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What are the salaries like in Barcelona?

Written by Ingrid

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?

Photo by JWPhotography2012 via Visualhunt.com / CC BY

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:

Rent

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?

Photo via VisualHunt.com

Food

Couple, groceries only – €350/month
Eating out once a week in a mid-range restaurant – €160/month

Utilities

Water rates – set by Aïgues de Barcelona and vary depending on 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.

About the author

Ingrid

Having studied English Language and Literature at university, Ingrid went on to obtain an MA in Classics. She currently works as a freelance writer, covering a variety of subjects, especially language, literature, history and archaeology.

10 Comments

  • How’s the crisis, tourism and Airbnb affected the rental market? I hear it’s almost impossible to find a place long term…

    • Sara, we have recently moved here, and on Idealista Barcelona, I see plenty of apartments, with a range of values, amenities, etc. Currently,at least.

  • Those salaries are hilarious. I am here over 10 years and very few people earn over 25k and normal people earn about 1300 a month after tax. Teachers get around if they are working in a school, otherwise they need to jaunt from one end of the city to the other giving lessons. Being self-employed is ridiculous and very costly so most people work in black. Airbnb has made a real mess of the city for anyone thats not on a northern European salary as its out-priced the centre due to landlords wanting quick fast money. Its a great city for a nice lifestyle but if you want a career, pension, quality housing etc. you’d be better off somewhere.

    • Hi. Im a dentist and id like to move to Barcelona. How much do dentists earn there?is there a good place for a dentist?

  • Great information. What’s the cost of a 1 bed or 2 bed condo or flat in Barcelona?

  • Is this information some what out of date?

    As of May’18, finding a 2 bed flat for 1000€ in central BCN! A hole perhaps!
    And 700 for outlying districts?! You’ll more than likely find it more expensive as you move away from the city centre. Obviously there are areas that are exceptions..but not a 700€ exception!.
    Decent 2 bed in Vila Olimpica with parking…for 1300, move fast, it won’t last long.

    I couldn’t agree with John more, AirBnB has made a total mess of the rental market, hopefully that’s about to change with some new laws around renting your property on the down low. I understand the landlords perspective…the rental laws here total lean towards the tenant, stop paying…not much they can do…so why not rent short term and make the same money…
    That’s another reason why it’s very common to pay 3 months deposit. Oh yeah…don’t forget the absolutely crazy agency fees…normally 10% of annual rent. Oh yes…nice!
    (The government needs to step in, but they’re too busy fighting over independence to actually improve anything going on in the city).

    It’s still cheaper than some other major cities of Europe, but comparing the actual cost of living (water/gas/elec/internet/tv … not cheap) to the average salary … something isn’t right.

  • Very informative article although I don’t know if the data are taken from 2018. I would be very interested to know how much a Senior Copywriter’s (English -UK & USA) salary would be there and if there is a demand in the market there for such a post.

  • Hi!
    Thanks for all information, great to have it in one place 🙂
    Do you know how much more or less Senior Technical Recruiter working for top start-up can get?
    Thanks,

    Rony

    • Hello Rony,
      I don’t have this information myself, but you can check some job adverts to see if this meets your expectations.
      Good luck!
      Daniella

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