Teaching English abroad continues to grow in popularity and salaries are on the rise in many parts of the world. Your potential for earning big salaries depends on several factors including your level of qualifications, previous teaching experience and the region or country where you choose to work.
Points to consider when evaluating potential TESOL salaries.
When evaluating the salary offered by any particular teaching job it is important to consider both the figure itself and the cost of living in the specific country where you will be living. A monthly income of $1000 in Peru would be enough to provide a very comfortable lifestyle, while the same amount in a major city such as Rome would probably not be sufficient to provide the kind of lifestyle you were hoping for. Any additional benefits included in your contract are also worth considering as paid accommodation, free airfares, local health insurance, and paid vacations can add up to a very healthy package. Below we take a closer look at the most popular regions for teaching English abroad.
How much can I earn teaching English in Asia?
Asia is the most popular region in the world for foreign teachers as it offers a great combination of competitive salaries, a low cost of living and plenty of unique culture to enjoy. South Korea and Taiwan are particularly popular as the average salary is typically very generous at around $2000 to $2500 per month for first time teachers and as much as $3000 for teachers with previous experience. China employs more teachers than any other country in the world due to its insatiable demand for people with a TESOL qualification. First time teachers can earn between $1000 and $2000 per month in their first year and as much as $3000 with some experience under their belt. All these destinations have great potential for saving a considerable portion of your income, whether you stay for just one year or you decide to stay long term.
Although Japan is still a popular place to live and work, it no longer offers the potential to save as much as it once did due to increasing living costs and stagnating salaries. Increasingly, more and more teachers are choosing Southeast Asia as a destination as it offers plenty of adventurous and exotic locations to choose from and salaries have increased considerably in recent years. The largest markets for teachers are in Thailand and Vietnam where salaries of up to $1500 are relatively common and the cost of living is low.
How much can I earn teaching English in the Middle East?
The Middle East is the main destination for teachers whose top priority is to earn a high salary. Countries such as Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates offer some of the best contracts you will find anywhere in the world. Average monthly salaries are between $3000 and $5000 and most contracts also include extra benefits such as free accommodation, health insurance and flights in and out of the country. On top of all that, these countries are tax-free so you get to keep every penny you earn.
Although these benefits are very attractive, it is worth remembering that this region is not suitable for everyone. Previous teaching experience is usually required and competition for the best jobs is always very high. The conservative nature of society in many countries in the Middle East is another factor to be seriously considered, especially for female teachers. However, if you think this is the right region for you, you can also look at other countries including Oman, Kuwait, Qatar and Bahrain.
How much can I earn teaching English in Europe?
Europe is the top destination for a large number of teachers who want to live and work abroad. However, it is probably not the best location from a financial standpoint as the cost of living is typically high in many countries and salaries are often much the same as those offered in cheaper destinations across parts of Asia. If you plan on saving some money during your teaching contract, you should certainly look elsewhere. However, thousands of people still decide they want to experience the culture and lifestyle of this diverse continent without the option of saving much or any of their earnings. The countries with more affordable economies are largely found in Central and Eastern Europe, with the Czech Republic being one of the most popular. The most popular countries in the west of the region are Spain, Italy and France, although these are all relatively expensive places to live.
How much can I earn teaching English in Latin America?
Latin America is another region that attracts a large number of teachers due to the culture and lifestyle rather than the potential to earn high salaries. Although you will not get rich teaching here, you will have the opportunity to explore some of the most exciting countries in the world. Chile is often seen as the leading light in the region as it has a stable economy and a good quality of life. Other popular destinations include Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica and Ecuador. Many teachers working in Latin America choose to top up their main income by taking on a few private students in their freetime.