Phones in Spain


The Spanish telephone network is highly developed with over 52 million mobile subscribers in early 2014. Here is an overview of the telecommunication market.

Telecommunication is definitely an important part of any expatriation project. Regardless of the country you wish to visit, you will definitely have to communicate with your relatives and friends, both abroad and in your host country. So if you are planning to settle in Spain, whether for long-term or short-term, you will be able to benefit from its wide telecommunications network consisting of land line and mobile phone service providers.

Different telephone operators offer various types of packages for all tastes. But you are advised to choose the best according to your needs and means. The Spain forum may help you in this regard. 

Land lines

A land line could be more appropriate if you are planning to make a long stay in Spain. You can choose between Telefonica, which is the national telephone company, and many other regional operators, no matter where you have settled. Note that the Spanish telecommunications market is very competitive. Hence, it is best to compare offers beforehand.

You can check out the different service providers' website or visit one of their branches. Documents to produce to subscribe to a land line are your identity card or passport and proof of residency. You may also have to state your bank account number if you opt for direct debit to pay your phone bills.

Installation can take at least a week, depending on the region you live in.

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Installation is generally free of charge. However, the device and related equipment rental will be charged on a monthly basis.

Making phone calls

International calls in Spain are quite expensive with most service providers. Therefore, using a prepaid international card should be more economical. Moreover, to make international phone calls you are required to dial the international code "00" followed by the country code (or city and area code) and the phone number without the initial "0".

US: 00 1 phone number
UK: 00 41 phone number
Switzerland: 00 41 phone number
Italy: 00 39 phone number
Australia: 00 61 phone number
Canada: 00 1 area code phone number
Italy: 00 39 area code or city phone number
Belgium: 00 32 area code or city phone number

For regional and local calls, you simply have to dial the phone number consisting of 9 digits.

To connect with the information service, call 11-888 and 112 for the European emergency number.

Mobile phone

The use of mobile phone is widespread in Spain, as in most European countries. To date, the country has more than 52 million mobile network subscribers. Note however that the country uses GSM technology. Hence, expatriates coming from European Union countries can use their mobile phone by purchasing a new Spanish sim card. Those coming from other countries, on the other hand, have to unlock their mobile phone before traveling. Otherwise, they will have to buy a new mobile phone.

Spain has several mobile network operators in a very competitive market, including various services and packages. You may also subscribe to a postpaid mobile line. If you opt for prepaid mobile phone, you can buy prepaid cards in shops, electronic stores and supermarkets.

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Pay phones

Phone booths are available in all major Spanish cities. Most of these require prepaid cards, but you can still find coin phones. Prepaid cards are available in shops and supermarkets as from € 5.

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