FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

FAQs

These are a few FAQs about Spanish courses, accommodation, bookings, and other most common questions asked to our staff. If your question is not answered here, please contact us for personal advice. We’re glad to assist you in everything you may need.

Please read also our General Conditions, Legal Notice and Privacy Policy.

1. COURSES

When can I start a Spanish course?

What is the average age of students at TANDEM Escuela Internacional Madrid?

What time should I arrive at the school on the first day and what should I bring with me?

How can I choose the best course for me?

How will I know the level and course I will be in?

What should I do if I want to take a week’s holiday or a few days off in the middle of the course?

Can I change courses once I have started?

What time are the tutorials?

Is there a fee for cancelling a course?

Can we make up for classes that fall on bank holidays?

Will I receive a certificate at the end of the course?

Does TANDEM MADRID qualify for CSN grants?

 

2. REGISTRATION

What is included in the course price and registration fee?

How can I register with TANDEM?

How far in advance should I register?

I do not speak any Spanish. How can I register?

What are the payment methods?

What do I have to do if I want to register my underage child for a course?

I need a visa. How can I complete registration and receive the letter I need for the embassy?

 

3. ACCOMMODATION

How can I book accommodation?

How far in advance should I book accommodation?

If I book accommodation, how will I get there?

Can I come a few days before the course starts or stay a few extra days at the end?

Where is the accommodation located?

What do I have to bring with me if staying with a host family or in a shared apartment? Are towels and bed linen provided?

What should I do if I have an allergy or special needs?

Who should be notified of my arrival time?

Cancellation, postponement or interruption of accommodation

When will I receive confirmation and details of my accommodation booking?

When can I check in and when do I have to check out of the accommodation?

If there is a problem with the accommodation, will the school be responsible?

Do all accommodation options have Internet and/or WiFi?

 

4. CULTURAL PROGRAMME

What activities are included in the cultural programme?

Is the cultural programme included in the course price?

Do you also offer a language exchange service?

 

5. MISCELLANEOUS

How big is Madrid?

How do I get to Madrid?

What is Madrid’s public transport system like?


 

When can I start a Spanish course?

Any Monday of the year.

**Because we know that you cannot always start on the scheduled dates, we have other options to suit your needs. Please check with us first to see what options are available.

What is the average age of students at TANDEM Escuela Internacional Madrid?

In the general intensive courses, the minimum age is 18. The summer courses for young people are for teenagers aged 14 to 16, with the possibility of taking the course as young as 13.

If a student under the age of 18 wishes to take an intensive course, his or her parents must complete the registration process, send a letter discharging the school of any liability and providing details of the student’s guardian during the stay.

What time should I arrive at the school on the first day and what should I bring with me?

Intensive classes from Monday to Friday morning start at 09:30 h.

On the first day of class, you should be in the school by 09.15 h so that we can show you around the school and resolve any doubts you may have. You will receive a folder with information about the school, a map of Madrid and a textbook.

You only have to bring something to write with and an eagerness to learn!

How can I choose the best course for me?

It all depends on your goals, your level at the start of the course, and how much time you have. Students coming for more than 8 weeks usually prefer to take a normal intensive course of 20 lessons a week and avail of our long-term offer. However, others want to make the most of their time and prefer to take the super intensive course or even private classes. In any event, our registration manager and study coordinator will be pleased to advise you at any time.

How will I know the level and course I will be in?

Have you studied Spanish before? Do you know your level? We will be happy to send you a level test for our courses.

You can take the test online or we can send it by email. Or if you are in Madrid, you can take the test in the school. If, after taking the test, there are still doubts as to your level, we can supplement the test with a personal interview with a teacher on the first day of class, over the phone, or here in the school any day before starting the course.

What should I do if I want to take a week’s holiday or a few days off in the middle of the course?

If you wish to take a few weeks or days off to travel around Spain during your programme at TANDEM, you must notify us at the time of registration or at least one week before your holiday. You can make up for that week on your return.

Can I change courses once I have started?

If you think you are in the wrong level or do not feel at ease in the group, etc., you should talk to your teachers and the head of studies. We can find a flexible solution, such as moving you to another level or other options. Please note that if you wish to change to a cheaper course, we cannot refund the difference. In any event, please feel free to talk to us at any time; we are here to ensure that you achieve your goals.

What time are the tutorials?

From Monday to Thursday, at 13 h. You should request an appointment at the secretary’s office with the head of the Spanish Department, Mabel Aparicio.

Is there a fee for cancelling a course?

If you give at least 15 days notice prior to the course start date, TANDEM MADRID will refund the full cost of the programme (if it was paid in advance), less the registration fee (€200).

If you cancel within 15 days of the course start date, TANDEM Madrid will not give any refund.

If you cancel a course that requires confirmation from the school in order to apply for a scholarship/grant from a third party (visa, government, university, etc.), the official letter of rejection from the body awarding the scholarship will be required before a refund of the advance payment will be given (less the €200 registration fee).

Cancellations will not be accepted unless made in writing. For security reasons, cancellations cannot be made over the phone.

Registration is accepted on the assumption that the student will stay for the course duration specified in the registration form. No refunds will be given for courses or parts of courses that were not attended due to illness, early departure, late arrival, etc.

Cancellation or changes to courses by TANDEM MADRID

Number of students per class: minimum 4, maximum 10 in morning group classes, and minimum 4, maximum 12 students in extensive courses. If there are not enough students to make up a group, before the course starts or during its development, TANDEM Madrid reserves the right to cancel the group course up to 6 days prior to the course start date. In such cases, either students will be offered a place in smaller group classes or one-to-one classes and, when applicable, the duration of the classes will be reduced to the amount indicated in the reservation. If none of the aforementioned options are possible, a full refund will be given on the course. Classes are given from Monday to Friday. Course times and dates are subject to change according to TANDEM Madrid’s organisational needs. In this case, courses may take place either in the morning at 9.30 am, or in the afternoon at 14.00 and they finish at 17.15 pm.

Can we make up for classes that fall on bank holidays?

There are no classes on local or national bank holidays. However, TANDEM Madrid recovers all classes falling in bank holidays.

*The school closes for one week at Christmas.

Will I receive a certificate at the end of the course?

When a course is completed, all TANDEM students receive a certificate of their level on the last day of the course. The certificate is included in the course price.

Does TANDEM MADRID qualify for CSN grants?

Yes. Contact us for details.

Are TANDEM MADRID courses recognised in Germany as Bildungsurlaub?
Yes, they are officially recognised in the following German regions: Hamburg, Berlin, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Rheinland-Pfalz, Sachsen-Anhalt and Schleswig-Holstein.

What is included in the course price and registration fee?

The registration fee (€45) includes:
Enrolment, placement test, free welcome folder, loaned out course book, personalised attention, cultural activities, Free Wi-Fi access, end certificate of participation in the course. 2 free cultural activities per week, 1 free extra Spanish class (Coffee and news/ Café y Noticias). TANDEM Partner service. Book, film and music CD loan service. Student assistance service (purchase of tickets, information on transport, etc.). Tutorial sessions with teachers..

Not included in the course price:
Transfers to/from the airport, travel insurance, some of the activities in the cultural programme, final exam and registration for the DELE exams.

How can I register with TANDEM?

Complete and send us your registration form by post or email. You can also register online using the form on our website. Book you Spanish course now.

On signing the registration form and paying the reservation fee, the student agrees to the terms and condition set out in this document. As soon as we receive your registration form, we will email you a confirmation of your reservation, together with a breakdown of the course and accommodation fees (if you requested this service from our partner agency). To reserve a course, advance payment of 200 euros is required as a deposit and one week’s accommodation, if the programme you purchased includes this. These deposits will be deducted from the final invoice. The amount of the deposit may vary for special courses.

Deposits may be paid in cash, by credit card (Visa or Mastercard) or bank transfer (all bank commissions must be paid by the student).

The remaining payments until the full amount has been paid must be made by bank transfer at least 15 days prior to the course start date, or in cash (in euros) on the first day of class.
The student will be officially registered at the school when the deposit or course payment has been received. Payments will not be accepted by the school unless the registration form has been received.

If the student needs a letter of confirmation from the school and/or specific documentation to apply for a scholarship/grant from a third party (visa, government, university, etc.), the programme must be paid for in full before the documentation in question will be sent. Payment will only be accepted by bank transfer.

Students registering within one week or less of the course start date must pay for the course and accommodation in full by bank transfer or credit card before the reservation will be confirmed.
Discounts and promotions are only valid for payments made in cash or by bank transfer.

TANDEM reserves the right to cancel the student’s registration if payment is not received within the stipulated deadline.

Payment of the Spanish course must be made to the following bank account:

TRIODOS BANK

Bank 1491, Agency 0001, DC 27, Account 2077137723

IBAN: ES4914910001272077137723
BIC: TRIOESMMXXX

Programmes for GROUPS: for group reservations, the institution in charge of the group must pay 20% of the full price at least 8 weeks prior to arrival.

How far in advance should I register?

We recommend you reserve your course at least 4 weeks in advance, although we accept last-minute registrations subject to availability.

Students registering within one week or less of the course start date must pay for the course and accommodation in full before the reservation will be confirmed.

I do not speak any Spanish. How can I register?

Until you feel comfortable speaking Spanish, we will ensure we understand each other perfectly well. The TANDEM Escuela Internacional Madrid team will be delighted to help you in English or German.

Bear in mind that you will be speaking Spanish in class from day one, even as a beginner. The Spanish classes are very communicative! You will be surprised how quickly you learn the language.

Many of our students do not speak a word of Spanish on their first day of class, but we will help you right from the start.

What are the payment methods?

The payment methods are:

  1. by bank transfer
  2. by credit card
  3. via our online payment platform
  4. in cash, on the first day of the course

What do I have to do if I want to register my underage child for a course?

The minimum age for registration in an intensive Spanish course at TANDEM is 14. The course content and the topics covered are designed for adults. To reserve the course, follow the normal procedure and sign the registration form as his/her parent or guardian.

In addition, we will need the written and signed permission of the child’s parents and a photocopy of both their passports.

I need a VISA. How can I complete registration and receive the letter I need for the embassy?

EU citizens (from the European Union) do not need a visa to attend courses. Non-EU citizens (from countries that are not in the European Union) should contact the relevant Spanish Embassy or Consulate for information on the requirements for studying in Spain.

If the student needs a letter of confirmation from the school to apply for a visa, the programme and accommodation must be paid for in full before the requested documentation will be sent. Payment in this case will only be accepted by bank transfer.

When TANDEM MADRID receives payment in full of the programme, the letter of confirmation will be sent to the address provided by the student. If the student prefers to have the documentation sent by courier (e.g.: UPS), he/she must pay the delivery costs in advance. This applies both to individual students and group programmes. The student is responsible for his/her visa application process at all times.
TANDEM MADRID accepts no responsibility whatsoever in the event of the refusal of a visa.

If the student is unable to attend a course because his/her visa was refused, he/she must submit the official document of refusal (with the date, signature and stamp) issued by the relevant Spanish Embassy or Consulate, clearly indicating the student’s name, passport number and visa application.

For a refund of the advance payment, TANDEM MADRID must be notified of the cancellation in writing (attaching the document of refusal) at least 15 days prior to the course start date. TANDEM MADRID will refund the advance payment, less the €200 registration fee and other applicable administration expenses (bank commissions, faxes, phone calls, etc.). No refund will be given for cancellations made within 15 days of the course start date.

Discounts and promotions do not apply to courses that require the aforementioned letter of confirmation.

More information about visa

How can I book accommodation?

To reserve accommodation, follow the normal procedure and sign and registration form. Your reservation will be confirmed when the deposit for one week’s accommodation has been paid.

How far in advance should I book accommodation?

Madrid is the capital of Spain and a very popular tourist destination. It is therefore important to book your accommodation at least 2 weeks in advance. We can take last-minute bookings, but it is always better to ask us about availability when requesting a particular type of accommodation.

If I book accommodation, how will I get there?

We will send you details of your accommodation one week before the course begins, together with a map of the Madrid Metro. TANDEM can also arrange for you to be picked up at Madrid airport.

Can I come a few days before the course starts or stay a few extra days at the end?

If you wish, you can book the accommodation to stay a few days before the course starts so you can explore Madrid, or stay a few extra days or weeks at the end. In this case, the extra days have to be added to the price of one week’s accommodation (from Sunday to Saturday). There are special rates for extra nights. For more information, please read our General Conditions.

Water and gas charges are included in the price of the accommodation. However, we ask you to not waste water as Madrid has serious drought problems.

Where is the accommodation located?

TANDEM Madrid also offers a professional accommodation service and has extensive experience in this area. All accommodation options have been carefully selected and quality inspections are carried out on a regular basis. All are located in the centre of Madrid. Although Madrid is a very large city, we assure you that none of the accommodation options are more than 30 minutes by public transport from the school.

What do I have to bring with me if staying with a host family or in a shared apartment? Are towels and bed linen provided?

If you are staying in a shared apartment, you will be given bed linen and quilts, but no towels. Do not forget to bring towels and whatever else you need to feel comfortable around the house.

In a host family, you will be given everything you need, including towels.

What should I do if I have an allergy or special needs?

You can indicate any preferences or special needs you may have in the registration form (for example: if you are a vegetarian, allergic to a particular animal, etc.).

Who should be notified of my arrival time?

You should send us an email with your approximate arrival time more or less one week before the course begins. We will contact the host family or person in charge of the apartment on your behalf.

Go directly to the house and ring the doorbell.

Cancellation, postponement or interruption of accommodation

Except in special cases, all changes of accommodation must be made after 12 noon on the Sunday.

Students will not be refunded for the postponement or cancellation of accommodation once the course has started.

If the accommodation is cancelled within 2 weeks of the course start date, one week’s accommodation will be charged.

Bookings for double rooms will only be accepted if the two people are travelling together.

No refund will be given for cancellations once the course has started and the student is staying in the accommodation.

Students must arrive at the accommodation after 12 noon on the Sunday and leave before 12 noon on the Saturday.

When will I receive confirmation and details of my accommodation booking?

You will receive all the information approximately 2 weeks before your arrival.

When can I check in and when do I have to check out of the accommodation?

Accommodation is booked by the week; arrival is always on the Sunday before the course begins, and departure is on the Saturday after the course ends. However, you can request extra nights for before or after the course.

If there is a problem with the accommodation, will the school be responsible?

TANDEM MADRID takes every care to ensure there will be no problem and that you are comfortable in your choice of accommodation. However, if there is a problem, the student may change accommodation at no extra cost.

Do all accommodation options have Internet and/or WiFi?

No. In the case of host families and shared apartments, if you wish to have this service, you must request it .

What activities are included in the cultural programme?

TANDEM’s cultural programme offers different activities at least 2 or 3 afternoons a week, such as walks in Madrid, dance classes, cooking classes, visits to museums, lessons outside the classroom and excursions to Toledo, Segovia, Alcalá de Henares, etc.
Every Monday we give a presentation on the cultural programme for the week, where you can sign up for the activities that most interest you. You can also check our blog and our Facebook page for details.

Is the cultural programme included in the course price?

Many activities, such as walks in Madrid, Spanish culture classes outside the school, language exchange parties and some visits to museums, are free.

However, if you go for tapas, to a karaoke, the theatre or in some museums, you have to pay for what you eat/drink or the tickets.

The weekend excursions with a private tour guide and transfers and to and from the destination cost between €30 and €50.

Do you also offer a language exchange service?

TANDEM Madrid offers the “TANDEM PARTNER” programme, a language exchange service where we help you find someone with whom to practise your Spanish outside the school.

If you have registered for a Spanish course with a duration of at least 4 weeks, please ask us for the TANDEM EXCHANGE form.

The service is free for students of our school.

How big is Madrid?

Approximately 3 million people live in the centre of Madrid, but if we include the suburbs, the population is about 4 million.

How do I get to Madrid?

Madrid has very good connections with many of the world’s airports. You can also get to Madrid by bus from some European cities and, of course, by train or car.

What is Madrid’s public transport system like?

You can reach any area of Madrid by Metro or bus, and the best of all is that it is very cheap!

Brochures, flyers and prices