One of my dreams has always been to teach abroad, so after graduating, I sat down to research the best countries to teach English and save money. It turns out there are a lot of opportunities out there that can help you achieve these aims.
For example, some of the best countries to teach English and save money include Vietnam, UAE, the Czech Republic, Turkey, China, Japan, and many others. Each country will easily allow you to save between $500 and $1,000 each month.
So, here is a complete guide to help you find the best countries to teach English and save money. If you want to make your ESL teaching career successful, I suggest you read this article about the Top 19 Tips For a Successful ESL Teaching Career.
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How To Choose The Best Country To Teach English And Save Money
Before moving to the top countries, it is important to consider some factors. These include:
Your salary and benefits will highly depend on your qualifications and skills. For example, the highest-paid teaching jobs are for people with a teaching certification, TEFL certificate, and university degree. Besides that, you can also select a job that will offer you other benefits to help you save more money.
2- Cost Of Moving
Moving abroad requires a lot of money, as you will need money for a flight, an apartment deposit, and more. Therefore, consider each of these costs before you begin your job.
I suggest you look for companies or schools that pay for your travel, rent, and even visa expenses. I am fortunate to have found a company that covers all my expenses. I wrote about my experiences SIE Shenzhen Reviews and everything you need to know to teach English in China.
3- Cost Of Living
Once you settle in, you will have living expenses, such as commutes, rent, food, etc. Some places are generally more expensive than others. Select a country that will enable you to save with affordable living costs.
One of the best ways to lower is to shop and eat where locals go, avoid Western restaurants and shops, and even avoid apartments where most expats live. I found that most places overcharge expats.
12 Best Countries To Teach English And Save Money
Here are the best countries to teach English and save money:
Vietnam is at the top of our list because you have the ability to save a lot of money here. The typical job requirements to teach English include a TEFL certificate, a bachelor’s degree, and native-level proficiency. You will love the tropical climate and the beautiful beaches it has to offer.
Remember that your job will not offer you a housing allowance. However, rent costs are low, so you will be easily able to afford them.
Finally, average food costs per day are between $10 and $12, allowing you to save money.
|Estimated Salary||$1,700 per month|
|Estimated Living Costs||Between $700 and $900|
|Estimated Savings||Between $800 and $1,000|
2- United Arab Emirates (UAE)
The UAE is synonymous with an expensive lifestyle, but that is not always the case. If you want to earn a high salary, then the UAE is one of the best countries to teach English and save money. The minimum qualification requirements include a TEFL certificate, a bachelor’s degree, and native-level proficiency.
You also need teaching experience to teach English here, as some of the requirements are a little strict. However, once you start earning, you save a lot of money. Many teachers also get a housing allowance and airfare reimbursement.
|Estimated Salary||$3,000 to $5,000 per month|
|Estimated Living Costs||Between $1,400 to $2,000|
|Estimated Savings||More than $1,000|
3- The Czech Republic
Head off to Central Europe and easily access the best of Eastern and Western Europe through the Czech Republic. A TEFL certificate and bachelor’s degree will allow you to start with a reasonable salary here. Otherwise, the wages can be a little low here.
You can also do private tutoring to make money outside your day job and boost your income. Of course, when you have free time, you can roam this beautiful country and take in all the natural beauty and castles.
|Estimated Salary||$1,000 to $1,500 per month|
|Estimated Living Costs||Between $550 and $1,000|
|Estimated Savings||$500 or more|
Turkey is one of the best countries to teach English and save money because it has a low cost of living. We recommend that you apply year-round because many people want to go to Turkey and teach English. Once you get there, the culture is one of the best things to explore.
From the beautiful architecture of the mosques to the delicious Turkish kehwa (coffee), you will have a lot to experience. So, don’t forget to keep applying to Turkey to teach English.
|Estimated Salary||$1,000 to $1,800 per month|
|Estimated Living Costs||Between $800 and $1,200|
|Estimated Savings||$300 to $1,000|
Japan has diverse landscapes, metropolises, cultural history, and much more. You will need a TEFL certificate, a bachelor’s degree, and a valid passport from an approved native-speaking country to teach English here. The living costs are a little higher here than in other places, but you can still save money.
Some of the most popular ways to teach in Japan include through public schools, private language academies, or the JET Programme. You can find a way that you think suits you best.
|Estimated Salary||$1,500 to $2,500 per month|
|Estimated Living Costs||More than $1,000|
|Estimated Savings||$500 to $700|
Indonesia has a plethora of islands that you can begin island hopping in your free time. This is one of the reasons it is one of the best countries to teach English and save money. The salary in Indonesia will allow you to live a comfortable life, and the environment is serene.
You will have a lot of time to hike, go to the beaches, snorkel, and do much more. If living on a majestic island has always been your dream, then you must apply here.
|Estimated Salary||$1,000 to $1,500 per month|
|Estimated Living Costs||Between $500 and $900|
|Estimated Savings||$500 to $1,000|
Taiwan is one of the top hidden gems in teaching English and saving money because it is not as popular as other places. The best part is that they will also allow you to work overtime, which can boost your income.
You will also love the combination of beaches, nature, and city life for exploration and relaxation during your free time.
Tourists also don’t crowd this place as it is not as popular as others. However, you will love the street food, the weather, and the people here. All of this makes it one of the best countries to teach English and save money.
|Estimated Salary||$2,500 per month|
|Estimated Living Costs||$500 to $1,000|
|Estimated Savings||$1,000 to $2,000|
8- Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia is a great country to make a lot of money, but you will have to commit to a longer contract than the rest.
You will also require teaching experience, TEFL, and a bachelor’s degree to begin working there. Many people think Saudi Arabia is unsafe, but that’s not the case.
You will have to be careful about gender norms and the different cultures there. Once you get there and settle in, you will love living there.
|Estimated Salary||$2,500 to $4,000 per month|
|Estimated Living Costs||$700 to $1,000|
|Estimated Savings||$1,000 to $3,000|
The general requirements for teaching English in China include the following:
- Bachelor’s degree.
- Holding a native-speaking country passport.
- A TEFL certificate.
- Two years of professional teaching experience.
Recently, in 2021 China passed a new policy to improve the quality of English education. Still, China is among the best country to teach English and save money.
To save money while teaching in China, I suggest you choose a low-cost living city and pick a school that offers housing and airfare reimbursement.
|Estimated Living Costs||$600 to $1,500 per month|
|Estimated Savings||$1,000 to $1,800|
10- South Korea
The requirements to teach English in South Korea include a TEFL certificate, a bachelor’s degree, an E-2 teaching visa, and being a native English speaker.
South Korea is one of the best destinations to teach English. Like China, you get fantastic benefits, including a contract completion bonus, airfare reimbursement, and free housing.
|Estimated Salary||$1,600-2,600 USD per month|
|Estimated Living Costs||$560 to $2,000 per month|
|Estimated Savings||$1,040 to $2,000|
The pay in Thailand is not as high as in other countries unless you decide to teach in Bangkok at an international school.
Thailand is one of my favorite countries as it has delicious food, a fun-loving atmosphere, and beautiful weather.
|Estimated Salary||$1,000–1,500 USD per month|
|Estimated Living Costs||$700 to $1,000 per month|
|Estimated Savings||$400 to $900|
Spain is an excellent destination to teach English, and the general requirements include a bachelor’s degree and a teaching license for private schools.
If you are looking for an opportunity to teach English in Europe, I suggest you consider teaching English in Spain.
Even though you don’t have the same benefits as other countries, Spain is still among the best countries to teach English and save money.
|Estimated Salary||$$835 to $1,900 USD per month|
|Estimated Living Costs||$800 to $1,200 per month|
|Estimated Savings||$400 to $900|
These were the twelve best countries to teach English and save money. You can decide which country you want to go to, depending on what you prefer and the requirements you can meet.
Be sure to research the culture and other things before you visit to understand if you will be able to fit in the country of your choosing.