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Working Days in Spain - Everything You Need To Know in 2024

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Working Days in Spain - Everything You Need To Know in 2024

Are you considering working in Spain? If so, it's essential to understand the country's working days, public holidays, and annual leave entitlements. This guide will give you 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. With a bit of delay, the trial is currently ongoing. Meanwhile, Valencia conducted a mini-trial for one month in 2023 with very positive results. But until the 4-day work week becomes the new norm it will still take some time.

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. A new law is currently in the making that aims to reduce the standard working hours from 40 hours to 37.5 hours per week by 2025.

You have surely also heard of the famous Spanish siestas and are wondering if it is true or just a stereotypical myth. It is indeed not a myth, as some industries and sectors have a "split shift" from 9:00 AM to 8:00 PM with a two-hour lunch break. However, in general office jobs you will have your typical 30-60 minute lunch break. 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.

Jobs in Spain

Working Days In Spain

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 differences in the regions. In the hot south, a longer lunch break is necessary to escape the heat and therefore shops are open longer in the evenings than in the north.

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.

Public Holidays

Spain has 8 national public holidays. Depending on the region you will get additional local holidays, Barcelona for example has 4 additional regional holidays. It's important to note that in most of Spain, public holidays falling on a Sunday are moved to the following Monday. Catalonia (where Barcelona lies) is an exception to this, where public holidays falling on a Sunday will not be recovered.

Annual Leave

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. Typical holiday months 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.

Jobs in Spain

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