From flexible working schedules to decent earning potential, teaching English online is your golden ticket to becoming your own boss and living as a digital nomad. We’ve already answered your burning questions about teaching English, so now it is time to find out what unexpected perks there are to being an online English teacher and teaching online in the virtual classroom.
Teach English and Be Your Own Boss
Regardless of whether you work online for a company or as an independent freelancer, you’re still able to be your own boss with the ability to set your own working hours, giving you a great work-life balance (something some people search for their entire lives and can’t find). What’s better than being able to sit at home in your pajamas all day with unlimited coffee? Many people who work in other industries often crave the perk of working from home remotely, and by being an online English teacher, you can do this.
The Perks of Setting Your Own Hours
Being able to set your own hours and teach around your own schedule is also a huge benefit to people who have other life commitments. Many people who teach online have children so they can look after the kids during the day and teach in the evenings. Other people work full-time jobs but want to supplement their income with a side-gig.
Whether you’re an early bird or a night owl, you’ll always find someone who wants to learn at any time of day. Many students are based in Asia meaning if you’re a night owl, then you can schedule your classes for later in the day and stay in bed late every morning. Sounds good, right? Well, this is one of the biggest perks of teaching English online for those who want a little more freedom and flexibility in their lives.
Maximize Your Time
Additionally, classes are usually between 30 minutes to an hour at a time. This means you can decide how many classes you would like to teach in a week and break them up however you like. Maybe you want to break your lessons up by going to the gym, cooking or looking after kids? Others prefer to do their teaching in blocks with back to back classes. It’s all up to you, and you have full control!
Teacher to Student Ratio
There are close to 1.5 billion people across the world learning English. When it comes to native English speakers, this number is significantly lower. This means that the number of English teachers in comparison to English learners is minuscule, so opportunities for you truly are endless. Getting yourself a TEFL certification will also help you stand out amongst your peers and help you open even more doors.
You wouldn’t have to worry about booking classes either because there’s just so many learners! In fact, you might find yourself having to turn students away because your schedule is so jam-packed! We recommend if you’re starting out as an English teacher online, that you ease yourself in gently. Try not to overwhelm yourself by booking too many classes in the beginning. Take it easy and start off slowly. Your future TEFL superstar self will thank you for it.
Save Money AND Earn Money
Here’s the thing about being an online English teacher – you can save so much money (and we don’t just mean saving money in a bank account), we mean money you can save by cutting costs! You probably won’t realize how much you can save until you actually start teaching. So, let’s break it down.
Think of a regular 9:00 am-5:00 pm office job, now think of the daily expenses you might have. Perhaps a takeaway coffee in the morning, transport costs to and from work and lunch expenses from eating out. Working from home helps you cut these types of costs out completely as you’ll be able to work from your bedroom, living room, or kitchen. You’re also less likely to suffer from burnout if you’re able to set your own schedule.
The Perks of Cutting Costs
By cutting these costs from your daily work life, you’ll allow yourself to see more of your earnings. If we’re being honest, teaching English online isn’t going to make you rich overnight, but it can allow you to save money and fully appreciate your earnings when you get them. Having that little extra disposable income can make more of a difference than you think and can be one of the most rewarding perks of teaching English online.
Travel Anywhere in the World
As an online English teacher, you really do have the freedom to go anywhere in the world. All you need is a decent WiFi connection to get started. Think Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, or even China – as long as you have good WiFi, then you can live and work here. There are no limits to the amount of traveling you can do, which is usually one of the biggest perks of teaching English online for the many digital nomads.
What if you don’t want to travel abroad (at least not right now anyway)? Then discover the world virtually. Meeting and teaching people from all around the world virtually can be just as exciting and culturally immersive. A great perk of this is that you can travel without even leaving your own home, and it adds a unique flavor to your online classroom. Being able to gain a cultural understanding of other places and people will help you to become more open-minded.
No Early Mornings and No Dress Code
Some people are naturally early birds. Others are most productive when they wake up late. For some online English teachers, the ability to arrange afternoon or evening classes is a game-changer. If you want to teach English online, then you can choose when you want to work because there will always be someone wanting to learn. You don’t need to get up early if you don’t want to. In fact, if you want to stay in bed every day until midday, then do it. For night owls, this can be a huge perk to teaching English online.
When it comes to the dress code, unofficially – there isn’t one! It’s recommended to look professional when hosting lessons, but if you want to wear a fancy shirt for the camera and a pair of pajama trousers hidden under the table, then go for it! For extra comfort, get yourself a pair of slippers to slide into when teaching. Trust us, it’s one of the comfiest desk jobs you’ll find!
The Perks of Choosing the Right Company
This is a pretty big one for teachers whose main priority is flexibility. A lot of online teaching companies don’t have minimum or maximum requirements in terms of teaching hours. This means that depending on your needs as a teacher, you could have completely different teaching hours every week.
Some companies will require that you sign a contract upon the start of your employment. So make sure to read the ins and outs of the contract before signing the dotted line. Many teachers tend to apply for lots of jobs and choose the one employer that gets back quickest. But if you do your research right, you’ll find a really flexible company to work for who won’t require a commitment to a certain number of hours.
Is Being an Online English Teacher Worth It?
In a nutshell, yes. The benefits of becoming an online English teacher generally tend to outweigh the cons. Being able to have control over their daily work is something a lot of people wish they could do. Of course, it might be difficult at the beginning to get started, but these tips to become the best TEFL teacher might help.
Having the freedom and flexibility to set your own schedule is only one awesome thing. But when you start to see the other unexpected perks of teaching English online, you will quickly realize how amazing this type of virtual job is.
Because of the growth in popularity of teaching English online, people are leaving their normal, boring 9-5 lives behind and are quickly switching over to the life of flexibility, freelance, and freedom. If you want to know even more about starting out as an English teacher online, check out Melissa’s article on what she wishes she knew before becoming a TEFL teacher.