If you are planning a move to Barcelona, one of the first things you will want to consider is what your job options, pay expectations and cost of living might be.
Let ShBarcelona guide you through important information on salaries in Barcelona, from the minimum wage to how to calculate your income after tax.
What is the minimum wage in Barcelona?
In Spain, there is a minimum wage set by the government which increases each year, although not always in line with the inflation.
For 2017 it has been set at €9906,40 annually, which equates to €707,60 per month or €23,59 per day.
This is a significant increase (8%) from the previous year, bucking the trend of small increases for 2015 and 2016.
This is the minimum that your employer must pay you regardless of what type of work you do, or the number of hours you work.
The figure may sound small, but when you consider that your living costs might be much less than in other comparable European cities, you might be surprised to find that in Barcelona, a little goes a long way.
What is the average wage in Barcelona?
A recent survey shows that the average salary for a full-time worker in Barcelona is around €41,000 before tax, higher than the average for Spain as a whole which suggests that the jobs market is stronger here.
Keep in mind, however, that this is an average of all salaries ranging from €15,000 at the lower end (entry level tourism, catering etc) to €85,000 at the higher end (management executives).
The median may give more realistic average salary expectations at €31,200. Of course, the amount you earn will always be linked to the type of work you do.
Teachers can expect to earn up to €25,000 before tax, for example, while IT technicians might earn up to €22,000/35,000.
The best way to forecast what you might be paid for the type of work you do is to look at job adverts which should give an idea of salary expectations, then use an online tax calculator in order to work out your salary after tax.
Related article: What is the cost of living in Barcelona?
You can calculate your own monthly cost living in Barcelona by clicking directly on this link.
In addition to the calculator, you can check the average prices of daily use products (food, clothing, leisure, utilities, etc.).
Other considerations: cost of living, transportation, food, rent…
You now know what you might expect to be paid, but what about expenditure?
Again, your expenditure will depend very much on your particular circumstances (whether you are single, whether you have children, if you live in a shared flat, location within the city, etc.).
Here are some rough figures for different sets of circumstances:
Shared flat in central Barcelona – 350€ up to €700/month
2 bedroom flat in central Barcelona – around €1100/month
2 bedroom flat in outlying districts – 800€ up to 1000€/month
For details of short, medium and long-term rental properties in Barcelona, check out ShBarcelona’s website.
Related article: What is the average flat rent price in Barcelona?
Couple, groceries only – €350/month
Eating out once a week in a mid-range restaurant – €160/month
Water rates – set by Aïgues de Barcelona and vary depending on the area, from around €25 – 40 per month (payable bi-monthly).
Electricity/Gas – this can get expensive as you’ll need to keep warm in the winter with heating and cool in the summer with air-conditioning (or lots of power-hungry plug-in fans).
Budget around €120 per month for a couple where one person works from home, less if you are both out at the office all day.
Mobile/broadband/TV – You can get mobile + broadband packages for around €35 per month, and if you want a decent TV package on top of that, this will cost you an extra €50.
Travel (2018 prices)
Monthly travelcard allowing unlimited travel in zone 1 ‘T-Mes’ – €52.75.
10 travel card – €10,20.
Single journey on public transport €2.15.
As you can see, compared with London for example, the cost of living in Barcelona is very reasonable.
If you are prepared to cut back on unnecessary expenditure it is possible to live on a part-time or one-partner wage without too much pain!
So whilst you might expect less in terms of salary, your salary may go a lot further than you might think.