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Teaching English in Spain

Teaching English In Spain Feature
Spain is one of the most popular choices for teaching English abroad. It’s not too far away for some and it’s a beautiful country to explore.

Teaching English in Spain


Bachelor’s Degree: Preferred. But not required

Monthly Salary: $800 to 3,000 USD

Peak Hiring: September to October

Visa Information: Student visa. EU citizenship

Housing: Not compensated

Airfare: Not reimbursed

Student Types: Business English and children

At a Glance

Teaching English in Spain is a great opportunity to immerse yourself in another culture and gain a new perspective on the world. However, there are some things you should know before you make the decision to teach abroad.  This guide will help you get started teaching English in Spain.


Spain is a popular choice for English teachers because it’s not too far away from the rest of Europe. You also get a wonderful quality of life being there with all sorts of beautiful places to explore. Not only is it easy to get around, but it’s well-connected between cities by bus or train.

If you want vibrant nightlife, you’ll love the experience of living in Spain. Even the smallest villages can have parties that go all night long. It’s relatively easy to pick up Spanish compared to languages in Asia so culture shock is usually not an issue.

If you’re thinking about teaching English in Spain, it will require you to have a Bachelor’s degree. Not all employers request teachers to have a TEFL certification. Although it’s not essential, it still helps prepare you to teach English in a classroom.

Pros of Teaching English in Spain

  • Decent Wages: Wages can vary greatly depending on a number of factors, including the specific location in Spain, the teacher’s qualifications and experience, and the type of school they are teaching at. However, in general, English teachers in Spain can expect to earn a decent wage, particularly if they are teaching at a private language school or university.
  • Cost of Living: The cost of living in Spain is quite reasonable, especially when compared to other Western European countries. In general, prices for basic necessities like food and housing are lower than in countries like Germany, France, or the UK.
  • Good For Travel: Spain is an excellent country for travel. It has a rich history and culture, beautiful scenery, and plenty of things to see and do. Whether you’re interested in exploring Spanish cities like Madrid and Barcelona or taking in the country’s stunning coastal and mountain scenery, you’ll find that Spain is a great place to visit.
  • Nightlife: Spain is definitely known for its nightlife! Whether you’re looking for a party scene or a more relaxed atmosphere, you can find it here. There are plenty of bars and clubs to choose from, so you’re sure to find something to your taste. And since Spaniards tend to stay up late, the party doesn’t really get going until midnight or later.

Cons of Teaching English in Spain

  • Spanish Bureaucracy: Spanish bureaucracy can be a bit daunting for foreign English teachers. The process for obtaining a visa is often very bureaucratic, with a lot of paperwork and red tape.
  • Siesta: There is no doubt that siestas are a huge part of Spanish culture. For many Spaniards, taking a siesta is a daily ritual that helps them to relax and rejuvenate for the rest of the day. However, there are some people who argue that siestas are pointless and that they are nothing more than a waste of time.
  • Payday Inconsistencies: There are a few schools in Spain that have been known to delay payments to their foreign English teachers, but this is not always the case. In general, most schools in Spain are prompt with their payments and make sure to take care of their employees.

English Language Schools in Spain

If you’re first starting as a teacher abroad, internship programs are a hassle-free way to go. Internship programs usually cover all the essentials for teaching English in Spain. For example, it includes salary, accommodation, airport pickup, meals, and TEFL certification.


NALCAP pairs American and Canadian graduates with elementary and secondary schools in Spain.

Meddeas logo

Meddeas partners with more than 200 private schools in Spain for English teachers with little or no experience.


UCETAM hires teachers to work in public schools. Experience is required with a university degree.

The North American Language and Culture Assistants Program (NALCAP) pairs American and Canadian graduates with elementary and secondary schools in Spain. Any native-like speaker can apply and become a teaching assistant (TA).

Meddeas partners with more than 200 private schools in Spain. This program is geared towards English native speakers with little or no teaching experience. You need to be TEFL-certified or have the equivalent education to apply for Meddeas.

To get accepted into UCETAM, candidates must be native English speakers. They also must have experience with children, hold a university degree, and have a clean criminal record. The application period for the UCETAM academic school year typically starts in January.


English teachers enjoy a high wage for the amount of work in Spain. The typical salary for English teachers in Spain ranges from €700 – €2,000 per month. This translates to anywhere between $800-3000 USD.

English Teaching Jobs In Spain Feature

Depending on which program you’re in and how many hours you get assigned, you may only work 3 or 4 days per week. Spain also has lots of holidays throughout the year. It seems like there’s at least one 3-day weekend every month.

One of the good things about Spain is that it’s relatively easy to pick up extra English lessons on the side.  Some schools offer subsidized rent and health care to English teachers. But unlike some countries in Asia, Spanish schools don’t reimburse you for airfare.

Monthly SalaryTotal
US Dollars (USD)800 to 3,000 USD
European Euros (EUR)700 to 2,000 EUR


Teaching English in Spain is a great opportunity for native English speakers to earn a paycheck while enjoying the culture and lifestyle of Spain. While teaching English in Spain doesn’t necessarily require a degree in education, it does require some training. In most cases, teachers will be required to take part in a course where they learn about teaching techniques and classroom management.

Spain is also a popular destination for TEFL/TESOL teachers, so you’ll have to stand out from the crowd if you want to get hired. This is where TEFL certification can help set you apart from the competition.  A TEFL certification program can provide you with the necessary skills to teach English to students including interactive teaching, grammar, and vocabulary.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much money can you make teaching English in Spain?

As a brand new ESL teacher, you might be able to find a job in Spain and make enough money to live comfortably with a bit left over. Monthly salaries can range depending on location and school. You can earn anywhere between €700 – €2,000 ($800-3000 USD).

Do you have to speak Spanish to teach English in Spain?

Virtually no programs have a Spanish language requirement. But you should be good enough to have at least a basic knowledge of the language. It’s also helpful for understanding rule changes for visas and checking out your banking documentation.

What are the requirements to be an English teacher in Spain?

You need an undergraduate degree as a minimum requirement and a criminal record check. Some programs request teachers to obtain TEFL certification before teaching.

Do you get paid on time?

Paydays can be late or inconsistent. Because you get paid just once a month, this makes budgeting tough. It can also give a sense of disorganization within the country and schools in Spain.

Is it safe to teach English in Spain?

Just like all countries in the world, crime exists in Spain. But it’s a relatively safe country to visit and work as an English teacher.


  • During siestas, everything in town closes between 2 pm and 5 pm, and noise is kept to a minimum.
  • “Running of the bulls” is a 9-day festival held in Pamplona where bulls are let go on the streets to chase people.
  • 47 UNESCO heritage sites are located in Spain (3rd highest after China and Italy).
  • The famous ‘Tomatina’ festival occurs in Spain where people toss tomatoes at each other.
  • Spain is the fifth most populous country in Europe.
  • Nudity is legal in Spain but still considered inappropriate in many places.
  • The tooth fairy is actually a mouse in Spain.
  • It has the second-highest unemployment rate just after Greece.

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