Are you considering working in Spain in 2023? If so, it's essential to understand the country's working days, public holidays, and annual leave entitlements. This guide will provide you with everything you need to know to ensure you're well-prepared.
Does Spain have a 4-day work week?
Spain was one of the nations that proposed a three-year trial of the four-day work week, which was authorized by the government in 2021. The pilot was intended to start in September of that same year, but it hasn't yet. Who among us wouldn't relish having a day off of work? We would, without a doubt, but alas Spain does not, at least not yet, have a four-day workweek.
Working Days in Spain
Spain has a standard working week of 40 hours, which is typically spread over five days. The maximum number of working hours per week is 48, and any hours worked above this must be paid as overtime. I’m sure you have heard of the famous Spanish siestas, and you are wondering if that is still the case in Spain or not. Well, the typical workday for Spaniards working in retail and other shops is a "split shift", lasting from 9 am to 8 pm with a two-hour lunch break. In an office job, however, you will find similar working hours as in other countries with 30-60 minutes lunch breaks. With new political developments and a new generation flooding the job market, Work-Life-Balance becomes a bigger topic and this includes shorter lunch breaks and more time for family and friends in the afternoon.
Are shops in Spain open 7 days a week?
No, on Saturdays you will find many smaller and local shops with reduced hours, and bigger franchises will remain open fully. However, on Sundays all shops close with the exception of some 24/7 supermarkets. The normal lunch break hours are from 1:30 pm until 5 pm, so try to avoid this time for shopping. The opening hours also vary within the country due to the huge weather difference in the regions. In the hot south, a longer lunch break is necessary to escape the heat and therefore shops are open onger in the evenings than in the noth.
What is Full-Time and Part-Time Work in Spain?
40 hours a week is the standard for full-time employment, and any overtime should be specified in your contract. In Spain, part-time labour is employment lasting up to 20 hours each week.
Spain has 14 public holidays in 2023, which include both national and regional holidays. National holidays include New Year's Day, Labor Day, and Christmas Day, while regional holidays vary by province. It's important to note that in most of Spain, public holidays falling on a Sunday are moved to the following Monday. Catalunya (where Barcelona lies) is an exception to this, where public holidays falling on a Sunday will not be recovered.
In Spain, employees are entitled to a minimum of 22 working days of annual leave per year. It's also worth noting that employees are entitled to take at least two weeks of their annual leave consecutively, although this may vary depending on the company's policy. Typically holiday month are August-September and depending on the company you might be obliged to take a major part of your vacation days in this period.
Start Your Adventure in Spain
While working hours in some regions of Spain may differ significantly from those in other nations, you can generally expect similar hours in Spain's major cities as in other European ones. It is important that you understand how the Spanish system operates before deciding on employment opportunities in this country. By being aware of these factors, you can ensure that you're well-prepared and able to enjoy a healthy work-life balance. Now that you have all of these details covered you can start beginning your job search in Spain.