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Retiring in Tenerife: 8 Easy Ways to Ensure Smooth Move to the Island

Retiring in Tenerife is a dream for many people seeking a warm, sunny climate and a relaxed way of life. 

This beautiful island in the Canary Islands has become increasingly popular with retirees worldwide. 

However, retiring in Tenerife requires careful planning and research to ensure a smooth transition to your new life on the island.

This blog aims to provide valuable information and resources for anyone considering retiring in Tenerife. We understand that the decision to retire in a new country can be daunting, and there are many factors to consider, including residency requirements, healthcare, cost of living, housing, and cultural activities. 

This blog will provide a comprehensive guide that covers all these topics and more to help you make an informed decision about retiring in Tenerife.

If you are looking to invest as an expat or high-net-worth individual, which is what I specialize in, you can email me (advice@adamfayed.com) or WhatsApp (+44-7393-450-837).

How to retire in Tenerife?

Retiring in Tenerife, a beautiful island in the Canary Islands is a dream for many people. Here are the easy steps to help you retire in Tenerife:

Research residency requirements

The first step is to research the residency requirements for retiring in Tenerife. As a non-EU citizen, you must apply for a residency visa or permit. EU citizens can live and work in Tenerife without a visa.

Determine your budget

Before retiring in Tenerife, it’s important to determine your budget. Consider your living expenses, healthcare costs, and other expenses.

Look for housing

Start looking for housing before you retire in Tenerife. You can find rental properties, villas, or apartments in various parts of the island.

Learn the language

Spanish is the official language of Tenerife. Learning the language will help you communicate with locals and navigate daily life.

Connect with other expats

Join expat groups and clubs to meet other people who have retired in Tenerife. They can offer tips and advice on navigating living on the island.

Explore the island

Tenerife is a beautiful island with plenty of natural beauty, history, and culture. Take the time to explore the island and enjoy all it has to offer.

Consider healthcare option

Healthcare in Tenerife is generally good, but it’s important to have the right health insurance to cover any unexpected medical expenses.

Seek professional advice

Before retiring in Tenerife, seek professional advice on tax and financial planning. This will help ensure that your retirement savings last as long as possible.

What are the residency requirements for retiring in Tenerife as a non-EU citizen?

As a non-EU citizen, there are certain residency requirements that you must meet before retiring to Tenerife. 

The first step is to apply for a long-term visa or permit, allowing you to stay on the island for more than 90 days. This visa can be obtained from the Spanish embassy or consulate in your home country.

To be eligible for a long-term visa, you must have sufficient financial means to support yourself during your stay in Tenerife. 

You must show proof of income, such as pension income, savings, or investments. Additionally, you will need to provide evidence of health insurance that covers you while living in Spain.

Once you arrive in Tenerife, you will need to apply for a residence permit. This requires a visit to the immigration office, where you must provide biometric data and additional documentation. 

The residence permit is valid for two years and can be renewed as long as you meet the eligibility criteria.

It’s important to note that the requirements for residency in Tenerife can vary depending on your specific circumstances. 

It’s recommended to seek professional advice from an immigration lawyer or consultant to ensure that you have all the necessary documentation and meet the eligibility criteria for retiring in Tenerife as a non-EU citizen.

What is the cost of living in Tenerife for retirees?

The cost of living in Tenerife for retirees can vary depending on several factors, such as lifestyle, location, and accommodation choices. 

Generally, the cost of living in Tenerife is lower than in other European destinations, making it an attractive option for retirees seeking affordable living without compromising their quality of life.

Some of the most significant expenses for retirees in Tenerife include housing, healthcare, and daily necessities such as food, utilities, and transportation. 

Housing costs can vary significantly depending on the location, size, and type of property. 

In general, retirees can find affordable housing options, such as apartments or small houses, with rents ranging from €500 to €1,000 per month.

Healthcare in Tenerife is of high quality and accessible to all residents, including retirees. Retirees who have contributed to the Spanish social security system for at least one year are entitled to free healthcare services. 

However, private health insurance is also available for those who prefer more comprehensive coverage and faster access to medical services.

Daily necessities such as food, utilities, and transportation are relatively affordable in Tenerife. 

Retirees can expect to spend around €250 to €400 per month on groceries and around €50 to €100 per month on utilities, including water, electricity, and gas. Public transportation is widely available and affordable, with bus fares ranging from €1 to €2 per trip.

retiring in Tenerife
A major consideration when retiring in Tenerife is the cost of living. Photo by Gustavo Fring

What are the healthcare options available for retirees in Tenerife?

Retirees in Tenerife have access to a wide range of public and private healthcare options. 

The Spanish public healthcare system is available to all residents, including retirees, who have contributed to the Spanish social security system for at least one year. The public healthcare system in Tenerife is of high quality, and services are generally free or low-cost.

Retirees can also choose to take out private health insurance, which can provide more comprehensive coverage and faster access to medical services

Private health insurance policies in Tenerife are available from a variety of providers, with varying levels of coverage and premiums.

Tenerife’s private hospitals and clinics cater specifically to the expat and retiree communities, offering services in multiple languages and familiar healthcare practices. 

These facilities often have shorter wait times and more personalized attention than public hospitals.

In addition to traditional healthcare services, Tenerife also offers several wellness and alternative healthcare options. 

Many spas, wellness centers, and clinics offer acupuncture, massage therapy, and naturopathic medicine services.

How can retirees find suitable housing in Tenerife?

Retirees looking for suitable housing in Tenerife have several options available to them. 

The first step is to decide on the preferred location and type of property. Tenerife offers a wide range of properties, from apartments and villas to townhouses and bungalows, each with its own set of advantages and drawbacks.

One of the most popular ways to find housing in Tenerife is through online property listings. There are several websites and platforms that list properties for rent or sale in Tenerife, with detailed information on location, size, amenities, and pricing. 

Retirees can browse these listings, contact property managers or owners directly, and schedule viewings to find the right property.

Another option is to work with a local real estate agent. A reputable agent can provide valuable insights into the Tenerife housing market, help retirees find suitable properties that match their preferences and budget, and negotiate favorable terms on their behalf. 

Real estate agents can also assist with legal and financial aspects of the property purchase or rental process.

For retirees who prefer a more personal touch, house-sitting or home-sharing programs can be an excellent option. 

These programs allow retirees to live in a local’s home, often rent-free, in exchange for providing care and maintenance services. This option can provide an authentic local experience and allow retirees to save on housing costs.

Finally, retirees can also consider long-stay hotels or serviced apartments. These options can provide the comforts and amenities of a home without the long-term commitment of a traditional rental agreement. 

Long-stay hotels and serviced apartments are also ideal for retirees who prefer a more flexible lifestyle. They may want to travel or explore different areas of Tenerife during their retirement.

Retiring in Tenerife requires finding housing in your preferred location and suited to your budget.
Retiring in Tenerife requires finding housing in your preferred location and suited to your budget. Photo by Miguel Á. Padriñán

What are the best areas to retire in Tenerife?

Tenerife offers several excellent areas for retirees to live, each with its own unique features and attractions. 

The best areas to retire in Tenerife depend on individual preferences, such as climate, lifestyle, amenities, and accessibility. 

Here are some of the most popular areas to consider:

Puerto de la Cruz

Located on the northern coast of Tenerife, Puerto de la Cruz is a charming and picturesque town with a mild climate and beautiful beaches. 

The town is also home to several parks, gardens, and cultural attractions, making it an ideal choice for retirees who enjoy nature, history, and cultural activities.

Costa Adeje

Situated in the southwest corner of Tenerife, Costa Adeje is a popular resort area with beautiful beaches, high-end restaurants, and luxury hotels. 

Retirees who prefer a more upscale lifestyle with access to modern amenities will appreciate the area’s sophisticated ambiance.

Los Cristianos

Located on the southern coast of Tenerife, Los Cristianos is a bustling and vibrant town with a thriving expat community

The town boasts several beautiful beaches, a bustling promenade, and a wide range of restaurants, bars, and shops. Retirees who enjoy an active and social lifestyle will appreciate the area’s lively atmosphere.

La Laguna

Located in the interior of Tenerife, La Laguna is a historic and picturesque town with stunning colonial architecture and a rich cultural heritage. 

The town is also home to several parks, gardens, and museums, making it an ideal choice for retirees who enjoy history, culture, and outdoor activities.

Santa Cruz de Tenerife

Situated on the northern coast of Tenerife, Santa Cruz de Tenerife is the capital city of the island and offers a bustling urban lifestyle with access to modern amenities and cultural attractions. 

Retirees who enjoy city living will appreciate the area’s cosmopolitan ambiance and diverse range of activities.

What is the climate like in Tenerife, and how does it affect retirees?

Tenerife’s subtropical climate means it enjoys warm and pleasant temperatures year-round, making it an attractive destination for retirees seeking a mild climate. 

The island has two distinct weather patterns, with the north being more humid and rainy, while the south is drier and sunnier. 

The temperatures in Tenerife vary depending on the altitude and location, with the coastal areas having milder temperatures than the mountainous regions.

The climate in Tenerife can have several benefits for retirees. The mild and sunny weather can help alleviate symptoms of certain medical conditions, such as arthritis and respiratory problems. 

The pleasant climate also provides ideal conditions for outdoor activities, such as hiking, swimming, and golfing, which can help retirees stay active and healthy.

However, the subtropical climate can also pose some challenges for retirees. The high humidity and heat in some areas can be uncomfortable for some people, especially during the summer months. 

Retirees may need to take precautions to stay hydrated and avoid sunburns, especially during outdoor activities.

What are the cultural and social activities available for retirees in Tenerife?

Tenerife is a culturally rich and diverse island with plenty of activities and events for retirees to enjoy. 

The island has a vibrant social scene, and there is always something to do, regardless of one’s interests. 

Tenerife is famous for its vibrant and colorful festivals and events, celebrating everything from music, art, food, and history. Some of the most popular festivals include Carnival, which is celebrated in February, and the Corpus Christi Flower Carpets, which takes place in June.

Several museums and galleries showcase the island’s rich history and culture. Some of the most popular museums include the Museum of Nature and Man, which houses the largest collection of Guanche mummies, and the Tenerife Museum of History and Anthropology.

Tenerife is also home to several theaters, cinemas, and concert halls, where retirees can enjoy live performances, movies, and concerts. 

The Auditorio de Tenerife, located in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, is one of the most prestigious theaters in Spain and hosts a range of cultural events throughout the year.

The country’s mild and sunny climate makes it an ideal destination for outdoor activities. Retirees can enjoy a wide range of sports, including golf, tennis, hiking, swimming, and cycling.

Lastly, Tenerife has a thriving expat community. Retirees can join various social clubs and organizations to meet like-minded people and engage in various activities, such as language exchange, book clubs, and art classes.

retiring in tenerife
Retiring in Tenerife will require you to pay taxes depending on your nationality, residency status, and income sources. Photo by Karolina Grabowska

What are the tax implications of retiring in Tenerife?

The tax implications of retiring in Tenerife can vary depending on several factors, such as one’s nationality, residency status, and income sources. 

Here are some essential tax considerations for retirees considering relocating to Tenerife:

Residency Status

Retirees who plan to spend more than 183 days in Tenerife per year must obtain residency status, which has implications for tax purposes. Residents of Tenerife are subject to Spanish tax laws, which include income tax, capital gains tax, and inheritance tax.

Income Tax

Retirees who receive income from sources in Tenerife, such as pensions, rental income, or investment income, are subject to Spanish income tax. The tax rate varies depending on the amount of income and the taxpayer’s residency status.

Capital Gains Tax

Retirees who sell assets in Tenerife, such as real estate, may be subject to capital gains tax. The tax rate varies depending on the type of asset, the length of ownership, and the taxpayer’s residency status.

Inheritance Tax

Retirees who inherit assets from someone who is a resident of Tenerife may be subject to inheritance tax. The tax rate and exemptions vary depending on the relationship between the deceased and the inheritor and the value of the assets.

Double Taxation Agreements

Tenerife has double taxation agreements with many countries, aiming to avoid double taxation for individuals who earn income in both their home countries.

Conclusion

Tenerife offers a great retirement destination for those seeking a peaceful, warm climate with stunning natural beauty. 

From its golden sandy beaches to its verdant forests and rugged mountains, Tenerife has something to offer for every retiree. 

The island also offers a range of amenities and services, including healthcare facilities, shopping centers, and restaurants that cater to retirees.

The island’s stable economy, low tax rates, and well-developed infrastructure add to its appeal as a retirement haven.

Most importantly, Tenerife offers retirees a safe and secure environment to enjoy their retirement years. The island’s low crime rate and welcoming locals provide a sense of security and comfort.

Retiring in Tenerife is an excellent choice for those seeking a peaceful, affordable, and culturally rich retirement destination.

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Adam is an internationally recognised author on financial matters, with over 760.2 million answer views on Quora.com, a widely sold book on Amazon, and a contributor on Forbes.

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