As tourism is a major employer in Spain, there is always a very high demand for TEFL qualified teachers in this area. There are hundreds of privately run language schools across the country that cater to the tourism sector, as well as business related classes and lessons for young learners. There is also a popular government sponsored program that recruits a large number of teachers to work within the public school system. Although jobs can potentially be found in all areas of Spain, the main markets for teachers are in big cities such as Barcelona, Madrid and Valencia.
What can I expect to earn while teaching English in Spain?
The exact figure that you will get in your pay packet will be influenced by many different factors, including the area where you are working, the type of employer you are working for, your level of qualifications, and your level of teaching experience. The average monthly salary can range anywhere from 700 to 1,800 euro. It is common for many teachers in Spain to be paid by the hour rather than a fixed monthly salary and in this case you can expect a rate between 13 and 20 euro. Unfortunately, most jobs do not include much in the way of extra benefits that you might find in other regions, such as paid airfares and free accommodation. While the average pay is not particularly high compared to some other countries, you should still be able to live comfortably if you are able to budget sensibly.
Should I apply for an official job placement in Spain?
The North American Language and Cultural Assistants Program places around 2,000 American and Canadian citizens into Spanish schools each year, where they work as assistant language teachers alongside local teachers. Although the salary you will receive through the program is not high by European standards at between 700 and 1,000 euro per month, the scheme does offer a great opportunity to experience living and working in Spain. It is also a very convenient option as all the arrangements are made before you leave home and most of the paperwork is done for you. Your monthly salary will be based on the location where you are placed, and you can also choose to add to this by taking on a few private students in your freetime.
What other employment options are there for TEFL teachers in Spain?
Although the recruitment scheme outlined above is a very popular option, it is only responsible for a small percentage of the overall TEFL market in Spain. The majority of foreign teachers working in Spain are actually employed by private language schools that can be found in large numbers throughout the country. To secure a job in this field you will normally need to complete an in-person interview, which means that most people head to Spain without a job lined up in advance. Most language school jobs are paid by the hour, with the average rate ranging from 13 to 18 euro. For a typical full-time position, this should equate to between 1,300 and 1,800 euro per month. Once again, many teachers working in this environment choose to supplement their main income by taking on a few private students outside of their normal working hours. Private tutors are free to charge any amount they like, although the average is around 20 euro per hour.
How does the cost of living affect TEFL teachers in Spain?
Spain is one of the largest countries in Europe which means that the cost of living does vary considerably from one region to the next. If you are based in a rural area, you could potentially live quite well on as little as 700 euro per month. In contrast, major cities such as Barcelona and Madrid have a far higher cost of living which would probably require twice the income to live the equivalent lifestyle. Wherever you end up living in Spain, your main expense is likely to be accommodation. In order to lighten the load in this area, many teachers choose to share an apartment with one or more other teachers working locally. Another cheap option is to rent a room in a local family home. As the balance between income and outgoings is not usually on the income side for most teachers, saving any amount of your salary is likely to be difficult in Spain. However, what you do earn should still be enough to enjoy a good standard of living in this hugely popular corner of Europe.