Expat Forum For People Moving Overseas And Living Abroad banner
Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 20 of 56 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, I'm new to this site and have found it really helpful so far finding out lots of useful info about moving to Spain. I am hoping to move near Valencia next summer with my partner and my 6 year old girl. Was wondering if anyone could tell me what it was like settling a young child into a spanish school and new country and how easy it is to make friends?

Thanks
Zoe
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
36,768 Posts
Hi, I'm new to this site and have found it really helpful so far finding out lots of useful info about moving to Spain. I am hoping to move near Valencia next summer with my partner and my 6 year old girl. Was wondering if anyone could tell me what it was like settling a young child into a spanish school and new country and how easy it is to make friends?

Thanks
Zoe
hi Zoe & welcome

your 6 year old will have little problem settling into spanish school - there might be tears & tantrums for a while but she'll soon make friends & be babbling away in spanish

depending upon whether you speak spanish or if not, are in a high brit expat area, having kids usually makes it easier to make friends, doesn't it?

your biggest problem will be if you and/or your partner need to find work


there pretty much isn't any

& the spanish govt isn't expecting it to be much better by next summer
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
hi Zoe & welcome

your 6 year old will have little problem settling into spanish school - there might be tears & tantrums for a while but she'll soon make friends & be babbling away in spanish

depending upon whether you speak spanish or if not, are in a high brit expat area, having kids usually makes it easier to make friends, doesn't it?

your biggest problem will be if you and/or your partner need to find work


there pretty much isn't any

& the spanish govt isn't expecting it to be much better by next summer
Yeah it does make it easier to meet friends having children so hopefully wont find it too hard. Do you know much about the area? Work is the thing but its pretty much the same here too, hoping to find something before we come over fingers crossed
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33,612 Posts
Yeah it does make it easier to meet friends having children so hopefully wont find it too hard. Do you know much about the area? Work is the thing but its pretty much the same here too, hoping to find something before we come over fingers crossed
Its infinately worse in Spain, 20% unemployed compared to 8% in the UK and of course you do get welfare if you're unemployed in the UK. However, lets try and be optimistic, have alook thru some of the Spanish newspapers on line, sur in english, Friday ad, they may have something. It helps if you have skills or a proffesion that could be used in Spain and it is pretty much essential that you can speak and write in Spanish

Jo xx
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Its infinately worse in Spain, 20% unemployed compared to 8% in the UK and of course you do get welfare if you're unemployed in the UK. However, lets try and be optimistic, have alook thru some of the Spanish newspapers on line, sur in english, Friday ad, they may have something. It helps if you have skills or a proffesion that could be used in Spain and it is pretty much essential that you can speak and write in Spanish

Jo xx

Thanks Jo I'll have a look at those. How long have you been in Spain? Do you love it? Zoe x
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33,612 Posts
Thanks Jo I'll have a look at those. How long have you been in Spain? Do you love it? Zoe x
I've been in Spain for nearly 2 years and yes its great. It hasnt been plain sailing tho, we hoped that my husband could start a business off out here, but no luck, the recession came along and he has to commute to the UK to work, leaving me here on my own with the kids. But for now its ok, the kids are happy here, due to their ages 12 and 14 we have sent them to an international school which the love, but it is expensive.

Apart from that lifes great, altho once the novelty wears off livng here, its the same old routine as in the UK, school run, shopping, cleaning, washing (it dries quicker here lol), ironing, nagging kids........ I thought my children would enjoy the outside life here, but in the summer its too hot so they stay indoors watching TV, computer games etc (they've long since got bored with the pool) and in the winter they stay indoors cos its too cold and wet!!!! But I guess they have more outside space here when they do venture out. And it is more relaxed and peaceful here

Jo xxx
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
36,768 Posts
Yeah it does make it easier to meet friends having children so hopefully wont find it too hard. Do you know much about the area? Work is the thing but its pretty much the same here too, hoping to find something before we come over fingers crossed
as jo say'sunemployment is much worse here

I'm about half way between Valencia & Alicante - what area are you thinking of, do you speak spanish & what sort of work are you going to be looking for?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,399 Posts
Hi Zoey,
Just out of interest....why are you planning a move to Spain and not, say, Italy, France, Germany or other EU countries?
As Jo has said, the economic situation here is amongst the worst in the EU, much much worse than in the UK.
It's hard enough for Spaniards to find work, let alone immigrants.
Speaking Spanish is essential but even then with unemployment at 20% and rising.....
It could take years for things to bottom out and you may find that the UK economic situation has hugely improved by then.
I noticed that when I lived in Prague Brits seemed to be able to find work but I understand from friends that many of the firms which employed Brits (in low-skilled jobs, though) have closed operations in the CR.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,399 Posts
Has anyone else noticed the increase in the number of people saying they want to move to Spain? Is it because it's getting cold and miserable in the UK?
I wasn't here this time last year, I was getting ready for the Big Freeze in Prague:D so I can't make comparisons.
Just curious to see if there's a correlation....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33,612 Posts
Has anyone else noticed the increase in the number of people saying they want to move to Spain? Is it because it's getting cold and miserable in the UK?
I wasn't here this time last year, I was getting ready for the Big Freeze in Prague:D so I can't make comparisons.
Just curious to see if there's a correlation....
I was thinking the same thing, maybe its the time of year coupled with the economic gloom????

I guess what would be an interesting question to ask is, why did any of us move to Spain ??

Jo xxx
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
as jo say'sunemployment is much worse here

I'm about half way between Valencia & Alicante - what area are you thinking of, do you speak spanish & what sort of work are you going to be looking for?
We were thinking around the Xativa area, no i dont speak spanish just about to enrol in a college course to learn and be able to teach my daughter so she can have a conversation before she starts school. As for work I'm not sure, think my partners going to be fine as he has lots of contacts in the garden centre world over there so I would like to come over and not work for a bit while we settle in then see whats about and what would fit around school etc. What do you do? how long have you been in spain?

Zoe x
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hi Zoey,
Just out of interest....why are you planning a move to Spain and not, say, Italy, France, Germany or other EU countries?
As Jo has said, the economic situation here is amongst the worst in the EU, much much worse than in the UK.
It's hard enough for Spaniards to find work, let alone immigrants.
Speaking Spanish is essential but even then with unemployment at 20% and rising.....
It could take years for things to bottom out and you may find that the UK economic situation has hugely improved by then.
I noticed that when I lived in Prague Brits seemed to be able to find work but I understand from friends that many of the firms which employed Brits (in low-skilled jobs, though) have closed operations in the CR.
Hi, because I love the country and always have, the other countries just dont appeal to me like spain does
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,049 Posts
Hi Zoe and welcome!:)

Just wanted to make a quick comment on your daughter starting school in Spain. It's great that you've enrolled on a college course - any preparation you can do to cram in as much of the language is encouraging to hear, even if you end up in a more populated Brit environment down South - it will go towards your feeling comfortable in your surroundings and integrating. My youngest was 6 when we came over (my eldest two - twins - were 7). Bearing in mind that my OH is originally from here (Galicia) it was always our intention to bring up the kids as bilingual, but unfortunately with all that was going on workwise, at the end of the day it just didn't work out that easy! :eek: I doubt whether you will be able to teach your daughter to reach conversation level by the time you're planning on coming out next year....but anything you do to help, simple phrases etc can only be for the good. Don't let that put you off though - all three of ours started in a Spanish state school here - they were given extra tuition the first few months and of course, they made friends quickly so that helped, as the other kids took them "under their wings" and through play etc, they were bilingual shortly after that. As XabiaChica pointed out, kids at that age do adapt incredibly quickly - sure, expect a few tears before bedtime (our's did - for a couple of weeks, but soon forgotten!) - but it's been brilliant!! They haven't been held back in their education at all - or had to repeat any years. Just make sure that you keep on top of the language in order to help with homework, etc and communicate to a certain degree with the teachers....of course, this all depends on where you end up anyway! But, please take it as a sign of encouragement that really, you should not be worrying about your daughter settling in at all at that age.

Best of luck!

Tallulah.x:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Hi Zoe and welcome!:)

Just wanted to make a quick comment on your daughter starting school in Spain. It's great that you've enrolled on a college course - any preparation you can do to cram in as much of the language is encouraging to hear, even if you end up in a more populated Brit environment down South - it will go towards your feeling comfortable in your surroundings and integrating. My youngest was 6 when we came over (my eldest two - twins - were 7). Bearing in mind that my OH is originally from here (Galicia) it was always our intention to bring up the kids as bilingual, but unfortunately with all that was going on workwise, at the end of the day it just didn't work out that easy! :eek: I doubt whether you will be able to teach your daughter to reach conversation level by the time you're planning on coming out next year....but anything you do to help, simple phrases etc can only be for the good. Don't let that put you off though - all three of ours started in a Spanish state school here - they were given extra tuition the first few months and of course, they made friends quickly so that helped, as the other kids took them "under their wings" and through play etc, they were bilingual shortly after that. As XabiaChica pointed out, kids at that age do adapt incredibly quickly - sure, expect a few tears before bedtime (our's did - for a couple of weeks, but soon forgotten!) - but it's been brilliant!! They haven't been held back in their education at all - or had to repeat any years. Just make sure that you keep on top of the language in order to help with homework, etc and communicate to a certain degree with the teachers....of course, this all depends on where you end up anyway! But, please take it as a sign of encouragement that really, you should not be worrying about your daughter settling in at all at that age.

Best of luck!

Tallulah.x:)
Hi Tallulah

Thanks very much for your message, thats really good to know as that has been my main concern about moving as I want her to be ok. Have you been in Spain long? Any other advice you can give me would be really great concerning everything, we are trying to get armed with all the information we need so we can get sorted before we move from schools, to cars, internet well everything really

Zoe x
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,399 Posts
First of all, you need to understand just how bad the job situation is. We're not being miserable, it's a fact. The construction sector has been hit particularly hard so demand for everything associated with it including furniture sales,garden centres, etc. has fallen dramatically.
Secondly; rents vary according to the area you choose but I can't imagine that a two-bedroomed apartment plus utilities would cost less than 600 -700 euros a month. This area is especially expensive.
Cars: it depends whether you are importing a UK vehicle or buying here. If the former, the procedures are complex but not insurmountable. You have to pay an import tax though. There is a lot of help elsewhere on this site.
Internet: depends on where you are how good it will be but it's OK in most places, I believe. It can be ridiculously expensive -we negotiated ours down to less than half what we had been paying.
If you are guaranteed work, you don't have a problem, but if not, you need a reasonable amount of money to tide you over until you do. You may need to stay in a hotel until you find somewhere to live, you may have to support yourselves for a few months.
I'm ultra-cautious but I would say you need at least £10k to be on the safe side although some people might say you could get by with less.
I moved here from the Czech Republic last December and everything is great but.....I'm not looking for work.
And that makes a huge difference, IMHO.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,049 Posts
Hi Tallulah

Thanks very much for your message, thats really good to know as that has been my main concern about moving as I want her to be ok. Have you been in Spain long? Any other advice you can give me would be really great concerning everything, we are trying to get armed with all the information we need so we can get sorted before we move from schools, to cars, internet well everything really

Zoe x
Came over here just over four years ago now and built a house. Funny thing is, regarding the kids settling in, I remember having conversations with my OH's family at the time saying "Don't worry about the kids, they'll be fine - it's YOU we're worried about!!". All I was concerned with was the kids though - but that's perfectly normal. We knew it was the right age to bring the kids over - my OH moved to England at the age of 8 not speaking English - but very soon he picked it up and made his life in the UK, doing very well, actually!;) I don't think you can ever underestimate the time which it takes to completely adjust. My side are all over in the UK, but often come out to "Hotel Tallulah" - I haven't been back to the UK yet.....guess it will be eventually for the usual weddings/funerals - but you know what? I don't even have the inclination. This is where I call home.:love:

There's always loads of questions you need to ask - don't worry about asking what you may think might be the silliest of questions - it's probably something we've all faced or are facing at the moment....so just ask away!! They're a good, helpful bunch on here and the site has a wealth of info...but don't worry if you can't find the info/thread you're looking for....just start another one and soon you'll be inundated with lots of info/opinions and experiences!!

I would say though that the sooner you narrow down your preferred location the better, as schooling should be your priority - and get over and visit it - once chosen, put her name down. Even during the school hols, there's usually a staff presence available to take you around and go through all the details.

Tallulah.x:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19,449 Posts
Hi, I'm new to this site and have found it really helpful so far finding out lots of useful info about moving to Spain. I am hoping to move near Valencia next summer with my partner and my 6 year old girl. Was wondering if anyone could tell me what it was like settling a young child into a spanish school and new country and how easy it is to make friends?

Thanks
Zoe
Hi!
Just to say welcome to the forum and I'm glad you're putting all the info here to good use.
You can search the forum for things like car info, learning Spanish, renting or buying property...
You've already been given good advice about your daughter and her learning Spanish. Your own Spanish classes should give you a few general basics in the language, but it takes a long time to become proficient, so don't expect to be going down to the shops and having a joke with the girl on the till after a few months of classes!!
The contacts your husband has are probably the best thing you've got going for you at the moment, so start following them up and see what they say.
Hope everything goes well for you :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33,612 Posts
Hi!
Just to say welcome to the forum and I'm glad you're putting all the info here to good use.
You've already been given good advice about your daughter and her learning Spanish. Your own Spanish classes should give you a few general basics in the language, but it takes a long time to become proficient, so don't expect to be going down to the shops and having a joke with the girl on the till after a few months of classes!!
The contacts your husband has are probably the best thing you've got going for you at the moment, so start following them up and see what they say.
Hope everything goes well for you :)

My friend brought her daughter over here when she was 6 and she went to a school with no other british. It took her about 3 months to learn the language. Today she is 15 and totally, totally fluent, in fact she's more Spanish than British and doesnt like to even admit that she comes from a British family at all!

Jo xx
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Came over here just over four years ago now and built a house. Funny thing is, regarding the kids settling in, I remember having conversations with my OH's family at the time saying "Don't worry about the kids, they'll be fine - it's YOU we're worried about!!". All I was concerned with was the kids though - but that's perfectly normal. We knew it was the right age to bring the kids over - my OH moved to England at the age of 8 not speaking English - but very soon he picked it up and made his life in the UK, doing very well, actually!;) I don't think you can ever underestimate the time which it takes to completely adjust. My side are all over in the UK, but often come out to "Hotel Tallulah" - I haven't been back to the UK yet.....guess it will be eventually for the usual weddings/funerals - but you know what? I don't even have the inclination. This is where I call home.:love:

There's always loads of questions you need to ask - don't worry about asking what you may think might be the silliest of questions - it's probably something we've all faced or are facing at the moment....so just ask away!! They're a good, helpful bunch on here and the site has a wealth of info...but don't worry if you can't find the info/thread you're looking for....just start another one and soon you'll be inundated with lots of info/opinions and experiences!!

I would say though that the sooner you narrow down your preferred location the better, as schooling should be your priority - and get over and visit it - once chosen, put her name down. Even during the school hols, there's usually a staff presence available to take you around and go through all the details.

Tallulah.x:)
Thanks Tallulah you've made me feel so much better about it, its quite daunting but am really looking forward to it. Do you work? Whats your thoughts on the job situation at the moment over there?

Zoe x
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,049 Posts
Thanks Tallulah you've made me feel so much better about it, its quite daunting but am really looking forward to it. Do you work? Whats your thoughts on the job situation at the moment over there?

Zoe x
Sorry for taking a while Zoe, but had to sort out the dinner and feed the clan!!:D

Well, I can’t add anything positive I’m afraid to what you’ve already seen on the forum and undoubtedly in the news/online regarding Spain’s economy right now. There’s no doubt that the construction industry and associated businesses has been very badly hit and the snowball effect is probably as bad as the rest of Europe, if not worse – ie take away construction related unemployed and we’re probably not far off the 10% or so that the rest of Europe are feeling. You have to keep in mind here that Spain’s economy has been propped up by construction for many, many years. Pre-crisis, Spain was using up 50% of all the cement used in Europe – a mad situation.

If you think about it though, the construction industry’s collapse in Spain shouldn’t affect tourists coming on holiday from other countries in its own right. Therefore, the recovery being shown in places like Germany will have positive effects on the Spanish economy as the hotel industry, etc will pick up in parallel thus creating jobs in non-construction related sectors….so in my humble opinion, Spain on the whole will take a good deal of time to recover due to its dependency on construction, but small pockets of the economy such as those reliant on tourists will be dependant on other countries’ recovery – so therefore should be quicker. This hopefully would mean that jobs in those sectors will start picking up again.

As for me, well some time ago I went back to part time work via the internet for a company back in the UK. It could be full time, but I’ve not got the time to spare – and to be honest, I’m finding hard to get any time off right now to relax – what with the job, the kids, etc, hard labour converting our land after the house build, just general everyday life…and we thought we’d come here for a more relaxed lifestyle! Yeah right!! I think we’re busier here than we ever were over there!! But I have to say, far happier and no regrets…:juggle::)

You say your OH has some contacts in his field of work – really work on that one. It would be ideal to have something set up before you definitely come over. Spain is definitely a networking environment when it comes to employment….”who you know” can go a very long way here. As an example, we have a friend who has just done a couple of years’ work for a gardening maintenance company and it was purely through contacts as he has never done that before in his life, though he is a hard worker. A classic of the networking culture here.



Tallulah.x:)
 
1 - 20 of 56 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top