Have you ever thought about moving abroad but not sure where would be best for you? Is Tenerife a future goal that you have always dreamt about but you aren’t sure about a few things? Well, we are here to try to make that decision slightly easier for you.
With our article covering the highs and lows of living in Tenerife, it might just help to make the choice for you. Moving anywhere is always such a big decision to make, and you must consider the pros and cons of it, but I’m sure there are also pros and cons of where you live now. So carry on reading with us and let’s see where this can take you.
Highs of Living in Tenerife
If you are more of a sun lover than someone who enjoys the cold, moving to somewhere warmer than where you currently live might have always been in the back of your mind, especially during winter periods. Whether you already live in Tenerife or not, we all know that during the summer periods they can get approximately 6-8 months of lovely weather. Also, in some areas of Tenerife, they are likely to get a good amount of rain over a couple of months as well. This means living in Tenerife would offer you a mixture of amazing summers and cooler winters over wonderful landscapes. We have all said at one point in our lives, “Oh I wish I lived in a hot country” or “I’m sick of this rubbish weather, I’m moving somewhere hot”, so why not make that true.
However during winter periods, it rarely even gets that cold, unlike what you expect in the UK or other colder countries. Even at the beginning of a new year, over January and February time, Tenerife still has sunny days that you’ll be able to sunbathe in. The plus to this point, other than it just being amazing to living somewhere that’s sunny for the majority of the year, means you won’t need to be paying much, if anything, on heating bills.
Tenerife is said to be a very friendly place and whether you are going to live there or just going for a few weeks vacation, you are sure to notice it. Doesn’t matter if you are staying in the busy city centre or a reserved town. Whether you are walking along a quiet harbour or in the midst of a wild festival, if you are polite to the locals, maybe just giving a smile or just by saying ‘Hola’, they are sure to return with politeness.
If you are to live in a small town, over time you will get to know local residents as well as local businesses, and they will get to know you too. It’s a lovely feeling when you live somewhere and everyone around you is polite and helpful. Some towns may differ from others, depending on size and what things may go on there, but the majority of them will be a lovely place for you and even your family to live.
Space & Scenery
This is one of the great benefits of moving somewhere like Tenerife. If you are a lover of space and you like living in more of a rural area, then this should definitely be in your pro’s list. Living in Tenerife means that you don’t have to travel far to end up in the middle of a beautiful, peaceful landscape. This is one of the main things that Tenerife is renowned for.
As well as Tenerife having a vast amount of space, they do also have some wonderful scenery. With Mount Teide being in the centre of Tenerife, peaking at 3,718 metres above the Island, this means you’ll be able to see all the amazing volcanic landscapes as well as the caves that were once inhabited. You will also have some idyllic views of sloped vineyards, high cliffs, some spectacular forests (in the north) and some lovely sandy beaches. Wherever you are located in Tenerife, there is sure to be a beautiful view somewhere around you.
This could be a major breaking point for lots of people making the move to Tenerife. Tenerife is said to be a very safe place to live, with a small amount of crime - normally theft-related than anything else. Most people state, whether a female or male, that you’d be able to walk down the street and feel completely safe to do so, and this is not a feeling that you can get just about anywhere.
If you are now wondering what the crime rate is like in Tenerife, Spain, it would tell you that it is very low. With crime such as vandalism and theft being rated low and assault and armed robbery very low, I think you can get a feel for what it is like. Crime is not non-existent, as it isn’t anywhere, but knowing you live somewhere where the worst crime that occurs is petty theft has to fit somewhere on the pro’s list… doesn’t it?
Picture this, waking up on a sunny Sunday morning, getting dressed with a lovely fresh breeze blowing through your window. Then walking outside with locals smiling as you walk past, down to the local market to pick up some bright, tropical fruit that just tastes amazing. Sounds good? This can be one of the most amazing feelings that you can have, especially living somewhere hot where fruit and vegetables help you get through the day. With local supermarket shelves full of loose fruits and vegetables that are available during different seasons, that must be something you can fall in love with.
In the UK, the worst thing when buying fruit or vegetables from your local supermarket is when you know it’s not completely fresh as it’s already started to turn, even though you only bought it a few days ago. Unless you are buying your fruit from a local market where it’s supplied fresh, anything you buy from a bigger store has been transported in from far away. So as well as having a variety of fresh, exotic fruits, it is normally for very little money too. You can also get freshly caught fish and seafood, as well as freshly skinned rabbit and piglets and cut beef, pork and lamb. This may be something that not all people want to see, but at least it is real, fresh and local.
Lows of Living in Tenerife
Distance from the EU Mainland
However, as lovely as it can be to live in Tenerife, there are some lows that come with this. The first one is that you are distanced from the EU mainland. As we know Tenerife, and other Canary Islands are part of Spain however they are a closer distance to the African continent than the EU continent.
This means that unless you want to travel to another island, or to Africa, it can be a minimum of 3-4 hours flight to get anywhere. One way to try and explain this slightly better is if you’re flying from the UK to Spain, it can take around 2 hours, but if you are flying from the UK to Tenerife, it can take about 4 hours. That shows you just how far away Tenerife is from Spain, even though it is classed as a Spanish Island.
The other issue with living in this remote location is trying to buy things online or send parcels to family or friends. There are many places that don’t even deliver to some of the Canary Islands which can be a huge issue but if you aren’t someone that orders online and prefers buying local, then this may not be a problem for you.
Lack of Business Acumen
Being self-employed or running a business on a small island can be pretty difficult. A lot of island businesses still don’t have a website, just using social platforms such as Facebook to promote their business. Unfortunately, sometimes this isn’t enough. Quite a lot of small local businesses that you may find in Tenerife don’t advertise their business, and they just rely on local residents and the tourists that come and go seasonally.
The issue is that if you needed any help with your business, whether it’s marketing, finances or you need to recruit new members of staff, trying to get qualified advice for this may be quite difficult. If you aren’t fluent in Spanish, communication with people over the phone or even face-to-face can be quite a struggle. Also, unlike some bigger countries that have a multitude of people that are qualified in marketing your business or helping with financial issues, a small island off the coast of Spain doesn’t have all those opportunities. This might mean having to get in touch with someone outside of the island, which could result in communication over e-mail, FaceTime calls, or expensive personal visits.
This is something that some people won’t care about, or could be a huge issue for others. Unfortunately, you will see yourself paying out more, but for less service, though Tenerife promotes itself as an IT hub between Europe, Africa and the Americas. However, there was a test that ran the speed on 7 providers and they found out that the typical speed range available to Tenerife residents was between 26.87—115.41 Mbps (3.4MB- 14.4MB). The standard speed is generally 6MB, although it may be unlikely you would see this whilst streaming and at the weekend you can see this speed getting slower. Maybe it’s a hint to try to get out more!
Island Life is Slow
If you are used to a more busy and hectic life where things are ‘go, go, go’, then Tenerife may not be the right place for you. Tenerife can be described as having a very slow culture and nothing happens fast. If you ever needed or wanted something straight away, basically that just won’t happen. You’ll find yourself waiting in lines at a restaurant, the grocery store, the bank, pretty much everywhere and anywhere. However, if you are looking at retiring and want somewhere lovely and warm to retire to, then maybe the slow Tenerife life is just for you.
Trends Pass By
Being quite a remote island, you do miss out on trends, however, this again will affect some people more than others. If you are someone that loves to watch UK TV, keeping up on who got voted out in The Great British Bake Off, or what Kylie Jenner is up to now, you may find yourself out of the loop. Also, fashion and makeup trends won’t be a big thing in Tenerife as they may be somewhere such as the UK or America. You can also miss out on cultural and music trends, which may be slightly heart-breaking for you if this is your passion.
Whether Tenerife is already your future living destination or you can’t decide and need more information, either way, it is good to look into what it might be like living somewhere new. Yes, Tenerife is a beautiful place to live with some lovely locals to make you feel right at home. However, if the lows are going to be a huge issue for you, then maybe it isn’t the right place for you. Everywhere has pros and cons, it’s just weighing up what is more important for you and whoever else is going to be moving out there with you, as well as your reason for relocating. Before making this important life-changing decision, make sure you take time exploring and researching thoroughly all things Tenerife.