'It's a big problem!' An expat in Spain warns of growing anti-foreigner feelings in the holiday hotspot

Expat / Canary Islands

An expat shared his experience in Spain

Sarra Gray

By Sarra Gray

Published: 05/07/2024

- 11:09

An expat who lives in Spain discussed anti-foreigner sentiments in the country

Many Britons love Spain - the country has a huge expat community and is a popular choice for lots of people jetting off on holiday.

One man who moved to the Canary Islands warned why expats and tourists may not be fully welcomed.

Parts of Spain have experienced anti-tourist protests in recent months, with locals marching through streets sharing their frustrations with tourists.

A lot of this comes from rising property prices that have been exacerbated by wealthier tourists and expats buying properties in Spain.

Canary Islands

The expat warned some locals are unhappy with foreigners


Speaking on YouTube channel Nomad Elite, the expat explained this sentiment is something he has noticed more and more.

"I have seen a little bit of an anti-foreigner sentiment increase over the past couple of years that primarily has to do with the fact that foreigners came here and started purchasing a lot of real estate," he said.

"I personally have friends who have purchased several properties here. It leads to locals not having access to affordable housing and that's always a problem."

He said this has led some locals to resent expats and tourists with "deeper pockets" taking available housing.

The expat added "house prices continue to climb and climb" while salaries have not increased at the same rate in Spain.

This ratio of salary to property is affecting locals but it is also worth bearing in mind for Britons looking to move and work there.

While anti-tourist protests have taken place in areas such as Palma and Ibiza, the expat said anti-foreigner feelings are not necessarily a big deal as they can vary between locations.

He added: "This is a definite problem here but this is depending on where you're located. It's not true for every city and every town, but in certain places, this has become a bit of an issue."

Canary Islands Spain

Anti-tourist sentiments have been felt in Spain


Another man who moved to a Spanish island spoke about his experience and what he thinks others should know. He said there is not always a lot to do as many of the activities are catered towards tourists.

"Since you're living here you're not really into the touristy places or attractions. It gets boring," the expat explained.

He added there are many quiet towns on the island and the lack of "free time activities took a while to get used to".

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