When getting your paperwork in order before travelling to Spain, it’s well worth being aware of the public holidays which tend to take precedence here. Furthermore, don’t forget that Spain is divided into different autonomous communities, which are essentially regions with some of their own regulations. In fact, there are a number of national holidays (which apply throughout the country) and others which the autonomous communities choose whether or not to adopt. You can see the calendar of Spanish holidays for 2019 here. Therefore, if you have paperwork to take care of with your bank or your new bank you’ll need to check this calendar first.
However, there are banks which minimise the disruption of customer services being limited to working hours and days (many banks are only open in the morning). The solution for the Spanish bank holiday issue is digitalisation. For years now, banks have been moving progressively further in this direction, and some have done it more effectively and more quickly than others. CaixaBank is a prime example.
Through a service it is calling Now, CaixaBank offers customers a wide range of banking services online. From carrying out day-to-day operations through Línea Abierta (the company’s online bank), with its app or via a smartwatch and even being able to receive predictive alerts regarding your finances. One of the features I use the most is the ability to add accounts from other banks to the app, meaning that I have complete access to and control of my various accounts in one single place.
Another thing I really like is the range of payment methods available to customers: you have the typical debit or credit card, but can also pay with a contactless wristband (which I always take to the beach) or even on your mobile phone or smartwatch.
In case you’re interested, I should also mention that you can do everything from signing up or opening a bank account in Spain online (from your home country, if you like) using the online registration, you can even request a loan from the comfort of your own home… the possibilities are endless. What’s more, in my opinion, the best thing is that through HolaBank (the most valuable bank service for us expats) we have the same services that CaixaBank offers its domestic customers but with customer service provided in our own language. Everything can be managed at their offices in your language. This is one of the main reasons I signed up.
I hope that this post has helped you too.