News and information from Spain
International Edition - November 2020
Welcome to the November issue of 'The Word on the Street'. This is your monthly news and information from Spain provided by Ábaco Advisers. We hope to keep you in touch with the news, events and just a little bit of gossip.
Non-resident property tax – are you up-to-date?

Non-residents who own property in Spain are often surprised to hear that they should be paying at least two property taxes. IBI (council tax) and an additional tax depending on whether they rent out their property or not. In this article we explain about the different taxes and how they are calculated:

The option to donate

Donating your property is an increasingly popular alternative to bequeathing it in your will. It means that you can support your beneficiaries through the process and take advantage of the more straightforward donation procedure. It’s less expensive and can be a weight off people’s minds when it comes to worrying what will happen to their Spanish property in the future. This article explains more about the process and the benefits:

ÁbacoClub anniversary

Yes! It’s actually one year ago since we launched our ÁbacoClub. The inauguration took place on 25th November at the Club Náutico in Torrevieja and was introduced by Sofía Zajac. Our second opening ceremony was on 27th November when we welcomed members at Hotel La Zenia. Altogether over 200 people attended the events and we got off to a great start with opportunities for club members to learn how to cook paella, enjoy a little wine tasting and learn some conversational Spanish too.

Of course, the last few months have meant that we have had to withdraw our face-to-face events and instead have opted for recording videos and live workshops for you on a range of subjects. You can watch these on our ÁbacoClub YouTube channel

One important feature of the ÁbacoClub offer are the collaborations we’ve made with other organisations. This means that at an increasing number of venues and with a number of businesses you can obtain a 10% discount. We’re delighted to announce some of our most recent associates:

Qtal Gourmet

Qtal Gourmet sell a range of high-quality wines and other products. Every product is offered at between 10-15% discount if you show your ÁbacoClub card. At the moment you can choose a gift for someone for Christmas and it will also be presented in a special occasion box. The company is expanding to include a new venue where you can try the wine and select an accompanying taster food. You can take a look at the shop and hear more about the offer in this YouTube video.

Habitus restaurant

Join Sofia Zajac on a tour of this restaurant which is situated in the centre of Torrevieja. The restaurant serves a range of high-quality Spanish food either a la carte or menu del día at a range of prices depending on your wallet. There will be a special Christmas menu and there are opportunities for booking a celebration on the premises. You can check what’s being planned on their Facebook page or website. Again each meal comes with a 10% discount for ÁbacoClub members.

Mora Solutions

One of the ÁbacoClub partners is Mora Solutions (Iberdrola). They can help you find the most cost-effective electricity contract for you. You can find out more about how club members can benefit from Mora Solutions’ services in your Ábaco Online account.

In this video we hear about their latest offer and the advantages of equipping your property with solar panels.
First, second and third for the Iberian Peninsula

Congratulations to Spain and Portugal for topping the Expat City Ranking 2020. Valencia came first in this international survey followed by Alicante in second and Lisbon in third place. The local healthcare and climate were two factors that brought Spain to the top of the list. Malaga also took a very respectable 6th place and Madrid came in at ninth. Other positive factors included the availability and affordability of housing in the region.

You can read more about what expats like about this part of the world as well as the complaints about those cities at the bottom of the list. Rome and Milan are 65th and 63rd respectively and Seoul comes in at number 64:
Spanish credit card mistakes

Money Saver Spain comes to the rescue again by alerting us to some common mistakes that people make when using their credit cards in Spain. You’re probably already familiar with some of these:

Spanish bank account fees

Spanish bank accounts are not renowned for providing free services and there has been some recent concern about the prospect of fees going up. This article by The Local is behind the pay wall but you may be able to access it if you have not used up your quota of free reads:
Watch out for scam adverts

This article from ‘Which?’ reminds us how careful we must be when ordering online, particularly through adverts on the internet. We might think that adverts on Facebook have been checked, for example. However, this article points out that even apparently ‘reputable’ sites may share adverts that turn out to be scams. It provides some interesting examples as well as what you might do if it happens to you:
Heading for the slopes?

It’s the time of year where some people get out their boots and take to the ski slopes. Of course, Spain has its very own range of mountains that are ideal for those who enjoy a spot of skiing close to home. However, this article also outlines what’s available in some other favourite European destinations. Things might not be quite the same this year but resorts are relying on some people turning up:

The history of Madrid – in photos

This selection of black and white photos is presented by the Guardian and provides some interesting and varied images of Spain’s capital city. With some famous visitors such as The Beatles and Ché Guevara, each photo comes accompanied by a little commentary:

It’s not all doom and gloom

El País explores in this article the fact that not everyone is worse off following the pandemic. With opportunities for spending down, some people are seeing their savings mounting. But will there be a spending spree when it’s all over?
Looking for a positive place?

If you’re local to Benissa then you might be interested in their Putxero de Nadal Menus that are being promoted on the EuroTourGuide website:

The website is also a useful source of information about what is still happening in your part of the Costa Blanca and it’s well worth a ‘like’ to their Facebook page to make sure you are kept up-to-date with any trips or events that are taking place.

EuroTourGuide Facebook

Check out the EuroTourGuide ‘What’s On Newsletter’ which keeps you informed about the latest coach trips and positive places to visit:
The news about Valencia

Remember you can keep informed about what’s happening in the Valencian region on the Valencia in English weekly round up:

If you’re planning an away day

It might not be the right time to pack your bags just yet but there’s no harm in doing a little planning and preparation. El País in English shares with us two articles providing some suggestions for places we might visit in better times.

It’s been an incredible autumn weather-wise and the first article suggests 10 Spanish beaches that are particularly attractive at this time of year:

The second article takes us on some forest trails where we might be fortunate enough to reduce our stress levels and get in touch with nature:

At the bottom of both articles you’ll find links to other suggested destinations and ways of relaxing and enjoying the beauty of Spain.
He’s a Spanish record breaker!

It’s a little bizarre but predictable that there are those who compete to hold the record for holding the most Guinness Book of World Records. Christian López has emerged as Spain’s record champion holding 34 records in total. Find out what he’s been up to and what he’s got planned:
What interests you?
What interests you?
We would welcome any suggestions for future themes you would like us to cover either in the newsletter or in an article on Spain Explained.

Please let us know by email at

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