Spain, a country steeped in history and culture, has become a magnet for foreign residents in recent years. With its breathtaking landscapes, vibrant cities, and diverse amenities, Spain is currently one of the world’s top immigration destinations. According to Spain’s Ministry of Inclusion, Social Services, and Migration, the population has surged by 19% in the past six years, showcasing the country’s allure to expats from around the globe.
Alicante, a coastal gem, stands out as the largest expat community in Spain. With its 120 miles of picturesque coastline and iconic spots like Benidorm and Torrevieja, Alicante beckons families from various nationalities. The region offers an attractive package—mild weather, affordable living, delectable cuisine, and a leisurely lifestyle. Notably, around 20% of Alicante’s population consists of foreign residents, predominantly British, Dutch, German, and Russian. Families find solace in state and international schools, while retirees bask in the warm climate and vibrant nightlife. Convenient connections via Alicante Airport enhance the appeal.
Spain’s popularity extends beyond Alicante. The Costa Blanca, a haven for families and retirees, entices with its diverse housing options and stunning landscapes. Meanwhile, the Costa del Sol boasts a thriving English-speaking expat community, drawn by the promise of 320 days of sunshine and a lively beach-oriented lifestyle. Madrid, a bustling metropolis, appeals to professionals and students alike, offering a blend of work opportunities and a laid-back lifestyle. Barcelona, a multicultural hub, boasts unparalleled quality of life, making it a haven for expats seeking vibrant city living coupled with beachside leisure.
The influx of foreigners has notably contributed to Spain’s population surge, reversing the decline during the Covid-19 pandemic. The number of non-EU foreigners gaining residency increased by 3.6% in 2021. Andalucía emerges as a hub for expat concentration, with regions like Aragón and Asturias also witnessing substantial growth.
The diversity of nationalities is striking. EU citizens, especially from Romania, Italy, and Germany, contribute significantly to Spain’s international fabric. Beyond Europe, Morocco leads the pack, followed by Colombia and the UK. Interestingly, the British retiree community holds a special place, with an average age of 54.1 years, compared to the EU average of 39.6 years.
Spain’s soaring foreign population is set to continue, promising demographic shifts that will shape its future. The projections by Spain’s National Institute of Statistics foresee a population increase of 4 million by 2037, with immigrants constituting a significant portion. As the Spanish-born population decreases over the years, Spain’s dependence on foreign labor and social security contributions will intensify.
Spain’s embrace of expats mirrors its rich diversity and vibrant lifestyle. With regions like Alicante, Costa Blanca, Costa del Sol, Madrid, and Barcelona offering unique appeals, Spain stands tall as a welcoming destination for those seeking a new home enriched by history, culture, and community.