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08 Living in Madrid

  • IED Guides
  • "Student Guide"
  • Number 01 - 22 de September de 2021
  • creatividad

Anyone who lives or visits Madrid discovers a vital and bright city open to the world, an epicentre of culture, entertainment and art, with numerous theatres, cinemas and museums. The character of Spaniards, combined with the appeal of "street living", is a rich incentive to enjoy the activities and events taking place in the city and to establish personal and professional connections.

Do you want to know what happens in this city? Do something new each day.
These are our suggestions:

1 The cost of living in Madrid

Coste de la Vida en Madrid

Are you living in Spain for the first time?

Here are a number of interesting facts about the cost of living in Madrid.

Approximate monthly expenses:

  • Estimated monthly expenses for a student in Madrid
  • Accommodation (room in shared flat): €350 - 550 / month
  • Private health insurance: €36
  • Services: bills for electricity, water, heating, gas and Internet connection in an apartment amount to approximately €60.
  • Food: €240
  • Educational materials (photocopies, books, notebooks, etc.): €50-100
  • Transport: Metrobus monthly card: €54.60, although price varies depending on age and area.
  • Entertainment: €220 
    Below is a list of the average cost of products:

    Restaurants and bars:

    • Daily menu: €10.00 - 15.00
    • McDonalds: €5.00-7.00
    • Coffee: €1.50 - 2.00
    • Large beer: €2.00 - 3.00
    • Soft drink: €1.50 - 2.00

Productos de mercado:

Market products:

Milk 1 liter 0.66 - 1,00
Bread 1 stick 0.75 - 1.50
Pasta 1 kg 0.75 -  1.50
Rice 1 kg 0.75 -  1.50
Cheese 1 kg 7.00 - 12.00
Eggs 1 dozen 1.30 -  2.20
Chicken breasts 1 kg 5.50 - 7.00


Apples 1 kg 1.30 - 2.00
Oranges 1 kg 1.00 - 2.00
Tomatoes 1 kg 1.10 - 2.00
Potatoes 1 kg 0.70 - 1.00
Lettuces 1 head 0,80 - 1,00


Water 1.5 liters 0.50 - 1.00
Coca Cola 1 can 0.50 - 0.70
Chocolate bar   1.00 - 2.00
Chips bag 0.80 - 1.50
Nuts bag 3

Useful tips:

In Spain, the electricity supply is 220 volts and plugs have 2 pins. The rest of Europe uses the same voltage, except for the UK and Ireland, where the supply is 240 volts and electrical appliances have 3 pins. If you come from these countries, you'll need an adapter from 3 to 2 pins to use electrical appliances.
We recommend buying the adapter at the international airport from where you are flying to Madrid, as it is quite difficult to get in electrical stores in the city.

Water in Madrid is safe for drinking. There is no risk in consumption.

Phone calls
To call Madrid from your home country, you need to dial the international prefix for Spain (0034) and the prefix 91 to communicate with fixed numbers in Madrid.

In Spain, gratuities are included in the bill of restaurants, hotels, taxis, bars, etc. However, it is customary to leave some extra coins, but it is entirely up to the customer.



2 Discounts for Services

Descuentos en Servicios - IED Madrid

There are services, bookstores and specialty shops in Madrid that offer exclusive discounts for students of the IED Madrid. It is essential to show your International Student Identity Card to benefit from these discounts.


  • Graphic Book: 5% discount on books, graphic tablets and Wacom.
    Contact by email: info@graphicbook.com (Identify yourself as a student of the IED Madrid)
    916 45 52 53
  • Panta Rhei: 5% discount on cash payments (Show your IED Madrid student card).
    Calle Hernán Cortés 7 28004, Madrid.
    913 19 89 02

Shops and workshops

  • La Eriza Binding Workshop: 10% discount in estimates for each project.
    Calle Colon, 15, bajo izquierda. 28004, Madrid.
    E-mail: laeriza@gmail.com
    91 521 4061
  • RIBES & CASALS fabrics: Special discount card for students of the IED Madrid to present along with the IED student card.
    Calle Atocha, 26. 28012, Madrid.
    913 694 500
  • Ceplasa plastics: 10% discount to all students, presenting their card.
    Calle del Cardenal Cisneros, 45, 28010 Madrid.
    914 47 68 51
  • JER, Fine Arts: 10% discount to all students, presenting their card.
    Calle Hortaleza, 72, 28004 Madrid.
    915 32 17 65
  • La Riva, special paper: 10% discount to all students, presenting their card.
    Plaza de San Ildefonso, 4-5, 28004 Madrid.
    915 22 41 01
  • The Graphics (Printing and Binding Workshop): 10% discount presenting the IED student card.
    Calle Estrella, 12, 28004 Madrid.
    Contact: Sergio Arribas
    918 052 280/639 304 299
    E-mail: info@thegraphics.es
  • Manuel Riesgo SA: 5 to 7% discount, presenting the IED student card.
  • Sancer. Model making: 10% discount to all students, presenting the card and paying cash.


Alternative transport services

Madrid Segway Tours
(10% discount)

What is it?
Madrid Segway Tours allows you to embark on a journey into the past, with a tour from Madrid to the new and modern city that reinvents itself along the river Manzanares. There are guides that will show you a Madrid full of secrets and romantic spots and will accompany you to do your shopping in the most prestigious stores and boutiques of the city, as well as taking you to have some tapas in the unique Mercado de San Miguel, or helping you get to know the stadium of your favourite soccer team.

Before each tour, the guides will teach you to handle the Segway, a very simple and fun system.

Plaza de Santa Maria Soledad Torres Acosta, 2
(Plaza de la Luna, Metro Callao). 28004, Madrid
Tel. 608 419 513
More information: http://www.madrid-segway.es/

Motor & Go Rent
(Discount on monthly hire and 10% on one-off hire)

It is necessary, in order to benefit from the discount, for students to show their IED Madrid student card when booking or picking up your Segway at the premises.

Paseo Infanta Isabel, 2328014, Madrid.
Tel. 91 434 96 48
E-mail: empresas@motoandgo.es


3 Bookstores and specialised stores

Panta Rhei - Librerías y Tiendas Especializadas - IED Madrid


Very close to the IED Madrid, perpendicular to Calle Flor Alta, we come to the Calle de los Libreros, known for its large number of bookstores. For those who live in Madrid it is undoubtedly the best choice to buy books, including secondhand books.

Here is a selection of different bookstores (also online ones) that are popular in this area:

And if in addition to having a passion for books, music is your thing, we recommend the following establishments:

El Corte Ingles is a department store of great prestige where you can find almost anything. It has stores throughout the city. Also, Fnac is a store that specializes in music, books, movies, computer equipment, photography and video.

All at your fingertips.

4 Transport

Madrid has an extensive network of highly interconnected transport. You can use the same ticket (travel card) throughout the network, which includes the underground Metro, light rail, commuter rail, city and intercity buses.

The travel card is valid according to the chosen area, and is divided into: A, B1, B2, B3, C1, C2, E1 and E2, although its use is permitted beyond the scope of validity by paying for any supplementary routes.

Rates can be found here:

There are also other types of tickets:

  • Single ticket: €1.5
    Valid for one trip in the Municipality of Madrid (bus) and on the Metro network depending on the origin and destination.
  • 10 trip Metrobus: €12.20
    The Metrobús ticket allows you to make 10 trips on the Metro or EMT (bus) without distinction, without the need for a different ticket for each form of transport. Valid on all Metro stations within Zone A, and all EMT, ML1 (light rail) except the Plaza Colón-Airport line.

More information on the Transport Consortium webpage.

Travel card application.

Monthly subscriptions to travel cards can be purchased at tobacconists, but only for renewals. When requested for the first time, they must be obtained online or by calling 012.

  • Youth Pass: €20 in all zones (until the date when the holder becomes 26).
  • Regular Pass: €54.60 zone A (valid for those between 25 and 64).
  1. Documents required:
  • ID card, passport or NIE (in the case of the Youth Pass, both a photocopy and original must be submitted).
  • Application Form (obtained at the tobacconist where you submit your request).
  • A recent colour and passport size photograph with the name of the applicant on the back.
  1. Obtaining the card:
  • A Regular Pass card will be delivered at once
  • A Youth Pass is delivered in the same tobacconist where the request is processed within approximately 15 days.

* The travel card can also be requested online.
To see the rates for travel cards, click here.

For more information on travel cards in Madrid, click here.

Alternative transportation.


Hiring a bike lets you enjoy the city in a healthy and environmentally friendly way at your own pace. In Madrid you can use BiciMAD.

In addition, the Parque Juan Carlos I offers a free bicycle rental for you to explore this great park. The system is very simple and you only need to register at the park, next to the main car park, where an electronic card is obtained, which is valid for a year and offers free access to the park’s bicycles. Each access allows for one hour’s use of the bikes and is the best way to take advantage of the special bike itinerary within the park.
Avenida Manuel Azaña / Avda. Logroño / Via de Dublin s / n
Metro: Campo de las Naciones (L8)

5 Madrid Youth Card application

Solicitar el Carné Joven - IED Madrid


The Youth Card allows you to enjoy discounts on transport, accommodation, cultural activities or shopping in general. This card is personal and non-transferable, and gives the advantages offered by the other Autonomous Communities in Spain and any European countries adhering to the Youth Card. It is valid indefinitely from the date of issue up to the age of 31.

This card includes travel assistance insurance cover anywhere in the world which automatically enters into force from the moment you acquire the Youth Card. The telephone numbers for Allianz are:

  • 902 360 699 (calls from Spain)
  • 91 452 29 45 (calls from abroad)
  • Free collect calls.

Application conditions:

  • Aged 14 to 30
  • Resident in the Madrid province

Two types of card:

  • Youth Card: You can enjoy multiple discounts and benefits. It includes travel assistance insurance with international coverage.
  • *Youth Card Visa: it has the same characteristics as the Youth Card, plus the services of a bank card (debit or credit).

How do I apply?

To get the youth card, you can go to any of the following offices, present your ID, passport or NIE, and pay €4 in handling fees.

  • Oficina de la Dirección General de Juventud y Deporte de la Comunidad de Madrid. Paseo de Recoletos 7-9. 28004, Madrid
  • Oficina Joven Comunidad de Madrid, TIVE Calle Fernando El Católico, 88. 28008, Madrid
  • Any branch of Bankia in the Madrid province.

* The Youth Card Visa is obtained and issued at Bankia branches.
For more information on the Youth Card, click on this link.

6 Traveling in Spain

Viajar por España - IED Madrid

Spain is a great tourist country with beautiful beaches, an abundant and rich history, a vast cultural and artistic heritage and very diverse cuisine. Spain also stands out for the wonderful cultural diversity in its different regions.

During your time at the IED Madrid, enjoy this opportunity to travel around the colourful regions of Spain.

Central regions: get to know the origins of the country

These regions stand out for their cathedrals, convents, monasteries, castles and walled cities, wonderful artistic and cultural groups playing a key role in the country's history since the Middle Ages, the Reconquista and the establishment of the kingdom.

  • Madrid
    Apart from being the capital of Spain, it is also an autonomous community, with a historic, modern and multicultural city with a rich cultural life and attractive tourist activities.
  • Castilla la Mancha
    It is a region with cities and towns steeped in history and monuments, known for its association with Don Quixote.
    Places of interest: Toledo, Guadalajara, Ciudad Real.
  • Aragon
    It is identified with the ancient kingdom of Aragon, forged in medieval times. This is the place from which to learn about the origin of the country.
    Places of interest: Zaragoza, Teruel, Huesca.
  • Castilla y León
    The kingdoms of Castile and Leon played an important historical role in the Middle Ages and the Reconquista. Its wonderful historical and artistic monuments say a lot about the history of Spain.
    Places of interest: Salamanca, Segovia, Avila, Burgos, Leon, Valladolid, Soria, Palencia.
  • La Rioja
    It stands out for its variety of landscapes, flora and fauna, and for being home to genuine wine culture since ancient times.


East: Mediterranean regions

Spain is bathed by the Mediterranean Sea in the east, which gives its coastline its beautiful beaches, abundant sunshine, blue poetic skies and sea and a seaman spirit.

  • Catalonia*
  • Valencian Community
    This region is known for its long coastline, beautiful promenades, the famous festival of Las Fallas and for paella, a dish of international renown.
    Places of interest: Valencia, Alicante, Costa Blanca, Costa de Azahar, Castellón.
  • Murcia
    It has a great landscape and vast environmental diversity. It also stands out for its beautiful beaches and coasts.
    Places of interest: Murcia, Cartagena, Mazarrón, La Manga.


South: Feel the south, discover Andalusia

Andalusia is a land whose history dates back to the Roman empire and whose culture is characterized by a strong Islamic influence, as a result of the reign of the Moors for 700 years. Its wonderful cultural diversity lends this land impressive historical monuments such as the Alhambra in Granada, the Mosque of Cordoba and the Giralda in Seville, as well as splendid cathedrals. In addition, this region retains much of Spanish tradition, as the birthplace of flamenco.
Places of interest: Seville, Granada, Cordoba, Malaga, Ronda, Antequera, Almería, Cádiz, Huelva, Donana National Park, La Costa de la Luz, Jerez de la Frontera, Jaén.


North: Cantabrian Sea and diversity

  • Galicia*
  • Asturias
    This region has a beautiful green landscape and is surrounded by mountains overlooking the Cantabrian Sea. It offers a wide range of beautiful beaches and cliffs dotted with fishing villages contrasting with the inland villages. It is also known for its cider, the local drink par excellence.
    Places of interest: Oviedo, Gijón, Avilés, Los Picos de Europa, La Costa Verde.
  • Navarre
    There are many natural spaces and fantastic landscapes in Pyrenean villages, ideal for practicing winter sports. Pamplona, ​​the capital, holds from the 6th to the 14th of July the San Fermin festival, which is known internationally.
  • Cantabria
    Its coastline is dotted with fishing villages, beaches and small coves. Santander, an open and cosmopolitan city, has a wide range of leisure activities during the summer and is extremely attractive.
  • Basque Country*


West: land of history

  • Extremadura:
    In this land we find great architectural and landscape richness. The region is also known for maintaining its rich traditions and customs. This area is still untouched by tourism.
    Places of interest: Merida, Caceres, Trujillo, Guadalupe, Plasencia, Badajoz.


* The Spain of diversity:

Catalonia, Galicia and the Basque Country: these three regions emphasize their uniqueness by having their own language, tradition and culture.

  • Catalonia
    It is an eminently Mediterranean area, with its own language, Catalan. Catalonia is a dynamic, cosmopolitan community that has a great historical and artistic heritage. It has beautiful coastlines, beaches and mountains to enjoy the sun.
    Places of interest: Barcelona, ​​La Costa Brava, Girona, Figueres, La Costa Dorada, Tarragona, Lleida.
  • Galicia
    This region has Celtic origins, from the time before it underwent Romanization. Its history has lent it deep peculiarities and a special identity, as displayed in its language, Galician, its folklore with Celtic roots and its varied and unique craftsmanship. It is a maritime land and has several important fishing ports. Santiago de Compostela, one of the three holy cities of Christendom along with Jerusalem and Rome, is home to the cathedral that marks the final destination of the famous Camino de Santiago.
    Places of interest: Santiago de Compostela, A Coruña, Vigo, Ourense, Pontevedra.
  • Basque Country
    Its unique history has shaped the specific character of the Basque Country, which features a wealth of traditional culture. It has its own language, Euskera, which is the only non-Romance language of the peninsula. The Guggenheim Museum of Contemporary Art in Bilbao is known for its avant-garde design and architecture.
    Places of interest: San Sebastian, Bilbao, Vitoria.