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Time Zones in Spain

Multiple Time Zones

Country: Spain
Long Name: Kingdom of Spain
Abbreviations: ES, ESP
Capital: Madrid
Time Zones: 2
Dial Code: +34

Time Zones Currently Being Used in Spain

OffsetTime Zone Abbreviation & NameExample CityCurrent Time
UTC +1WESTWestern European Summer TimeLas PalmasTue, 7:43:14 pm
UTC +2CESTCentral European Summer TimeMadridTue, 8:43:14 pm

How Many Time Zones Are There in Spain?

All of continental Spain, including the capital Madrid, observes the same time zone. However, the Canary Islands, off the coast of Morocco, add a 2nd time zone to the country. Here, the local time is 1 hour behind the mainland.

Time Zones Not Currently Being Observed in Spain

OffsetTime Zone Abbreviation & NameCommences
UTC +0WETWestern European TimeOct 27, 2024
UTC +1CETCentral European TimeOct 27, 2024

The above time zones are used during other parts of the year. They will become active again after the next clock change as Daylight Saving Time begins or ends.

Is Spain Using the Wrong Time Zone?

Spain uses a time zone that does not adequately reflect the solar time on its longitude. Central European Time (CET) is based on the solar time at 15° eastern longitude, which runs along the border between Germany and Poland. Central European Summer Time (CEST), Spain's Daylight Saving Time, refers to an even less suitable solar time, at 30° eastern longitude, which runs close to Kyiv, Ukraine.

In terms of geography, it would make more sense if continental Spain observed the same local time as the Canary Islands. In fact, the country did so for decades—from 1900, when time zones were introduced there, to 1940, when the dictator Francisco Franco moved Spain to the time zone it uses today.

Tuesday, July 23, 2024