Spanish higher education: why choosing Spain as the destination?

Spanish higher education: why choosing Spain as the destination?

2021-10-04 16:52:44

Spanish is one of the most preferred study destinations for international students due to many reasons. After finishing senior highs in their home country, many international students aspire to study in a different country to discover interesting cultures and lifestyles. Also, they might be attracted by famous schools and affordable studying and living expenses. In the article, we will explain why Spain is a good destination for international students.

1. Renowned universities:

In Spain, there are many great universities with promising majors, available for international students. Currently, there are a total of 76 universities in Spain, 45 of which are run and funded by the state, while 31 are private or run by the Catholic Church.

According to QS rankings, the best ones, for now, are the Autonomous University of Madrid, the University of Barcelona, Autonomous University of Barcelona, and Complutense University of Madrid, and the University of Navarra. The top 3 universities are within the world’s top 200, while the other two are within the top 300.

Except for general rankings, major-specific rankings are more important for students wishing to pursue a certain career. Here are some of the best choices for people that wish to pursue a certain degree:

  • Economy or Business Administration (state-owned): eg. Pompeu Fabra University, Carlos III of Madrid
  • Business school (private): ESADE business & law school, IESE business school, IE University
  • Languages and linguistics: the University of Granada, Autonomous University of Barcelona

These are only several examples of the possible choices. You can certainly find the university and the major you love in Spain!

2. Mediterranean lifestyle:

Another attractive reason for studying in Spain is to enjoy the Mediterranean life. Spain is known to be a major fruit and vegetable producer in the European Union. You can encounter diverse vegetables and fruits at affordable prices. Also, Spanish superb gastronomic skills are an important part of its culture. Living as an international student in Spain means that you can have easy access to all the fresh ingredients as well as tasty meals.

Sunshine and beach are another part of this lively Southern European country. Before starting your professional life, why not spend some time studying in this cozy and relaxing environment? If you are tired of loads of schoolwork and want to stop for a moment, Spain is also a great place to wander around. You can easily find peace of mind in the old towns, in the mountains, and on the street.

Spain is also famous for parties, discotheques, and festivals. If you are a party animal, go for it! Because the country is young and rich in nightlife and it will not make you regret your choices.

3. Fees and living expenses

On the one hand, the country has a lot to offer to young people, like studying opportunities, parties, and gastronomic joy. On the other hand, the fees and living expenses are affordable and averagely lower than in other developed countries. Spain is the 3rd cheapest country in Western Europe. The average living expenses of an international student can be from 700 euros to 1800 euros a month, depending on the city you live in and the lifestyle you lead.

The tuition fees are also low compared with English and American universities. Most of the universities are state-owned. You can expect to pay from 750 euros to 2500 euros a year for a bachelor's program if you study in a state-owned university. The tuition fees for master's programs are around 1000 to 3500 euros a year. However, if you choose to study in a private school, the fees can be around 20,000 euros per year. This is much higher than public universities but might still be lower than most American or British ones.

4. Job opportunities

Different to many people might think, in Spain, there are also many job opportunities for expats. As an international student in Spain, if you stay for more than three months in Spain, you will need to apply for a student visa. With this visa, you can also work and chance to stay in Spain searching for jobs when the period ends:

  • As long as you hold a student visa, you can work part-time (20 hours/week) to gain extra money and work experience. To make this happen, you need to sign an internship agreement with your university and the organization you will be working for.
  • Job-seeking residence permit: You can stay for longer to look for a job in Spain when your student is going to expire in two months, or it has expired within three months.
  • Residence permit for internship: If you find a job when your student residence is about to expire, or you have finished your studies. The company can help you to apply for an internship residence permit if they want to sponsor you.

5. Spanish: the second spoken language in the world

Spanish is the second spoken language in the world. And there isn’t any place better than Spain to learn this beautiful language. As one of the most spoken languages in the world, Spanish could be a good plus when it comes to job hunting because it might facilitate you with more job opportunities.

If you want to start to learn or improve your Spanish, you can come to study for a degree or even learn language lessons for daily use. If you don’t want to devote much time to learning this language, you can even pick it up on the street by making purchases, ordering drinks, or making friends.

6. International experience

Spain is one of the EU countries, meaning that with a student visa and residence permit, you can travel to other EU countries without any more visa requirements. With the Spanish student residence permit, you can get special discounts at various cultural sites such as museums, art galleries, opera houses in Spain or other European countries.

Some people may fear that there might be too many locals around them and they might not fit in well with the society. Since Spain is an easy-to-access study destination, you might encounter many expats from other countries, especially in big cities. If you want, you can also design a unique international experience by surrounding yourself with international students.

Now that you understand that becoming a student in Spain can bring you so many benefits, you might want to know how to apply for a student visa. It’s important to mention that medical insurance is a compulsory document for student visa applications. Here in the official international office of Adeslas, we offer the best valued Spanish expat insurance that meets all visa requirements.


[1] Study in Spain. (2021). Retrieved 4 October 2021, from

Our contents will be updated according to the most recent legislation. Last update: 04/10/2021

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