Coming to live and work in Barcelona certainly has its appeals. Imagine the morning commute past some of the world’s most iconic sights, such as the Sagrada Familia. Or envision finish your day’s work, to head straight down to the beach and enjoy a cold beer in the sunshine.
Barcelona offers a quality of life that many Northern Europeans can only dream of. With year-round sunshine, beautiful architecture, delicious gastronomy, and beautiful array of beaches, there’s not much more you could ask for.
Sounds like heaven to you? Well, read on to find out more about what it’s like to work in Barcelona, from the average salaries to the cost of living, and much more.
Can you work in Barcelona if you don’t speak Spanish?
The two official languages in Barcelona are Spanish and Catalan. If you only speak English, you may be worried that this means you won’t be able to find a job here.
The good news is, thanks to Barcelona’s international population, English is also widely spoken here too. Your best bet is to find an English-speaking job working for an international company.
Working in the tourism sector is also possible, as speaking English puts you at a great advantage. Bars, restaurants, and hotels recruit more staff in the busier summer months. But bear in mind that certain positions, such as receptionists, may be required to speak Spanish.
Another possible option is to work as a nanny or au pair, as lots of families look for native English speakers to help their children learn the language. This way you can also pick up some Spanish yourself too!
Knowledge of other languages is certainly a bonus, so if you come to work then it’s worth putting in the effort to learn a little Spanish too.
What is the average salary here?
Despite recent economic issues in Spain during the last few years, Barcelona remained an economically strong city. Thanks to the great number of foreign visitors and immigrants that the city receives, it has allowed Barcelona to continue above the national trend economically.
On average, a person working in Barcelona typically earns around €1400 per month. Salaries range from the lowest average of €950, up to €13,200 (which is the highest average, but the actual maximum salary will be higher).
It is worth noting that Barcelona in fact has some of the highest salaries in Spain, second only to Madrid and Bilbao!
Although the pay is lower than what some may be used to in countries such as the UK, the quality of life more than compensates for this. The sun shines (virtually) every day, and you can spend your weekends lazing on the beaches and nibbling on some delicious tapas.
What is the cost of living?
Although one of the most expensive cities in Spain to live in, Barcelona is relatively cheap in comparison to other major European cities. Given its beaches, rich culture, and vibrant city life, it’s not totally surprising that it comes in at the more expensive end!
Not to fear however, as you can still do Barcelona on a budget. Here are some of the average costs at a glance:
- Average cost of a 1-bedroom apartment in the city centre: €898
- Average grocery cost for 1 person per month: €150-200
- Average cost of utilities: €130
- Public transport single ticket: €40
- Average cost of a meal in a restaurant: €7-20
Read our blog all about the cost of living in Barcelona to find out more.
Do I get many holidays?
Holidays may be agreed upon individually or collectively and may not be less than 30 days in a year. Employers are not permitted to replace holidays with financial compensation, so rest assured you can have some well-earned R&R when working in Barcelona!
How can I find jobs that are available?
Below is a list of some of the main online job websites, including some that specialise in jobs in Barcelona for English-speakers: