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Hello,

My name is Emma and I am 26 years old. Myself and my 34 year old boyfriend are hoping to move to the Costa Blanca next year.
I have an Early Years degree, a TEFL certificate and experience as a Pre School supervisor and my partner is an experienced Kitchen manager.
I have come here to be totally honest and admit that yes I am apprehensive!
I have read lots of threads and comments on here and have noticed that there is quite a bit of negativity around.
We value ourselves as realists and are by no means blinded by the 'sun, sea and sangria' lifestyle. We are willing and ready to work hard.
I would really appreciate some honest feedback from 20/30 something expat couples... I would love to here your stories to provide me with both information and reassurance!
Thank you in advance xx
 

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Hello,

My name is Emma and I am 26 years old. Myself and my 34 year old boyfriend are hoping to move to the Costa Blanca next year.
I have an Early Years degree, a TEFL certificate and experience as a Pre School supervisor and my partner is an experienced Kitchen manager.
I have come here to be totally honest and admit that yes I am apprehensive!
I have read lots of threads and comments on here and have noticed that there is quite a bit of negativity around.
We value ourselves as realists and are by no means blinded by the 'sun, sea and sangria' lifestyle. We are willing and ready to work hard.
I would really appreciate some honest feedback from 20/30 something expat couples... I would love to here your stories to provide me with both information and reassurance!
Thank you in advance xx
Your perception of negativity is our telling you like it is. Unemployment here is high , very high especially compared with the UK.

With teaching qualifications you might (note might) get a job with an English language academy. In all probability this will run from October to June, leaving you three months without work. For those nine months you may get somewhere around 1000€ per month (but it will pay your social security and cover your healthcare). It will not be enough for you to register both of you as residents (a minimum of 600€ per person per month going into a Spanish bank account and/or capital of 6000€ per person). You would do better having a fair command of Spanish to be able to explain grammar, etc. to children in the language they already understand. Additionally, you might get private class requests, but be aware they often pay very little (sometimes as low as 5€ per hour).

Your boyfriend's employment prospects are an unknown quantity since I have not heard of any positions of "kitchen manager" - does he actually cook or sit in an office and create menus, supervise the other staff or... I think most places that have fair sized kitchens may well put the chef in charge. He would do better to find suitable employment before making the move.

Be aware you will probably have to pay a minimum of 500€ per month for rent plus utilities (gas, water, electric, etc.) and depending on the tenancy agreement you may also have to pay the IBI plus refuse collection charges.
 

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What Baldilocks says is true, but it might be better for you to look into working in a British or international school. The salary may be a little better and the time table will be more in the region of 9:00 - 5:00. Academy work is typically in the evening - or maybe that's better for you with your partner working in the restaurant trade?
For jobs in British and international schools look in the TES, Guardian or by sending your CV to them directly after a Google, but do it now as the ads are starting to appear for the next academic year.
 

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What Baldilocks says is true, but it might be better for you to look into working in a British or international school. The salary may be a little better and the time table will be more in the region of 9:00 - 5:00. Academy work is typically in the evening - or maybe that's better for you with your partner working in the restaurant trade?
For jobs in British and international schools look in the TES, Guardian or by sending your CV to them directly after a Google, but do it now as the ads are starting to appear for the next academic year.
We are assuming you are both from the EU with the advice myself, PW and Baldi have given? You don't actually say so in your location flags.

Agree with Baldi, unemployment is sky high so get employment before you move. 30% in many areas, and over 50% for the under 26yr old age group.

Look up the requirements for residency, ad mentioned by Baldi, in the FAQ thread. As you are not married, you will each have to satisfy financial and healthcare requirements separately by having paid, contracted (not casual) work.

You will earn a lot more teaching in an International school than in a language academy, but probably less than you would earn in a UK school.A decent one will offer at least 22000€/ yr with a 12 month contract but be careful, some still quote a monthly wage and forget to tell you it is only a 10month contract. If you return to the Uk, some but not all education authorities will take your work experience in Spain into account when placing you on the pay scale. Main Recruitment for September actually starts around February, so you've already missed many of this years jobs! Look for ads on TES website and also read their forums- you will see many of the poorer schools mentioned indirectly - (naming directly is not allowed).

Not sure what a kitchen manager does- but just be aware that a lot of Restauarant work could be seasonal and casual- no employment contract. - therefore no residency, no healthcare, etc.
 

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You ask for advice from 20-30 year old expat couples living and working on the Costa Blanca.

I don't think you will get very many replies from such people as most that were here have returned because, as has been said before, there is so little work for them.

Those of that age group who are here are usually here illegally (without residencia or health care etc) and working casually without a contract. I know a lot of people like this, especially in the Benidorm area. They tend to stay a season or two then return to the UK.

Many young Spanish people are leaving Spain to find work and to be able to support themselves and their families.

My advice is do not come to Spain to live unless you both have a job with a contract. Being willing to work hard is not enough nowadays I'm afraid.
 

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With no benefits culture, no safety net like the UK, the unemployed in Spain (see the stats on Pesky's post) are 'ready and willing to work hard'.

This thread http://www.expatforum.com/expats/la-tasca/371025-why-do-we-bother.html
should be obligatory reading for anyone wanting to move to Spain to work.

Take on board all these comments you perceive to be negative. Those who live here know what it's like and will do our best to help, but forewarned is forearmed.
 

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I'm guessing the more than six million unemployed Spaniards are 'willing to work hard', especially if they have families and a mortgage to pay.
 

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Your perception of negativity is our telling you like it is. Unemployment here is high , very high especially compared with the UK.

With teaching qualifications you might (note might) get a job with an English language academy. In all probability this will run from October to June, leaving you three months without work. For those nine months you may get somewhere around 1000€ per month (but it will pay your social security and cover your healthcare). It will not be enough for you to register both of you as residents (a minimum of 600€ per person per month going into a Spanish bank account and/or capital of 6000€ per person). You would do better having a fair command of Spanish to be able to explain grammar, etc. to children in the language they already understand. Additionally, you might get private class requests, but be aware they often pay very little (sometimes as low as 5€ per hour).

Your boyfriend's employment prospects are an unknown quantity since I have not heard of any positions of "kitchen manager" - does he actually cook or sit in an office and create menus, supervise the other staff or... I think most places that have fair sized kitchens may well put the chef in charge. He would do better to find suitable employment before making the move.

Be aware you will probably have to pay a minimum of 500€ per month for rent plus utilities (gas, water, electric, etc.) and depending on the tenancy agreement you may also have to pay the IBI plus refuse collection charges.
I don't think the 600€ per month criteria is relevant if you have a contract of work. The contract could be for just a few hours a week, but it should still be enough to be able to sign on to the Central Register of Foreign Nationals, get your certificate and then get state healthcare. I know this sounds a bit backwards, because a few hours a week isn't going to be enough to live off or give much back to the government in social security payments, but the financial security requirements don't seem to be an issue so long as you have an employment contract. That is my experience anyway a few months ago.
 

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I don't think the 600€ per month criteria is relevant if you have a contract of work. The contract could be for just a few hours a week, but it should still be enough to be able to sign on to the Central Register of Foreign Nationals, get your certificate and then get state healthcare. I know this sounds a bit backwards, because a few hours a week isn't going to be enough to live off or give much back to the government in social security payments, but the financial security requirements don't seem to be an issue so long as you have an employment contract. That is my experience anyway a few months ago.
The problem is getting a contract.

Even if you can find work, around here employers simply don't issue contracts!
 

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We have entered the realms of doom and gloom. Our moto is you only live once so give it a go and what will be will be.

A kitchen manager is basically a head chef who has a lot of experience within a managerial role
 

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The problem is getting a contract.

Even if you can find work, around here employers simply don't issue contracts!
A native English speaker with a TEFL certificate and a degree like the OP should find work in an Academy easily round here. Not great money, unsociable hours, no pay in the summer months, etc etc but if you want to get your foot in the door it's a starting point. And because there is a demand, academies are happy to give a contract and help with the registration because they know native English speakers are an asset.
 

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A native English speaker with a TEFL certificate and a degree like the OP should find work in an Academy easily round here. Not great money, unsociable hours, no pay in the summer months, etc etc but if you want to get your foot in the door it's a starting point. And because there is a demand, academies are happy to give a contract and help with the registration because they know native English speakers are an asset.
My only reason for using the word "may" was the fact that many academies have their regular teachers in place and any recruitment would depend on either their expanding or their needing to replace a leaver.
 

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I think in big cities there is a sufficient turnover of teachers, many of whom only stay for a year or two before moving on, for quite a few vacancies to arise in the academies each year. I seem to remember that in Madrid some academies even guaranteed a place for an academic year in return for doing your TEFL with them.
 
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