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Malaga - Employment

Because of the obvious language difference, many expats work in areas where their knowledge of English is required, such as the tourist industry, and services aimed at the expat community. This could be anything from working in a bar or restaurant, or self-employed plumbers, hairdressers or cleaners.

If your knowledge of Spanish is minimal to basic, you can find work with an estate agent which specialises in properties for expats. Some Spanish may be required to converse with sellers or legal representation, however many of the house sellers will also be English speakers.

There is also plenty of work for English teachers either in the international schools or private language schools. Many locals will be keen to take English classes as the language is so important in their area, and so there will be plenty of opportunity to supplement any income by giving private English lessons as well. Formal qualifications are not normally required as many adults will be looking for conversational practice, however a TEFL qualification is recommended to add weight to any job applications.

Jobs for foreign teachers in state schools, however, are difficult to come by due to the complicated 'oposiciones' process and exam that is required to work in any public or civil service position.

Jobs for English speakers will be advertised in the variety of English newspapers available from all newsagents, and online at www.surinenglish.com

If your level of Spanish is good, and you fulfill all the legal requirements to work in Spain, then you are free to compete with any Spanish person for jobs. In this situation, a native level of English will always be an advantage, even if it is not a direct requirement for the job.

All job contracts need to be registered with INEM, the government-run employment centres that are in all Spanish towns and cities. Job hunters can visit the centres to view job openings, a selection of which can also be seen at www.inem.es, and which can also be viewed in English. The website also gives details on Spanish employment law and requirements, and information on claiming unemployment benefits. A full list of INEM offices can be found here.

A number of private job agencies have offices in the centre of Malaga including Manpower at Alda Colon, 1, Randstad at Avenida Canovas del Castillo, 14 and Start People at Salitre, 14.

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