How do I get a job teaching English in Mexico?

Put simply, Mexico has one of the biggest and most popular markets for ESL teachers anywhere in Latin America. With a population close to 130 million and an economy that is heavily reliant on international tourism, as well as trade with its huge northern neighbor the U.S.A, Mexico has a very strong demand for English language skills in most parts of the country. The country’s location on the southern border of the U.S. also makes it particularly popular with American teachers who want to stay within a short flight of home. One other major attraction for many teachers is that long-term visas for legally working in Mexico are relatively easy to secure.

How do I get a job teaching English in Mexico?

The first step to starting a new life teaching English in Mexico, either short or long term, is to complete a TESOL certification course. Most employers in most countries now require job applicants to have undertaken some amount of teacher training in order to be eligible for their vacant positions. By the end of your training you will have learned all the basic skills and knowledge you will need to produce positive results in the classroom.

Mexico boasts numerous schools and language centers eager to hire ESL teachers from abroad. Often, these positions are not widely advertised beyond the local area. To tap into these opportunities, many individuals opt to undergo TESOL training within the country, enabling them to interview for jobs immediately after completing the course. Alternatively, you can pursue an online TESOL course from home and then personally interview for jobs either advertised online or discovered upon arrival in Costa Rica.

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What do I do to get a teaching job in Mexico once I am TESOL qualified?

Once you have obtained your TESOL qualification, you can begin applying for your preferred teaching positions. Keep in mind that many employers in Mexico prefer in-person interviews and tend to hire locally. Therefore, you may need to relocate before securing a job. However, there is no need to worry as this is common practice, given the high demand for English teachers in the country. To gain an advantage in this competitive job market, you should take a look at ITTT's lifetime job support service, which offers assistance to all graduates, including:

  • Access to our database of potential employers
  • Exclusive leads on unadvertised jobs
  • Advice on constructing a high-quality CV or resume
  • Advice on writing cover letters
  • Assistance with planning trial lessons for job interviews
  • Consultation on potential job contracts

Take a look at the following post for more information: How does the lifetime job support service work?

What visa will I need to work legally as an ESL teacher in Mexico?

Once you have accepted a suitable job offer and signed a contract, you will then need to apply for an FM3 visa that will allow you to live and work legally in Mexico for one year. If you are in the minority of teachers who manage to secure a job from within their own country, you can process the visa via your nearest Mexican Embassy or Consulate. However, the majority of teachers will need to interview for jobs in person within the country, which means you will need to apply for the visa locally with the help of your new employer.

Once you have been granted your FM3 visa from within Mexico, you will need to collect it from a Mexican Consulate outside of the country. Depending on where you are in Mexico, teachers typically go to San Antonio, Texas, or another neighboring country such as Guatemala or Belize. You must collect the visa within 15 days of issue and you must return to Mexico within a further 30 days. Although the FM3 visa is valid for a year, it can be easily renewed. If you successfully renew it three times you will be granted residency in Mexico.

Also read: How much can I earn teaching English in Mexico?