Expat shares what he 'hates' about living in Spain - 'it would drive you crazy too'

Expat shares what he 'hates' about living in Spain - 'it would drive you crazy too'

Expats protested about frozen pensions

Anna Barry

By Anna Barry

Published: 27/01/2024

- 08:00

An expat shared one thing he doesn't love about life in Spain

Spain is a beloved holiday destination and also a popular option for British expats.

It's a short flight from the UK, is home to delicious cuisine, and offers a very laid-back lifestyle - not to mention it's famous for sun, sea and sand.

But despite its incredible positives, nowhere is perfect, and expats who move to Spain may find there are some aspects of life there that they don't love.

James - who has lived in Spain for 12 years and has a Spanish partner - shared a few things he "hates about living in Spain", including one social etiquette, "the long Spanish goodbye".

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James from Spain Revealed

'I think it's something that would drive you crazy too'

Spain Revealed

James referenced a societal practice. He said: "I think it's something that would drive you crazy too."

According to the Spanish resident, many Spaniards take a long time to say goodbye during a social interaction.

He said: "I love how gregarious Spanish culture is. This is a country where people will stop and chat, spend time without looking at their watch, and be really, really happy in your company.

"But there's an aspect of this gregariousness that I just can't handle and it's called 'the long Spanish goodbye'."

James set the scene of being at a party with friends or a partner and collectively deciding it's time to leave.

He claimed that instead of taking around 10 minutes to say their goodbyes, Spanish people "will spend the next hour slowly inching towards the door and engaging in any potential conversation that comes their way".

The expat explained that he wouldn't mind this if they'd agreed to stay at the social function for another hour, but not if they agreed to leave there and then.

He said that if he knew they were staying a while longer, he'd settle in, grab another drink and enjoy himself.

According to the expat, the Spanish are incredibly sociable but find it hard to say goodbye swiftly


James continued: "But what I can't handle is living for an hour in this kind of goodbye no man's land."

Other expats gave a warning for people thinking of moving to Spain. While it's a great tourist destination with holidaymakers flocking from all over the world to explore the beautiful country, this occasionally can pose some issues.

They also offered a word of advice for people hoping to relocate to Portugal.

A person's home is a place they know like the back of their hand, and moving to a whole new country can feel like a big step away from your comfort zone. According to two expats, one aspect of moving to Portugal can be rather "shocking".

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