8 Must-Ask Questions Before Teaching Jobs In Spain

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GoAbroad helps you figure out how to get a job teaching English in Spain

Are you sitting at your desk right now, tired of your daily routine? Are you spending your days dreaming about sitting on the beach, sipping on sangria and eating churros — and not just as a tourist on vacation, but as a local? Well then, we have the perfect solution for you: teaching English in Spain. Thousands of teachers have done it, and we think you'd make their next great hire.

This is your chance to change your life and truly immerse yourself in a new culture! But before you go ahead and make such a grande life changing decision, there are a few things you need to know. Luckily, we’re here for you! We've brought you the most comprehensive collection of insight before you sign up to teach English in Spain. Scroll down for answers to every question on teaching jobs in Spain you were too scared to ask.

Orange rooftops in Madrid

Practice those lithpth before teaching English in Spain.

FAQs on teaching jobs in Spain

1. What can I expect from my English teaching jobs in Spain salary?

Of course, before you decide to pack your entire life and move all the way across the world, you need to make sure that the English teaching jobs in Spain salary is enough to cover your bills, groceries, and have some left over for a little bit of fun. Otherwise, why did you move to Spain, right? ;-)

The English teaching jobs in Spain salary can vary depending on what city or area you are in, what institution you are working for, your teaching experience, how many hours per week you are working, and what kind of classes you teach.

On average, ESL teaching jobs in Spain pay starts from €14 with general English classes then moves up to €30 for private classes. Keep in mind that as a new teacher, you might not get more than 20 hours a week, while travel and preparation costs will not be paid extra. Low balling, you can expect to earn, on average, €1200 per month. However, by the second year, with more experience and more time to get adjusted, you can easily reach €1500 per month.  If you combine TEFL teaching jobs in Spain together with some additional private classes, can bring you an average monthly salary of €20,000 or €24,000 a year, excluding taxes.

As a little tip, search for ESL teaching jobs in Spain close to USA army bases (ex. Navy Base Rota). Due to the increase of English speakers in a given area, business may be apt to hire more English-speaking employees or may even pay for current employees to attend English language classes. Finding teaching jobs in Spain for Americans just got easier.

green hillsides, buildings on cliffs in background Ronda, Spain

Thought you’d miss out on a European fairytale? Well, think again. (heart eyes)

2. Will teaching English in Spain make me rich?

An English teaching job in Spain will not make you rich financially, but it will make you rich spiritually — how couldn’t it when your weekends are largely dedicated to munching on tapas.

A combination of teaching classes at an institution and private tutoring could be more lucrative and bring in some extra pocket money. While teaching English in Spain won’t mean huge financial gain, you will be able to live and work abroad without putting a huge dent in your pocketbook. If you’re savvy and budget-minded, you might even be able to shave off your debt or save for your next great adventure. Just don’t be so uptight that you don’t splurge on a ticket to the Alhambra — trust us, it’s worth it.

3. What should I spend all my Euros on? ;-)

Spending money in Spain? Ah! There are so many possibilities that at first it may be difficult to know where to start. Food? Drinks? Clothes? Travel? More churros?

First, make sure you break even financially every month: rent, bills and debts should be covered first (don’t forget about that student loan!). Then, it’s highly recommended to spend a weekend at the beach (especially during summer season!). After all the moving, finding a job and getting settled in, you need to relax, take a dip in the warm water and have a glass *cough* jar *cough* of orxata and some paella (yummy!). You deserve it!

And last, but not least you should TRAVEL! How about you take a trip to Cadiz and Seville, and visit their amazing cathedrals, churches and palaces, relax at the Plaza de España, or check out one of the spots where they filmed “Game of Thrones”? Are you more of a museum person? Then go down to Madrid and check out Prado, one of the largest museums in the world, and while you’re there, make a stop at the Royal Palace. Like Madrid, Barcelona also has a lot of history and is famous for its nightlife. Go to Andalucia and admire the beautiful women dancing flamenco with flowers in their hair or head further afield when you take a little excursion to Portugal. 

detailed architecture, inner courtyard, Seville, Spain

Architecture-loving ESL teachers— y’all know what to do.

4. Can you teach English in Spain without a degree?

There are a lot of countries around the world where teaching English does not require a degree, and Spain happens to be one of them. The competition is fierce in places like Madrid, Barcelona, or Valencia, if you want to work for a reputable academic institution (where a degree is required). But if you’re happy to just work in less glamorous places, and just make enough money to pay your bills and enjoy the Spanish life, then there are enough opportunities to get a teaching job in Spain without a degree.

Because Spain is such a popular destination and the demand for English language is getting higher, your chances of finding and getting ESL teaching jobs in Spain are also higher.

Although you don’t need a degree to teach English, and you already speak the language, you will still need to enrich your teaching skills by taking a TEFL course. It is not a degree, but a certification which proves your competences to teach English to non-native speakers (more on this below!).

Now, your chances of finding a TEFL teaching job in Spain just got higher.

If you want to improve your chances for an ESL job even more, then start by doing some volunteer teaching. It might not help you financially at first, but it will get your foot in the door, it will give you flexibility with your lessons, and you will be able to use more nontraditional methods in a more relaxed environment.

Coastline, beach, and city, Barcelona, Spain

Yes, contrary to popular belief, you CAN have it all as an ESL teacher in Spain.

5. What are the teaching English in Spain requirements?

Generally speaking, the major requirements to teach English in Spain are the following:

TEFL certificate. Being an English native or near-native speaker is a huge advantage, but if you’re serious about a career in teaching English in Spain, then you need a bit more than being able to speak the language. To be considered for teaching English in Spain, you will need to have a professional TEFL certification and a one to three years of experience in the classroom (that volunteer teaching might come in handy!). If you have some sort of extra English teaching qualifications, like specialized TEFL or CELTA modules or experience as a full teacher, even better. 

Visa. If you’re not European and you want to teach English in Spain, the second most important thing is a visa. There are different types of visas, but for teaching jobs in Spain the most common is the Tourist Visa, a 90-day permit for tourists. It is not entirely legal but getting a working visa in Spain is very hard, as it requires an employer to sponsor you. A Working Holiday Visa is a permit that allows only certain nationalities to work and sometimes study in Spain (Americans do not qualify). But if you enroll in a program, they will provide you with a visa and take the stress off your back. 

Knowing Spanish may not be required, but it is helpful. Should we remind you that speaking Spanish is also very important? Unlike Germany or the Netherlands, only a very small percentage of the Spanish population can speak English. In the big cities, you might be able to get by and make yourself understood, but the further you go into rural areas the harder it will be. As a bonus, translate your resume and cover letter into Spanish and apply, apply, apply! 

[11 Things You Should Know About Teaching English in Spain]

futbol stadium, Barcelona, Spain

If you weren’t into futbol (like, the real kind) before, you are now.

6. What types of ESL teaching jobs are in Spain?

If you’re wondering what types teaching English in Spain jobs are out there, here’s a small list that can help you get started:

  • Private schools – It’s estimated approximately 30 percent of Spanish children attend a private school and the curriculum is being taught in Spanish. So, brush up on your Spanish skills before you submit your application.
  • Universities – Spanish universities have the biggest demand for ESL teachers. In the past few years, as they adopted to the new EU standards and regulations, most Spanish universities have added a high number of Bachelor’s, Master’s and PhD programs in English.  
  • Language academies – Language academies concentrate on studies of a foreign language and all its aspects. Students can vary by age, background, work experience and the level of language that they are starting with. These extracurricular classes exist out of normal school hours, so be prepare to work nights and weekends.
  • High schools – All Spanish public schools now teach English from very early ages and up to the high school level. Exams like Cambridge First Certificate (CFE), Cambridge Advanced English (CAE) and Cambridge Proficient English (CFE) are commonly taken by high school and university pupils and these pupils are always in search of private tutors. If you want ESL jobs in Spanish high schools, up your chances by having additional certifications in standardized test prep. 
  • International schools – Teaching jobs in Spain international schools are often popular choices. Some international schools follow a bilingual curriculum. Private and international schools tend to have smaller classes and a more relaxed environment, and many of them provide English summer school programs. 

7. Where can I find ESL jobs in Spain?

Wondering where you can find ESL jobs in Spain? Don’t worry — we got you covered! Check out our our giant collection of English teaching jobs in Spain hiring right now and pick which program best suits you.

We also recommend asking our Online Advisors for program matches or using MyGoAbroad to bookmark programs and compare them side-by-side. It’s like we’re doing the legwork for you, and we love it! You can even narrow your job search if you have a specific Spanish city/destination in mind, and sift through your program options until you find “the one.”

Want even more advice on how to find ESL jobs in Spain? We thought so.

cobblestoned streets, little road with flowers, Valldemossa, Spain

Worried your Insta game would falter? Pffft. Why?

8. Should I teach in Spain in a city or a rural area?

Spain is widely known for its football, beaches, siestas, honey, wine, and culture, but each city, region, and village is different, thus making each ESL teaching experience in Spain different in its own way. On the one hand, city life is attractive to folks who want to be immersed, but comfortable and on the other, the rural environment will give you a more intimate experience with locals or brush up on your high school Spanish. Decisions, decisions. Here are the factors we recommend you consider:

Conveniences. If you decide to take a job teaching English in Spain, you’ll most likely want to get the full Spanish life experience as well. Living in a city is the fastest and easiest way to make friends, find entertainment, and use public transportation to travel.

The rural area can sometimes become sheltered and lonely. Rural people tend to be more private, and you’ll likely not find many English speakers in case you need help and directions. But you will get a taste of the quiet Spanish life, finding little peaceful and beautiful places that most people don’t know about. City life is more of the same as any big city, but as all well know, the true heart of every country is found in the rural area with the locals.

Cost. It goes without saying that the cost of living in a city is far higher than the cost of living in a rural area, just as the salary for a job teaching English will be higher in a city than in a rural area. Consider your cost of living versus earnings when you teach English in Spain. Paid programs should be able to offer you resources to better understand the cost differentials.

Your Abilities. Besides the financial disadvantage of living in an urban area as a teacher, you need to consider the noise pollution level. If you cannot prepare your lessons in a loud environment, then you need to reconsider living in an urban area. Sure, there are more opportunities and your social life may improve drastically, but if you cannot do your job properly, is it worth it? Or maybe you are the kind of person that adjusts easily and it’ll all be a piece of cake!

But if you are not a fan of highly populated areas, want to get away from the crowd, and want to immerse yourself in the true Spanish life, there are thousands of beautiful rural places to choose from. The rural areas will offer a more relaxed and quiet life, better and cleaner environment, cheaper housing, a lower cost of living, and an escape from past experiences and old habits. Throw yourself with the locals and learn their unique way of living.  

Inside the Sagrada Familia, Barcelona, Spain

Get up close and personal with major world landmarks and cultural sites. 

What are the best jobs and programs for teaching jobs in Spain?

And because we’re sure that by now you are at least considering to find yourself and ESL teaching job in Spain, we’ve also created this list highlighting six of the best teaching English in Spain paid programs. Read on and take your pick!

1. Language and Culture Assistants

LCA is Spanish government’s largest and most popular program for teaching English in Spain. It offers 12 hours of work per week, decent salary, health coverage and a wide list of regional placements. The requirements are easy to fulfill and there is NO program fee.

2. Meddeas 

Meddeas promotes Language Assistant programs in five countries, including Spain, and provides support to bilingual teaching in educational centers. This is another great chance to gain teaching experience, enjoy the culture and language, and get a monthly income, all with no extra fees for the program. 

Related: More program info

3. Beda Programa 

Beda is a program that places language assistants in Catholic schools, mostly in Madrid but in other regions as well. The company helps with obtaining a visa and opening a bank account, pays a decent salary, and offers health coverage and a wide range of trainings and workshops.

In search of F? Beda Programa is the right place for you!


UCETAM offers a bilingual and bicultural program, CBC (Colegios Bilingues Cooperativo), which places most of their language assistants in Madrid. The teaching period is September-June, application time is January-February, with 18-26 hours a week, health plan, a salary of €1000 - €14000 depending on the hours worked, paid school holidays, and free lunches. Cha-ching!

5. BEST Programs 

BEST offers teaching internship opportunities in Spain for a fee. They provide two weeks of Spanish classes, housing assistance, orientation packet, insurance, airport pick-up, and all the materials you need for your lessons. If you’re a new graduate, this is a great way to gain teaching experience without the stress of finding accommodation, getting the right visa, and searching for a job. BEST Programs will take care of everything for you.

Related: Read Reviews on BEST 

[Nothing feel QUITE right? Browse all teaching jobs in Spain]

Now’s your chance to teach ESL in Spain

stone field, ruin, yellow flowers, ocean

Take the time to explore every corner, crevice, and off-the-beaten-path spot in Spain. 

Teaching ESL in Spain is the job that everyone is dreaming about.The only hard decision you will have to make when teaching ESL in Spain is the location. With so many beautiful and fascinating destinations, you might find it a struggle to pick and choose. But no matter where you go, an amazing adventure is guaranteed. So, check out what program best suits you, gather your stuff and take a step towards a brighter future. 

Find your next great ESL job in Spain today