Renowned for its glorious weather, quirky architecture, inventive cuisine, and lively street scene, it’s no wonder that Barcelona attracts visitors from all over the world, keen to soak up this vibrant and colourful city. The city is home to a large and thriving expatriate community, drawn by the Barcelona way of life. |
As with any big move, moving to Barcelona can be just as disorienting as it is exciting. Luckily, newcomers to this city have a number of tools at their disposal to help them adjust. The versatile smartphone proves itself once more with these expat-friendly apps, which will have any foreigner pounding the streets like a local.
If you’re arriving in Barcelona with minimal language skills, your first order of business should be to learn a few communication basics. Barcelona may be in Spain, but locals there consider their city to be the capital of the autonomous region of Catalonia. Thus, road signs and public notices will be in Catalan, the official language of Barcelona and Catalonia. Most Catalans, however, are fluent in Castilian Spanish as well, so it pays to learn some of both.
For a fast and fun way to learn both Catalan and Spanish, try Duolingo, a free language app you can use on the go. Duolingo teaches you useful words and phrases as well as basic verb conjugations, and even reminds you to practice. Though not a substitute for a foreign language course (which also offers the chance to socialise with other expats), Duolingo is an excellent way to begin wading into a new language.
With some basic language skills under your belt, you’re ready to interact with the locals. Meetup, another free app, is an excellent way to find groups of people who share your interests. With over 24 million users in 181 countries, Meetup lets you choose from various activities – sports, music, fitness, etc. – from which you can find groups to join. Often you can find a group meet-up to attend at any time, every day. With Meetup, you can have the whole exciting city of Barcelona in the palm of your hand.
If you’re any sort of foodie, you’ve come to the right place. Barcelona is teeming with restaurants, markets, and tiny tapas bars, all of which overflow with Mediterranean flavour. Consistently listed as one of the top ten gastronomical cities in the world, Barcelona will make you feel spoiled for choice. Sort through the city’s eateries with El Tenedor (literally “fork”), a free restaurant app offering reviews, discounts, and promotions of restaurants in major Spanish cities. Earn points (called “yums”) on El Tenedor by making reservations at participating establishments, and you could get 10 Euros off your next meal.
Thinking of packing up and moving to beautiful Barcelona? Make the right first choice and arrange for a Barcelona airport taxi to meet you (and all your luggage) at arrivals. Simple to pre-book and a whole lot easier than taking the bus, an airport transfer will give you a head start in your new city.
Lukas Johannes is a driver for Shuttle Direct, the number one provider of shared and private airport transfers all over Europe and northern Africa. If you’re looking for an affordable Barcelona Airport taxi, Lukas and his colleagues can make sure that you and your luggage get to and from the airport swiftly and safely.
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