Granada, nestled in the Sierra Nevada mountains, is located in the heart of Andalucia, Spain’s southernmost region. Strolling around this town will guarantee you run-ins with live musicians, artisans selling their crafts, and Moorish and Roman relics. Although the economic crisis of 2008 hit southern Spain hard, Granada’s tourism industry still seems to be thriving. Not only will you be able to find jobs in Granada, but you’ll be able to live and play in a fantastic city where you can enjoy the famous Alhambra, flamenco shows, and tapas galore!
Jobs in Granada
Granada makes for an exceptional place to work and play, and most job opportunities do not have a Spanish language requirement, surprisingly. Although, if you have Spanish language skills they will definitely boost your chances of scoring the most competitive jobs in Granada.
With its tourism industry booming, Granada has many openings in its hospitality workforce, especially for candidates who are multilingual. Granada is a destination for backpackers and skiers alike, from Europe and beyond, so there are service positions at hostels, hotels, spas, and resorts in the region. Working with clientele from all over the world will be sure to boost to your resume. Expect to work around 30 to 35 hours per week with lots of evening hours in hospitality work in Granada.
If you already have childcare experience under your belt, working as an au pair could be a great way for you to work in Granada. This type of live-in nanny gig is an excellent way to earn your keep while also immersing yourself in the local culture. Beyond taking care of the kiddos, some au pairs are expected to tidy up, cook meals, and help with other duties around the house. This will add up to a full-time, 40-hour a week job. Remember, you’ll have a family away from home and perks like accommodation and food included!
The University of Granada hosts over 60,000 students, many of whom want to improve their English language skills, which can mean plenty of English teaching jobs. If you are TEFL certified, teaching English in Granada is a simple way to make ends meet. Teachers can work 20 to 40 hours a week through various language schools in Granada. Individual private classes and tutoring can also be a lucrative option for teachers who want to increase their income.
Freelance work in marketing and promotions is becoming more common in European cities like Granada with large student populations. If you’re a people person, enjoy getting to know local businesses and networking, and you don’t mind late nights, this could be a good fit for you. This type of position can also include behind-the-scenes work like social media management or graphic design. Hours are based on candidate availability and the season, but tend to hover around 20 hours per week.
Life in Granada
Granada’s culture is influenced by Arab, Jewish, Spanish, and Roman ancestry, so you’ll notice subtle hints of this as you walk through the six main neighborhoods of the city. As you walk through the winding and hilly streets of Granada, you’ll notice plenty of artesanal stands and shops full of colorful scarves, stained glass lanterns, flowing clothing, and jewelry. Most restaurants also have some sort of terraza, or outdoor patio area, which you should definitely take advantage of. The neighborhoods Cartuja and Realejo have the most tapas bars and restaurants to try, but make sure to wander elsewhere to try more of the local flavors
It is imperative that you visit the Alhambra in Granada. This Moorish fortress and UNESCO World Heritage Site has been well preserved, and boy are we happy about that! The intricate murals within the palace, pools, gardens, and views are stunning and unmatched in the rest of the region. If you’re interested in another view of the Alhambra after your tour, take in the scene from the Mirador de San Nicolas, located in the neighborhood, Albayzín. If you do enjoy the view, it’s likely that you’ll be accompanied by a guitarist or some other street performer.
There may be some new customs to get used to when you start living and working in Granada. For example, it is customary to kiss on the cheek when you greet one another. Forget about personal space, too! The Spanish tend to be close talkers and on public transportation you will often be forced to get a little cozy with your neighbor. Make sure to keep a close eye on your belongings because pickpockets are common in Spain and the rest of Europe, and they will take advantage of close quarters like buses, trains, and crowded markets.
Salary & Affordability
Granada is an already affordable city that also offers a lot of free and discounted activities. Make sure to keep an eye out for discounts, free days at museums, and as mentioned before, free tapas!
Salaries for jobs in Granada vary depending on what type of work you’ll be doing and what inclusions the job offers. You’ll reap the most benefits as an au pair in Granada, since lodging and meals will be included. On the other hand, there may be only minimal benefits in basic business roles, but the pay will be higher. Expect to make between $8 and $13 per hour for most traditional work in Granada.
Also keep in mind that salaries in Granada may be slightly lower than those in Madrid or Barcelona, but the cost of living is much more reasonable too. Accommodation is provided by many employers in Granada, or at least housing assistance, but if you do have to find your own lodging you’ll like be spending about 200 to 500 Euro a month.
If you want to save money on food while working in Granada, be sure to check out the local markets for fresh fruits, vegetables, and meats. The costs of food at local markets is affordable and the quality is excellent! Eating out can cost you about €10 for a large, three course lunch. Transportation in Granada is easy and affordable, too. A monthly metro pass will cost you about €40, but you can also easily get around the city on foot at no cost.
Accommodation & Visas
Granada is a university town and popular destination for international travelers, which means lodging options are plentiful. Finding homestays, shared apartments, or dorm-type housing can be easy to do with various local newspapers, flyers, and online sites filled with vacant listings. Many jobs in Granada, especially those in the hospitality industry, will offer accommodation as part of your employment contract, which can be a great weight off your shoulders.
Regardless of how you find your housing, you should expect your accommodation to be a lot smaller than what you’re used to. Bathrooms and kitchens can sometimes feel especially cramped, but why stay at home when you can explore beautiful Granada day and night!? It is also not common to have a clothes dryer or dishwasher in most apartments, so expect to air dry just about everything.
Visas are required to work in Spain, but requirements vary depending on your home country and the length of your stay. It is likely that your placement program or agency will assist you with the visa process. It is a good idea to take a look at GoAbroad’s Spanish Embassy Directory for the most up-to-date visa information.
Benefits & Challenges
As one of Andalucia’s most popular cities, Granada is easy to get to, offers plenty of activities, and is easy to navigate even with minimal Spanish language skills. The University of Granada hosts over 60,000 students, which opens up many opportunities to network with students and alumni from around the world. The city also has an increasing “internship” culture because of its student population, which can mean more work opportunities, but with potentially lower pay.
Southern Spain was hit hardest by the recent recession and evidence of the economic crisis is still visible today. Unemployment rates among young people are well over 20 percent, and because of this, some locals frown upon foreigners taking available jobs in Granada. The economic struggle here has in turn made prices for goods noticeably lower than northern Spain though, which match the lower wages available in Granada.
Many a traveler has been known to take advantage of Granada’s tapas tradition. In most restaurants and bars, for every drink purchased, the patron also receives a free tapa. The size and type of tapa vary, but those who get to know the city well can easily afford themselves meals after only a couple drinks!
Granada is a city where you can let your creative, curious, and adventurous spirit loose in the winding streets with spectacular views and delectable cuisine. Make this southern Spanish city your home through one of the fantastic job opportuntiies listed on GoAbroad.com now!