Home / What to Expect: TEFL Teacher Salaries
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The cards are now on the table! Teaching English in another country is not about making a lot of money. However, being fairly compensated and having the opportunity to live abroad are both advantages. That’s not to imply you won’t have enough money to live on; in some circumstances, the cost of living is low, and wages are high enough to allow you to save money. Most people who wish to teach English as a foreign language want to assist others in learning new skills, but like with any employment, you need to be aware of the salaries and locations where you can earn the most money. Let’s look into the TEFL teacher salaries who live and work abroad.

So, What Can You Earn?

Surprisingly, there is no simple answer. The amount you can make is determined by several things, including your qualifications and experience, where you want to go, and the institution that employs you. We’ll go through these in more depth later.


Two primary qualifications will be considered when evaluating how much you’re likely to make. First and foremost, you must assess whether you have a degree. Some countries require a degree; it is not negotiable, whilst others are more than willing to accept TEFL teachers without a degree. This directly translates to the amount of money you can earn, and a lack of a degree tends to limit your earning potential.

The second, and most critically, is your TEFL certification. Hundreds of people provide TEFL classes, but they are not all equal. This is especially true if you purchase a system from one of the discount websites. Look for a course provider who can demonstrate they have accredited courses that respectable external authorities have endorsed. It’s also true that not all systems are built to provide the same endpoint.

For example, we have a variety of approved courses that meet the requirements. However, we also offer top-up courses meant to supplement your abilities. However, some course providers will try to persuade you that you can get work teaching English in another country, which is not the case. It is one of these extra short courses. They are not necessarily accredited because they are not required to be. They are intended to supplement the expertise of someone already trained to teach English in another country. As a result, you must have a recognized and authorized TEFL qualification to obtain work and make a respectable wage.


It makes no difference what industry you work in. Experience always determines salary, and most people must begin at the bottom. If you are a newly qualified teacher entering the workforce for the first time, you may have to accept a lesser wage for the first couple of years. However, if you are an experienced teacher in your home country searching for a change of pace, the offers will be more lucrative.


There will also be a significant compensation difference based on where you want to teach. However, remember that pay should align with the area’s cost of living. That is, the money you earn should quickly meet your housing and living expenditures while providing you with enough money to play with. The Middle East, for example, has a reputation for paying high wages, but the cost of living is also high. In Chile, for example, a salary of €500 a month may be posted, which appears absurdly low.

However, they have a low cost of living, so your money will go further and cover everything you require. It would be best if you also considered that you can earn more money in larger cities than in smaller communities. Again, this is because living in a larger city will cost more than living in a small hamlet, so there are many aspects to consider.

Look at Other Benefits

Although some countries might not pay the highest wages, your salary package may include other benefits. These can sometimes be worth much money, so you don’t have to work as hard. Some countries, for example, commonly include the cost of a flat or house. That means you won’t have to pay rent, saving you a lot of money each month. When we compare the average wage in China at €1200 per month to the average salary in Japan at €1600 per month, we may conclude that Japan provides the best value. Accommodation is, however, commonly given for instructors in China but not in Japan. So the €400 income gap translates to more money in China because you don’t have to pay rent.

Other benefits, such as flights and health insurance, may be included in some countries, so assess how big of an impact this will have on your monthly earnings and expenditure before deciding whether it is sufficient to live on. Health insurance can be pricey in certain countries, so including it for free is a big plus.

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TEFL Teacher Salaries by Continent 

The average salary for an English instructor working overseas varies by continent. Of course, many things influence this, including the economic status of each country, but there are many parallels between continents.


In Europe, incomes are divided into north and west, where he will earn the most, and east and south, where the economic climates are not as favourable and lower pay are expected. However, remember that this also applies to the cost of living, so even if you are paid less, you will spend less daily.

Norway and Denmark have the highest earnings in Europe, with monthly salaries average at €2500-€3000 in Norway and €3500-€4800 in Denmark. You must have a degree to be considered for this position, and they prefer that you have prior experience. They do not usually include things like airfare or lodging. So keep that in mind, as living costs are pretty expensive there. To earn at the top of either of these income bands, you must have substantial experience, possibly a master’s degree, and be able to demonstrate skills that are difficult to find elsewhere.

In sharp contrast, the lowest incomes in Europe are found in Turkey, where they range from €220 to €730 per month, and in Georgia, where they range from €240 to €1000. Both of these countries are looking for degree-holding teachers. However, you do not need to have a lot of experience. Remember that the cost of living will be equal to the salary. So, while this may appear to be a small pay, it will be sufficient to live on, and you may discover that your housing bills are covered. Every European country prefers you to have a degree if you wish to teach English overseas.


If you don’t have much experience and are just starting, Asia has some of the finest entry-level earnings. Accommodation fees are commonly included in pay packages in South Korea and China. Cambodia is the only country in Asia where a degree is not required. It also provides competitive pay ranging from €700 to €1100 monthly. At €6500 per month, Hong Kong has the highest earning potential. However, keep in mind that this will be held for persons who have significant qualifications and experience to offer to the table. In Hong Kong, the starting pay is closer to €1700. Because accommodation is included in the cost of living, you must be frugal with your money.

English teachers in India earn the lowest earnings in Asia, with starting salaries of roughly €130 per month and increasing to €800 per month for those with more experience. They require a degree but do not require previous entry-level teaching experience. Nepal is the only country in Asia where teaching English is not compensated. They can only afford volunteer teachers right now, but you don’t need a degree or expertise, so plenty of people are willing to take on the challenge.

Laura teaching english in Thailand
Central and South America 

Central and South American wages are consistently low. Most places, however, do not require a degree or experience if you have the required TEFL qualification. It is a popular destination for newcomers, and the countries are fascinating and worth exploring. Salaries typically range between €500 and €1000 per month. The cost of anything is minimal, but you won’t have much left over. A degree is required in Peru and Chile and is preferred in Ecuador, Guatemala, Mexico, and Uruguay. Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, and Colombia all allow non-degree teachers with TEFL certification.

Middle East and Africa 

The tax-free income status is one of the reasons that the Middle East is a popular TEFL location. This does, however, imply that competition for places is severe. Without experience, a degree, and TEFL certification, you cannot obtain work in the Middle East. Africa pays well, particularly in Egypt, Algeria, and Morocco. They also have several volunteer opportunities in other African countries. As a result, the UAE has the highest wage levels in the Middle East. Beginning about €1700 per month, experienced teachers can earn up to €4500 monthly.

They also like to provide completely inclusive packages that include travel and lodging charges, leaving you with amuchmoney left over. Morocco and Egypt have the lowest wages in the Middle East and Africa, with monthly earnings ranging from €450 to €800 in Morocco and €450 to €700 in Egypt. Both of these countries demand a degree but may provide a contract to people who do not have any experience. Flights and accommodations are not included.

TEFL Salary Summary

So there you have it; the amount you make depends on various circumstances. It is usually ideal to begin your job in a country that does not require much experience. However, after teaching, you can start to aspire higher. Your TEFL destination’s geography and economic situation will influence the amount you can earn. This is subject to change based on what happens in the rest of the world. Teachers with a degree and experience, andan approved TEFL certification,will receive the best pay.

Always check whether a country offers extras such as free airfare, free housing, or health insurance and calculate how much this will save you. Although the pay may not appear to be very significant, if you consider China versus Japan, having a free apartment can save you more money than the difference in compensation each month. Finally, don’t be turned off by countries that offer less than you are accustomed to receiving in your native country. Because the cost of living is likely to be lower, you will spend less money each month.

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