Internship Programs in Spain
Guide to getting an internship in Spain
A hugely popular place for tourists and interns alike, Spain is a beautiful country filled with proud cultural traditions, a buzzing culinary scene, and miles of coastline to visit. Interns in Spain will have the opportunity to live and work in a center of European business and culture, all the while practicing the third most widely spoken language of the world.
Top industries in Spain
You can find internships in nearly every field in Spain but some stand out more than others. Here are a few of the top industries in Spain for international internships.
Business & marketing
Internships in various aspects of business development and support are extremely popular in Spain. With one of the top economies in Europe, Spain is filled with international business internship opportunities. Nowadays, most business marketing positions focus on developing online marketing strategies and conducting in-depth market analysis.
Completing an internship at a financial institution in Spain is a great way to learn more about the field and experience firsthand how the country has responded to the ongoing financial instability in Europe. Most finance internships will be offered in Spain’s major cities, especially Barcelona and Madrid. If you see yourself in the future traveling around the world for business or simply want to get a taste of international financial operations, take a finance internship in Spain!
Several tourism and hospitality internships are available in Barcelona, Madrid, and Seville, but opportunities can be found at any tourist hotspot. Your day-to-day tasks may vary depending on the type of tourism company or hotel but expect to practice your Spanish and use your English speaking skills to your advantage. As one of the top tourist destinations in the world, Spain is a great place to get started in the tourism industry.
Best cities to intern in Spain
You might already know these popular destinations and what makes them great for interning in Spain, but let's break each one down briefly so you can choose the right one for you and your career.
- Madrid: Spain's largest city, Madrid, is a natural fit for an internship – it has almost every industry you can imagine! Popular fields where you can find a lot of internship choices include business, finance, and marketing. In the evenings and on weekends, you can explore all of the cultural offerings in Madrid including its world-famous museums and great food scene.
- Barcelona: The second largest city in Spain, Barcelona is in many ways completely different from Madrid. Located on the Mediterranean coast, Barcelona has deep cultural roots and a strong Catalan presence, plus delicious food and nightlife you can enjoy outside internship hours. Popular intern industries include business, tourism and hospitality, community development, healthcare, and human rights.
- Seville: Located inland in the heart of the Andalusia region, Seville is a popular destination for travelers and interns alike. Popular industries in Seville include art, business, and tourism.
Where to find internships in Spain
Finding an internship in Spain isn’t as daunting as it may seem. Once of the easiest ways to secure a position is to apply through a program provider that will match you to an internship matching your goals, location preferences, and field. You can also search for opportunities right here on our GO internship job board!
How to apply to internships in Spain
While requirements may be different depending on the country, industry, and so on, these are generally the steps you’ll need to follow to land an unpaid or paid internship in Spain.
- Check that you meet the eligibility requirements. It’s important to make sure that your qualifications and experience match what the internship is looking for, especially when it comes to academics and language proficiency.
- Prepare your application materials. These may include your resume (CV), cover letter, portfolio, and/or statement of purpose and goals.
- Submit any necessary documents or paperwork.. Request any academic transcripts from your home university and letters of recommendation well in advance of your application deadline.
- Prepare for the interview! Practice common questions relating to your decision to choose Spain as a destination and what you hope to gain from the experience.
- Apply for a visa. Check the visa requirements for your country at the local Spanish consulate, either online or in person.
Work culture and language tips in Spain
Learning a bit about the language and culture of Spain before interning will help you navigate daily life both in the office and out.
Work culture & office etiquette
- The Spanish highly value communication and trust in the business environment.
- The work culture has been influenced by traditional Spanish values revolving around social structure and formality.
- Because the Spanish people pay close attention to the way others present themselves, most are well-groomed and dressed at all times.
- It is important to take time to get to know your co-workers, as most business relationships are built on the value of trust. If you tend to keep to yourself, you may be viewed as rude or antisocial.
- Networking is hugely important in Spain. Having connections will get you far in business.
Spanish is the official language of Spain, but people in larger cities can generally speak and understand a little English. Despite this, it is a very good idea to brush up on your Spanish skills before interning abroad in Spain. There are internships available to international workers in English, but some may expect interns to be fluent in Spanish. In any case, look for internship programs that can provide additional Spanish language training if you need it.
Is it expensive to live in Spain?
While larger cities like Madrid and Barcelona can be on the more expensive side, the cost of living in Spain is lower than in most European countries. A room in a shared apartment in a city center like Madrid can range from about €350-€600 ($390 - $672 USD).
Can I do an internship in Spain if I don’t speak Spanish?
Yes, there are internships in English in Spain for those who don’t speak Spanish or have a low level of proficiency. Speaking some Spanish will likely open up more opportunities, though.
Do I need a visa for an unpaid internship in Spain?
If you plan to intern in Spain for more than 90 days, you will need a visa regardless of whether your internship is paid or unpaid. Visa requirements vary by country so check with your local Spanish consulate for the details.
Do interns get paid in Spain?
While many internships in Spain aren’t paid, some may pay a small monthly stipend to full-time interns.
Do I need a visa to intern in Spain?
The type of visa you need to complete your internship depends on the length of your stay in Spain and the hours you work per week. Usually, your employer or program provider can let you know which short or long-term visa you will need.
Can I learn Spanish during my internship in Spain?
Yes! Although it’s a good idea to have some knowledge of Spanish before you intern, many internship programs have built-in language training opportunities to help you build up your skills.Related Content
What types of industries can I find in Spain?
Although you can find internships in most fields in Spain, the most common industries include business, marketing, finance, accounting, and tourism.
Where can I find an internship in Spain?
The most popular places to intern in Spain include Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia, Seville, and the Canary Islands.