Best Countries To Teach English Abroad

Teaching English abroad can be an exciting and fulfilling experience, allowing you to immerse yourself in a new culture, meet new people, and develop valuable skills. However, choosing the right country can be daunting, with a wide range of factors to consider, such as the demand for English teachers, cost of living, and overall quality of life.

Some countries offer outstanding salaries and benefits, while others offer a lower cost of living and a chance to fully immerse yourself in a different way of life. To make things easier for you, we’ve put together a list of the best places to teach abroad. 

Keep reading to discover where you can take your teaching career to the next level.

What Advantages Does Teaching Overseas Offer?

Teaching abroad is a chance to step out of your comfort zone and challenge yourself in a new environment. It’s an adventure that can offer a ton of benefits, both in your career and your personal life. Think cultural immersion, learning a new language, networking with other professionals, and advancing your career. 

Cultural Immersion and Personal Growth

Teaching English abroad provides a rare opportunity to immerse oneself in a foreign culture and gain a deeper understanding of its people, traditions, and way of life. By living and working in a foreign country, teachers can experience their host culture’s daily routines and customs, interact with locals, and develop a sense of empathy and respect for cultural diversity.

Furthermore, cultural immersion can broaden one’s perspective and challenge preconceived notions and biases. Living and working in a foreign culture requires an open mind and a willingness to adapt to new ways of thinking and doing things. English teaching jobs abroad can lead to personal growth and a greater appreciation for diversity, which can be applied in one’s life.

Learn a New Language

Teaching English abroad can also offer language learning opportunities, allowing you to develop your language skills in a natural and immersive setting. While teaching English, you will have the chance to interact with locals and practice your language skills in real-world situations.

Not only will this help you better connect with the local community, but it can also be a valuable asset in your future career. Being bilingual or multilingual is highly sought after in many fields.

Professional Growth

Having international experience can make you stand out in a competitive job market. Teaching abroad can be an impressive addition to your resume, demonstrating your ability to work in a diverse and challenging environment. It also shows your willingness to take on new challenges and learn new skills.

Also, English teaching jobs abroad require strong communication, problem-solving, and time-management skills, highly transferable to other professions. 


Many English teaching jobs offer flexible schedules and ample vacation time, allowing you to travel and explore the region during your time off. 

English teaching jobs abroad can be an excellent opportunity to see the world, broaden your horizons, and make unforgettable memories. You can visit nearby cities, landmarks, and natural wonders and explore neighboring countries and regions. 

Top Countries to Teach Abroad

Are you considering teaching abroad but need help figuring out where to start? With so many options out there, it can be tough to know where to begin your search.

Our selection process involved a thorough analysis of various factors, including job market competitiveness, cost of living, and availability of resources for English teachers. After extensive research and analysis, we have compiled a list of the best countries to teach English abroad, as follows:


China is a country of incredible diversity, with a rich culture and history that spans thousands of years. It’s a land of contrasts, with modern cities and towering skyscrapers standing alongside ancient temples and tranquil countryside.

With a population of over 1.4 billion people, the demand for English teachers is high, and there are plenty of opportunities to teach at all levels.

The average monthly salary for English teachers in China ranges from 8,500 to 25,000 RMB ($1,200 to $3,500), depending on qualifications and teaching experience. 

To give a sense of expenses, the average monthly cost of living in China can range from 2,700 to 7,100 RMB ($380 to $1,000), depending on factors such as location and lifestyle. 

Accommodation, food, and transportation are generally quite affordable in China, meaning that teachers can save a significant portion of their monthly salary. 

To qualify for a teaching position in China, you must hold a bachelor’s degree and be a native speaker from an English-speaking country. You’ll also need to obtain a TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) certification, which typically requires completing a 120-hour course. Additionally, there are age restrictions for obtaining a work visa in China: men must be under 60, and women must be under 55.

One of the biggest perks of teaching in China is that many employers offer free or subsidized housing, flights, and health insurance. This can make the overall package attractive for those looking to save money while working abroad.


Spain is a stunningly beautiful country in southwestern Europe, famous for its rich culture, history, and gastronomy. With its warm climate, beautiful beaches, and lively cities like Madrid and Barcelona, Spain is a popular destination for tourists and expats.

The average monthly salary for English teachers in Spain ranges from 700 to 1,800 EUR ($690 to $1,770), depending on qualifications and teaching experience. The cost of living in Spain is relatively affordable, with an average monthly cost ranging from 810 to 1,215 EUR ($800 to $1,200).

Generally, you’ll need a bachelor’s degree to teach in Spain. Additionally, you’ll need a teaching license if you want to teach in a private school. For teaching assistant positions, the age limit is usually 60 or below.

Spain offers access to public healthcare, free if you are a legal resident and employee. It includes access to a range of medical services and treatments. This means you’ll be able to access high-quality healthcare services without worrying about expensive medical bills.

Spain is one of the few European countries that doesn’t prioritize British or Irish native English speakers. The Spanish government actively encourages North American teachers to reside and work there. 

As a result, Spain is a desirable destination for individuals from America or Canada seeking teaching opportunities in Europe. So if you’re looking for a destination offering an outstanding work-life balance and plenty of opportunities for travel and adventure, this country may be the perfect choice.

South Korea

South Korea, officially known as the Republic of Korea, is located in East Asia and has over 51 million people. The country is known for its rich cultural heritage, advanced technology, and modern infrastructure.

Teaching in South Korea can be an excellent choice for several reasons. First, the country has a high demand for English teachers, so numerous job opportunities are available. Additionally, South Korea offers competitive salaries and benefits packages, making it an attractive option for an English teacher.

The average salary range for an English teacher in South Korea is between 1.5 million and 6.2 million KRW per month, equivalent to approximately $1,100 to $4,400. The salary varies depending on qualifications, previous teaching experience, and the type of school.

Living in South Korea is relatively affordable compared to other developed countries. The average cost of living ranges from 1.4 million to 2 million KRW per month, which is equivalent to approximately $1,000 to $1,400. This includes accommodation, food, transportation, and other essential expenses.

Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree to teach English in South Korea. They must also be a native of an English-speaking country and have a TEFL certificate for public school positions. Some private schools may not require a TEFL certificate, but it is still highly recommended.

English teachers in South Korea can enjoy various perks, including free housing, airfare reimbursement, health insurance, and a contract completion bonus. 

The housing provided by the schools is a rent-free apartment located near the school. This makes it easy for an English teacher to commute. Alternatively, the school may offer a monthly housing allowance to cover your rent.

Airfare reimbursement is often provided at the beginning and end of the contract, and health insurance is usually included in the benefits package. The contract completion bonus usually equals one month’s salary and is paid out at the end of the contract.


Japan, also known as the Land of the Rising Sun, is an island country in East Asia. It is famous for its fascinating blend of traditional and modern culture, breathtaking landscapes, and world-class technology

The country is a popular destination for tourists worldwide and is known for its hospitality and friendly locals. Japan is also renowned for its delicious cuisine, including sushi, ramen, and other traditional dishes.

The working culture is similar to that of China and Korea, with a strong emphasis on respect for authority and punctuality. Teachers in Japan are highly respected and valued members of society, and the education system is known for its high standards. 

The average monthly salary range for an English teacher in Japan is around 200,000 to 600,000 JPY, which is equivalent to $1,400 to $4,000. This salary range highly depends on the type of school, location, and teaching experience.

The cost of living in Japan varies depending on the city and region, but it is generally considered relatively high. The average cost of living ranges from 188,000 to 315,000 JPY per month, approximately $1,300 to $2,200. This cost includes rent, food, transportation, and other daily expenses.

Teaching English in Japan comes with several perks, including housing provided by the school, flight reimbursement, health insurance, and a contract completion bonus. The accommodation is often small but comfortable, which can be a great way to save money on living expenses. Flight reimbursement and health insurance are significant benefits that can help alleviate living costs.


France is a beautiful and diverse country famous for its history, art, fashion, cuisine, and architecture. The country is also home to picturesque villages, stunning coastlines, and scenic countryside, making it a popular tourist destination. It has a population of approximately 67 million people and is one of the most visited countries in the world.

Paris, the capital of France, is known as the City of Love and attracts millions of tourists every year. French is the official language of the country, and it is also one of the most widely spoken languages in the world.

Although being an EU citizen may increase the likelihood of finding an English teaching job in France, individuals from other English-speaking nations can still secure employment opportunities. 

For instance, the Teaching Assistant Program in France (TAPIF) offers teaching assistant jobs to Americans aged between 20 and 35. Additionally, several other programs can aid job seekers with finding work and navigating the complex process of acquiring an EU visa.

The average monthly salary for an English teacher in France ranges from 800-2,000 EUR ($790 to $1,970), depending on the institution you work for and your previous teaching experience. Private language schools and universities typically offer higher salaries than public schools. 

However, the cost of living in France can be high, especially in major cities like Paris, where the average monthly cost ranges from 1,600-2,100 EUR ($1,570-$2,070). 

To teach English in France, you must be a university graduate and have a teaching certification such as the CELTA or TESOL. Some schools may also require a certain level of proficiency in French.


Vietnam has a rich culture and a rapidly growing economy. It is known for its delicious food, stunning natural scenery, and vibrant cities like Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.

The education system in Vietnam is undergoing rapid development, with the government investing heavily in education. The system is divided into five levels: preschool, primary school, lower-secondary school, upper-secondary school, and tertiary education.

English language teachers in Vietnam can expect to earn an average monthly salary range of 28,000,000-52,000,000 VND ($1,200 to $2,200). You can supplement your income when you teach private lessons.

The average monthly cost of living in Vietnam is relatively low, ranging from 21,000,000-33,000,000 VND ($900 to $1,400). It’s worth noting that the cost of living can vary significantly depending on the location, with urban areas being more expensive than rural areas.

To teach English in Vietnam, a few minimum requirements must be met. These include having English as your native language, a bachelor’s degree, and a 120-hour TEFL certificate. Additionally, an English teacher must be under 60 to obtain a work permit.

Health insurance can cover various medical expenses, including hospitalization, outpatient treatment, and emergency care.


Thailand is known for its beautiful beaches and delicious food. Bangkok, the capital city, is a bustling metropolis with skyscrapers, shopping malls, and street markets, while the northern region offers stunning mountain scenery and a more laid-back atmosphere.

The literacy rate in Thailand is over 93%, and English is taught as a second language in schools. However, due to the lack of qualified teachers, there is a high demand for native English speakers to teach English as a foreign language.

Teaching in Thailand is a popular choice due to the country’s friendly culture. On average, English teaching positions offer between 32,000 and 94,000 THB per month, which is roughly equivalent to $850 to $2,500.

The cost of living in Thailand is relatively low compared to Western countries. A typical monthly budget for an English teacher would be around 37,500 to 75,000 THB per month, which is equivalent to approximately $1,000 to $2,000. This budget would cover rent, food, transportation, and entertainment expenses.

The minimum qualifications for teaching English in Thailand include a bachelor’s degree, TEFL certification, and no age limit. However, most schools prefer teachers under 60 years old. It is not necessary to be a native English speaker from an English-speaking country, but you need a high level of English proficiency.


Taiwan, also known as the Republic of China, is an island country in East Asia. It is situated on the western edge of the Pacific Ocean and is home to over 23 million people. The country has a highly developed economy and is a significant producer of high-tech electronics, including semiconductors, computer parts, and smartphones.

The education system in Taiwan is similar to that of China, Korea, and Japan. It places a strong emphasis on academic achievement and standardized testing. 

English is taught as a second language from a young age, and there is a high demand for native English-speaking teachers to help students improve their language skills. Teachers in Taiwan are expected to work long hours and be highly dedicated to their students.

The average monthly salary range for English teachers in Taiwan is between 63,000-76,000 TWD, equivalent to approximately $2,000 to $2,400. The cost of living in Taiwan is generally low, with an average monthly cost of living ranging from 31,500-50,500 TWD, or $1,000 to $1,600.

To teach English in Taiwan, a bachelor’s degree and being a native speaker from an English-speaking country are generally required. There is no age limit for overseas teaching jobs.

Perks for English teachers in Taiwan include housing provided by the school, round-trip flights, and health insurance. Some employers also offer a contract completion bonus for overseas teaching jobs.


The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a country located in the southeastern part of the Arabian Peninsula, bordering the Persian Gulf. The country comprises seven emirates, each with its unique character and culture. The UAE is a popular destination for expats due to its stunning beaches, modern cities, and opportunities for career growth.

Teaching English in the UAE is a popular choice among ESL teachers and for good reason. The country offers some of the highest ESL salaries in the world, with a range of benefits that make it an attractive option for teachers looking for a well-compensated and secure job. Benefits include free or subsidized housing, flights to and from home country, and health insurance. 

While the cost of living in the UAE can be high, especially in major cities like Dubai and Abu Dhabi, it is generally offset by the high salaries offered to ESL teachers. 

The average salary for ESL teachers in the UAE is 11,000 AED ($3,000) per month. The average cost of living ranges from 5,000-7,000 AED ($1,350 to $1,900) per month.

To teach English in the UAE, minimum qualifications typically include a bachelor’s degree, TEFL certification, teaching experience, and being a native or fluent English speaker. Many schools also require a background check and health screening before hiring.

Key Takeaways

Each country offers unique benefits and challenges, so research and carefully consider your options before deciding where to teach. Whether it’s the high salaries and excellent benefits of the Middle East, the rich history and culture of Europe, or the exciting and dynamic lifestyle of Asia, there is a country out there that will have the perfect teaching job for you!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

We answer some of the Frequently asked questions by ESL teachers.

What qualifications do I need to teach abroad?

Each country has different requirements, but generally, you’ll need a bachelor’s degree and a TEFL certification. Some countries may also require additional qualifications, such as a teaching license or a specific level of language proficiency.

How much can I expect to earn as an English teacher abroad?

Salaries vary significantly depending on the country, qualifications, and teaching experience. You can expect to earn enough to cover your living expenses and save some money. Research the specific salary ranges and cost of living in each country.

What are the expected benefits offered to ESL teachers abroad?

Benefits can vary depending on the school and country, but typical benefits include free housing, flights, health insurance, and contract completion bonuses.

Do I need to speak the local language to teach abroad?

Speaking the local language is not always necessary. However, learning some of the local languages can be helpful in adapting to the culture and building relationships with students and colleagues.

What are the biggest challenges of teaching abroad?

Teaching abroad can be a rewarding experience, but it can also be challenging. Adapting to a new culture, language barriers, and differences in teaching styles can all be potential challenges. Have an open mind, be flexible to overcome these challenges, and make the most of your experience abroad to be a successful teacher.

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