– by Chrissy Grainger
Attaining a TEFL Certificate in Barcelona, sought after by language schools around the world, will give you the skills and confidence you need to start on your journey as an EFL teacher. With this accredited course that will open doors in places you never imagined you might end up, what place could be better to study for it than one of the most popular, cosmopolitan European cities with the largest student population; Barcelona. Whether you are a foodie, an architecture fan or a hiking enthusiast, the city has something that will hit the spot. However, factoring the likely biggest expense of studying your TEFL in Barcelona, accommodation, into your budget requires some attention.
Why choose living in Barcelona
Barcelona is known as the capital of Catalonia within the nation of Spain, where locals share their city with a huge number of tourists and expats alike, many of whom being English teachers. With a population of a little over 1.6 million people, it is the largest metropolis in Europe on the Mediterranean coast. Alongside all the culture and entertainment you would expect of a major city, teamed with its beach areas and mountains, doing your TEFL in Barcelona may well lead to a desire to stay. If the inevitable happens and you do fall in love with the city and decide to stay, be aware of your timing when applying for teaching jobs in Barcelona. April, May, September, October, December and January tend to be the best times to look for work as an English teacher, whereas from mid-July to the end of August are the worst.
Ideas for work and leisure
For foodies, Barcelona’s unique culinary heritage is sure to impress, offering a huge variety of restaurants, tapas bars, bodegas and markets, which may also be an ideal place to pick up part-time work as a waitress to help cover the cost of your TEFL studies. If the great outdoors appeals to you, Barcelona and the easy to travel to surrounding areas offer incredible hiking trails as well as places to go mountain biking and rock climbing. If you prefer the nightlife and being a night owl, the city provides plenty of both small and intimate, and huge, world-renowned spots that you can make your stomping ground. Working as a guide and promoter in the evening for nightclubs or hostels is another great way to make some money while having fun at the same time. Along with the sunshine, stunning architecture and laid-back atmosphere, it is easy to see why Barcelona is one of the world’s most popular cities. Your time spent in Barcelona is guaranteed to provide lifelong memories, proven by the study undertaken by Internations Expat Insider stating that expats living in Barcelona are the happiest.
Factoring accommodation into your finances
TEFL offers accommodation options but if you wish to arrange your own, being aware of the perks and the pitfalls is important. While some aspects of Barcelona are incredibly affordable, other aspects need to be factored into a budget, with accommodation likely to be your biggest outgoing. Prices can vary greatly depending on the area, proximity to the city centre and how many people you are sharing with. Around the city, expect to pay€350-500 per month if you are in a shared flat, or splurge on a one-bedroom apartment for some €650-850. Also worth noting is that most places require a deposit of 2 months rent on top of an agency fee that will cost you another month’s worth.
Accommodation while you house-hunt
Barcelona’s charm attracts people from all over the world, which makes it a beautiful, multicultural mixing pot. However, as a result, that can make it difficult to find your ideal place since demand for housing is high and places tend to go fast. Therefore, you may want to consider arranging alternative accommodation while you search for a place to rent. There are plenty of options available besides spending a fortune staying in a hotel. For example, staying in a hostel or renting an Airbnb can help keep costs down but still ought to be realistically factored into your budget. Barcelona is a city that combines rich traditions with a youthful, energetic vibe. Coming to Barcelona to study is perfect for those who want a mix of culture, adventure and self-development. It offers the opportunity for those studying their TEFL qualification to integrate with locals by living alongside them in shared accommodation, developing their Catalan and Spanish skills and becoming familiar with one of the greatest cities on earth.