Life as an International Student in Spain

Entering a new country with the aim of studying for a degree program will be a new benchmark in your life. Student life in Spain will also be a benchmark for telling people how outstanding your experience was in Spain and how meeting other cultures has expanded your thinking. Spain has a favorable geographic position and attracts people from all over the world. The number of international students in Spain has grown substantially, so the atmosphere you’re going to develop your academic competence will help you become more open-minded. During your studies in Spain, you can learn some Spanish words and phrases so you can get the Spaniard’s heart immediately. Speaking in terms of cultural variety, Spain is one of the wealthiest countries and spans its cultural elements all over the world.

Throughout your studies, there will be times when you will find yourself so involved in the Spanish lifestyle that you will start to identify changes you have had as an individual. The most exciting part of being an international student in any country is that you will get the real flavor of that country. For example, getting involved in different clubs such as sports, reading, or any other local ones that are concerned with making a real difference in their community. Best believe you will turn into a Hispanophile. On the other side of the medal, your studies will serve for you to become a well-equipped scholar. 

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Here’s what student life in Spain generally looks like:


Starting with a fun fact, Spain gets the highest rays of sunshine throughout the year, counting 3,000 hours. Like any other country, the climate depends highly on the year’s season. Although there can be differences in weather, you will have to carry the SPF factor with you. In terms of areas and seasons, you will face different levels of heat and cold. If your favorite time of the year is spring and autumn, then you will be expecting mild temperatures in Spain. These mild temperatures indicate temperatures between 64 and 86 F. During these two seasons, you could have a walk in the forest, tour mounts with a cable car, or engage in any outdoor activity you prefer.  

During the summer, the peak temperatures are in July and August. More or less, you will be experiencing a dry and hot summer. You should definitely pack your swimming suits and plan on spending 2-3 days of the week on the beaches of Spain. Remember that wearing white reflects all wavelengths of light, and, in Spain, white represents a prominent part of Ibiza fashion. Some other hacks on how to cope with heat are to put hats on when you’re outside and when you’re inside, just keep the persianas down. 

The winter season in Spain is generally bearable, and the temperatures vary between 41 F to 57 F. Compared to other countries, winters in Spain are more pleasant. In addition, the southern region of this country will still get some rays of sunshine at this time of year. Since winter starts around 21 December and ends around 21 March, you will have enough time to enjoy your winter activities. 

General Daily Routine 

Your general daily routine depends on your plans and schedule. However, international students usually spend their day in cafes, parks, and squares as there are the most lively places and with the most activities. After you finish your lectures, many aesthetic seats in your local park will await you and your favorite book. 

Sports are an inevitable part of a person’s daily routine. You can start your day by running, but remember to eat breakfast before running. As important as it is to engage in a sports activity, having a good playlist will enhance your experience. The advantage of coming to study in Spain is that you will easily find yourself playing or watching football. Since Football is an essential part of Spanish culture, maybe you can consider playing football twice a week. 

Students’ academic achievements depend highly on their daily routines. A straightforward routine will help you keep up with your life and studies. Thus, following this general daily routine with the possibility of altering it to your needs will help you get along with your studies. 

Here’s a general daily routine for students:

  • Set up the alarm for an early wake-up
  • Write down your daily goals
  • Check your assignments and review your chapters
  • Create a list of healthy foods that you should eat
  • Tidy up your room 
  • Complete any assignments before going to sleep

Socializing and Events

The famous saying “Viven en la Calle” or “live in the streets” represents Spaniards’ enthusiasm for entertainment. Overall, fun events in Spain include elements of dancing, dining, and clubbing. You can enjoy multiple activities and events six days a week. However, on Saturdays, people usually spend their time on housework and chores. So you should expect your local friends to be busy. 

In terms of nightlife, Spain is better than the best. Bars are open all day long and don’t get closed till 3:00 in the morning. This is also why many international students choose to spend their study years in Spain. Party freaks will always find party neighborhoods where the dance floors are flooded with wild souls and first-class DJs.

The joyful moments you will experience in Spain are like in no other country. This is due to the importance of late-night social gatherings in Spanish culture. Whether you visit posh clubs, laid-back pubs, tapas restaurants, beach clubs, or boat parties, you’ll find that Spain’s nightlife grows more vibrant as the hours pass. People frequently take afternoon naps to recharge before going out at night. After all, you’ll need all the energy if you start partying at 2 A.M. and keep going until the early morning hours.

Furthermore, Spain has several student organizations that organize group excursions in different cities. Spain is very diverse, with many sites and historical places to explore. You just have to find the right time and people to explore the hidden gems in Spain.

Expenses and Living Costs

Living abroad is a bit challenging, and the very first challenge you will face is defining your budget and where you will spend it. Although Spain is a budget-friendly country for international students, you should not feel any financial pressure. Generally, for everyday and satisfying student life in Spain, you will need around 900€ if you choose to live in a modest city. On the other hand, if you desire to study in big cities of Spain such as Madrid or Barcelona, you should add a little extra to the mentioned budget.

Accommodation will consume most of your budget, as apparent as it is. The best solution to living a comfortable student life is to choose one suitable housing option for your living standard. For instance, student residence halls are the most inexpensive housing alternative. Its prices range from 360€ to 600€. In spite of this, you can always rent an apartment, which of course, is comfier and more aesthetically pleasing, but also tends to be more expensive.

University Hours

Although certain degrees require additional years, most university degrees in Spain require four years of study. Spanish higher education comprises Bachelor’s or undergraduate degrees (Grado) for four-year programs, Master’s degrees (Máster) for two-year postgraduate programs, and doctorate (Doctorado) for post-education, according to the European Commission of Education and Training.

Since attending university is not compulsory, students are responsible for covering the cost of their higher education. Compared to private institutions, the cost of tuition is significantly cheaper at public universities. Several publicly funded Spanish institutions are well-known worldwide, including the Autonomous Universities of Madrid, Barcelona, Salamanca, and Alcalá de Henares, to name just a few.

Language and Communication 

Though many international students will have to adapt to a new language and a new culture, which in this case is Spanish, that doesn’t necessarily imply that it will be difficult to embrace it. There are many tips for overcoming language barriers for international students. During your studies, you must fight against your insecurities of not knowing the Spanish language. Whenever you’re unsure about how to phrase anything, just say it. It’s okay if you need to restate your sentence a few times before someone fully gets you. Always keep in mind that practice makes perfect.

The positive aspect of learning a new language when you’ve moved to a country abroad is that it will improve your cognitive function. More importantly, your problem-solving skills, verbal and spatial abilities, as well as your memory function will drastically improve through learning the Spanish language. So struggling to express yourself if you still don’t have full command of the Spanish language is an indication that your left brain hemisphere, which is responsible for speech and abstract thinking, is facing a progression.

Exploring and Traveling Around

You will grow and learn a lot as you explore Spain’s landmarks. One of the best ways to meet new people and make friends is through trips and social gatherings. You can start your exploration with the famous city of Córdoba and Medieval Castle Almodovar. This visit will take you to Medival times and have you contemplate one of the most significant centers of art and philosophy.  When it comes to the beautiful Castle Almodovar, the Arabic fortress near Cordoba, which was built in the year 760 AD, you will enjoy all the architectural details surrounding the castle.

Valencia is a wonderful city in Spain that serves international students with some of the best views as it is located on Spain’s east coast. Without the crowds seen in other major Spanish towns, the 2,000-year-old city offers broad, sandy beaches, beautiful architecture, a vibrant culinary scene, and a rich cultural heritage. Although it is the third-largest city in Spain, the principal sights, such as the cathedral, Mercado Central, and the Unesco-listed Lonja de la Seda, are all within walking distance of one other in the town center. Albeit, Spain offers many other cities and regions to enjoy your time and appreciate life as you are spending your study years in this country.