Teach English in Romania
Teach English in Romania
Tefl Jobs In Romania
The Carpathian Mountains run through the country of Romania. It is an unusual destination for English teachers abroad; however, there is undoubtedly a lot on offer. There is strong folk culture, and the smaller villages have been self-sufficient due to the fact they are isolated from the rest of the country. This makes them fascinating places to visit as they all have stories and unique traditions. It may not be your first choice of country to visit, but English teachers in Romania will have amazing adventures and connect with local folklore and learn all about the history of this fascinating country.
Over the last few years, modernisation has begun to collect and connect up these smaller areas, and this has seen them grow increasingly reliant on modern technology and equally need more English teachers in Romania to help with the socialisation of these villages. While you are living and working in the country, you need to make time to visit the many amazing castles, abandoned forts, churches and other landmarks that tell stories of days gone by. The Romanians are very proud of their history and want you to take part in local customs, and in many cases, your employer will even pay for excursions to these places as they consider it vital for your education. So if you have a passion for history, folklore and telling tales of old, then teaching English in Romania could be the perfect adventure for you.
Often state schools cannot afford to hire English teachers in Romania unless they are local. This also means that while you are perfectly within your rights to try and teach private lessons, the market is pretty sparse. There are plenty of volunteering opportunities for teaching English in Romania, but the wages will be lower than what you are used to. In this guide, we will look at the opportunities in more detail, learn more about finding work as an English teacher in Romania and look at the cost of living and integrating into the community.
The type of role you will find teaching English in Romania depends a lot on where you want to live. Bucharest is the capital city, and you will find the largest concentration of language and international schools, public and private schools, as well as many different opportunities for private tutoring here. However, in the smaller and more rural areas, it tends to be public or private schools, so there are fewer opportunities.
State schools in Romania do not have a lot of money; however, if they are going to hire an English teacher in Romania, they will be looking for someone who comes from the EU. In state education, you have the standard primary through to high school education, so there is an opportunity to teach your favourite age group. You will need good qualifications and potentially a degree if you do not come from a European country.
Private Language Schools
Found mainly in the larger cities, international and private language schools are another great way to find work teaching English in Romania. At these institutions, your students will be adult learners, usually business people who want to take part in international job markets. You will also find college-age students looking to gain English language skills so they can apply for further education in other countries. Generally, they are going to want to learn conversational English with an emphasis on spoken rather than written skills.
Private language lessons
As with most countries, you can top up your income teaching English in Romania by offering private tutelage. However, this is quite a poor country, so in order to find people willing to pay for private tutors, you need to be located in the bigger cities. The only thing you need to do is check if you have a contract with a language school that they are happy for you to offer this service, as some see it as a conflict of interest. Alternatively, you could teach English online as the Internet connectivity tends to be very stable, in which case your employer should have no issue as he will not be poaching their students. You should take care to understand any rules of self-employment in a new country and make sure you comply with them.
Finding a job
The peak season for schools and institutions looking for English teachers in Romania is during the months of September and January. This is the beginning of each term. Therefore, it is worth sending out your CV early but don’t expect to hear much until the hiring period.
Pretty much every job teaching English in Romania will require a 120-hour TEFL certification. However, many do not require a bachelor’s degree, although it does give you an advantage if you have one. One of the more challenging things is they prefer to recruit from EU countries, so it’s much harder for non-EU citizens to find work. You do not have to be a native English speaker, but if you are not, you need to demonstrate that you are fluent in English and competent at teaching it.
Visa Requirements for English Teachers in Romania
All English teachers in Romania will need to have a national long-stay visa; however, the rules are slightly easier if you come from an EU country as you can apply for it while you are in the country. If you are a non-EU citizen, you first must secure a job before you’re allowed to apply for your visa, and then you must get the paperwork processed in your home country before you fly to Romania. The visa application will require copies of essential documents such as your passport, a criminal records check, proof of medical insurance, proof of accommodation, evidence that you are financially stable, an international CV and cover letter, a recent photograph and an employment permit. They do have one of the more complex visa systems in the world. However, if you have secured work at one of the private or public schools, the staff should be able to help you with your application.
Need to know
When communism collapsed in Romania, English was introduced at a primary level. This means that most children born since then have good English skills. Many children’s television programmes are shown in Romania in English, and this actually motivates them to want to learn. Older children will understand that it is easier to improve their work prospects if they can speak English. In 2014 there was also a ruling that gave Romanians an easier path to go and work and live in the UK, but this does mean they need to improve their English skills. As already mentioned, public schools tend not to have much in the way of prospects for English teachers in Romania because the local teachers have things covered. It’s also hard for The schools to afford to pay people who are not locals. However, language schools are growing rapidly, and private and international schools run more like a business and have more money to offer. It can be hard to get freelance work because of poverty; however, you could teach English online to supplement your income.
Culture and Living in Romania
Living and working in Romania could be a really positive experience because locals are friendly and enjoy looking after and hosting newcomers. They actually tend to be a little overbearing with their hospitality, and they may insist you join them for food and drinks or spend longer than you intended at a social event. Traditional dancing is part of the culture, and everything seems to be good-natured, so try and join in even if you are not familiar with the customs.
Classroom & work culture
Romania is a very respectful culture, and you will be expected to bring professionalism to the classroom. This includes the manner in which you conduct yourself as well as the choices of clothing you wear. Business casual is the minimum standard you should adhere to, but many settings prefer formal business wear. You are expected to be the authority figure in your classroom and demonstrate the ability to lead and direct your students. As with any new location, a good tip is to watch and imitate your coworkers and see how they deal with students and approach issues.
Culture & etiquette tips
The correct way to greet someone is to shake hands and make eye contact. You should make the effort to learn Romanian greetings, including ‘pleased to meet you’, ‘hello’, and ‘how are you?’ It may not seem like much, but they will appreciate the fact you have taken the time to fit in with their culture and don’t worry if you happen to miss pronounce it. You should address anyone superior to you in the workplace by a formal title of sir or madam unless they instruct you otherwise. It is better to come across as too formal than too casual, and they will let you know when they are happy for you to drop the formalities.
Romania is one of the cheapest countries to live in, in eastern Europe, but it can be hard to make ends meet and pay your bills because the wages are comparably very low. This means if you find full-time work in a local school, your payment will be on a par with local teachers. In addition, some schools will have some benefits, including subsidised or free accommodation. The good thing is that rent is cheap in the country, so as an English teacher in Romania, your wages should stretch to a small apartment for yourself.
The best advice for any new country is to try and live like a local. This means shopping at local markets and stores and avoiding places that sell overpriced imported goods. If you do this, your lifestyle will be pleasant while you are living and working as an English teacher in Romania. Locals tend to assume that foreigners are very rich and you may gain something of a celebrity status, especially among younger people. Expect a lot of questions about your culture and lifestyle as they are keen to travel.
In order to provide the most accurate cost of living figures, we use numbeo.com, the world’s largest cost of living database, updated regularly.
- Accommodation: £339–£559/$425–$701/€420-€690
- Utilities: £73/$91/€90
- Health insurance: The cost of a typical visit to a GP: £26/$33/€31
- Monthly transport pass: £13/$16/€15
- Basic dinner out for two: £20/$25/€23
- Cappuccino in ex-patt area: £2.33/$2.92/€2.88
- A beer in a pub: £1.51/$1.90/€1.85
- 1 litre of milk: £0.93/$1.17/€1.14
- 2 litres of Coca-Cola: £1.10/$1.38/€1.34
Tefl Jobs In Romania: KEY POINTS
TEFL CERTIFICATE NEEDED
120-hour TEFL qualification
MAIN JOB TYPES
Public & private schools
- Popular locations for TEFL jobs: Bucharest, Constanta, Cluj-Napoca, and Lasi
- Average salary for EFL teachers: The basic monthly salary for full-time English teachers in Romania is likely to be in the region of 1,100 Leu (£200/$260/€250) per month. Skilled jobs potentially pay up to 2,500 Leu (£460/$580/€570), but finding one of these positions is hard. The hourly rate will be around 50 Leu (£9/$12/€11).
- TEFL qualification requirements: A 120-hour TEFL qualification is the standard minimum for most roles
- Prerequisite university degree: Most jobs are for postgraduate candidates, but voluntary opportunities and some language schools often accept English teachers in Romania without a degree
- Term times: September to June
- Currency: Romanian leu (RON)
- Language: Romanian
- Teaching programmes: Public Schools, Private Schools, Language Schools, International Schools, Freelance, Volunteering
- Age restrictions: Postgraduate, but volunteering opportunities for those aged 16+
- Previous teaching experience: Beneficial to most jobs
Facts about Teach English in Romania the Complete Guide for TEFL Teachers | Reviewed May 2022
TEFL TEACHER DEMAND
Romanian leu (RON)
OUR ROMANIA TEFL RATING
Tefl Jobs In Romania: FAQS
How much can I earn as an English teacher in Romania?
The basic monthly salary for full-time English teachers in Romania is likely to be in the region of 1,100 Leu (£200/$260/€250) per month. Skilled jobs potentially pay up to 2,500 Leu (£460/$580/€570), but these positions are rare.
Is Romania expensive to live in?
No, the cost of living in Romania is very low, and although the salary does not seem that high most people teaching English in Romania will have no problem making ends meet.
Can I teach English in Romania without a degree?
Yes, often, the TEFL certification is the only qualification that is mandated for English teachers in Romania. But having a degree will help you get better-paid roles, and to teach at the university level, you need to have a master’s degree.
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