As English continues to grow in popularity as a second language, a plethora of exciting destinations have become viable for teaching abroad. There are thriving English teaching communities on every continent (bar Antarctica), each with unique opportunities, decent salaries, and a quality of life that often surpasses the local norm. However, certain countries prove more straightforward for settling in as a TEFL teacher. We have evaluated various criteria like job availability, visa procedures, income-to-cost of living ratio, local hospitality, and even gastronomic offerings to compile this list of prime teaching destinations. We have featured one country per geographical region to provide some diverse options.
South Korea is a favorite destination for TEFL certified teachers, primarily due to the myriad of job opportunities and competitive salaries. The typical teacher's wage ranges between $2000 and $2500 per month, and the cost of living is affordable. Additional perks often included in your teaching package are free accommodation, travel expenses, and end-of-contract bonuses.
The country's modern infrastructure allows for easy exploration during your free time, and the classroom experience is generally smooth thanks to well-behaved students. Securing the necessary visas and permits is quite straightforward, with employers often handling the heavy lifting. And to top it all off, the local cuisine is a delight.
Germany may not be the first country that springs to mind for ESL teaching, but its numerous advantages make it an appealing destination. The German penchant for discipline and efficiency promises smooth classroom experiences and minimal hassle when sorting out paperwork. Being situated in the heart of Europe also offers easy access to a multitude of countries for exploration.
TEFL certified teachers can earn an average salary of $2000 per month in Germany, though this can rise up to $5000 for highly qualified and experienced individuals. A widespread demand for teachers in kindergartens, language centers, international schools, and corporations bodes well for incoming educators. Furthermore, a nationwide teacher shortage increases opportunities for those interested in teaching in one of Europe's most structured environments.
Latin America has always been a draw for teachers worldwide, especially those from the US and Canada. However, Colombia is a relatively new entrant, emerging from years of isolation. With the economy surging and the government simplifying procedures for foreign teachers, the influx of English educators is expected to rise. Job opportunities in cities like Bogota and Medellin are burgeoning, with private language schools and local mainstream schools vying for top-tier teachers.
Colombia stands out for its friendly hospitality, ranking as the second happiest nation in the world, making it a wonderful place for newcomers. Other attractive factors include a low cost of living, rising salaries, a vibrant social scene, and breathtaking landscapes. For those seeking an offbeat path, Colombia offers an enticing choice.
Thanks to its proximity to Europe and a thriving tourism industry, Morocco has a high demand for English teachers. You are likely to find employment in private language schools and international schools, with private tutoring being another feasible option. A significant draw for teachers in Morocco is the diverse student population, characterized by a blend of languages, beliefs, backgrounds, and a strong motivation to excel academically. Other highlights include year-round warm weather, excellent local cuisine, extensive beaches, and unique opportunities for deeper exploration into Africa.
The United Arab Emirates
We have included the UAE in our list to represent the Middle East, a significant player in the English teaching landscape. The region is renowned for its high salaries, meaning teachers can enjoy a comfortable lifestyle while saving a substantial amount. Most jobs come with generous benefits, including airfares, paid accommodation, and cash bonuses. Plus, your salary is tax-free. While the recruitment criteria may be stringent, you can expect a relaxed workplace, shorter working hours, and respectful students once you are hired.