Nestled at the very center of Europe, Germany provides the perfect base to explore the multitude of wonders the continent offers. Opportunities abound for TEFL qualified teachers throughout the country, where a love for nature can be fulfilled by the nation's mountains, forests, sprawling rivers, rugged coastlines, and sandy beaches. With competitive salaries for teachers and a comparatively easy process for foreigners to work legally, Germany offers a viable choice for those considering teaching English in Europe.
Table of Contents
English teachers employed in private language schools in Germany can anticipate an average monthly salary ranging between $1,400 and $2,200 USD. If you opt to offer full-time private tuition or supplement your main income through additional tutoring, you could earn hourly rates from $17 to $35 US. Bear in mind, the remuneration packages vary considerably among language schools, with larger chain schools generally paying less than independent institutions. Higher salaries are typically offered in larger cities such as Berlin, Hamburg, and Munich.
Foreign teachers are predominantly employed by private language schools, especially in larger cities like Berlin, Hamburg, Munich, and Cologne, which have an abundance of potential employers. These cities are also prominent hubs for business English classes. Numerous international companies have their headquarters in Germany, including major German corporations like Volkswagen, Siemens, and Daimler AG, which routinely offer in-house English training. Teaching young learners is also a prevalent option, as kindergartens, which introduce English learning at a very early age, are widespread.
Also read: How do I become an English teacher overseas?
You can regularly find TEFL job advertisements online, making it possible to secure a teaching position in Germany even before you leave your home country. However, navigating the visa process can be somewhat complex, especially if you are not proficient in German. Most teachers apply for a freelance visa, allowing them to work for several language schools and offer private lessons. Alternatively, you can apply for a sponsored work visa, which lets you work for a single school (with an allowance for side work). Keep in mind, though, that visa processing times can be lengthy, usually ranging between two to three months, although this can vary by state.
Considering the possible delay in processing your work visa, it is advisable to have enough resources to sustain yourself for approximately three months upon arriving in Germany. With the average cost of living for TEFL teachers of between $1,000 and $1,500 US per month, this translates to a sum of $3,000 to $4,500. The more savings you have initially, the better. Housing usually comprises the most significant expense, leading many teachers to opt for economical housing solutions like hostels or shared accommodation until they receive their first salary. Living costs are generally higher in larger cities, but Bremen and Leipzig are considered to be the most affordable cities to reside in.