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Compare Andorra and Monaco, why Andorra?

Introduction to Andorra

What do clients say that have already moved here?

I have relocated many families and individuals from  Monaco to Andorra. The main feedback was the advantages not only for children and education but also the outdoor life style, cheaper property and general well being rather than the traffic pollution of Monaco. Of course with the reputation it has built up over the centuries and the luxury that prevails, Andorra will not always be that alternative to be considered.

Monaco Contrasts with Andorra

Two very different countries by geography but similar in more ways than one

Andorra so different in geography from Monaco
  • Population of Monaco of 39,000 * includes 8200 Monagasques. It is the 189th least populated country.
  • Population of Andorra is 77,000 * and includes 27,200 Andorrans. It is the 185th least populated country.
  • Both of these countries have populations where the native contingent is out numbered in their own countries.

  • Land area of Monaco is 2.02 sq km  with new reclamation planned. It is the 2nd smallest country.

  • Land area of Andorra is 468 sq km and it is the 16th smallest country.

  • Monaco can still be tax free, and so can being a passive resident in Andorra (subject to personal circumstances).

Or try what is on offer in Puerto Rico, 0% income tax and 4% tax rates, please refer to the investment program here by courtsey of Nomad Capitalist

Access to Andorra and Monaco

One of the disadvantages of Andorra over Monaco is the access infrastucture. From Nice Aiport there is a regular and cheap Heli service, from Barcelona to Andorra it can be arranged but will set you back about 2,700 euros for a one way trip.

Airport proximity is also a plus for Monaco, all eyes have been on the "Andorra Airport" near La Seu d'Urgell. Those eyes have become strained and painful to keep open over the years, so unless you have a private jet or take an air taxi, rely on other airports near Andorra.

Access by road to Monaco is direct of course but can prove a nightmare in summer and in general is not the best place to navigate around with the traffic. Andorra is just over a two hour drive from Barcelona airport, a beautiful stress free drive (once off the ring road for Barcelona), please refer to the Andorra access route here. Also but only at predictable times of the year Andorra has its own access problem, notably on a long holiday weekend in the winter ski season or the summer holiday season. Once a resident here you will learn to follow the golden rule

"Andorra out mornings, Andorra in afternoons"

If you get it wrong, best of luck.

The added disadvantage to traffic can be snow, but in the 2019 season there were only two snowfalls that interfered with rush hour traffic, snow ploughs are out overnight as necessary and the roads are rarely a problem. The photo below is in Erts on the way through La Massana to Andorra La Vella in the morning rush hour, January 23rd 2019
Erts Andorra rush hour towards La Massana and Andorra

Comparison of procedures for residency, the Formula 1 /23 (Pun intended)

The basic procedure is similar in that police and marriage certificates are required ( Although not from place of birth which has always been a parculiar requirement given that so many left their country of origin as sometimes as far back as a baby).

The other requirements of a rental or property and health insurance are similar.

The bank certificates are required in both countries, the banks in Monaco may or may not issue such unless you have (some times less) 1 million euros invested which seems to be the standard minimum, a figure which towers above the Andorran requirement of 3 times the minimum wage, that is about 38,000 euros. In fact given property which is compared below Andorra seems about 1/ 23rd of the price of Monaco all in, here starts the Formula 1 /23

Property Purchase comparison.

For many years running Monaco has rated as the most expensive city in which to buy property with 2018 average rates being 43,780 euros a square metre. Andorra does not figure in any statistics but the average price here can be about 2,000 euros, not far from the Formula 1 /23!
As outlined above there is a clear difference in value for money. For example in Monaco the cheapest studio of just 22m2  (250 square feet) is 895,000 euros: The most expensive studio currently on the market (April 2019) will set you back 6.5 million euros, but there again it does have 70 sq metres ( about 800 square feet)!!

A two bedroom starts at 650,000 euros and rises to 16.5 million and so on. The most expensive properties are of course on application, but as far as the top end studio above is concerned you would be hard pushed to find a top end Xalet at that price in Andorra.

The cheapest studio in Andorra could be about 40,000 euros, generally they are 60 - 70,000 euros. Considering the price difference with Monaco we again end up with the magic Formula 1 /23!

A 2-3 bedroom apartment in Andorra, together with the views of the mountains which can be breath-taking may cost about 200,000 - 500,000  euros, and detached houses (Xalets) can still be found here for under 1 million euros.

Rentals Comparison

The most expensive property available to rent if you really want it is at Monte Carlo One, and a triplex there is asking 200,000 euros per month rental ? Too much ? No, over a third are booked and its not even complete yet !

As far as rentals are concerned in Monaco the cheapest available studio is about 2,000 euros per month, unless you would like to share ( Share a studio ? Very cosy).

In Andorra a studio can be found for 350 euros per month (Maybe rentals are an exception to the Formula 1 /23).

At the middle end of the market a 3 bed apartment in a reasonable area of Monaco will set you back about 15,000 euros per month, depending on where you prefer to be, we have already covered Monte Carlo One !!

In Andorra a 3 bed apartment can start at about 800 euros and depending on where you prefer could go as high as 3,000 euros.

ROC Properties and the Andorra market

Historically both countries owed their existence to banking "secrecy". I am unable to comment on Monaco, but I can state that Andorra has finally been acknowledged as a low tax country as opposed to a tax haven, so Monaco which is still tax free for most ( but not all) has the edge if you don`t mind passing the savings on to landlords and restaurant owners.

If I can assist on information about making Andorra your preferred domicile please email me and I will be delighted to answer any questions you may have, and remember, no filling in boxes to anonymous websites.......

Incidentally while we are on the subject of small countries, is anyone interested in Residency in the Vatican? I was thinking of making a website but seems there ins`t much call for that !

The Vatican, Andorra and Monaco
The Vatican is the 195th least populated county and has a population of just 799 as estimated in 2019. Also known as the Holy See the jurisdiction of this self governing micro country encompasses just 109 acres or 0.441 square km. To my knowledge there is no residency program in any of the Andorran Residency Categories, you need to be in the service of the Vatican, Swiss Guard or by Papal authorisation. If a Vatican City passport holder wishes to visit St Lucia, he or she will need a visa before..... I think that`s enough!
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