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Home / Teach English in Dubai: The complete Guide for TEFL Teachers | Reviewed May 2022

TEFL Jobs In Dubai

Overview

Would you like to teach English in Dubai? The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is an ideal choice for experienced teachers in various fields because of its cosmopolitan society, favourable environment, and high tax-free income with good benefits. Founded in 1971, the UAE has since grown to become a global financial, commercial, and travel powerhouse. It is a diverse country with substantial desert plains, tranquil white beaches, artificial islands, and contemporary skyscrapers.

The UAE is an excellent place to visit if you enjoy cosmopolitan surroundings. You’ll see a variety of faces in your classroom and your personal life, thanks to a mix of local ethnic groups and a growing ex-pat population. One of the most well-known aspects of TEFL jobs in the UAE is the income — the cost of living is high, but so is your pay, and with added perks like free lodging and return flights, it’s simple to save money while teaching Dubai.

Types of teaching jobs available in the UAE

Jobs are competitive in the UAE since it is a popular destination for international teachers. The more experience and qualifications you have, the more likely you will find Dubai English teaching jobs at a school that pays well and has decent benefits.

While many foreign teachers teach English as a Foreign Language in the UAE, it is by no means the sole topic available. Teachers are needed in a variety of disciplines due to the country’s vast number of international schools; English, Math, and Science (Chemistry, Physics, and Biology at the upper levels) are especially in demand. Here are some of the various types of jobs and schools to keep an eye out for.

International school

Experienced and licensed teachers are most suited for teaching jobs in Dhabi in international schools. These schools follow a foreign educational system’s curriculum, such as the British or American systems.

As previously stated, English is not the only subject available in such institutions, as teachers in a variety of disciplines are needed. Furthermore, due to the diverse nationalities represented among UAE ex-pats, English is not the primary language of instruction at all private international schools. Therefore, whether you are a native speaker or fluent in a language other than English, you should see if there are any international schools in the UAE that provide classes in your original tongue.

Public schools

In recent years, the UAE’s public education system has concentrated on a systematic makeover, with initiatives to enhance standards. This means that many foreign ESL teachers have been—and will continue to be—needed to meet Emirati students’ English-language needs. Dubai English teaching jobs in public schools are usually the best paid and come with the best benefits of all the options.

Vocational colleges

TEFL Dubai teachers, as well as teachers of other practical disciplines like business, aviation, and engineering, are needed at vocational colleges for Emirati students. In addition, because the UAE government has made a deliberate effort in recent years to place more Emirati residents in high-level positions in the workforce, vocational institutes require highly-trained foreign teachers to train the future Emirati workforce.

Foreign language schools

Teachers with extensive ESL expertise would be ideal to teach English in Dubai to Emirati students at a foreign language school. Students include adults as well as younger students who are applying to universities. International language-school chains, as well as local chains and independent schools, can be found throughout the UAE. Moreover, language schools are not limited to English only, as members of the UAE’s heterogeneous population are interested in studying other languages as well.

Private tutoring

In the United Arab Emirates, private tutoring is a little different. Because the UAE’s royal family is huge and extended, and they are among the world’s wealthiest individuals, you might be asked to educate royalty! Private employment firms occasionally seek English tutors for the UAE’s elite families, as well as ordinary Emirati nationals making this an amazing way to teach English in Dubai.

Popular Destinations to teach 

Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Fujairah, Sharjah, Dubai, Ras al-Khaimah, and Umm al-Qaiwain are the seven emirates that make up the United Arab Emirates. Here are some of the most well-known:

  • Dubai is the most Westernized of the Emirates, and it is also recognised as the UAE’s party capital. Although there are many foreign schools in this city, the cost of living is expensive.
  • Abu Dhabi is the most populous emirate. There are numerous local schools (and thus numerous work prospects to teach English in Dubai) in this area. It has a more conservative culture than Dubai. The cost of living is similarly expensive but not as high as in Dubai.
  • Ras al-Khaimah: Located in the Arabian Gulf, this northernmost emirate is known for its beaches.
  • Sharjah: Of the seven Emirates, Sharjah is the most conservative. Alcohol is not permitted in this area but you will still find opportunities to teach English in Dubai jobs here.

The expense of life and conservatism differ between the emirates. Due to limited career prospects and fewer schools, most international teachers concentrate their efforts in Dubai and Abu Dhabi. If you’ve been hired by the public school system, you may not know where you’ll be allocated until after you’ve been hired, so only apply if this unknown component isn’t a concern for you.

Visa & Sponsorship

If you’ve accepted one of the English teaching jobs in Dubai, obtaining a work visa is not straightforward; however, it may take some time. First, you’ll need to have all of your papers and credentials authenticated, which could take several weeks.

One advantage of using a third-party recruitment agency to help you prepare to teach in Dubai is that they may assist with the documentation required to obtain a visa in the United Arab Emirates. Visas are not often granted until after you arrive in the UAE, which can take several weeks.

Work culture in the UAE

In the UAE, the working week goes from Sunday to Thursday, with Friday and Saturday being rest days. The typical teaching day begins at 7:30 a.m. and concludes at 2:30 p.m. Teachers in the United Arab Emirates are frequently expected to participate in extracurricular school clubs. On the other hand, the workload for English teaching jobs in Dubai is often thought to be light.

Depending on the emirate you live in, the type of social life you can have differs. For example, other areas are more conservative than Dubai, which boasts a thriving nightlife culture.

Although alcohol is available in licensed establishments (except in Sharjah), individuals must acquire a licence to consume it. Although this restriction is frequently disregarded, it is worthwhile to obtain permission for teachers who plan to stay in Dubai for an extended period of time and want to drink alcohol.

It’s vital to note that in the UAE, same-sex sexual actions are prohibited. This is a crucial factor to consider for LGBTQIA educators. Public shows of affection are also illegal, regardless of gender.

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LIVING COSTS

Although the UAE is more expensive than 70% of other Middle Eastern countries, you might be shocked to learn that it is only more expensive than 66% of other countries. This merely goes to demonstrate that places with extremely high earnings do not always have an equally high cost of living, as is the case in the UAE. Aside from the higher pay you’ll earn as a TEFL teacher in the UAE, free living, often in beautiful apartment complexes with amenities like a swimming pool, sauna room, gym, and other sports facilities, will make your salary even more appealing.

Housing in the UAE may be expensive, especially if you live somewhere fancy, and there’s a vast difference between cheaper homes and more opulent living. Having free accommodation would be a huge plus. Many English teacher jobs in Dubai have additional benefits like return flights, and most schools offer lengthier contracts, so you won’t have to relocate every few years.

Cost of living prices taken from Numbeo is the world’s largest up to date quality of life global database.

  • Accommodation: $1,265- $2320
  • Utilities: $179
  • Health insurance: Cost of a typical visit to a GP: $60
  • Monthly transport pass: $80
  • Basic dinner out for two: $45
  • Cappuccino (regular): $5.00
  • Beer in a pub: $12.30
  • Litre of milk: $2.10

TEFL Jobs In Dubai: KEY POINTS

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AVERAGE SALARY

8,000–15,000 dirhams

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EDUCATION NEEDED

Prerequisite university degree

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TEFL CERTIFICATE NEEDED

120 Hour TEFL Certificate

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MAIN JOB TYPES

Public, private schools International school

KEY FACTS

  • Popular locations for TEFL jobs: Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah.
  • The average salary for EFL teachers: The basic monthly salary for full-time positions is likely to be in the region of 8,000–15,000 dirhams (€2088–€2,850/$2,200–$4,000) per month. The best-paid jobs will boast salaries closer to 22,000 dirhams (€5695/$6,000) per month.
  • TEFL qualification requirements: A 180 Hour Level 5 TEFL qualification will be required for most positions, if not a CELTA
  • Prerequisite university degree: You’ll need a degree, and many positions also require an MA in a related field. You cannot teach English in Dubai without a degree.
  • Term times: September until July
  • Currency: UAE dirham (AED)
  • Language: Arabic
  • Teaching programmes: Public School, Private Schools, Language Schools, International Schools, Bilingual Kindergartens, Freelance, IELTS, IB, Business English
  • Age restrictions: Under 55
  • Previous teaching experience: Three to five years of previous experience is a usual requirement

Female teachers may be hesitant to apply for teaching positions in the UAE due to the strict dress code, but many ex-pats say it is actually more open than you think. Women are encouraged to cover their shoulders and knees in Dubai’s malls, and a similar dress code will almost certainly be demanded of you at work, although this is no more conservative than what would be expected of teachers anywhere else in the world. On the other hand, conservative laws should not be regarded lightly. Kissing in public is forbidden and can lead to deportation, and there are comparable prohibitions for swearing in public, even on Facebook or WhatsApp. In the UAE, homosexuality is outlawed and punished by law, and blasphemy is likewise prohibited.

These are all key factors to consider when evaluating whether or not the UAE is a place where you can live and work without feeling trapped by the country’s harsh restrictions. Dubai is undoubtedly the most liberal of the seven emirates, but you’ll likely encounter culture shock if you’re coming from the West.

Students in the UAE are keen to learn English, yet they take their classes with a laid-back attitude. Expect pupils to be late for class, hesitant to do homework, and even unwilling to participate in classroom activities that they dislike. Adult students are infamous for talking on their phones during class and not paying attention in class.

In this rigid culture, you’ll find your pupils to be polite and approachable while maintaining professional limits. Whether you’re teaching youngsters or adults, classrooms will often be equipped with cutting-edge technology, and you’ll have lots of resources at your disposal.

Facts about Teach English in Dubai: The complete Guide for TEFL Teachers | Reviewed May 2022

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LANGUAGE

Arabic

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POPULATION

9 million

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TEFL TEACHERS DEMAND

High

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CURRENCY

UAE dirham

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CAPITAL

Abu Dhabi

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OUR DUBAI TEFL RATING

3.8/5

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TEFL Jobs In Dubai: FAQS

Q:

Can I teach English without a degree in Dubai?

No, that is not the case. Most schools in Dubai prefer teachers who have at least a bachelor’s degree, while some prefer teachers who have a bachelor’s degree in the subject they would be teaching. A teaching licence, TEFL certificate, and/or teaching experience are also required.

The UAE Ministry of Education establishes the standards for a bachelor’s degree and teaching certificates in order to meet the visa requirements for teaching jobs. Therefore it is highly suggested that you obtain a TESOL, CELTA, or TEFL qualification before applying for teaching positions in the UAE.

Most schools in Dubai want teachers with prior teaching experience. However, without a degree, you can teach international families or provide private tuition to professionals who want to improve their English language skills for career success.

More possibilities to teach English are available for teachers with or without professional experience, thanks to the region’s developing tourism and hospitality businesses, which demand knowledge of the English language.

One of the highest paying countries for English teachers is the United Arab Emirates. Your monthly payment might range from €2,274 to €5,210 per month, depending on your qualifications, experience, and teaching institution.

While the cost of living in the UAE fluctuates depending on the emirate, overall, the cost is high.

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