Top 5 Places to Teach English in Asia
Teaching English abroad is a great way to see the world and earn a living at the same time. Asia is one of the best places for English teachers. There are so many places you can find work in Asia, but the key is to understand which one will be the best fit for you. Here are the top 5 places to teach English abroad in Asia.
1. South Korea
South Korea is one of the most common destinations for English teachers. Most students in South Korea will study English at some point in their lives, so there is a massive demand for English teachers. It is a modern country that offers most of amenities that Westerners are used to and the cost of living is moderate. You can earn quite a bit of money teaching English and there will be plenty of jobs to choose from, but it comes with one serious disadvantage. Unfortunately, a lot of former English teachers have complained about unfair treatment and unethical practices at the hands of their employers. If you decide to try working in South Korea, you should carefully vet prospective employers and make sure that you know what you are going into.
Japan used to be known as the best country for English teachers until more recently. Japan still has a lot of great opportunities and the pay rates are actually among the highest in Asia, but there are some additional challenges now. The economic slowdown hit Japan pretty hard, and educational institutions have been forced to either shut down or lay off a lot of teachers. The tsunami has also affected a lot of cities in northern Japan. The jobs are not as easy to come by in Japan and the job market is also more competitive as well, so you will need to have a bachelor’s degree and TEFL certification if you want a decent job. If you pick Japan, you will need to find a job before you arrive and have an alternate plan if things do not work out.
Thailand is now becoming one of the hottest places to teach English. Although it is not one of the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, and China), it is considered to be one of the emerging markets. There are a lot of new opportunities for English teachers and the cost of living is very low. The job market is not that competitive yet and their cities are growing every day. The only downside is that the pay rates are not very high compared to other Asian countries. It is still more than what the average Thai people earn and it will provide you with a comfortable standard of living, but it is not enough for you to save money for back home.
China is now known as the new frontier in Asia. Everyone wants to go to China to get in on the action and there are plenty of opportunities for English teachers. The downside to working in China is that job market is becoming more competitive, so it is important to have a bachelor’s degree and TEFL certification. Moreover, the working conditions you experience can vary greatly depending on where you are in China, so you may not have all of the amenities you are accustomed to in Western countries.
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Taiwan is becoming the new hub for English teachers. It has the perfect blend of a decent standard of living and pay along with a strong job market. Taiwan is slightly more polished in terms of appearance compared to China, the pay is actually a little bit higher, there are a lot of jobs and the market is not flooded yet. Taiwan is one of the best places to look for work if you are trying to get started in Asia.
Ultimately, it will be up to you to find the right place to get started. All of the countries in Asia are rapidly expanding and you will be able to find a job anywhere if you look hard enough. Have you ever taught English in Asia?