7 things you should know when you move to Ibiza

Are you dreaming of living in Ibiza? Then this post is just for you. A few years ago we were in the same position that you are in right now. We had a dream to improve our quality of life. We were fed up with cold Holland and we were ready to move to Ibiza, the island that we both love so much.

We’d like to share our Ibiza story with you in the hope that we can inspire you to take action and make your dream become a reality. We are two ordinary people just like you and if we can do it, we know that you can too.

This is what we want you to do next. Take a nice glass of wine and turn off your phone. Because your life-changing journey will start right now.

Our Story

I (Virgil) was about to move to Hong Kong when I met Marisa. Can you imagine worse timing? Well, I went to Hong Kong to set up a business with a friend, and back then we decided that we would have a relationship from a distance.

After 6 months Marisa said, “this is not going to work. If we want a life with each other we need to live at least in the same country.” And she was right. But under one condition, that we would not stay in Holland.

Can you imagine cold weather and 300 days of grey skies? Don’t get us wrong we love Amsterdam, our hometown, but we wanted so much more out of life than getting out of bed, going to work, having dinner, watching television and going back to bed. Does this sounds familiar?

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Big decisions

So we had some decisions to make. Which country should we move to? At the time we were juggling between Bali and Ibiza. Marisa took action by convincing me that Ibiza was the best place to live. I had visited Ibiza once for work; I loved it but i had not seen enough to truly say, “yes! Ibiza is the place.”

We went on a small holiday to visit 5 of Marisa’s best friends who had been living on the island for a couple of years. Of course, we were now both looking at Ibiza through a different lens. We were not tourists any more; this small island would soon be our home.

The moment we set foot on Ibiza soil, it felt like home. If you have made it this far in our story, we are convinced that you have the same feeling. We explored each corner of the island, we made new friends quickly, and with pain in our hearts but with a fire awakened in us, we left to go back home to cold Holland.

Our Move

It took us 3 years to prepare for our move. Back then there was no information about moving to Ibiza. We needed to find out everything ourselves. But the day came that we made the move and the first time our little green car drove off the ferry in Ibiza town, we had the exact same feeling that we had with all our holidays to Ibiza. Except this time we were not going back to the cold.

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Ibiza

If you would like to make the move to Ibiza, you need to know a bit more then the clubs and fantastic beaches. You need to know more about the culture, the social activities and regulations that are completely different than in your country of origin. Let’s dive into some Ibiza facts

Ibiza is a small island located about 60 miles off the coast of the mainland of Spain. It is part of a group of four islands called the Balearic Islands in English, (or “Islas Baleares” in Spanish), which includes Ibiza, Mallorca, Menorca & the tiny island of Formentera.

It is just a little less than two hours flying time from the UK and is now served by direct flights from Stansted and Amsterdam Schiphol all year round, as well as by multiple UK airports in the summer during tourist season. Therefore, it’s easy now to get to and from the island even during the winter months.

300 days of sun

Yes you read it right! Ibiza has approximately 300 days of sun a year. That is hard to believe if you are from a country which has 300 days of grey skies. In summer it can be up to 35 degrees.

Winter brings cooler weather but it rarely drops below 10 degrees, even on the worst days, and when the sun comes out in December and January it’s still not unusual to get burnt if you’re not used to it. Winter days of more than 20 degrees are not rare.

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Understanding Ibiza

The first thing you truly have to get used to is the siesta during the day. Can you imagine week one in Ibiza and you forgot to go to hardware store to get some stuff for your brand new home.

You rush out the house in the car and drive to the nearest store. You arrive and the store is completely abandoned.

Your confusion turns to anger. What’s going on?

Then you realise that it is siesta. It took us weeks to get used to it, but now we are more relaxed and plan our day completely differently.

Ibiza in winter

The winter time is fantastic. More and more places stay open during this time of year. The island goes completely into relaxed mode. Most businesses operate only in the summer season. And although the season seems to get longer every year, winter is the time to recharge and relax.

There are so many social events where you can meet people, get together with the kids, and enjoy your day. This is a great time of the year to actually explore the island, and create some you time.

There are countless activities you can participate in. From beach fitness classes to sunset yoga sessions, dance classes and cookery workshops, to name just a few.

When we moved here, someone told me that Ibiza forces you to let go of the big city mentality, and as hard as it is at times, we’re really enjoying doing that. So, don’t get frustrated with things, enjoy the change of pace!

Es Vedra 1

Work

Lots of people are discovering the joys of working remotely via the internet whilst living here, and some even travel to and from often. The Times Online recently coined the phrase, “The LonZa” (London-Ibiza).

If, like us, you work from behind a laptop and would like to move around, you will be happy to know that there are free WiFi spots in nearly every town and village.

Although most places have WiFi, it’s still good to have your own connection for use in your Ibizan home.

In order to work for a Spanish company you will need an NIE Number which basically is a tax identification number for foreigners in Spain. You need it if you are going to work for a Spanish company or if you are going to buy a house or a car. The NIE number starts with ‘Y’ and is followed by seven numbers and a letter.

 

Learning Spanish

When you move to Spain, you must speak the language. To give you an idea, there are 20% expats in Ibiza and the rest are Spanish or Spanish speaking. Can you imagine how you limit yourself when you only work and talk with only 20 % of the island’s population?

So you must learn Spanish, but where do you start? Every Monday we had a Spanish teacher at our house. We had a friend who joined us and the 3 of us were learning the basic grammar and conversation skills.

But that was not enough. The thing with learning a language is that you need to practice every day. And the best way to practice is to speak it. Our golden tip to you is:

Join a Spanish conversation group. Meet up with Spanish people who would like to learn English or any other language. Just go to a cafe and talk away. Make mistakes and learn from each other.

It is way more fun to learn in a social way than stuck in a class. You can find Spanish conversation groups on Facebook or any other social media platform. Or go set up or find your own group at meetup.com. Be creative finding a group on social media and you are well on your way.

Great tools that helped us become better at Spanish are:

  • Duolingo Download this app and you will learn in a simple way.
  • Babbel.com An online platform that will help you with your Spanish lessons and conversation classes. 🙂

There are loads of apps and programs out there, but we’d like to keep it simple for you. These are the ones that really stood out for us.

Restaurant Cala Mastella Ibiza

The People in Ibiza

The one thing that we love the most about Ibiza is that people here do not judge. They take you as you are. You can make friends very easily.

The island is so small that you bump into each other at opening parties, the schoolyard, social events and birthdays. So even if you are shy, no worries at all, Ibiza will take care of you.

Facebook is the most popular social network on the island, and there are a lot of Facebook groups that you can be a part of to ask questions or to build relationships. Here are some of the most popular Facebook groups for you to start with.

Enjoy Ibiza

Ibiza is a great place to live, and an even better place to let your kids grow up. The quality of life is so much better than what you are used to right now. The sun will lift you up and will enable you to do great things in life.

Is it easy to move to and live in Ibiza? The answer is no.

There are people coming over without a plan or any preparation and they believe that the island’s good energy and spirit will help them with their Ibiza live. Their adventure sadly ends way too soon.

If you want to succeed with your move to Ibiza, or anywhere else in the world, you need to come prepared. You will need to know your financial situation. You need systems and check lists to make sure that you covered every angle of your new Ibiza life.

Before you get totally overwhelmed, we’ve got your back. We have documented every stage of our move. We will prevent you from making all the expensive mistakes we made when we moved over.

We will share with you the exact steps that we took to find a house, set up our business and, most important, our Ibiza life.

We would like to say goodbye for now with the reminder that everything in life is possible. Take action, be passionate and let us guide you every step of the way.

We’ve created a cheat sheet for you, “ How to find your Ibiza dream house”. Accept this free gift from us to get you started, and we’ll take it from there. All you need to do is take the first step and that is claiming your free cheat sheet in the box below.

We believe that you can do it, only now you need to believe in yourself.

P.S. When you are truly serious about your Ibiza move we invite you to click right here so we can get you started!

 

Virgil is the co founder of Ibiza Inside and together with Marisa he has a mission to help as many people all around the world to become better versions of themselves In body,mind and lifestyle. Ibiza is his base and the world is his stage.

Leave a Reply

48 Comments

  1. The weather is definitely reason enough to move. It beats gloomy England any day!

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  3. Deborah Stewart-Staff

    I have the same dream and have had it for years, I first came to the island in 88 and I’m there every year at some point, I did 2 seasons, 2001 and 2002 but I have to be patient before I can move to Ibiza. My life and work is in London but my heart is in Ibiza so I’m always yearning for it. When my husband retires from London Underground in a few years time, them perhaps we may be able to move. Our little boy is 4 1/2 now, my only worry is uprooting him from his school and friends when he’s a bit older. Any thoughts or experience on this would be good

    I’ll be over again in September for a yoga retreat at Sunset Mountain, so happy to have that to look forward to. The island is the most beautiful place on this earth in my opinion.

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  5. sawyer

    this is awesome.. i love Ibiza:)

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  7. Ollie

    This is a great post, we are looking to relocate to ibiza from london with our children by early next year. Most blogs you read from ex pats are from people without children so any help and advise on schools and childcare would be hugely appreciated!

  8. Thank you friends for all your comments.. We will write some more posts about living in Ibiza and the school system.

  9. Karla

    I have been working seasons in ibiza & going on holidays for the last 5 years. I am hoping to move there soon. Im currently finishing my TEFL & hopefully il find away to earn & live there all year. Living the dream is important.

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  11. Fortunately Ibiza is Spain and Spain is European Union. Europe is a large open space. There are not borders, and all Europeans can travel and live anywhere they want. Even if UK don’t sign the Schengen accords. Anyway, your post with 7 things we need know is great information for tourist and for any person who think move to Ibiza.
    Many thanks, good work.

  12. Anonymous

    Perdon… Estoy practicando mi espanol…

  13. Hello to everyone, i moved to ibiza a couple of years ago and its very easy to find and meet new friends, there are some webs that give some information about parties and beachs but no one that can give some advices about rentals or jobs, in http://www.ayudaenibiza.com i found a web that can help u in everything, they put offerts of rentals and job offerts everyweek, and they answer to you in any question u can make to them, u are all welcome to ibiza hope u have great time there. Sorry for my english..

  14. david brown

    I have been going to Ibiza for 38 year`s now we go every year we were there in may and were going again in sept I love this island and I have more friend`s there than in u.k I would love to live there but at the moment I just can`t don`t have the money but we both hope to retire there I thank you for your info and any thing you can help me with will help I love this island and been all over it even up kapp no to the top thank`s for the info take care

  15. faye

    Hi all i was just after a little advice. I have had an amazing business opportunity which involves me (28) and my son (11) moving to Spain in January. Originally it was alicante we was going to move to which I have done a lot of research into and have found it is a great place for my son to grow up and has everything he needs there but have just been told there is room for the business so was just wondering if ibiza caters for kids the same way alicante does? Is it a good place for children/teenagers to grow up in?
    Thanks in advanced , Faye

  16. faye

    Room for the business in Ibiza that was supposed to say

  17. Carmen

    Hi there, any advice on work agency? I work in HR/Payroll and I have not found anything in Ibiza so far.
    Any advice is appreciated

  18. Bezza

    My folks went to a very quiet Evissa back in 74′ i remember nearly drowning in the pool after falling in from dancing around the edge in my cowboy hat with bucket and spade lol
    Ventured back in 87′ 88′ 90′ 91′ 94′ with the lads then did 6 months in 96′ working for Manumission and cream up at KU
    Then been with many girlfriends and mates since sometimes 2 or 3 times a season so you could say it was in my bones the freedom to be who ever you want to be’
    The island has changed for sure i miss the chilled arty hippy vibe as im finding the new roads traffic lights speed cameras fashion police vip stuff a pain
    I miss seeing the horse and carts, rusty old cars, beach fires, free parties etc
    So many people go there on holiday each year and wish they live there but never make it as there jobs children or seeing there parents stop them from going.
    Finding all year round work is ultra hard to find going as an outsider and the summer seasonal jobs pay peanuts so unless you are lucky living there is but just a dream hey
    best of luck and love to everyone x

  19. susan

    Hi there, does anyone know how and where i can obtain temporary work in my school holidays? I am an English teaching assistant in the UK and have so many hols per year i might as well take them in the sun. I am currently doing a TEFL 120 hour online course.
    Many thanks

  20. Ibiza is a great place. Moving to a new place is always a fantastic adventure. I have spent amazing time there. Thank you for sharing your article! Greetings!

  21. Lorraine

    Just out of interest, what companies could I work from home from?

  22. daniela

    Great advice !
    i’m looking to move this month or beginning of May ! to start a new lifestyle.. I live in Spain anyway so it wont be a huge change for me I also speak fluent Spanish !
    Is it difficult to find a job ?

  23. Richard

    I really enjoyed reading your story. Thank you. This summer will be my 10th year in a row holidaying in Ibiza. I am in love with it. Always thinking and dreaming of living and working there. Me and my fiancée are really considering moving out there in a few years. I am a landscape gardener and qualified personal trainer and my fiancée is a nurse. Are those kind of jobs on the island British people? Thanks again

  24. Linda

    Hi Marisa & Virgil, we done our homework and decided on Ibiza as a place to buy an apartment for our old age. Although we have travelled extensively, we never really fancied Europe. How very pleasantly surprised were we when we arrived in Ibiza. What a stunning Island, lovely people and great food. We stayed in Portinatx which was lovely and drive south most days. We were shown quite a few apartments but when We saw an apartment for sale along the beach close to Cafe Del Mar, we fell in love with it. Amazing views from the balcony. It needs lots of work which we will be starting in Oct/Nov 2016. We’re hoping the large hardware stores will be open for business then! It was great reading your article and we look forward to reading more.

    Linda and Lee

  25. Antonio

    It is not a dream anymore, Silvia snd I are looking to move to Ibiza for good. London is not set up to grow a family.
    Ibiza should accommodate our need.
    Enjoy the life people and follow your soul!!!
    Tony

  26. Rajes

    Thank you for generously sharing your experiences.I am hoping to retire to Ibiza soon.Your info and advice is warmly welcomed.

  27. Elliot Taylor

    How to choose between Ibiza, Mallorca and Minorca? It would be interesting to hear how you chose.

  28. Thank you for your comment Elliot… The best thing you can do is visit all the islands spent some time and you will find your answer…:)

  29. Thanks for clear and informative article. I would LOVE to live in Ibiza. I work in writing and also spiritual healing, I am a medium … I guess there are centres where my kind of work would be accepted , I could do readings and healings, and I hold meditation circles and teachings here, but i just don’t know if there is enough interest in my field over there to cover my costs?!
    Do you have a view on this? xx

  30. Hi Marisa and Virgil
    I just saw your blog and wanted to get in touch.. My name is Eva, I’m a master watchmaker. I make my own watches and do restorations and repairs too. I was born in Berlin but lived in South Africa, USA and the longest in Sydney for the last 20 years. It’s me and my two small sons. We recently moved back to Germany to be with my family again…but I find it very hard to fit back into old dusty Germany. I miss Sydney, but its soooo far from my Fam. Ibiza came to my head…what is it like for kids to grow up there?? How are the schools? How likely is it there for me as a single mum to make it there with my own business? Is it very expensive there? Will there be any support for single mums for me there? You write it is easy to make friends there which sounds very lovely….are there many expats with young kids living on the island? Would love to get in touch with you two :)) my email address is mail@evaleube.com
    Would you give me yours??
    Love
    Eva

  31. Naomi

    Thank you guys! What generosity to share all your tips with the community, see you there some day!x

  32. Sam Zimmerman

    Hi Marisa & Virgil

    My husband and I are from South Africa and looking at moving to Ibiza within the next year.
    We are sold on island life and working and making Ibiza our home.
    We have started learning Spanish and would appreciate any help or advice as to moving, long term rentals, work possibilities etc. We wouldn’t be opening a business but we are hard workers and have years of working experience in various fields between us – in a nutshell, we come from a country of proud and hard working people and we are not scared to prove ourselves and showcase our abilities – we just need a chance. And as we don’t fall under an EU country we actually need a work visa before we leave South Africa……
    I have made reading up on and learning about the beautiful paradise that is Ibiza a huge priority in our lives and it just makes us so excited that this could be somewhere we could call our home a dream come true.
    Please can you help us……. we wont let you down.

  33. Looks amazing! I work remotely and would love to visit Ibiza and potentially live there. How are the apartments? Also, is it very walkable and do people speak English as well?

    PS. Where did you get the infographic created? It’s a nice design!

  34. Wendy

    Hi!

    I really enjoyed reading this post. I’ve been coming to Ibiza for a few years for work now and since the first time I have been thinking of relocating here. I’ve been dreaming about it but why not make the dream a reality? I just started researching and this is actually the first thing I read haha. It surprised me a little that I’ve come across quite a few Dutch people that moved here. I’m from the Netherlands as well but am currently living in London. Anyway, before I start rambling, thanks for taking the time for writing all of it down =).

    Doeg!

  35. Lisa

    Hello could I please have a copy of your Ibiza house finder cheat sheet! Many thanks 🙂

  36. Maria

    Great !! Thanks i am in need of your help actually! I hope to get in touch with you

  37. Dear Marisa and Virgil,
    Wonderful reading your story. I very much appreciate the insightful information. I am an expat living in Paris. Thus far, I have come up against many rough patches in this pretty town that have made me soul discover of Where I enjoy being. Where you may ask? A place where I can and walk, next to the water. I grew up in Bermuda- so that explains alot. An active place , a place to have a good time and dance, chill and open.. relaxed, fun and social: Has a forest close at hand. A place that had magic and vibrancy.

    So.. I am tour guide in Paris with a masters in Fashion Merchandising and Fashion Design- am coming to grips that my calling is something theatrical, involving movement, making something that is freaking cool or designing. These are combination of hobbies as well as career- I have a wild imagination which I love letting loose. I worked in NYC for 10 years, good and bad- it had it moments, until I moved.. due to loving art and exploring another place. Now, when it comes down to home- Well. in the piece above all is revealed.

    In regards to money and security– That is a work in progress- so I read in your bit above about the burn out factor and I will have to say I am prone to that if I don’t have work.

    Anyhow, what would you suggest for a professional man like myself who wants to enter into a market , living, working and open . Thanks and please contact me anytime.
    Kind regards,
    Stephen

    p.s.- I do not know Spanish- but i am open to learning

  38. Dear Stephan,

    Thank you so much for you kind message.. please sent us an email and tell us how we can help you in the best way to make your dreams come true..

    We invite you to sign up for the housefinder cheatsheet and you are set to begin.. 🙂

    Looking forward to your email

    Kind Regards,

    Virgil & Marisa
    info@ibizainside.com

  39. Gintarė

    Quite inspirational. Text is so simple, so it’s a pleasure to read. Looks like I can start living there tomorrow. Nice feeling. I really would like to make it true.

  40. Sohail Rana

    Sounds like a nice place to live … its been on my mind for years but I guess time has come to take a trip and find out, looking forward to a positive feeling.
    The most important for me is the community that I live in .. friendly people and a smile ”
    I am single so less worries to take care of ” having said that I look forward to a pleasant future.
    I have lived around the world .. starting from Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Dubai UAE, Pakistan, USA, Denmark and Sweden. So looking for the very special place to settle down .. Got to be IBIZA “

  41. becky porter

    i wanna work and minister to people in need. i am an icu RN. i wanna bring my horse.i wanna live near the beach

  42. Giselle

    Hey guys! My friend and I decided that we are leaving the US after a few years of living here. We are both EU citizens and have lived in Europe before. We both enjoy the slow-paced, laid-back lifestyle that Ibiza offers but don’t know the first thing about planning the move. SOS!

  43. Too cool. I am especially interested in housing and connections on the island.

  44. Sandy

    Loved reading this!
    I have lived in Costa Del Sol, (a flood forced me back to UK)
    but having turned Vegan recently (36 years veggie) I am now looking for a more ‘green/environmentally/vegan lifestyle, so I have just started my research following a conversation with a Spain loving, coach & friend.
    Your thoughts appreciated….

  45. Hi Sandy,

    Thank you so much for your kind message.. Yes Ibiza has a large vegan lifestyle community. Sorry to hear about the flood.. But you will get back on your feet… Let us know if you need some more help..

    Virgil

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