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Employees in Spain enjoy one of the highest numbers of paid time off in the world
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Written by Natalie Barresi

Branded Content Creator

Labor laws in Spain: how many days of paid annual leave are workers entitled to?

Taking a break from work is essential for mental wellbeing. It allows people to recharge and be creative again. You shouldn’t have to overthink it, you deserve time off. However, in some countries you might get more vacation time than others.

Spain is one of the leading countries, not just in Europe but, in the world in terms of paid time off (PTO).  The laid back lifestyle of the country plus the incredible weather makes it the perfect place to work.

1. Why time off matters

In the current work culture, taking time off is sometimes seen as a sign of weakness or laziness. But it is actually crucial for mental wellbeing and creativity

It is said that creativity comes from being relaxed, and it’s true. When you are stressed, you can’t be creative. Taking a break from work will allow your mind to process the information in a different way, which will lead to new ideas and insights.

Going on vacation helps you recharge and come back to the workplace refreshed and ready to take on new challenges. Paid time off has been shown to increase creativity, productivity, and overall happiness of workers.

2. Vacation days in Spain

Spain is one of the countries in the world that offers the most paid vacation days. Spanish law requires employers to offer their employees a minimum of 30 calendar days, or 22 working days of annual leave, (not including public holidays) per year.

If you include the national holidays and regional holidays (which differ per region), workers can be entitled to up to 39 calendar days of paid time off.

This is a great way for Spain to encourage its employees to take care of themselves and their mental wellbeing.

3. Labor laws

Spain has been able to offer such generous paid time off because they have a progressive labor code that protects workers’ rights and provides them with many benefits like this one.

Workers are also protected from being terminated because they exercised their right to take care of themselves, which is something that happens in other countries where there are not as many protections for workers.

The government in Spain sets the Spanish national holidays each year, although Spanish bank holidays differ between each of the regions. While each city observes the national holidays in Spain, regional holidays are set by the local governments.

If a bank holiday falls on a weekend, they are sometimes changed to the Friday or following Monday. However, it depends on what the regional government decides.

4. National holidays vs regional holidays

The national holidays are the same for the whole country and are celebrated on the same day in all regions of Spain. 

Regional holidays are different for each region and can be celebrated on different days depending on the region and day of week.

National holidays:

– 1 January New Year’s Day.

– 6 January Epiphany (Three Kings’ Day).

– April Good Friday.

– 1 May Labor Day.

– 15 August Assumption of Mary.

– 12 October National Day of Spain.

– 1 November All Saints’ Day.

– 6 December Constitution Day.

– 8 December Immaculate Conception.

– 25 December Christmas Day.

Regional holidays: 

– 28 February Andalusia day (Andalusia).

– 19 March St Joseph’s Day (Basque Country, Castile-La Mancha & Valencia).

– April Easter Monday (Balearic Islands, Basque Country, Catalonia, La Rioja, Navarre & Valencia).

– 2 May Day of Madrid (Madrid).

– 15 May St Isidore’s Day (Madrid).

– 24 June St John’s Day (Catalonia, Galicia & Valencia).

– 25 July (Saint James’ Day Basque Country & Madrid).

– 11 September National Day of Catalonia (Catalonia).

– 9 October Day of the Valencian Community (Valencia).

– 9 November Virgin of Almudena (Madrid).

– 26 December St Stephen’s Day (Balearic Islands & Catalonia).

For the full list of regional holidays in Spain check here.

5. Job offers in Spain

If you want to enjoy taking your career to the next level, lots of holidays, and exciting cities, then it might be time for you to work in Spain! Click here to see all our job offers in Barcelona, Madrid, Valencia and Malaga. 

It’s free! You get to work in your native language. City Job Offers has remote and hybrid job opportunities. Many job offers are entry-level or don’t require much experience. Plus, in many cases, your relocation to Spain will be covered, all expenses paid. All you need to do now is apply!


💡Want to work in a country with great weather, stunning beaches, and incredible cities? Try Portugal, a hidden secret that might just be the best choice for you. Discover 7 reasons to live in this exciting country. Read more here →

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