Here’s How To Get Car Insurance In Spain As An Expatriate

Turner Insurance News   •  Feb 21, 2019

how to get car insurance when in spain

When starting a new life as an expatriate, it’s the little things that can be the hardest. Moving to Spain is one of the best decisions you can make, but it’s not all sun, sea, and sangria.

As many new and old arrivals will mention, the so-called “life-admin,” including registration, utility bills, and permits, can be a major drain on your time, energy, and finances. The best way to approach this in a country like Spain is to be proactive, positive, and organised.

International auto insurance is one area where it pays to be even more prepared. As an expatriate in Spain, there are legal obligations when it comes to your car insurance.

Additionally, car insurance does not work the same way as it does in say, the UK or the US, with the terms, premiums, and laws different vastly in some respects. Here’s everything you need to know about getting car insurance in Spain.

Car Insurance in Spain: What You Need to Know

As with most European car insurance, you are legally required in Spain to make sure your vehicle is fully insured. Penalties for not doing so are steep and can range from a large fine to actual prison time.

That being said, it’s estimated that over two million drivers in Spain are uninsured, one of the highest numbers in Europe. This makes it all the more vital that you have insurance.

If you’ve taken out overseas auto insurance before your arrival in Spain in another EU/EEA country, then you’re covered for your first six months. After this, you will need to register your car with the Spanish authorities and get Spanish insurance.

Types of Insurance

Once you can no longer rely on your auto international insurance, it’s time to get some local car insurance.

Third party insurance is the bare minimum mandated by law (seguro obligatorio). You’ll need to be aware of what kind of coverage you’re getting and if it fits the needs of you and your passengers. It is highly recommended that you take out unlimited third-party insurance, which should cost an extra 40 euros a year.

After this, there is roadside assistance (asistencia en viajes) and fire and theft (incendio y robo). But your best bet is to go for fully comprehensive insurance, also known as todo riesgo.


Car insurance premiums in Spain are one of the lowest in all of Europe. Insurers will calculate your premium based on a number of factors. These almost always include:

  • Type of car and use (business or pleasure)
  • Where you live in Spain (e.g. premiums are highest in the capital region and lowest in Andalucia)
  • Age, experience, and driver record.
  • Where you keep your car (garage, parking lot, street, etc)

In addition, you will also be able to get quick and easy short-term coverage if you aren’t in Spain for long, although this will be expensive.

Learn More

To learn more about getting the right car insurance in Spain or to navigate other types of insurance you’ll need in this country, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today.

We’re here to provide all of the expert advice you need.