Madrid Spain Low Cost Living Retire Early

–>Madrid Livability Factors
–>Madrid Cost of Living
–>Madrid Best Area to Stay, Best Tours, Cheapest Flights
–>Madrid Free Walking Tour Video and Map
–>Best Food and Experiences for Digital Nomads
–>Madrid Facts and History
Best Travel or Retire Cheap in Paradise Locations in the World

This is Dan from Vagabond Buddha. This is my Madrid Spain low cost living retire early guide.

We just completed a 15-month tour of the world without going home once. During this 15 month tour we visited the UK (1 month), Mexico (5 months), Columbia (6 weeks), Ecuador (2 months), Peru (2 months), Hungary (2 weeks), Slovakia (4 days), Austria (3 days), Portugal (6 weeks), Morocco (4 weeks) and now Spain (4 days). While in Spain, we created this Madrid Spain low cost living retire early guide. The link to the Vagabond Buddha blog for each place visited is in the notes below each Youtube video. Here is the Youtube catalogue for all of the videos. Click the Youtube Catalogue below or this link.

We were in Madrid for just 4 days. We flew to Madrid from Morocco because the flights going home from Spain are cheaper than going home from Morocco. Since we would connect in Spain we decided to spend time on the ground in Madrid before flying home.

Qiang Hui is going to Malaysia to visit her family and I am going home to California to visit my family. We couldn’t get a Visa for Qiang Hui to visit the United States, so we headed off separately to spend time in our home countries with our families. After 15 months on the road, we needed to visit our families before they forget who we are.

Since I loved Madrid so much, I decided to do a full post. This post includes livability factors and cost of living. When we were in Morocco I had dropped some of the data I normally report. Morocco is a place you must see in your lifetime, but I just don’t think many of you will want to retire or live there for an extended period. So my Morocco posts were short and sweet.

However, Madrid is a livable city. So I am going to include all the information about Madrid in this post.

Madrid Livability Factors

Since we only spent 4 days here in Madrid, my thoughts about retiring here are not completely formed. I have to love a place before I would consider living there. Reasonable costs of living are just the first part of the story. That is why I also consider my livability factors. Each factor is rated high, medium, or low, and then the overall desirability of a destination is considered.

Walkability: High. Madrid is highly walkable. It has a great public transportation system. You can even take the Subway from the airport to the city center. You could easily live here without buying a car.

Internet: High. Madrid has great Internet speeds. We had no issues with the Internet.

Food: High. All of the foods of the world are here in Madrid. They also have LIDL grocery stores so you can get high-quality foods at reasonable prices.

Weather: Medium. I like warmer weather than this in the winter. August is the warmest month with an average high of 90F, 32C. However, it cools down at night in August to an average low of 61F, 16C. January is the coldest month with an average low at night of 37F, 2.7C but warms in the day to an average of 49F, 9C. The rainy season is October through December, plus April and May, when it averages 0.3 inches, 7 mm per month.

Things to Do: High. If you are interested in city life, Madrid has everything you will need. Plus, you are just 4 hours drive to Valencia on the Mediterranean.

Social Considerations: It seems many of the people we meet here in Madrid speak English. But you would need to learn Spanish if you decide to move here. That should open up more doors for you. The people in Madrid are very nice and helpful. I don’t believe you will face any additional challenges here just because you are a foreigner.

Expat Penetration: High. There are Facebook groups, web pages, meetups, etc. Just Google “Madrid expats” and you will see.

Real Estate: Buying: You will see in the Digital Nomads video that there are 2 Bedroom apartments in Madrid that ranger from about 160k to 600k Euros. But I do not recommend buying until you have been here for at least 2 years. The rents for a 2 bedroom apartment would range from about 850 Euros to 2200 Euros per month.

Madrid Desirability Score: High. I could see myself living in Madrid. The costs are about 20-30% higher than Lisbon, but it is also a larger more interesting city depending on what you are looking for.

Please subscribe to Vagabond Buddha or our Youtube Channel to find out all the best places to live or visit around the world. I have been to 65 countries so far. I started in 2007.

Madrid Cost of Living

I am here as I type this Madrid Spain low cost living retire early guide. The below cost of living numbers are an integration of my own experience and Numbeo. However, if significant inflation since the date of this post would render this table inaccurate. In that case update my below numbers using Numbeo.

Monthly Cost of Living, Madrid, Spain ($USD)






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High-End Restaurant





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Per Day




The above numbers are for one person and do not include alcohol, tours, or extras. I do not guarantee these prices for anyone. Here is a link explaining how the table works.

Disclaimer: These cost of living estimates include only food, rent, and local transportation. It does not include medical insurance or other common expenses.  In addition to adding the cost of medical insurance, you should have significant savings available for emergencies.  Do not rely on these numbers.  You have to do an exploratory visit to determine the cost of living for your personal lifestyle.

Please book using our links to recommended flights, tours, or accommodations. You will pay nothing extra, but we will earn a small commission. Your kindness will encourage us to keep making these travel guides and videos.

Madrid Best Area to Stay

You should stay in the historical center of Madrid if possible. I have marked where to stay on the above map. I have also made a recommendation below at each price point. The following recommendations go from most to least expensive. After that, I will tell you where we stayed.

Here are recommended places at various price points: High, Medium, Low

We stayed in this Airbnb place when we were in Madrid. (If you are new to Airbnb, use this code for a big discount).

If you are enjoying this, could you please like it, share it, comment below, or subscribe? That will rank us higher in search engines so we can keep making these travel guides.

Cheapest Flights

We almost always get our cheapest flights on this Skyscanner. They have a web crawler that is constantly looking for the cheapest prices all over the world. As usual we found the cheapest flight to Madrid on Skyscanner.
<h4id=”BT”>Madrid’s Best Guided Tours

Madrid’s Best Guided Tours

There are the two tour sources I recommend. These are tour aggregators which means almost anybody can put their tours on here. So in addition to price, you should see how many reviews a tour has and read the customers comments before deciding which tour is best. You should also check both links below before making a final decision. Sometimes you will find significant savings on any given day for similar tour quality.

Tour Aggregator 1

Tour Aggregator 2

Madrid Free Walking Tour Video and Map

Above is the video of our Madrid free walking tour. The video discusses each stop on the tour and the below map will take you to each. The video and below map are free. Click the interactive Google Map on your smartphone to be guided on this tour. It is interactive so you can add and remove places.

Digital Nomads in Madrid: Best Food, Experiences

Here are our best food experiences in Madrid:

Takos: This is amazing Mexican food at reasonable prices. For example, there are 8 different kinds of Tacos at 1 Euro each including vegetarian.

Sidreria El Tigre del Norte Tapas Caseras: You buy a beer for 5 Euro here and they give you a large plate of Tapas. It was more than we could eat.

La Hummuseria: Crazy delicious hummas here.

Vagabond Buddha’s Kitchen: We cooked the rest of our meals at home, in our Airbnb kitchen. We just love the LIDL grocery stores in Spain . We keep buying food there and cooking at home. We are eating high quality meals for about 3 EU per person, per meal.

Grab a free copy of my Ebook. You will learn how to save and earn money living internationally.

Madrid Facts and History

Here are some interesting facts about Madrid from Wikipedia. I am in Madrid now.

Madrid is the capital of Spain and the third largest city in all of Europe with over 3 million people within the city and 6 million within the metro area. In Europe, only London and Berlin are larger.

Although people have been living continuously in Madrid since prehistoric times (500,000 BC), the earliest writing about its existence was found from the 9th century AD when Muslims controlled this area. There are also excavations of Roman and Carpetani ruins here that date from around 300 BC and before.

When the Christians took this part of the Iberian Penninsula back in 1085 AD, Madrid became the property of Alfonso VI of León and Castile. The Christians took the center part of Madrid and the Jews and Muslims were pushed to the suburbs.

I started living internationally over 11 years ago. If you would like to learn how to make money online, or how to live internationally possibly with less money than you spend at home, please subscribe to Vagabond Buddha, our YouTube Channel or get a free copy of my Ebook.

If you are interested in the subject of present moment awareness, my new videos on that subject are now being posted at my new Present with Vagabond Buddha Youtube Channel. The older videos are on the Vagabond Buddha Channel’s Presence Playlist.

This is Dan of Vagabond Buddha. Thank you for stopping by. The world is your home. What time will you be home for dinner?

I am not offering you any of the above prices. These are just my notes and estimates from the time of my visit and this post. Your costs will likely be drastically different if significant inflation or deflation occurs or the market changes after this post. Never move anywhere until you have visited first and verified price and living conditions for your style of living. I will not update these numbers until I am on the ground again here, if ever.

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