Shops Open In Spain On Sunday?

Shops Open In Spain On Sunday
Very few stores open in Spain on Sundays with the exception of a few streets in the city centres of Madrid (eg around Callao) and in Barcelona (eg the MareMagnum shopping mall by the port).

Are the shops open on Sundays in Spain?

Opening hours of shops in Spain – The classic Spanish shops are open from Monday to Friday at least from 9:30 to 13:30 and from 17 to 20. Many open in the morning already at 9 o’clock (bakeries also earlier) and close only at 14 o’clock. While in northern Spain the shops are open in the evening from 16:30 to 19:30, the business hours in southern Spain are usually from 17:30 to 20:30.

  • Saturdays are often only open in the morning;
  • On Sundays the shops in Spain are traditionally closed;
  • There are more and more exceptions to the above opening hours of shops in Spain: In the tourist regions, many shops are open much longer;

Some shops do not have afternoon rest at all and are open all the time. In many cities, the shops are also open on Sundays. Depending on the city and region, this can be all year round or limited to the summer or the pre-Christmas period. ´ The new shopping centres on the outskirts of the city or the large department stores such as El Corte de Ingles have also abolished the siesta.

Why are things closed on Sunday in Spain?

Take a stroll through any small or medium-sized Spanish town on a Sunday, and you’ll notice that the majority of its high-street shops and businesses are shuttered up. Even in bigger cities, many still close on Sunday. Often people assume that the Sunday closures are a reflection of Spain’s laidback lifestyle, and that Spaniards still see Sundays as a day of rest.

  1. While it is true that most Spaniards do still use Sundays to relax, eat, and spend time with family, it’s not entirely that simple;
  2. Others assume it’s a legacy of Spain’s Catholic culture, and that everyone’s at mass, but that’s become less and less true in recent decades, and the reality is that Spain’s Sunday trading laws are often the reason behind the closures, depending on where you are;
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READ MORE:  Spanish habits that foreigners just don’t get  Manual widget for ML (class=”ml-manual-widget-container”) Sunday Trading Sunday trading laws are not unique to Spain. Many countries around the world place limits on which, how, for how long, and how often shops and businesses can open on Sundays.

But many countries across Europe, like Portugal, Italy, and the U. K, have more liberal trading hours legislation. In fact, the European Commission ranked Spain as the country with the second highest number of restrictions on commercial trade in the EU.

A map of which countries where large supermarkets are generally open on non-holiday Sundays. Green: Large supermarkets and shopping centers are generally open on Sundays. Blue: Large supermarkets are allowed to be open for 6 hours or less on Sundays. Red: Large supermarkets are generally closed on Sundays.

  • Map: Imre Kristoffer Eilertsen/Wikipedia (CC BY 4;
  • 0) Spain’s law First things first, as with many policies in Spain, Sunday trading legislation is delegated to the autonomous communities;
  • Article 1 of Law 1/2004, which outlines rules on business hours more broadly, gives businesses the liberty to determine the days and times of their commercial activity, however it must work within the framework of the law and the rules of the autonomous community;

That is to say, each regional government has the final say on its Sunday opening hours, and in many parts of Spain Sunday opening is allowed once a month – normally at the beginning of the month – and on Sundays during special shopping seasons like Christmas and Easter, but also during sales periods. According to the law, the businesses free to open as and when they please are: 

  •  Hospitality establishments and bakeries
  •  Petrol stations
  •  Florists
  • Shops at transport stations
  • Smaller convenience stores, provided that they meet the criteria set out in the law

In a strange quirk on Spanish legislation, commercial establishments smaller than 300 square metres have total freedom of trading schedules across Spain, regardless of what is says on their regional statute book. Tourist areas Tourist areas are often given exceptions to deal with demand. Shops in towns and areas declared as tourist-based are allowed to open every Sunday. That grouping, as of a few years ago, includes:

  • Downtown Madrid
  • Valencia municipality 
  • Zaragoza 
  • Downtown Palma de Mallorca 
  • Most of the Catalan coastal with the exception of Barcelona
  • Most of the Murcia’s coastal area
  • The Andalusian and Valencian coastal areas
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Equally, any area with a World Heritage Site or property of cultural or national interest is allowed to open, as are shops close to ports on tourist cruise routes, and areas whose main attraction is shopping tourism. Shops Open In Spain On Sunday A woman walks past a closed shop in Madrid. Photo: GABRIEL BOUYS / AFP) READ MORE: Are Spaniards really that bad at queueing?  Community rules Businesses that are not included in the exempted sectors outlined in national law, as above, must abide by the trading calendar outlined every year by their regional government.

This means that many businesses aren’t able to open on Sundays, even if they wanted to. Certain sectors, however, like hospitality, can open without restrictions, as can pharmacies. This means there’s quite a bit of variation in Sunday trading laws around Spain.

In Madrid, for example, all businesses have been able to open, if they wish, for 24 hours a day, 365 days a week, since 2021. Compare that with the stricter restrictions in Basque Country, for example, where no big business can open on Sundays, nor holidays, and are often closed on Saturday afternoons too.

Generally speaking, the number of Sundays autonomous communities can play with is sixteen spread throughout the calendar years. However, based on each region’s unique economic circumstances, the number of authorised Sunday openings can be tinkered with, whether by increasing or decreasing it.

You can usually find your region’s Sunday opening scheduled for the whole year online. The economic impact The COVID-19 pandemic shutdown sparked debate about the economic consequences of Spain’s Sunday trading laws. Business groups called on the government to relax some of the restrictions when faced with financial annihilation, and requested freedom to open when they please, as was allowed in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis.

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With many businesses having closed their doors for the last time during the pandemic, allowing more economic freedom to trade on Sundays is seen as a way of recouping the significant losses many endured during the lockdown.

It would also perhaps be a way to boost employment, although many smaller businesses claim they can’t open on Sundays because they can’t afford to hire new staff or pay their existing workers more money. Smaller businesses and self-employed unions are often at loggerheads over Sunday trading laws with bigger companies and corporations, represented by The National Association of Large Distribution Companies (Anged), with regards to competition and the pros and cons of more liberal trading hours.

How can I spend a Sunday in Madrid?

Is Madrid closed on Sundays?

Spain convenience store/typical sunday for Spanish people

Madrid Sunday shopping hours – Sunday is generally the day of rest in Spain, with many shops remaining closed on a Sunday. However, as more foreigners move into the city you’ll find that there are a few shops open on a Sunday (though, with limited opening hours).

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Are pharmacies open on Sunday in Spain?

Pharmacy Opening Hours – Pharmacies are usually open Monday to Friday from 9. 30am to 2pm and 5pm to 9. 30pm, and Saturdays 9. 30am to 2pm. There’s usually a notice on the pharmacy window or door with details of the nearest 24-hour pharmacy (farmacia de guardia).