6 Best Places to Work in Colombia

Colombia is fast becoming one of South America’s most popular work destinations for foreign nationals. 

Salsa lessons and stunning vistas aside, Colombia is attracting an increasing number of expats to develop their careers in its improved urban infrastructure and growing job market. 

Despite being an economy primarily driven by its service sector, Colombia’s access to technology is catching up to the levels of North America and Western Europe. This has created flourishing tech bubbles within Colombia’s major cities and urban areas. And with these bubbles come opportunities for foreign nationals to find work. 

So to help you find the right spot in Colombia for your skills and goals, we’ve outlined the 6 best places to work in Colombia.  

Let’s kick things off with the capital.

Bogotá

As the capital, Bogotá is Colombia’s beating heart of trade and commerce. A growing middle class combined with a favorable government outlook towards foreign investment has caused the likes of Microsoft, McKinsey & Company and Proctor & Gamble to set up offices within its metropolitan area. 

Not only does Bogotá lure established multinationals, its seen a significant increase in the number of B2B agencies being created. In advertising and marketing alone, there are around 100 firms operating inside the capital. 

The average salary for an expat working in Bogotá is higher across most professions than anywhere else in the country. Furthermore, the variety of opportunities is greater than other cities in Colombia, so it’s ideal if you’re not certain what work you’re looking for. 

Looking for work in Bogotá, Colombia? Expat Group has already helped hundreds of expats like you kickstart their careers on Colombian soil.

Medellín

The city of eternal spring is known for more than just its weather. Medellín is fast becoming a hub for foreign and national tech startups.

Voted as the Wall Street Journal’s ‘City of the Year’ in 2012, Medellín now has some 875 startups operating within the city. Local business accelerators like Ruta N have stimulated much of Medellín’s business creation over the past half of a decade. 

For expats, this means there’s a rising volume of tech companies looking for foreigners with specialized skillsets in marketing, computer programming and account management. Currently, Glassdoor is advertising over 140 English-speaking vacancies in Medellín.

Barranquilla

Barranquilla is an ideal choice for expats interested in working in education. Only two hours from the touristic hotspot Cartagena, Barranquilla is also home to some of the best universities and colleges in the country. 

For expats looking to develop careers in education or gain some valuable experience in a classroom, Barranquilla has a whole host of teaching options for foreigners with a TEFL certificate. Furthermore, if you’ve got a degree or specialized qualification in education, private schools and universities will pay a premium for your teaching talents. 

If you’re looking for teaching work in Barranquilla, Colombia, consult Expat Group for advice on the best schools in the city.

Cali 

Sat in the beautiful valley of Cauca, Cali is now gaining the business clout to match its breathtaking setting. 

With around 2,800,000 people living in its metropolitan area, Cali is smaller than both Medellín and Bogotá but is now popular for both IT services and manufacturing companies. Currently, the likes of Johnson & Johnson and FullStack Labs are hiring fluent English speakers in the Cali region.

Bucaramanga 

Bucaramanga is not as common on Colombia’s tourist trail as it should be, yet its natural wonders are slowly making it a more desirable holiday destination. 

The likes of the Chicamocha canyon and national parks in San Gil have brought a rising number of visits from international travelers around the world. This has lead to an increased need for native English speakers. 

Looking for work in Bucaramanga? Expat Group has already helped hundreds of expats like you kickstart their careers on Colombian soil.

Manizales 

If you’re keen to learn about the production of coffee, Eje Cafetero is the crown jewel of Colombia’s coffee love affair. Manizales, a small yet stunning city in the Department of Caldas, is a central piece to Colombia’s vibrant coffee industry. 

With hundreds of coffee-growing fincas littering its hillsides, Manizales is home to farmers as well as exporters of its most famous bean. With commercial tours and coffee-making classes for tourists, Manizales offers employment opportunities for English-speaking expats with a passion for coffee. 

Not only that, some diligent research and sourcing could make Manizales the perfect spot to start a lucrative coffee export business.  

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