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Spain still the most popular destination for expats

Spain is still the top choice when it comes to Brits retiring to Europe, new figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) have revealed.

The new ONS data confirmed Spain as the ‘most desirable location’ for British people moving abroad, with retirees particularly enamoured with the sun, sea, leisure opportunities and Mediterranean diet on offer.

Some 37% of British citizens living on the continent reside in Spain, making it comfortably the most popular destination for the three-quarters of a million Brits living in EU countries outside of the UK and Ireland.


Although two thirds of Brits living in the EU fall between the ages of 15 and 64, Spain is well-known for attracting an older demographic, with some 41% of British expats there aged 65 and above.

According to the ONS figures, in total 293,500 British citizens currently live in Spain, with working-age people as well as a high proportion of retirees.

Swimming and golf are often put forward as favourite activities for those living in sunnier climes, and Spain is no different.  A recent study conducted by the University of Pittsburgh, University of Nevada and University of California - on the impact of exercise on the brain as we age - revealed that elderly adults who regularly walk longer distances suffer 50% less cognitive impairment than those who are less active, which will be music to the ears of expats who play golf on a regular basis or use the plentiful Spanish sunshine to stretch their legs on a more regular basis.

“Spain has so much to offer those who are retired or approaching retirement,” Marc Pritchard, sales and marketing Director of Taylor Wimpey Espana, said. “The Mediterranean climate and diet are well suited to those looking for a healthy lifestyle, while the medical system here is also superb.”

“As Spain remains the top choice in Europe for Brits living overseas, it’s important to provide accommodation that suits their preferences and budgets,” he added, pointing out that demand is there from residents of all ages, from families with young children to retirees living alone or as couples.


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