Even though the Spanish are not known for their English skills, in Barcelona you do not need fluent Spanish to make friends and find work. There are many international and English-speaking communities and networks in the city, and these help a newcomer as well as a more established expat to find their group of like-minded people. Even if you do speak fluent Spanish, these networks are a valuable resource, since they can make your life better in a variety of ways.
Networks for expats in Barcelona
The best way of approaching the subject of international networking in Barcelona is, of course, through the internet. Facebook alone has various groups for expats in the city, and these are helpful in many matters – you can, for example, buy used furniture or ask for recommendations on barber shops and doctors. You can join these groups by sending a request on Facebook, and a popular group is called Barcelona Expats. You can also search for a more focused group according to your own native country.
The second extremely useful tool for an expat is Meetup, a web page where you can join groups that hold meetings that you find interesting. Barcelona is a very active Meetup city, and you have lots of variety in events held in English. Popular ones are for example language exchanges and business or hobby-based meetings, and some of the groups are very established networks with hundreds of members.
To improve your business or chances of finding work, you may find that joining a coworking center is the best solution, as many of these centers offer an English-speaking community. However, if you want to join an international business network based in Spain, try for example Guiripreneurs – they hold informative meetings that are meant to ease the life of a small-scale entrepreneur.
Looking for advice?
If you are in need of reliable information in English regarding services or settling down in a new city, Angloinfo is always a good option. This is a worldwide network for English-speaking expats, and the web page devoted to Barcelona has lots of information – whether you need to find a gardener or a psychologist, this is a valuable source.
A certain kind of network can also be found through Barcelona’s several expat magazines, such as Barcelona Metropolitan. This is an established free publication, and it offers information about services in the area as well as covers interesting cultural topics.