Relocation to Gibraltar / Working in Gibraltar
Please find below some comprehensive details on working in Gibraltar and relocating to Gibraltar.
For a specific search for jobs in Gibraltar please click here.
It is not a surprise to people who live and work in, or near, Gibraltar that thousands more European expats are moving over to join them. Gibraltar is approximately two and a half hours from the UK and have on average 300 days of sunshine each year, with a great selection of stunning beaches, access to a variety of outdoors sporting pursuits such a biking, windsurfing and sun bathing. Gibraltar is an English-speaking community and thus language barriers do not exist helping to make Gibraltar an ideal place for relocation.
If you wish to work in Gibraltar, business generally around several key sectors: online gaming, accountancy, insurance, banking and all the various legal and IT services that these require. There are also various opportunities for more casual employment in bars and restaurants throughout town.
Around 20,000 people are permanently employed in Gibraltar, consisting of both locals, and foreigners living just across the border in Spain. Over 50% of Gibraltar’s school leavers go on to further education in the UK, more often than not returning to the Rock once they have qualified. This conveniently means that local UK trained professionals are readily available to run local businesses, the most common being law, business and accountancy graduates.
With neighbouring Spain having earned a relatively poor reputation for the lack of good job opportunities, low wages and generally inferior employment conditions and contracts, many people come to Gibraltar in search of a comparatively stable and professional environment in which to operate. Here they can enjoy a Mediterranean lifestyle, crossing the border as often as they like, while benefitting from the reassuring ‘Britishness’ of Gibraltar’s working and living environment.
Gibraltar is now home to a good number of international companies who operate in a professional environment not dissimilar to that of the UK. Genuine job prospects exist here now with many of the worlds largest online gaming companies choosing Gibraltar to base their head office.
Gibraltar mirrors the UK employment system, so all contracts are in English and look very similar that you would expect from the UK. Most questions we answer about contract here are answered with the reply that 'it is the same as the UK'!
The process of relocating to Gibraltar need not be a big problem and with a number of companies helping, both financially and organisationally, with the relocation process it can be similar to just moving down the road! The availability of services to help in your relocation to Gibraltar process is wide from helping you source accommodation to pet relocation.
The open border means you can live in Spain and work in Gibraltar with ease, and that your daily commute becomes a walk over the runway with a sea view to keep you company. Somewhat better than sitting on a dirty commuter train!
The availability of quality employment is ever increasing with the growth of many sectors including the online gaming industry now representing a major source of employment opportunities. Gibraltar has been relatively well established for many years with most of the vacancies in the banking, financial and legal sectors, although the recent boom in online gambling has led to more options in other sectors.
We cover a variety of different levels of jobs here including senior management, middle management, entry level and occassionally graduate opportunities.
Many people are caught with the question of whether they can relocate to Gibraltar with out having secured a job to go to. The answer is only answered by you, but the fact remains that in most cases to gain a job you have to be personally interviewed, and often have a strong preference to candidates already living in the area. RecruitGibraltar try to personally interview all its candidates prior to putting them forward for a vacancy but will certainly phone screen all people and ask their availability to come here for interview by a potential employer. Some companies will fly you over subsequent to a phone screening but this tends to be for the more senior roles so cater financially for the fact that you may have to pay to come over. Other ways to get here are to let us know if you happen to be taking a holiday in the area and we can schedule interviews around these dates.
You may wish to take a few days holiday and come over to see if Spain or Gibraltar meets your expectations and have a few interviews while you are here. The alternative is that you fly over subsequent to a phone interview, when a vacancy that meets your expectation arises, to personally interview. Most candidates find that without being here though you will find it harder to gain employment.
Gibraltar has a distinct benefit for non Spanish speakers in that being bilingual is not necessarily a prerequisite for employment and thus opens up many opportunities for a job.
Income Tax system in Gibraltar
There are 2 different types of income tax systems in Gibraltar the simplified system of a gross tax system (so no real allowance structure) makes it pretty easy to calculate. For more information see our comprehensive guide by clicking here.
Many of the people we work with find they are better off with a higher net (take home) pay that that in their home country but we strongly recommend that you visit the Gibraltar government website for specific information and a tax calculator - http://www.gibraltar.gov.gi/
Gibraltar is not income tax free unfortunately!
Salaries and working in Gibraltar
The working hours in Gibraltar are very similar to those of the UK, albeit some hours can be from 9 - 6 or take the opposite of working 'summer hours' during July and August and finish at 3.30pm each day. The working conditions are also very similar as the legal treatment of employees is the same as the UK.
Salaries will depend on what industry you work in as the online gaming industry roles tend to pay pretty well but i the legal sector they tend to be lower than that of the UK. As a guide the average wages in Gibraltar are typically 20% lower than in the UK (sunshine tax!), for basic positions such as secretarial and administration pay of £12k - £17k with PAs taking up to £25k. As you would expect specifically skilled roles such as IT positions command higher wages and can be anything up to matching UK wages. There are some locally based industries that always need specific skill sets such as Company Administrators and those with Trust experience and thus these candidates tend to get snapped up immediately.
Work permits can be issued to foreign nationals, and there are two completely different groups of persons EU and non-EU nationals. After staying more than 6 months in Gibraltar, EU citizens can apply and receive a 5-year renewable work permit, while the non-EU nationals are only eligible if there isn't a local resident willing to do the same job, see below for further information.
The provision of health care and pensions are relatively standard and again similar to those of the UK but certainly not the norm in Spain. As you will be working in Gibraltar you will be paying social security here but you can 'passport' the payment back to Spain via form filling etc.
Please note that if you work in Gibraltar but live in Spain then you pay income tax in Gibraltar.
As a British overseas territory, the sole official language of Gibraltar is English, and it is used by the Government and in schools. Most locals are bilingual, also speaking Spanish, due to Gibraltar's proximity to Spain. However, because of the varied mix of ethnic groups which reside there, other languages are spoken on The Rock.
Gibraltarians often converse in Llanito and is an Andalusian Spanish based vernacular and unique to Gibraltar. It consists of an eclectic mix of Andalusian Spanish and British English. However, it borrows words and expressions of many other languages, with over 500 words of Genoese and Hebrew origin. Among more educated Gibraltarians, it also typically involves code-switching to English.
Health, Cost of Living and Driving
The cheaper cost of living means real savings. There is no VAT charged in Gibraltar. Interest is fully allowable on mortgages in Gibraltar, and property in Spain is cheaper than in the UK
At the time of writing, Gibraltar is served by direct, twice-daily British Airways flights from Gatwick, the Monarch “Crown Service” from Luton and trips to and from Manchester fly four times a week. Gibraltar is 2 ½ hours flying time from London and three hours to Manchester. A multiple-lane auto-route, a few minutes drive from the border, links Gibraltar with the major airport at Malaga which offers regular international flights to most parts of the world as well as links to many of Britain’s regional airports. Malaga is reached in less than an hour and a half of hassle-free motoring through the spectacular Andalusian countryside.
Although Gibraltar is self-governing, its legal system is based on English common law, its Chief Justice is appointed by the Crown, and judgments are recognised and upheld internationally. Access to the courts is swift, efficient and less costly than in the United Kingdom - factors that, coincidentally, attract growing numbers of ship arrests and similar Admiralty matters to the jurisdiction.
The journey to work is generally stress free: just a short walk (Gibraltar is 5km long by 1.6km at its widest point), or you can drive in on the uncluttered Spanish roads.
Gibraltar is family-friendly. There are income tax benefits for married couples and those with children. Gibraltar schools operate on the UK curriculum and exam structure, they have a good reputation, and are freely available to Gibraltar residents. There is a fee-paying English-based International School nearby in Spain.
There are quite specific rules governing who can live in Gibraltar so for more information on work permits for Gibraltar click on this link.
If you work in Gibraltar you are naturally paying social security and thus can use the healthcare system. You are also able to use the healthcare system in Spain after the normal Spanish form filling! See here for more info - Gibraltar Healthcare
Property and Money
The prices of property in Gibraltar has been steadily rising, as has property globally, but the ever diminishing space available certainly means prices will continue to rise. There has been a swathe of newly erected property for both residential and commercial use mainly finished to a very high standard. The high end properties are mainly built with 'high net worth individuals' in mind who have to own a property in keeping with their wealth in order to qualify for the minimal tax category status.
The availability of rental property in Gibraltar is fairly wide from apartments with sea views to houses in town and prices vary massively depending on quality as you would expect. Access to rental property in Gibraltar is achieved via stroll along main street to the many estate agencies that line the path or a short search on the internet.
The lack of cheaper rental property has served to push prices up and led many people to seek accommodation across the border in Spain in the La Linea area or down towards Estepona. Other areas to consider around Gibraltar are Alcaidesa, Duquesa, Torreguadiaro and Sotogrande but the location with depend on how far you wish to travel to work and the amenities you are looking for. A search online or through the local free papers such as the Friday Ad or the Sur in English normally will get you on the right track.
When you arrive and start work you face the choice of living in Spain and commuting to work across the border or living in Gibraltar and walking to work. Below are the pro and cons of these scenarios
Living in Spain
Pros – Much cheaper than Gibraltar, more living space for the cost, more space to move about in outside of your home, easy access to the rest of Spain with no border crossing.
Cons – commuting to work, no train service in the local area although there are busses, Spanish spoken as the primary language, a need to register your existence with the local authorities.
Living in Gibraltar
Pros – English spoken as primary language, no commute to work as you can walk everywhere, all amenities are in a walkable distance
Cons – more expensive to rent that Spain, flat sizes are smaller, comparatively harder to access Spain in your free time
There are still plenty of properties for the first time buyer to purchase however with many of the older tower blocks seeing internal makeovers reminiscent of 'Changing Rooms'. Many of the blocks come with swimming pools included albeit they tend to be fairly small.
Special tax incentives are available for individuals buying residences in Gibraltar and handling at least a portion of their investments through local financial institutions (High Net Worth Individuals) as well as for relocating executives. These incentives will not be affected by the current restructuring of corporate taxes which when implemented will provide a benign, low-tax climate for local and international companies. Gibraltar has no capital gains tax, inheritance tax, gift tax or wealth tax.
Tourism in Gibraltar
Tourism forms a large part of the economy in Gibraltar and there are many hotels and tourist attractions on the rock. The main attraction here are the monkeys or apes and you can find out more about them by clicking here.
Moving over to Gibraltar
So in principle you have secured the job of your dreams but what happens next?
We will help organise an offer letter and a contract for you to ensure you are happy with the security of the role. We will help you with where to live based on what you expect to have as part of your daily life (for example if you cannot drive then this changes your accommodation options etc). We can send you some information on the places to live in the local area and what there is to do in your leisure time etc. After this you can start organising the flights with the employer and start packing up your life!
Most employers will pay for your flights and some baggage allowance but given the flexibility of Easyjet or Ryanair to take extra luggage you are potentially going to need some extra help!
Below is a short film that was filmed in, and about, Gibraltar.
Lifestyle Links for Gibraltar
- Facts about Gibraltar
- General Information on Gibraltar
- Gibraltar Internet and E-Commerce Facilities
- Healthcare in Gibraltar
- Nightlife in Gibraltar
- Property in Gibraltar
- Recruitment agencies in Gibraltar
- Schools in Gibraltar
- Income Tax in Gibraltar
- Work & Residence Permits in Gibraltar
Jobs in Gibraltar
- Accountancy & Insurance jobs in Gibraltar
- Administration & Office jobs in Gibraltar
- Banking & Financial jobs in Gibraltar
- Customer service & Call Centre jobs in Gibraltar
- HR jobs in Gibraltar
- Insurance jobs in Gibraltar
- IT & Technology jobs in Gibraltar
- Legal jobs in Gibraltar
- Marketing, PR & Web Design jobs in Gibraltar
- Online Gaming jobs in Gibraltar
- jobs in Gibralter
- Sales jobs in Gibraltar
- Secretarial & PA jobs in Gibraltar
- Jobs in Gibraltar
For a up to date list of jobs in Gibraltar click here