That freshly minted TEFL certificate and big ol’ smile gives you away: You’re brand new to the world of teaching English abroad, and we couldn’t be more excited to welcome you into the madness. It’s a lot of work, but it’s a ton of fun, and at the end of the day, you can feel GREAT about the amazing impact you’re having on the world.
Don’t have that prized TEFL certificate under your belt just yet? No worries. We’re here to guide you every step of the way.
Teaching English is a viable career path for many young travelers, but some destinations are more welcoming to you and your skills than others. We’ve worked with dozens of happy TEFL teachers from all over the globe, and they all agree that of the dozens of countries you have to choose from, few compare to these best places for new teachers abroad.
Where to teach abroad if you’re a new TEFL teacher
The darling of the TEFL world, Thailand has remained an attractive destination for TEFL teachers of all skill levels in the past couple of years. Thai students are eager to learn, and the relatively lax via situation makes for an easy transition to living abroad in Thailand.
Choose from many fabulous locations within Thailand to call home as a teacher abroad. If you’re a city slicker, Bangkok will keep you on your toes. Beach bums will feel at home in Phuket and Krabi, whereas chilled-out-Chiang Mai is a great fit for more lax and earthy TEFL teachers.
Recommended programs for teaching in Thailand:
You’ve loved Mulan since forever and will never say no to a quick trip to your local Chinese buffet. But we’re going to let you in on a little secret: None of this pales in comparison to the REAL THING (seriously, Kung Pao Chicken is epic in Chengdu), and lucky for you, China is rife with opportunities for new teachers abroad.
Though application and visa requirements are more stringent, it’s long-standing experience hosting foreign teachers means the route is well-worn for you to come and make your own mark.
Like Thailand, the vibe of China ranges from relaxed to raging. Find the city that fits your travel style and get ready for a meaningful experience teaching English abroad.
Recommended programs for teaching in China:
- 5 Month Paid English Teaching Internship in China
- 2-3 Month China Homestay & Language Exchange
- 5.5 Month Paid Teaching Jobs in Shanghai
Spain hosts thousands of English teachers every year, and it’s not only because of the tapas and churros. It’s because the Spanish culture is fascinating, the language is useful on a global scale, and the people are friendly and welcoming.
You can teach English in Europe in a variety of countries, but none offer as much sun, sand, and siestas as Spain itself. New TEFL teachers especially love Spain for its general familiarity and comfort.
Brush off your old high school Spanish skills and head to the Iberian peninsula for what’s bound to be your new favorite life chapter!
Recommended programs for teaching in Spain:
If you love the idea of China but think the 5-6 month teaching stint is too short, consider it’s friendly neighbor, Taiwan. Teaching jobs in Taiwan typically last for an entire school year, giving you plenty of opportunities to see all corners of the tropical island—and sample all the boba you can.
When not in the classroom molding the minds of the future, we recommend uncovering Taiwan’s fascinating history through museums, memorials, and documentaries, or diving deep into Taiwanese culture (listening to Hokkien pop definitely counts!). There’s more than meets the tiger’s eye when it comes to teaching abroad on the Isle Fermosa!
Recommended programs for teaching in Taiwan:
If you have your sites set on the south—way south—then consider finding paid English teaching jobs abroad in Argentina! The land of steak and tango makes an epic backdrop for new English teachers abroad. From the mountains of Patagonia to the undiscovered alleyways of yet another fabulous barrio, Argentina is a soft landing spot for new teachers abroad.
Thanks to ample support from the local government, there is relative ease in obtaining work visas. You can teach for as little as three months or up to a year—you decide! What’s more, Argentina doesn’t require all TEFL teachers to be native English speakers. If you’ve been a student of English yourself, Buenos Aires is a great starter destination for your fabulous career.
Recommended English teaching jobs in Argentina for newbies:
Vietnam, or, as we like to call it, Viet-nom-nom-nom (*drools thinking about pho*), is fairly new to the TEFL scene of Southeast Asia—but it came in with a bang. Vietnam has skyrocketed in popularity amongst new TEFL teachers in the last decade. Maybe it’s their kind locals, gorgeous naturescapes, or the relative affordability that made it rookie of the year. Who can say?
You can teach in Vietnam for 4-5 months at large urban institutions or in regional primary schools. Teachers are needed across the map, and we think you have the right appetite to do it right. A bowlful of adventure awaits…
Recommended teaching jobs in Vietnam:
We’re glad you’re here
We’re obsessed with teaching English abroad and couldn’t be happier to welcome you to our world. Once you’ve had a taste of the TEFL life, it’s hard to go back—especially when you launch your budding TEFL career in one of the best places for new teachers abroad.