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BenidormBack to top Back to main Skip to menu
Benidorm has been called the sacrificial lamb of the Costa Blanca, due to its sprawling concrete tangle of highrise buildings, shopping centers and reputation for being a destination for cheap package tours from the UK. Although this reputation is largely deserved, Benidorm is also a hugely popular holiday destination for Spanish families: It is packed with facilities and infrastructure and is a cheap, cheerful arrival point for newcomers that can serve as a perfect transition town.
Benidorm is serviced by Alicante airport, about an hour from the city. Because of Benidorms high popularity with holidaymakers, there are several transfer services including a coach that operates 365 days per year. Train travellers will arrive at Alicante train station and are able to access the same transfer services, which stop at the station on the way from the airport.
Although there are high numbers of English-speaking holidaymakers to be found in Benidorm in summer, there are very few expatriates, who prefer to live in the nearby coastal towns. Having said that, there are still good services and facilities available for English speakers: English libraries for you and the kids, doctors who are fluent in English, English newspapers (Costa Blanca News is the most popular) and some expat groups who may not meet in Benidorm specifically, but certainly cover the Costa Blanca.
Although there are a number of Private Schools in Benidorm, these are not to be confused with International Schools. Private Schools follow a Spanish curriculum and generally do not offer classes in English. International Schools usually follow a foreign curriculum, and/or the International Baccalaureate. There is one International School in Benidorm, the Costa Blanca International College, which follows a UK curriculum and has a 3 4 year waiting list (http://www.costablancacollege.com/eng.php)
Public transport in Benidorm tends to be good in the city area and more sporadic in outer suburbs (Urbans). Taxis are inexpensive, but if you plan to live here, you should invest in either a car or a motorscooter (very popular with the Spanish).
Like any expat, you will probably experience some disorientation when you first arrive. Benidorm does follow the Spanish tradition of siesta, so you may experience some frustration with only being able to access the banks in the morning hours and being forced to wait until the afternoon/evening for the shops to repoen, however the major shopping centers are no longer observing the siesta, so these are the best places to do your grocery shopping or simply get a coffee while the rest of the city naps its way through the afternoon.
Like the rest of Spain, Benidorm property prices have bottomed out in the wake of the global economic crisis. Despite property values being consistently high in this resort towns history, you can now buy a one-bedroom apartment for less than 150,000 Euros (usually with plenty of change). An apartment like this will most often be less than five years old with a maintained communal swimming pool within a couple of minutes walk of the city center. Rentals are equally inexpensive, with a two bedroom apartment with all amenities renting for around 400 Euro per month (less if you can speak Spanish and are able to negotiate).
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