Teach English in Thailand
. . . for a wonderful world you never knew existed.
Why teach English in Thailand? Why not! A top five reasons list won’t work, nor even a top twenty. Mostly because Thailand is all about the warm and friendly people. There is a reason why Thailand is called the Land of Smiles. Of course, we can talk about the beautiful islands, exotic cities, delicious food, stunning beaches, wild nightlife, jungles, elephants and on and on.
Thailand is probably one of the best places in the world to live. The author of this post lived there for 12 years and loved every moment of it. Many people go there and never leave. They go on vacation and after experiencing Thailand make a plan for a long-term visit! Almost every English teacher in Thailand will tell you that very story.
Okay, now for a bit of reality. It does get hot hot hot sometimes, particularly in Bangkok. Bangkok is famous for traffic snarls, gridlock, sweaty days and nights, pollution. But it also offers a surprise around every corner. And away from that one giant city, just about everywhere else has reasonably clean air and easy-to-deal with traffic. But EVERYWHERE in Thailand, you will see the famous smile and the warm, engaging people.
While Thailand is one of the best places to live, teaching in Thailand not ideal. Korea is probably better for a combination of respectful students, good wages and benefits. In Thailand the wages are modest and you’ll have difficulty saving more than US$200 a month. Part of the issue is modest wages, but having so much to do and see, makes it even more difficult. You’ll not be sitting at home moping all night!
Wages are not great on an international scale, but quite decent on the local economy and you’ll probably be earning double or even triple what the Thai teacher across the hallway is earning. If you are in Bangkok, Chiang Mai and the main parts of Phuket, most schools will require a degree and a TEFL certification. Away from the major cities, there are not enough teachers and your school can ask the labor department to waive the degree requirement (if needed).
Thailand is a personal contact culture and no reputable school will hire you without a face-to-face interview. Some will even want a demonstration lesson. What they are really looking for is someone who is friendly and flexible and also has some good basic teaching skills.
Don’t accept a job offer unless you are on the scene. There are quite a few scamsters who will offer you a job and when you have quit your job and given up your apartment, will ask you for $500 for your visa processing. This, of course, right at the last minute. Maybe a day or two before your flight. Once you send the money, the job disappears. Don’t do it. It is tempting to have the security of tying everything up before you go, but that is NOT Thailand. Korea, China, Saudi Arabia – yes. Thailand – no. I guess there is a bit of a price for all that wonderfulness. See our page on TEFL job scams to know how to avoid this potential problem in any country.
Teach English in Thailand. I don’t know a single person who ever regretted going there.
Teach English in Thailand