Are you dying to see the world but unsure how to do it?? If so, you might be interested in teaching English abroad! There are so many different countries where there is a high demand for English teachers, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by the possibilities!
Having taught for almost three years in SE Asia and in two countries, I have met travelers and teachers from all corners of the globe. After compiling all these conversations and observations, here is my list of the five best Asian countries to teach English in!
The Land of Smiles is a popular choice for first time teachers, with a tropical climate, world-class beaches and lush jungles it’s no wonder that it is an appealing location! The proficiency throughout Thailand is exceptionally low and therefore the demand is high.
Qualifications: TEFL/TESOL Certification and a University Diploma, Fluent Speaker *may be room for negotiation or exceptions*
Working Hours: 35-40 per week
Pay: 700 – 800 USD Per Month
Ability to travel: 9/10 → Since there are many public holidays you can travel around the country for short bursts rather easily. Also you get month-long breaks after each semester. Thailand has an extensive bus system making travel easy and affordable!
Note: There are many Thai holidays that you will get time off for, but in exchange the office culture is usually rather strict when it comes to sick days or vacation – usually neither of which are permitted nor paid for. Each Thai school is notoriously different. Some are laid back while others are not. Either way, come for the experience!
Want to read more about teaching in Thailand? Check out my article breaking down the process here!
Just ever so slightly off the beaten path, Vietnam draws a large crowd of native English speakers because of its increased pay and a more organized working environment. In Vietnam you have two options – to either work in a traditional school or in an after school learning center. Weigh the pros and cons in another post here!
Qualifications: TEFL/TESOL/CELTA Certification and University Degree, Native Speaker, *little-no exceptions*
Working Hours: 15 – 25 per week
Pay: 1,500 – 2,000 USD per month
Ability to travel: 7/10 *this depends on if you are working in a language center where you apply for time off or a traditional school where you get weekends off. Although Vietnam’s cities are very spread out, they have good infrastructure to travel!
Other perks: often times contracts come with bonuses and different incentives, this, along with a low-cost of living makes Vietnam a great place if you want to save money! Not to mention the FOOD yum.
Despite normally being known for its pop music rather than its teaching English opportunities, South Korea is an awesome place to move to! Here you will find the highest paying jobs in Asia averaging around 2,000 USD a month and often times possessing lucrative benefits such as health insurance or free accommodation!
Qualifications: Native English Speaker, University Degree, Health and Police Check
Pay: 1,600 – 2,600 USD a month
Ability to travel: 7/10 Since it’s a small country transportation from one end to the other is easy, weekend trips exploring all of the different parts of the country are totally feasible!
Note: In order to teach in South Korea you technically don’t need a TESOL or CELTA certification although if you do, it’s easier to make even more money.
Other perks: South Korea has stellar hiking, super fast internet and most restaurants do delivery – what’s better then that?!
This little island is often times overlooked by prospective teachers, but it shouldn’t be! Taiwan is a TOTAL foodie haven, and it has some absolutely stunning natural landscapes. Imagine black sand beaches, bright blue rivers and huge canyons! Taiwan is also super livable, public transportation is top-notch and affordable!
Qualifications: University Degree, TEFL/TESOL/CELTA Certification
Pay: 1,500 – 2,000 USD a month
Hours: 20-30 a week
Ability to travel: 6/10 most companies will give you two weeks paid vacation and sick days, making it difficult to plan many trips. Although it is a rather small country so getting around it is easier!
China is a huge place, as are its opportunities for teaching! There are 400 MILLION people in China learning English, making it the largest market in the world for teachers! There are many different types of schools you can teach in, education is held in high regard and taken very seriously. From Preschool to even university level the demand for teachers is high. Often times companies will include lucrative benefits like free housing and travel stipends making start-up costs lower.
Qualifications: TEFL/TESOL/CELTA Certification, Native English Speaker
Pay: 1,000 – 2,600 USD a month
Hours: 20-30 Hours
Ability to travel: 6/10 depending on your situation of course, but most schools will give two weeks of paid holiday along with Chinese New Year.
For most countries you will need a TESOL or some sort of teaching certificate! Click here for 10% off an internationally recognized TESOL Certification training!
Teaching English abroad is a fantastic way to learn about a new culture while making money! If you are drawn to the idea of teaching but would rather lead a more nomadic life, online teaching is also an option. Most companies will pay around seven to eight dollars every 30 minute session!
Hope this little break down has helped you narrow down the type of teaching experience that you want!
Have you taught abroad? Let me know in the comments your experience!