The demand for TEFL qualified teachers is high in both Asia and Latin America which means there are usually plenty of good options for newly qualified teachers and those with some previous experience. Which region would suit you best is a matter of personal choice, but there are a few points worth considering before you choose one over the other.
Can teachers save money while teaching English in Latin America?
TEFL qualified teachers working in Latin America generally earn enough to live a comfortable lifestyle, but you are unlikely to be able to save much of your income unless you live a very frugal existence. The average income for teachers should cover everyday expenses such as rent and utility bills, with enough left over to enjoy a modest social life and/or some regional travel. However, if it is important for you to save money to pay off debts or to fund further travels, then this might not be the best destination for you.
Can teachers save money while teaching English in Asia?
In contrast to Latin America, there are several countries in Asia where it is possible to save a good chunk of money every month. Countries such as China, South Korea and Taiwan all offer a good balance of relatively high salaries and a low cost of living that allows the average teacher to save around $500 to $1,500 per month. Obviously, how you live your life will dictate what your actual figure might be, but if saving money is a driving force behind which location you choose then Asia comes out on top every time.
How do I find a TEFL job in Latin America?
Throughout most of Latin America, the most common form of recruitment is via an in-person interview rather than over the phone or internet. Across the region the vast majority of teachers will head to their chosen location and then start the interview process on the ground. Although heading overseas without a job in place might seem a little scary at first, it is common practice and most teachers have no trouble finding a suitable position relatively quickly. The only real issue with this approach is that you will need enough cash to last until you get that first paycheck.
How do I find a TEFL job in Asia?
Unlike Latin America, it is common practice in many Asian countries to employ teachers before they have left their home country. Interviews are conducted remotely which allows you to apply and interview for as many jobs as you want without having to leave the house. You can apply for jobs in a variety of countries and cities and then take your pick of those that offer you a position. This approach often appeals to those with little travel experience and those looking for their first overseas teaching job. The fact that many of these jobs also come with airfares and accommodation included is also a big factor for many teachers.
What is a Latin American classroom like?
If you are undecided between these two popular regions for teaching, you might want to consider the difference in classroom environment. Typically, the average classroom in Latin America is a lively place where the students are not afraid to speak out. This is great for classroom participation, but it does require good classroom management and a sense of humor on the part of the teacher.
What is an Asian classroom like?
The typical Asian classroom could not be more different as lively behavior is much less common. As teachers and education in general are held in high regard it is taken much more seriously and classrooms are more restrained. While this can make managing your classroom much easier, it does mean that participation is harder to encourage to the point that many students are reluctant to speak at all for fear of making mistakes. Important traits for the teacher to have in this region are good communication skills and the ability to make the students feel comfortable enough to get involved in the lesson.
Are Latin America and Asia both good options for TEFL qualified teachers?
Despite their differences, both Latin America and Asia offer a wealth of opportunities for TEFL qualified teachers. Jobs are abundant across both regions, as is the potential for adventure and unforgettable experiences. Whether your dream is to visit the Great Wall, explore the mighty Andes Mountains, or to simply earn enough money to pay off your student loans, the ideal location is waiting for you in one of these amazing regions.