.

So what do people living in Ibiza all year round spend their time doing? Firstly, Pacha remains open on a weekend, so if you want a clubbing fix you can still head there. Many of the tourist traps shut but you will find a lot of local gems remain open. Winter is the perfect time to sample the plethora of Ibicencan restaurants in search of the perfect paella; Ibiza Town is a great shout for this.

Ibiza is also renowned for its fiestas. For example, Kings Day is celebrated across the island in January, with a hot spot being the centre of San Antonio. Another unmissable event is Flower Power in January. The streets of San Antonio get a 1960's makeover, as live music and fancy dressed folk hit to the streets. During March, you can experience traditional tapas without breaking the bank. The Pintxos trail allows you to follow a specified route of venues, all offering a drink and a tapas for just €2.

Living Costs

Summer prices are dramatically different to the winter. Prices are put at a premium for tourists, but there are plenty of ways to live in Ibiza more economically. Eating out should be a treat, although if you get to know local restaurants, you will find a lot of places offer a discount for residents. Supermarkets like Lidl, Mercadona and Eroski are a must for securing low prices on your shopping. Even club entry can be attained at a discount with an NIE (see below). Fuel and transport are fairly similar in cost to the UK; buses are a great way to save money getting around. English commodities like salad cream are where you will pay a premium, so it is always worth stocking up whilst in the UK!

Legal Requirements

As a European Union (EU) and European Economic Area (EEA) Citizen you and your family members have the legal right to live and work in Ibiza. If you plan to stay for more than three months, you will need to apply for a residence certificate. To obtain this, you may be required to prove that you have sufficient finances to sustain yourself and your family. Private or public health insurance may also be necessary.

The other crucial document you will need is a  tax identification number or NIE (Número de Identificación de Extranjero). This will allow you to: open a bank account; buy, sell or insure property; arrange credit terms or a mortgage; pay taxes; be paid for employment; apply for a business permit and start a business; register with social services and arrange receipt of social security benefits; and apply for a driver's licence.

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