How much can I earn teaching English in Bulgaria?

Like several other countries in Central and Eastern Europe, Bulgaria has drastically improved its infrastructure since joining the EU. In that time, the market for foreign ESL teachers has also grown considerably to meet the demand from local people who need to improve their English skills in order to move up the career ladder in many different fields. The country has plenty of attractions to offer teachers, including the famous Black Sea coastline, ski resorts at a fraction of the price of most others in Europe, and stunning natural scenery.

What are TESOL salaries in Bulgaria?

Bulgaria is certainly not somewhere to teach English if you want to save a large amount of money or live a lavish lifestyle, but that doesn?t stop people from coming here to enjoy the country?s culture, history and natural environment. The average income of around $650 to $1,000 is usually enough for most teachers to live a good lifestyle, particularly if they earn extra money by teaching private students in their free time. Another bonus is that a degree is not an official requirement for teaching ESL in Bulgaria, although it might help you to get the job if there is plenty of competition. In contrast, TESOL certification is virtually essential if you want to secure a job at the higher end of the pay scale.

Who are the main employers of English language teachers in Bulgaria?

Private language schools that provide classes for young students after school hours or adults during the evenings and at weekends are the biggest employers of foriegn teachers in Bulgaria. Due to the relatively low salaries on offer, many teachers also look for private students to tutor outside of normal working hours. It is generally quite easy to find school children who need extra help in the run up to exams or employees of local companies looking to improve their business related English skills. English camps also offer short-term contracts during the summer months from early June to late July.

What is the recruitment process for English teachers in Bulgaria?

The weeks prior to the start of the school year in early September are generally the best time to find teaching jobs in Bulgaria. January also offers a smaller secondary hiring window. Having said that, jobs can come up in private language schools at anytime of the year due to a surge in demand or an unexpected staff departure. Language school hours are typically around 20 to 25 classroom hours, plus added time for planning. The capital city of Sophia is home to the largest number of potential jobs, although other major cities such as Varna and Plovdiv are also good places to look.

What is the cost of living for English teachers in Bulgaria?

Bulgaria is one of the cheapest places to live in the EU. However, as most jobs do not include any extra benefits such as airfares and housing, it is hard for most teachers to save much of their salary each month. In some cases, employers will provide some help with finding a suitable place to live, while many teachers choose to share an apartment with other teachers from their school to lower their overall expenses. Local groceries are very affordable, as is eating out at local restaurants where a meal for two can be enjoyed from as little as 7 euro. The average monthly cost for a teacher in Bulgaria is around $500 to $1,000 per month, depending on your lifestyle and where you choose to live.

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