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How to Teach English Abroad:

The Ultimate 2021 Guide




The world is certainly in a tailspin so your options to teach abroad summer 2021 are a little more restricted than previous years. That doesn’t mean you don’t have a wealth of international teaching opportunities at your fingertips, however. Are you considering taking a TEFL certification but asking yourself ‘Where can I teach abroad in 2021?’. Here’s a few of the best places to teach English abroad over the next year.


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The world is topsy turvy and the future is looking unclear. However, for the traveling hearts among us, you may be wondering how to teach English abroad as we slip into 2021.

While there are no guarantees that 2021 will bring new light on the pandemic, it seems that we are starting to handle the world with this new threat in our midst. 

With the global understanding that international movement means a few weeks in quarantine, the opportunity to teach abroad summer 2021 seems highly likely for those who can stomach a couple of weeks in lockdown.

If that sounds like you, here’s our ultimate guide on how to teach English abroad in the new normal. 

Read on to discover the qualifications you’ll need for teaching abroad, what to expect, and the types of teach abroad jobs available.


Is teaching abroad right for me?


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Of course, this is a highly subjective question. However, if you’re looking to teach abroad summer 2021 and you’re wondering if a teach abroad job will suit you, consider these questions:

  • Are you confident at meeting new friends?
  • Are you independent enough to find your way in a new country?
  • Are you willing to learn a new language and culture?
  • Are you ready to sharpen your skills as an educator?
  • Do you like helping others to gain a new skill?
  • Are you interested in sampling new foods, customs, and ways of living?
  • Have you always wanted to travel?


If the answer to these questions is a yes, then teaching English abroad seems like a great move for you.

Not only will you build skills and a strong resume in an international job, you’ll get a chance to explore the world as a local; trying new foods, understanding new customs, and absorbing new languages.

While confidence will help you to get a leg up on your international explorations, teaching English abroad can also be a chance for you to boost your independence and push yourself outside your comfort zone.

If you’re unsure about whether teaching English abroad suits you, drop us an email. We’ve been teaching abroad for a long time, so we’ll have all the answers to your queries and concerns.


Can you teach abroad without a degree?


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Simply put, yes. You can teach abroad without a degree.

We get lots of emails from prospective TEFL teachers asking us ‘Can I teach abroad with just a TEFL?’ The answer to this question is a resounding ‘YES’.

Here’s the thing. To teach English abroad, you most often need to be a native English speaker, but this isn’t always the case. If you have a TEFL qualification, many schools and teach abroad jobs will accept you as a candidate due to the level of skill you demonstrate thanks to your qualification.

However, it’s highly important that you pick a TEFL qualification that is internationally-recognized, like TEFLPros 120-Hour TEFL Certification

If you choose to take a TEFL that isn’t internationally-accredited, you may find that schools abroad won’t recognize your qualification and won’t accept you as a certified ESL teacher.

If you’re wondering where to teach English abroad without a degree, you need to understand that you may face a few restrictions. While there are plenty of teach abroad jobs that don’t require a degree, many international schools will ask for a degree (especially if you have no prior experience teaching English abroad).

In this sense, for those researching where to teach English abroad without a degree, it’s best to pick volunteer programs, public schools, and community English projects. That said, with a few years’ teaching experience under your belt, you may find that international schools will consider your applications.


Best Places to Teach English Abroad in 2021


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The world is certainly in a tailspin so your options to teach abroad summer 2021 are a little more restricted than previous years. That doesn’t mean you don’t have a wealth of international teaching opportunities at your fingertips, however. 

Are you considering taking a TEFL certification but asking yourself ‘Where can I teach abroad in 2021?’. Here’s a few of the best places to teach English abroad over the next year.


Teach Abroad in Spain

Spain has become one of the top places to teach abroad, thanks to the favorable weather and welcoming attitude of Spanish people. TEFL teachers can enjoy teach abroad jobs in all different types of English programs, from Government English courses to public schools.

One of the best things about teaching in Spain is that your work week is only 12-25 hours, depending on your position. While the pay isn’t the best in Spain, you’ll find you get cheap travel around Europe and the cost of living is low.


Teach Abroad in Korea

South Korea has reopened its borders to travelers after its COVID lockdown, meaning you can now teach abroad in Korea. Be aware that you won’t be able to hop on an internal flight until you have completed the mandated government quarantine. 

However, once you’re ready to go, you’ll find lots of international and public schools with open positions for ESL teachers. 

Your teaching experience will vary considerably depending on whether you’re teaching in a city or out in rural areas. Cities are very advanced and fast-paced, whereas rural areas are a little more laid back. In both cases, be prepared to struggle with the language barrier but be excited for a whole new world of food and fashion.

If you’re teaching in an international school, you’ll make between $1600 and $2500 a month. Public schools pay a bit less.


Teach Abroad in Japan

Lots of newly-qualified TEFL teachers look to teach abroad in Japan due to its incredible diversity and rich culture. From the tech-filled Tokyo to the breathtaking sights of Mount Fuji, Japan is an unbelievable country to teach in.

For TEFL teachers looking to teach English abroad, Japan is opening up its borders for 2021 to both tourists and workers; teachers included. You can expect to earn anywhere between $2000 and $6000 a month as a teacher in Japan. Remember though, the cost of living is quite high.


Teach Abroad in Costa Rica

Costa Rica is one of the most stunning and naturally diverse countries in Central America. With everything from thick jungle to bustling metropolises, from brilliant blue lakes to towering volcanoes, Costa Rica is a sight to behold.

For those looking to teach in Costa Rica, you’ll find plenty of teach abroad programs that guarantee a full-time job and accommodation. 

Most teaching positions in Costa Rica are either volunteer or public school positions. You’ll make between $400 and $1000 a month teaching in Costa Rica, but the cost of living is very low in comparison to other teach abroad jobs.

Since most positions are in public schools, you won’t have full immersion English learning. This means it’s a good idea to learn a little Spanish beforehand.


How to teach abroad in 2021


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Teaching abroad may look a little different in 2021, especially since COVID measures will be firmly in place. That said, there are still plenty of opportunities to volunteer abroad and to teach abroad and get paid.

Here’s a little rundown of the different ways to teach abroad in 2021.


Volunteer to teach English abroad

If you’re looking to put your heart and soul into making a difference in 2021, why not teach English abroad on a volunteer basis

Volunteer English teachers work with all kinds of programs that connect educators to schools and English-learning programs overseas.

Some of the top volunteer overseas English programs running in 2021 include International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ), GVI, Volunteering Solutions, The Mighty Roar, and Projects Abroad.

To volunteer as a teacher abroad, you’ll usually need to be a native English speaker. You don’t need a degree and technically you don’t need a TEFL, but it is preferred. You’ll certainly benefit from the teaching skills that the TEFLPros 120-Hour Online TEFL Course can provide you when offering lessons in classrooms abroad — especially if you don’t speak the local language.


Teach abroad and get paid


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There are few ways to teach abroad and get paid. The type of school or learning institution that you work in will determine the salary that you receive, as will the country in which you teach and the qualifications that you hold.

To teach abroad and get paid, you will most often need a TEFL certification at the very least. As mentioned above, many international schools will also require that you have a degree.

What are the Best Teach Abroad Programs?

If you’re looking for a teach abroad job, it’s sometimes easier to go through teach English abroad programs. 

These companies are familiar with the requirements needed to place you in a reliable teaching position and have very good connections. They will also provide you with support, advice, and sometimes a little training.

To access teach English abroad programs that pay decent wages, you will need to be a qualified TEFL teacher. 

If you aren’t already certified, start training today with the TEFLPros 120-Hour Online TEFL Certificationwithin 20 days you’ll be qualified to teach English abroad!

If you’re researching the best teach abroad programs, here are our top picks:

  • CIEE – Teach abroad all over the world, from Spain to Korea to Thailand
  • GeoVisions – Teach abroad and get paid $20,000 – $30,000 a year in China
  • JET ProgramApply by November 2020 to teach abroad in Japan 
  • Korvia ConsultingChoose this public school program to teach abroad in Korea
  • WISE Abroad – Find teaching placements in Central and South America


Find Teach Abroad Jobs Independently

While teach English abroad programs help you find placements easily, they’re not always the most well-paid teaching jobs. You’ll also struggle to find placements in international schools through a teach abroad program.

If you’d like to find your own teach abroad jobs independently, try exploring job boards such as:


Is teaching abroad worth it?


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Now that it’s so easy to teach English online, we have many TEFL graduates asking us if teaching abroad is worth it.

If you’d like to push yourself, expand your horizons, and see the world in ways you’ve never seen it before, then yes, teaching abroad is certainly worth it. If you ask any TEFL teacher who’s spent time abroad, they’ll all tell you that they’ve learnt a lot about themselves and the world in that time. I know we’re super grateful that we spent time teaching abroad.

Not only that, however, you also show future employers how independent you are. You demonstrate initiative while building real-world skills at the same time. 

And of course, you’ll get a chance to sample incredible foods, immerse yourself in amazing cultures, and meet a global network of international friends.


Next steps

If you’d like to take the leap to teach abroad in 2021, you’ll need to qualify as a TEFL teacher first.

Sign up to the TEFLPros 120-Hour Online TEFL today and start your training to become an internationally-certified English teacher.

There’s a reason our TEFL course is number one on both GoAbroad and Go Overseas — it’s because our graduates have no trouble finding teaching positions abroad.

If you’d like a little help teaching English abroad in 2021, contact us at jos@teflpros.com or whit@teflpros.com. We’ll be able to point you in the right direction to take the next steps to becoming an international teacher.


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