Where to Earn the Highest Salaries Teaching English Abroad
There are many reasons why some people decide to teach English abroad. Some want to explore a new culture or learn a new language. Others want to gain teaching experience or be able to save a lot of money to pay off student debt or simply make some money for the future.
For a lot of people, it is exactly this financial aspect that leads them to live and work abroad as an English teacher. But do you know where you can earn the highest salaries when teaching English abroad? This article highlights the regions with the highest salaries on the EFL market.
Teaching English in Asia
Asia has long been one of the most popular regions for teaching English as a foreign language. Besides the many vibrant cultures and fascinating natural wonders, a lot of countries in Asia also offer good salaries and the low cost of living allows teachers to save a big portion of their salary. Teachers with a TEFL certification often earn higher salaries and have access to higher-level jobs in this part of the world.
Teaching English in South Korea
One of the traditional hotspots for high teaching salaries is South Korea. A typical starting salary for a foreign English teacher is around US$2,000 to US$2,500 after taxes. If you have a few years of teaching experience under your belt, schools often pay around US$3,000 a month.
Also consider that most schools in South Korea pay for their teachers’ airfare and provide free housing. This allows teachers to save a substantial amount of money each month and it isn’t hard to save up to US$1,000 or more per month, depending on your lifestyle.
Get started by taking our 10-day combined TEFL certification course in Seoul, South Korea, and learn more about living and teaching in South Korea in our country guide.
Teaching English in Taiwan
Schools in Taiwan pay a similar salary to those in South Korea of between US$2,000 and US$2,500 a month. On top of that, the cost of living in Taiwan is a little lower compared to South Korea, allowing teachers to save even more money with every paycheck.
Read more about teaching English in Taiwan.
Teaching English in China
The huge demand for qualified teachers in China has led to a very high salary for both new and experienced teachers. Therefore, teachers earn between US$1,000 and US$2,000 per month in their first year and up to US$3,000 with experience. Bear in mind that the cost of living in China is lower than South Korea and Taiwan. This means your salary can go a long way and you can enjoy a comfortable lifestyle during your stay.
Get started with your 4-week in-class TEFL certification course in Beijing, Shanghai, Zhuhai or Chongqing, and find out more about living and teaching in China in our country guide.
Teaching English in Japan
While Japan has been a star on the TEFL market for many years, the country’s increasing cost of living and stagnated salaries means it is no longer the best location in Asia for saving while you work. However, it is still a fascinating destination that attracts many thousands of foreign teachers every year.
Get started with your 4-week in-class TEFL certification course in Tokyo, and find out more about living and teaching in Japan in our country guide.
Teaching English in the Middle East
If making money is your main priority when teaching abroad, this is the region to head for. Many countries offer tax-free salaries and very attractive benefits to teachers. Due to these lucrative jobs, however, most employers have very high expectations of their teachers and hire mostly native English speakers with a degree and a TEFL/TESOL qualification.
Also keep in mind that the conservative culture in many of these countries might not suit everyone. Female teachers in particular might find it difficult to live and work in this region.
Teaching English in Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia offers some of the highest teacher salaries to be found anywhere in the world. Teachers earn between US$3,000 and US$5,000 per month. The salaries are also tax-free. This also includes paid housing, health insurance and roundtrip flights to Saudi Arabia and back home.
Read more about teaching English in Saudi Arabia.
Teaching English in the United Arab Emirates
Very similar to Saudi Arabia, teachers in the UAE also earn tax-free salaries between US$3,000 and US$5,000 per month. Schools in the UAE also provide free housing, health insurance and airfares to and from the country.
Read more about teaching English in the United Arab Emirates.
Teaching English in Europe
Europe is a very popular region for people wanting to teach English abroad. However, the fact is that salaries are often similar to those offered in places like South Korea or China, while the cost of living is significantly higher. However, if your heart is still set on Europe, there are a few countries where you can make a comfortable living.
Teaching English in the Czech Republic
The Czech Republic is one of the most sought-after destinations for many teachers as the country has a healthy job market for qualified teachers. On top of that, the Czech Republic has a long and fascinating history, making it an incredible experience for anyone coming to teach English.
Get started by taking a 4-week in-class TEFL certification in Prague.
For more information on living and teaching English in the Czech Republic, check out our country guide.
Teaching English in Latin America
Similar to Europe, countries in Latin America are very popular among many teachers because of the variety of cultures and natural features. However, this is one of the toughest regions to earn a good salary in. If your goal is to save as much money as possible while teaching English abroad, Latin America might not be right for you.
However, there are still a few countries where you can make enough to get by. Chile is the best option in terms of salary but Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica and Ecuador are also popular and have a strong demand for TEFL qualified teachers.
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