Non-Chinese ESL Companies | Alternative Platforms to Teach For

Are you looking for non-Chinese ESL companies to teach with? While the pandemic meant the demise and setbacks for many companies and industries, the e-learning industry boomed. The pandemic left over a billion students out of school, and many turned their gaze towards online. ESL teachers as well as students could take part in lessons where it was accessible and safe. However, the online ESL industry took a hit as China placed restrictions on the online ESL private tutoring industry. With 400,000,000 English learners in China, this is a dramatic decrease in students. ESL teachers are now considering upskilling, working for non-Chinese ESL companies, or going freelance.

What Are the New Regulations? 

The new Chinese regulations include a ban on ESL companies profiting from school curriculum subjects. Additionally, ESL companies will not be able to hire foreign teachers from overseas. As a result, teachers have lost their form of income and online Chinese ESL companies’ business models have become unsustainable. 

While the regulations haven’t yet come into full effect, it has impacted businesses and ESL teachers significantly. A 9 pm curfew for children learning with online ESL companies took place earlier in 2021, leaving teachers with emptier schedules. More recently, companies have stopped providing lessons and stopped hiring foreign teachers. 

Companies such as GoGoKid and Zebra English ceased hiring foreign teachers and suspended their school curriculum lessons. Other companies, however, such as DaDaABC, MagicEars, and VIPKID, are able to deliver their lessons to those who have already paid for lesson packages. Overall, opportunities to teach with online Chinese ESL companies appear to be diminishing. 

What Does It Mean For The Online ESL Job Market? 

While teaching English online is great, it is admittedly a saturated market. There are many general English teachers who, as skilled as they are, lack diversity. Basically, most teachers offer the same as the rest – general English. The Chinese regulations have effectively shut an avenue entirely, making the online ESL market even more saturated. Online ESL jobs will be more competitive than ever. 

What Are My Teaching Options? 

It’s important not to be discouraged by the new Chinese regulations. You must be positive yet practical. There are online ESL companies from all over the world. Your skills haven’t diminished and there are still millions of students waiting to learn English. Also, students aren’t limited to children, adults want to learn English too. We’ve narrowed down your best options.

Work For Non-Chinese ESL Companies 

While China has a huge demand, it isn’t the only country in need of English education. English is the most desired language in the world, and there are companies everywhere that specialize in delivering online ESL lessons. By working for non-Chinese ESL companies, you will be exploring new avenues and potentially widening your skillset. 

There are children all over the world if you hadn’t noticed! Students are everywhere, and English is a highly sought-after skill in every corner of the world. However, it is possible that you will end up teaching something more specific than general English. English for Specific Purposes (ESP) is an effective way to increase your value as a teacher. You could be teaching undergraduates, medical practitioners, business professionals, you name it. Whether you teach children or adults, working for non-Chinese ESL companies can be just as, if not more, rewarding. It is what you make of it, after all. 

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Worldwide Non-Chinese ESL Companies 


Preply is a popular option when considering teaching for non-Chinese ESL companies. This is a company that operates internationally, boasting over 800,000 students from over 180 countries. This means that you won’t be short of teaching hours, which you’re free to arrange yourself, by the way. By setting your own hours and your own rates, you have complete freedom and are essentially your own boss.  

What makes Preply even more unique is that you can teach any language. If you are bilingual, why limit yourself to teaching one language? In addition, there is plenty of room to grow professionally. With the support of webinars, training, and an encouraging tutor community, Preply should be among your considerations for non-Chinese ESL companies.  


Similarly, Cambly is a very popular choice for teachers of non-Chinese ESL companies.

With Cambly, teachers will make $10.20 per hour. A degree or teaching experience is not required! The lessons are as formal or informal as you like, from practicing conversational English skills to teaching Business English. You also have the freedom of creating your schedule and teaching from anywhere. 

You will be helping learners practice their conversational English skills from all over the world. Whether you speak to a Japanese doctor, a French graduate, or an Argentine ventriloquist, each session will be unique. 

Cambly Kids

With Cambly Kids, you can earn $12 per hour without a degree or teaching experience! In addition to this salary, you will have zero administration responsibilities when it comes to lesson planning or grading. You can set as many hours aside as you like to teach children from all over the world. This means that you can cater to any time zone or country you like, making it incredibly flexible. 

Asian ESL Platforms

If you want to work for non-Chinese ESL companies, you don’t have to look outside of Asia. Tutoring is one of the most popular online ESL companies for students in South Korea. With over 3,000,000 downloads and a growth rate of 800% per year, there won’t be a shortage of eager students.

Lessons are simple yet incredibly diverse. Classes are audio-only and concentrated on improving students’ conversational English facilitated by over 9,000 topic titles. Each lesson will be different to the next. For simple and fun work, you can earn between $10 and $14 per hour. 


Another platform based in Korea is Skybel. Skybel offers English education to students of all ages. However, the curriculum is diverse yet very specific when it comes to learning English. Curriculums vary from Adult English Conversation, Interview Preparation, and Junior Lessons. Additionally, it offers a Business English and IELTS Preparation curriculum, which would go hand in hand with our TEFL-Pro courses. By becoming certified in these fields and applying to Skybel, you would maximize your earning potential which is $20 an hour. 

The requirements to work for Skybel are demanding, as you’ll need to have a Bachelor’s Degree and at least three years of teaching experience. However, the salary and experience will make it worthwhile. 


Engoo is a global company with teachers from over 70 countries who teach students from Japan, Korea and Taiwan! This means that you do not need to be a native speaker to work for them. At Engoo, you are free to work the hours you desire and you can earn up to over $10 an hour. While you may argue the pay rate is low,  booking rates are excellent and you will be paid fully for absent students. Additionally, you will receive a $50 bonus for every 160 classes completed! 

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European TEFL Tutor Platforms


Novakid is an international company that caters to children from Germany, Turkey, Poland, Spain, and more! The interactive curriculum was designed by experienced methodologists to maximize students responsiveness to classroom activities. Along with the opportunity to teach are training programs to develop professionally as an ESL teacher. Your curriculum will also be provided, and your working hours are relatively flexible.

If you are confident in your teaching abilities, you can earn more money by converting trial students into customers! Similarly, if you know more eager teachers, you can earn money by referring them to the company. To work for Novakid, you will need a TEFL certificate, a year’s experience teaching English, and a minimum commitment of 20 hours a week.


At Lingoda, you have the opportunity to teach adult students who are incredibly motivated adult learners from every profession, many of who come from reputable companies such as Google, Adidas, BMW, and so on. They will also be paying for their education to satisfy their intrinsic motivation. Simply put, they will actually want to learn as opposed to children who are coerced by their parents to learn English! 

You will have a structured curriculum that optimizes engagement yet minimizes lesson preparation. To teach for Lingoda, you will need a TEFL certificate and a minimum of two years of teaching experience. 


If you want to launch your Business English career, Fluentify should rank on the list of non-Chinese ESL companies. By catering towards business professionals, students expertise and goals will vary from one to the next. By identifying their needs and providing your business background, you will be a valuable asset to many corporate and business professionals. 

To become an ESL tutor for Fluentify, it is preferred that you have a business background. Additionally, you’ll need two years of English teaching experience and a TEFL certificate. While the requirements are demanding, you can earn up to $24 an hour with Fluentify. 

Central & South American Non-Chinese ESL Companies

Open English

Open English boasts diversity, allowing you to teach children or adults, in a 1-1 format or group lessons. Whether you thrive by interacting with a larger group of students or providing a single student with your undivided attention, the choice is yours. Open English is the leading online English company in Latin America and has helped over 500,000 students reach fluency.  

To work with Open English, you will need to commit to a minimum of 10 hours and a qualification in TEFL. Open English teachers can receive up to $15 an hour for their services.  

English Key

At English Key, you have the opportunity to teach General English, Business English, and English for Interviews to Mexican students. With a self-paced learning program, courses have over 70 hours of theme-based content. Here, students learn at their own pace and track their progress. Statistically speaking, students that have tangible goals in mind are likely to learn English for longer, meaning your students will be more committed. 

The salary per hour will vary between $10 and $15. English Key requires that their teachers are native English speakers, and are preferably American. Additionally, your chances will increase if you have Spanish or Portuguese language skills. There is much room for progression, as you can progress to contribute towards courseware, training, and more. 

Time To Specialize?

With an influx of teachers re-entering the job search, the more skilled, the better The majority of teachers have a 120 hour TEFL certificate and do not specialize in a niche subject. Because of this, you should take advantage of an oversaturated market to stand out by upskilling.

At Premier TEFL, we offer a range of ways you can upskill. If you are already TEFL qualified and you’re looking for something short and sweet, we have 30-hour TEFL-Pro courses. These TEFL-Pro courses are perfect for those who want to demonstrate to employers that they are different. Whether you want to specialize in Teaching Business English, Teaching Young Learners, Advanced Grammar, and so on, you have plenty of options. Here are the options you have when upskilling with a TEFL-Pro course:

Get Teaching Practice

You’ll want to give yourself the best chance to compete with experienced teachers rejoining the job hunt. As part of your TEFL training, you can get fully organized teacher training with real ESL students. You’ll graduate as an experienced TEFL teacher with an accredited government-regulated degree, along with opportunities to specialize. If you’re reading this as a certified TEFL teacher looking for advice on how to improve and build confidence, we’ve got you covered. Our organized teaching practicum gives you the experience you’re looking for. You’ll teach real ESL students and re-enter the job search as a confident and competitive teacher!

P.s. If you need some help preparing for job interviews, book a session with our TEFL job interview coach.

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Become TEFL Certified with an Ofqual Level 5 TEFL Course

If you are looking to become TEFL qualified, you should choose a course that will stand out. Premier TEFL offers Ofqual Level 5 courses which will certainly impress employers. Level 5 TEFL courses are the same level as CELTAs and will maximize your salary potential and your employability. The English Government-regulated TEFL courses are highly desirable for teachers who want to find the best jobs in the TEFL industry. 

Additionally, you can opt for a TEFL course which includes teaching practice, enhancing your credibility for employers. With teaching practicum, you will benefit immensely from real-life experience before you enter the classroom. To be certified with teaching practice, your employers see that your teaching methods and delivery are of high quality. Here are the Ofqual Level 5 TEFL courses you can choose from:

Go Freelance as a TEFL Job Option

By becoming an independent freelance online ESL teacher, your potential will soar. Independent online ESL teachers have the freedom to set their; hours, rates, curriculum, payroll, and much more. Rather than meeting the requirements of a company only for them to tax your salary, you are in charge of your teaching business. You will become a hybrid of a teacher and an entrepreneur.

While some may argue that work will be more demanding, it will be more worthwhile. Marketing yourself, acquiring your own students, and developing lesson plans may be a necessary evil. However, your superior salary will make up for the admin work. If you are wondering how you would facilitate your lessons, look no further than this article regarding independent teaching and software.

teaching music and english
» Read about rockstar freelance TEFL teacher Ryan Cook

Broaden Your Teaching Horizons

When you become an online ESL teacher, it is easy to become shackled to the formalities you’re used to. Your work is provided for you, you get paid, and that’s it. If you explore options such as teaching different demographics, upskilling, or going freelance, you might have a more worthwhile experience. The new Chinese regulations have impacted the income of many teachers, and while it is crushing, it is important to look towards new opportunities. Opportunities are rife in the online ESL industry, and the new regulations could potentially be a blessing in disguise. 

The post Non-Chinese ESL Companies | Alternative Platforms to Teach For appeared first on Premier TEFL.

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