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Living in gran canaria

Living in gran canaria

Old Jan 2nd 2016, 7:28 am
  #16  
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Default Re: Living in gran canaria

Originally Posted by Elle1971 View Post
Hi Alexis. I'm very happy to answer your questions. We've been here three years now and are very happy. There are pros and cons of course. What some people may find a pro is a con in other people's eyes so I can ony speak from my own standpoint.

PROS: Yes it is cheaper, has the choice of two airports within 90 minutes and you can be in the mountains or the beach very quickly. There are stunning villages everywhere and things can be very Spanish... but if you want something a bit more English speaking, then that's available too. Rent is very cheap - we're paying less than a quarter of what we would for something equivalent in the UK. Eating out is really cheap too and you can get a three course meal with a drink during the day for anything between €7 and €15 (quality varies). A glass of wine or beer is usually €1 (inland) to €2 (resorts). Sometimes it comes with free tapas too, although that's more common in Granada. We live in the hills and it is stunningly beautiful. It's very peaceful with only dogs barking, chickens clucking, donkeys braying, horses whinneying and church bells ringing. Heaven! It's actually noisier than the city we lived in back in the UK but it's a different kind of noise - more chilled. Most areas will have internet available. Unless you go really rural you'll be okay with that. It's not the speeds of the UK but I find it's fine for what I need - and I build websites and run some really busy ones too. The big benefit for me is that it is real Spain inland. My English speaking is restricted to online and once a quarter or so when I meet up with Brit pals in the nearest town. You are forced to learn the lingo, and that's good if you want to get the most out of your time here.

CONS: You don't have the great year-round weather of the Canaries... and people don't realise that it can get very cold in the winter if you are up in the hills. This year has been very mild, but it's not unusual for it to drop to zero or below at night. Because we don't have curtains and carpets then the old properties can be very chilly. You'd need to account for extra costs in terms of heating then. Gas bottles very reasonable though, and wood for logburners gets cheaper if you buy in bulk. We find electricity expensive so we haven't gone down that route for heating. I understand that it is milder of you live on the coast. Conversely it can be very hot in the summer - we regularly reached low to mid 40s last summer. I loved it but it's not for everyone. There is not a lot of public transport outside of the larger towns in Almeria, and if going rural you will definitely need a car. I have to reply on my husband to drive me places and it's a bind. I miss the decent dining we had on our doorstep in Lanzarote and the UK, and the choice too. It's pretty restrictive here and the local places seem to cater to an older palate for the Brits whereas I like my food to be a bit more exciting than pie and chips or stew. The closer you are to the coast though, the more choice that is available.

It is good that you are keeping your home in the UK. Of course you may love it here and decide to sell up... but keep that safety net until you are sure. There are many people around here who would love to return to the UK (various reasons: health, grandkids etc) but are stuck because they can't sell their property for the price they paid. With regard to your healthcare - I never advise because everyone's situation is different. You can pay into the system though, or organise private cover. I would recommend getting some quotes for private and weighing that up. Personally I could save a fortune by going private but I pay into the system because I want a pension here one day and I work legally.

What you will find is that it is cheaper than the UK... and hey it's always good to have an adventure! What's the worst that can happen - you may hate it and head back... but if you keep your property then it's no biggie.

I hope that helps a little - but feel free to ask anything else (the more specific the better). If you're planning another sightseeing trip to Almería before making your decision - then feel free to get in touch. You're welcome to a cuppa or a glass of something cheeky. You can get me on PM on here and I'll give you my private contact details. Alternatively you can find me via the link in my signature down there.

Elle xx
Good morning Elle
I've send you a PM and greatly appreciate your very long message.
Happy New Year to you allx
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Old Jan 2nd 2016, 8:20 am
  #17  
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Location: Almería, Spain
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Default Re: Living in gran canaria

No problem at all. Will go have a mooch at your PM. Happy New Year to you and yours too xxx
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