The Ultimate Guru Guide To Relocating To Gran Canaria

Complete guide to relocating to Gran Canaria

Unless you try to drive over, relocating to Gran Canaria isn’t really any harder than moving anywhere else in Europe.

That said, the more information you have before you move to Gran Canaria the easier things are. Here’s everything we can think of that you need to know about relocating to Gran Canaria. Read More


The Guru Guide To Surviving Gran Canaria Kid’s Parties

Kid's birthday parties in Gran CanariaThe Hum is an ultra-low frequency sound that drives people crazy around the world. Its origins are a mystery, unless you’ve ever been to a kid’s birthday party in Gran Canaria.

As a Guiri parent of small children in Gran Canaria, you get excited the first time they are invited to a local birthday party. It’s a sign that the sprogs are fitting in at school and that their parents want to get to know you.

If you’re lucky, you end up at an outdoor asadero where the kids roam free and the parents get on with the most venerable of Canarian traditions; eating, drinking and talking too much all at the same time.

Unfortunately, most children’s parties in Gran Canaria happen at an entertainment barn known as a centro de ocio, ludoteca or jugadero. On paper, they offer everything needed for the perfect birthday party experience for child and adult alike; large play areas, entertainment, plenty of food and drink, BAR, etc.

Imagine sitting on comfy sofas sipping a cold drink and chatting while the kids are whisked away to a playground so vast and fascinating that they stay for hours. They finally emerge full of healthy food and surrounded by friends.

It’s so much fun that you all come back the next week even though it isn’t anyone’s birthday.

Hahaha! Just like the Hum, this perfect party venue is probably imaginary.

And the reality of kiddie parties in Gran Canaria is grim.

Death by party?

With one of the world’s sunniest climates, why are most birthday parties in Gran Canaria celebrated in dingy bunkers?

And why is forced out of dodgy speakers at 120 decibels?

And does it have to be dodgy salsa? Every time?  For three hours!?

And is there really no alternative to tortilla, white bread sandwiches, and crisps?

The hum explained

As a kiddie party get into full swing, the music, screams and shouting reverberate and amplify.  The sound distorts and grows until you feel like you’re at a rave inside a car ferry halfway across the Bay of Biscay. During a hurricane.

When scientists get round to studying the Hum, they’ll find that it starts in Gran Canaria’s birthday venues and spreads around the world. It’s not aliens that are driving us mad, it’s the Macarena.

Grin and bear it?

You’re probably thinking “oh, come on, it can’t be that bad”, or “just grin and bear it, for the kiddies”.

And yes, you can maintain a polite conversation around a bowl of crisps and a warm Coke. And the kids will eventually get so exhausted that they’ll sleep through the effects of the junk food and lurid sweeties.

Unless you’re unlucky and it’s your sprog that sustains a serious injury in the ball pit, or tantrums out and has to be dragged away in hysterics. There’s always one!

The mathematics of survival

Anyone can survive a party, but let’s do some maths here.

Each child is in a class of 20 and gets invited to at least 15 birthday parties per year. That’s more than one party per month. For 10 years.

If you have two or (god help you) three kids, the maths gets terrifying.

There’s a reason why most Spanish parents only have the one sprog.

Just go to the beach

We live on an island with one of the world’s best climates. It’s warm enough to have an outdoor party almost every day of the year.

So please, when it’s your little Juan’s turn to host a party, hold it on the beach, or in a park, or a plaza.

But not at Katapum. Please god, not at Katapum!


Quality Car insurance In Gran Canaria

Expat car insurance arrives in Gran Canaria with discounts up to 50%

Car insurance for Gran Canaria residents

Car insurance in Spain is pretty much the same as in the UK, you get basic and fully comprehensive insurance and a variety of policies in between. The only main difference is that roadside assistance is included as part of your policy as standard so you don’t need to then buy AA or RAC cover.

There are many insurance companies, but you rarely get the bargains you can pick up on the internet in the UK. You also have to pay for your insurance annually or every six months.

Due to bitter experience, we’d advise being careful with the cheapest quotes on the market as they always seem to include a catch. For example, some cheap quotes are cheap because you have to pay for any repairs and then claim the money back from the insurer (which can take months). Read this for a first person account of Gran Canaria car insurance problems.

Here’s a good place to start if you want quality car insurance in Gran Canaria with English-language support and excellent coverage.

Contact Caser Expats Insurance

We advise all Gran Canaria residents to contact Caser Expats Insurance as they offer up to 50% discounts to expats (on standard prices for Spanish drivers).

Think of it as a bonus for knowing how to use roundabouts.

Caser has an office in Las Palmas and another in San Fernando, so you know always know that you can talk to a real person.

Even with the discount, Caser Expats are not the cheapest car insurers on the market in Gran Canaria, but they do offer a series of heavy-duty benefits that make their annual policies worthwhile.

  • You can choose which garage fixes your car and even take it to the official brand garage (great service but high prices).
  • Roadside assistance 365 days of the years from the day you sign your policy.
  • Complete coverage for all mechanical and electrical faults no matter what they cost to fix.
  • Legal support in the case of a claim against a third-party.
  • Financial support if you lose your license and need to do a course to recover it
  • 100% of replacement costs for your vehicle (in the case of damage, fire or theft) for the first two years after it is registered, and 120% during the third year.
  • 60% no-claims-bonus when you renew your annual policy.
  • Global travel insurance.

Get a quote from Caser Expats by calling or emailing them, or simply by filling in the form at the bottom of the page. Their English-speaking, resident brokers will contact you straight away.

get a free Gran Canaria car insurance quote

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