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¡Gracias a Adeslas! - Chuck Fisher's LiveJournal [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
From Bay Area to Barcelona

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¡Gracias a Adeslas! [ Sunday, 19 Jun 05 | 16:13 ]
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[My Mood |relievedrelieved]

Thank you Adeslas! After being on “pins and needles” for nearly three weeks, I received a package in the mail that contained my medical coverage here in Spain. I have to show proof of medical insurance as one of the requirements for obtaining a permanent resident visa.

Medical insurance here is cheaper than in the US. After I was layed-off from Sun, I was paying $409.18 a month for COBRA. With Adeslas the bill is 115.68 € a month. The fact that I am now 60 meant that the rate was about 20% more than if I were 59. Also, this is not a true apples-to-apples comparison as the co-pay amounts for Adeslas are much cheaper.

Here’s a table comparing insurance costs. I continue to pay for American life insurance policies and no longer pay auto insurance. To make the total comparison I am using the current exchange rate of 1 € equals $1.20. So you can see that I am saving about $5,000 a year in insurance costs now.

Insurance Costs Comparison
US España
474 €
1.388 €

Commuting/Car Costs
Since we are on the subject of cost comparisons, I’ll share the costs of having a car in the US versus using public transit here in Barcelona. The cost of public transit here is based on my current usage patterns. Also, the public transit in the US is under reported as it was being subsidized by Sun for half of last year. Again I have converted the expenses in Spain to USD.

Commuting and Car Costs Comparison
US España
0 €
0 €
0 €
0 €
Public Transit
780 €

So, part of my “big plan” was to reduce expenses and to try and live cheaper, now that I am no longer a wage earner. As these two comparisons illustrate, I am doing just that.

[User Picture]From: bviz2
Sunday, 19 Jun 05 | 17:26 (UTC)

Just curious... What about the base tax rates?

Hi Chuck,

Interesting info.

What about the base tax rates? Sales/Use/VAT, property, income, etc?

I'm just curious simply because many people in the U.S. would respond with "Yeah, but the government takes a lot more of your money through the taxes." You know how much I trust this government to run efficiently and to be truthful.... Anyone seen any bronze republicans recently?

See you soon,
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[User Picture]From: ursine1
Monday, 20 Jun 05 | 06:05 (UTC)

Re: Just curious... What about the base tax rates?

That's a good question. Tax rates are higher here. In my case I only have to pay taxes in one country and not both. (Reciprocal tax agreement.) I will choose to pay taxes in the US. And my income will be only capital gains which is currently taxed at 15%. Regular income here is probably taxed around 35%, but don't quote me on that. I wouldn't say that business are run any more effieciently here than the government. And I haven't really heard much complaint about taxes or government inefficiency

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From: that_dang_otter
Monday, 20 Jun 05 | 15:22 (UTC)
Your maintenance is more than 2x gas costs? On my Harley, it's only equal to gas, and on my VW it's considerably less. That seems kind of high.

But yes, public transit is definitely cheaper! If only we had a reasonable system here...
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[User Picture]From: ursine1
Tuesday, 21 Jun 05 | 06:08 (UTC)

Car maintenance

Last year I had more work than usual done on my car. In fact, the first real repair since I bought it 7 years before. So the maintenance costs were about $1,500 more than usual.

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