TENERIFE FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions – TENERIFE GUIDE
Q: What’s the weather like in Tenerife?
A: Tenerife has a sub-tropical climate with micro-climates varying around different parts of the island. The south is generally warmer, sunnier and drier with less greenery, whilst the north is cooler, cloudier with more greenery. Average daytime temperatures range from 19 – 23c (winter) and 24-30c (summer).
Q: What’s the coldest month in Tenerife?
A: The coldest months are generally January and early February, although the month with the fewest hours of sun is typically December.
Q: What’s the hottest month in Tenerife?
A: The hottest month is typically August, although September can often feel warmer due to higher humidity.
Q: Which is the nicest part of Tenerife?
A: Tenerife has many nice parts, although some of the most popular destinations for visitors and residents alike include:
- Santa Cruz City.
- Puerto de la Cruz.
- La Laguna.
- Los Gigantes.
- Puerto de Santiago.
- Callao Salvaje.
- Costa de Adeje.
- Playa de las Americas.
Check out our Resort Guide: HERE
Q: Where can I view webcams in Tenerife?
A: Tenerife Guru has compiled the most comprehensive collection of webcams in Tenerife: HERE
Q: What’s the best area in Tenerife to stay?
A: Visitors looking for a typical beach holiday usually choose the ‘Costa Adeje’ area in the south. Culture vultures generally choose the city Santa Cruz or the old capital La Laguna, whilst Nature Lovers will be happy almost anywhere away from the tourist areas.
Q: How many days should you stay in Tenerife?
A: To venjoy the island’s main attractions, visitors should allow at least 5 days, with 7 day and 14 day package holidays being the most popular options. However, long-weekend trips are also growing in popularity.
Q: When is the best time to visit Tenerife?
A: For lazing by the pool and beach, Tenerife is excellent all year round. However, for nightlife/partying, the best months are June to September.
Q: Is Tenerife expensive?
A: Tenerife is generally a cheap place to visit or to live. Bars and restaurants can be particularly good value due to the strong competition. Alcohol and Tobacco are among the cheapest anywhere in Europe and general V.A.T. is only 7%.
Q: Is it expensive to eat out in Tenerife?
A: Due to the large number of cafes, bars and restaurants, Tenerife is an extremely good-value venue for dining out. Options range from €10 three course dinners and €8 ‘all you can eat’ Chinese Buffets, all the way up to Michelin-starred restaurants, plus everything imaginable inbetween.
Q: What’s the cheapest month to go to Tenerife?
A: Prices do not fluctuate massively through the year, although popular times such as Christmas, Easter and Summer command premium prices, whilst the quietest months are typically May and November. Golf lovers should visit between April and September when prices drop significantly for a round of golf.
Q: Where do rich people live in Tenerife?
A: Whilst there are expensive properties dotted all around Tenerife, the most prestigious areas in the south are Adeje Golf/El Duque/La Caleta, whilst in the north, there are several rich suburbs in the city Santa Cruz and the old capital La Laguna.
Q: Which is the warmest resort in Tenerife?
A: The climate around the island varies considerably due to numerous micro-climates. However, the consistently warmest area is in the south, from Los Cristianos/Playa de las Americas all the way along the coast to Playa Santiago and Los Gigantes. Check out our Climate & Weather Guide: HERE
Q: Is Tenerife good for partying?
A: Tenerife has a reputation as a top destination for nightlife and partying. Party-goers typically head to Playa de las Americas in South Tenerife for the main action. Check out our Tenerife Nightlife Guide: HERE
Q: What are Tenerife’s main attractions?
A: Tenerife is most famous for its beaches and nightlife, award-winning waterparks, and natural beauty spots such as Mount Teide National Park. Check out our Tenerife Attractions Guide: HERE
Q: Can you swim all year round in Tenerife?
A: Visitors from colder countries find the sea in the south of Tenerife warm enough to swim in all year round (19c/20c in winter / 24c in summer), although the locals tend to avoid it other than in the summer.
Q: How much money should I take to Tenerife?
A: This obviously depends on your lifestyle and the activities you plan to enjoy. However, most visitors should allow for at least €100 euros per day spending money (excluding accommodation costs, expensive watersports etc).
Q: How much is a pint of beer in Tenerife?
A: The average price for a pint of local draft beer (Dorada/Mahou etc) averages €2. However, many bars in the tourist areas offer happy hours and special deals for anywhere from €1.00 to €1.50 a pint.
Q: What is the cheapest day to fly to Tenerife?
A: Flight prices to Tenerife tend to increase before the weekend (Thursday/Friday) and then drop lower from late Saturday onwards, due to the popularity of long weekend stays on the island.
Q: Which airlines fly directly to Tenerife from the UK?
A: The main airlines operating direct flights to Tenerife from the UK are British Airways, Easyjet, Ryanair, Jet2, Norwegian and TUI.
Q: What are the most luxurious hotels in Tenerife?
A: Tenerife boasts several luxury hotels, including but not limited to: Ritz Carlton Abama, Melia Palacio de Isora, Royal Garden Villas & Spa, Hotel Botanico & Oriental Spa Garden, Bahia del Duque and Hotel Vincci Seleccion La Plantacion del Sur.
Q: Is it warm enough to sunbathe in Tenerife in January?
A: Absolutely, yes! Average daytime temperatures in the south range from 20c to 23c and 18c to 22c in the north. If the sun is out, it is almost certainly warm enough to sunbathe.
Q: Does Tenerife have a rainy season?
A: Whilst rain is fairly common in the north of Tenerife, the south of the island is relatively arid and has very low rainfall levels. Statistically, the wettest month is December, receiving an average 31mm of rain. In 2021, the wettest month was January.
Q: Is it windy in Tenerife?
A: It depends on the zone. The north and east coasts are windier than the south and west coasts. The least windy area is along the southern coastline tourist zone from Los Cristianos to Los Gigantes.
Q: Is Tenerife a safe island?
A: Yes, Tenerife is one of the safest places in Europe. It has among the lowest violent crime rates in the entire EU. It also has minimal or no risk for terrorist attacks, hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, venomous reptiles or shark attacks.
Q: How can I buy a property in Tenerife?
A: Tenerife is a particularly popular holiday-home destination among foreigners. There are legal pitfalls to avoid when buying, so care should be taken when seeking legal advice. For more information, see our Property Buying Guide: HERE
Q: Can I retire to Tenerife?
A: Tenerife is a very popular retirement destination. The process is relatively easy for EU nationals. UK nationals can also retire to Tenerife, although as of January 2021, the exact residency requirements are yet to be clarified by Spain due to the Brexit transition. For the latest Tenerife Residency rules and news, click HERE.
Q: Is Tenerife a Tax-Free Island?
No. whilst Tenerife applies very low taxes to certain goods such as alcohol, tobacco and fuel, low rates of tax are still payable. VAT sales tax is 7%, whilst income/capital/corporation taxes are roughly comparable to those in other EU countries.
Q: Can you drink the water in Tenerife?
Tapwater is officially drinkable in Tenerife, although most locals and visitors stick to bottled water due to the variable taste from created by disinfection treatments and mineral content. The majority of the island’s water now comes from desalination plants, although some remoter areas still rely upon the pristine water from mountain sources. A 5 litre bottle of spring water can cost as little as 60 cents.
Q: Is Tenerife a part of the European Union?
A: Whilst the Canary Islands are owned by Spain (a member of the EU) and use the Euro currency, they are considered outside of the EU for tax purposes (e.g. VAT, customs and duty-free status). Visitors returning to the UK or other EU countries after visiting Tenerife should therefore follow the GREEN or RED channels upon arrival and should NOT use the Blue ‘Arrivals from the EU’ channel.
Q: Are Taxis cheap in Tenerife?
A: Tenerife Taxis are relatively cheap in comparison with other EU countries, due to low fuel prices. All fares are metered, but care must be taken regarding any supplements that the driver seeks to apply, particularly on public holidays.
Q: Is tipping customary or required in Tenerife?
A: In tourist areas, tipping is more common/customary, but still not obligatory. A 5% to 10% tip at dinner, or a 50 cent or 1 euro tip in a bar or cafe will be gratefully accepted. However, among Spaniards, tipping is neither customary nor expected. In a bar or cafe, a Spaniard may simply leave the small change coins rounded to the nearest Euro, or perhaps up to a 5% tip in a fancy restaurant.
Q: Is English widely spoken in Tenerife?
A: In the tourist areas, basic English is widely spoken and understood. However in other areas, many locals may speak little or no English. The official language is Spanish (Castellano/Castilian) but with a regional accent, dialect and slang more closely reflecting that of South-American Spanish speaking countries.
Q: Does UBER or any other rideshare operate in Tenerife?
A: No, there is currently no UBER or other rideshare service operating in Tenerife. However, taxis are relatively cheap and there is a reasonable public transport bus network covering all main areas of the island.
Q: What is the transport/journey time between the airport and Playa de las Americas / Los Cristianos?
A: From TFS (Tenerife South) airport, journey times by car or taxi to Los Cristianos or Playa de las Americas are around 15 – 20 minutes, depending on traffic. The typical fare for the journey is between €25 and €30, depending on the destination.
Q: Is Tenerife hilly?
A: Being a island dominated by the highest mountain in Spain, nearly all journeys from the coastline to inland areas involves a fairly steep ascent. Most tourist areas are walkable, although visitors should expect a few hills to climb.
Q: Are there sharks in Tenerife?
A: Yes, Tenerife is home to various species of shark. However, shark attacks on humans are extremely rare. There have been only 6 reports of unprovoked shark attacks on humans in the entire Canary Islands since 1828, at least one of which was a fisherman unloading his tasty haul.
Q: Are there mosquitos in Tenerife?
Like all sub-tropical areas, Tenerife has mosquitos. However, they are relatively low in number, particularly in the developed tourist areas. There are no known instances of mosquitos carrying malaria in Tenerife.
Q: Are there cockroaches in Tenerife?
Like all sub-tropical areas, Tenerife has cockroaches. However, they are relatively low in number, particularly around hotels and apartment complexes where insect control programmes are in place. Cockroaches can also be minimised by clearing away dirty dishes, leftover food or crumbs and regularly emptying bins.
Q: What currency is used / accepted in Tenerife?
The official currency in Tenerife is the EURO. Some tourist-orientated establishments such as supermarkets, shops and bars may accept other popular tourist currencies, particularly GBP Sterling, although exchange rates offered vary widely! Currency exchange shops or kiosks are widely available in the tourist areas and typically offer better exchange rates than at airports, banks or hotels.
Q: Where should I exchange my currency in Tenerife?
To exchange currency for the official Euro in Tenerife, the cheapest option is the many currency exchange shops or businesses, which typically have a desk in an excursion shop, convenience store or electronics shop. Nearly all display their daily exchange rate prices on a board outside the shop. Airports, banks and hotels in Tenerife typically offer the worst exchange rates.
Q: Can I use my phone in Tenerife?
Yes, Tenerife has a good mobile phone network covering all of the tourist areas and main thoroughfares on the island. The island also has a widespread 4G network with plans to roll out 5G in the near future. Visitors should check that their existing phone plan covers roaming and that call and data roaming rates are reasonable. WiFi is also widely available in all airports, hotels, apartment complexes, and most bars, cafes, restaurants and shopping centres.
Q: Is Tenerife one hour ahead of the UK?
No. Tenerife is on exactly the same time as the UK, both in winter and summer, so Brits don’t need to change their watches.
Q: Can I use my debit/credit card in Tenerife?
Yes. Cards are accepted almost everywhere, particularly since the Covid-19 pandemic. However, check with your card issuer for exchange rates and overseas fees before you travel, to avoid any nasty surprises, or sign up for one of the many FX currency prepaid debit cards that offer better rates.
Q: Does it snow in Tenerife?
A: The only place on the island that gets snow is on Mount Teide in the national park, and only in the winter months after heavy rainfall. The sight of the snow-capped peak whilst sunbathing on a warm sandy beach is quite spectacular.
Q: What is the highest temperature ever recorded in Tenerife?
A: on 17th July 1978 a temperature of 47.5C (117.5 F) was recorded in Barranco de Masca, in the west of Tenerife.
Q: Is Tenerife tacky / Chavvy?
A: Whilst certain tourist areas in Tenerife have a tacky image and reputation, the vast majority of the island as a whole does not cater to this market.
Q: Can you flush paper down the toilet in Tenerife?
Yes. 99% of the island has modern toilets and sewage facilities that can cope with disposal of standard toilet paper. However, even the most advanced toilet can be overwhelmed, so it is still sensible to put any excess paper or other rubbish in the waste-bin provided.
Q: Do I need injections to visit Tenerife?
No vaccinations are required unless you are travelling from an infected area.
Q: How far is Tenerife from the UK by airplane?
The typical flight time from southern UK to Tenerife is around 4 hours and from northern UK approximately 4 hours 30 minutes.
Q: How long can you stay in Tenerife without a visa?
EU and UK passport holders can stay in Tenerife for up to 90 days without any further requirements. For longer stays, an application for residency is required. For more details on applying for residencia in Tenerife, click: HERE.