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The labor market in Spain


You are advised to enquire on Spain's labor market before if you are looking forward to live and work there. Here is an overview.

The unemployment rate in Spain, in spite of a decrease in recent years, remains relatively high compared to other European countries and tends to start rising again since a few years. However, some economic sectors still offer professional opportunities for foreigners, including marketing, import- export, professorship, translation, IT and new technologies.  

You'd better be fully prepared to seek employment in Spain and have solid professional and language skills!

Fluency in Spanish is often an essential prerequisite to find a job in Spain, except in some large international companies where working languages are other than Spanish. Unskilled, seasonal or agriculture jobs do not require fluency in Spanish.


With regards to the geographical distribution of jobs, Madrid and Barcelona attract many foreign workers because of their dynamism and bustling economic activities. Valencia has also experienced a strong economic expansion in recent years, thus attracting many foreign workers. Along the coast, many tourism or seasonal jobs are also available, especially for students.

Labor conditions

The minimum monthly wage in Spain is of 752,85 € per month for a full time job since January 2014. Spanish employees benefit from 22 days off and 14 bank holidays per year. The legal working time is set at a maximum 9 hours a day. 

The working day usually starts later than elsewhere in Europe, around 9 or 10 am and ends later in the evening, around 7 or 8 pm. 

  Useful links: 

Ministry of Labor
Oficina empleo - National Agency for Employment

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Member since 01 June 2008
Small earth, Mauritius
4 years ago

this article is way out of date. Unemployment is terrible with the mainland rate running at around 22% when i last looked. In the canary islands it gets worse, They hold the second highest unemployment figures in Europe , Second only to some french colony in the Caribbean

7 years ago

Unemployment is now close to 20%


See also

Barcelona, Catalonia's economic center, attracts not only young professionals but also many foreign companies and investors looking for new opportunities.
Madrid's labor market has been facing a shortage of qualified and skilled workforce since some time. Hence, it is open to young foreign professionals.
Malaga has been one of the most affected Spanish cities by the global economic crisis. Hence its high unemployment rate during recent years.
Sevilla's economy is recovering gradually after having been seriously affected by the global economic crisis. Unemployment rate has also been in decline.
Tenerife Island and Santa Cruz de Tenerife, its capital city, are known to be tourist destinations. But there are also jobs opportunities in many fields.

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