Many young Australians are eager to discover opportunities for living and travelling abroad. Whether you’re fresh out of school or looking for an exciting new chapter, exploring new countries can help enrich your perspective and your CV.
The world is your classroom, and travel is one of the most exciting ways to further your education.
While you learn from fascinating new cultures, you may be able to teach something you already know as well. Teaching your native language is a great way to line your pockets for more travel adventures, and cultivate marketable skills along the way.
Teaching English abroad is an excellent way for Australians to travel and get paid simultaneously. This path provides an opportunity to advance your career and earn some money, all while making your travel dreams come true. Becoming a TEFL certified English teacher could unlock many doors and help you advance in both career and travel goals.
Companies like the TEFL Org help Australians get certified to teach English abroad and online. With their online TEFL courses, getting an internationally recognised TEFL certificate has never been more convenient. Companies like these know the ins and outs of teaching English abroad, from certification to beginning work in a new country, so they have your back when getting started on this exciting journey.
Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about getting paid to travel as an Australian. We’ll take a look at everything from teaching abroad and teaching online while travelling to finding a job in your desired country. We’ll also take a look at some of the most popular destinations for jet-setting Australians, and some resources to get you started when embarking on your journey to teach English in a foreign country.
Why teach English abroad?
There are many reasons teaching abroad is an excellent choice if you’re hoping to spend a year or two travelling. Let’s take a look at some of the top reasons you should consider this means of earning while you travel.
Make a difference: Nothing is better than travelling the world and feeling like you’re making a positive impact in the process. When you begin teaching English abroad, you’ll see the difference you’re making in your students’ lives. You’ll know you’re teaching them a skill they’ll appreciate for the rest of their lives. Maybe one day they’ll even decide to travel to Australia to teach their native language too!
Make community connections: Teaching abroad is an excellent way to get to know your host country on a more intimate level. Rather than just site-seeing on a tour bus, you’ll meet locals through your job. They may tell you about little-know towns to visit or invite you to their home for an authentic meal. This opportunity takes your knowledge of the country past the surface level to create amazing connections and incredible memories.
Get out of your comfort zone: Travel is all about stretching your boundaries and growing as an individual. Teaching English adds to this experience in many ways. Maybe your school operates in a language unfamiliar to you. Perhaps you’re the only foreigner in your town. Maybe you’ve never stood in front of a large group of students before. All of these factors and more push you out of your comfort zone and can add to the personal development you experience when travelling abroad.
Earn money for travel: Here’s everyone’s favourite part. Teaching abroad allows you to earn money while you travel. You can work during school hours and then hop on a bus to have dinner in a new town after work. You can save money for weekend trips, and enjoy the experience to the fullest, knowing you’ll be making money again the following week. Exploration is always exciting, but having a steady stream of income in between adventures is what makes this lifestyle sustainable in the long-term.
Develop your skillset: If you’re fresh out of university, you may be eager to get some experience on your CV. Teaching English is a fantastic way to gain experience while making heaps of travel memories. Whether or not you want to be a teacher, you’ll learn useful skills like public speaking, intercultural competence, adaptability, and maybe even a new foreign language. Teaching abroad has plenty to teach you in return.
Teaching online while travelling
If you’d prefer not to set down roots in one particular place, you can always opt to teach English online. There are many platforms for teaching English online, and a TEFL certificate can help you score one of these sought-after positions with ease.
Teaching online allows you to be your own boss, and many platforms let you set your own schedule and work whenever you want. Pack some small teaching props, like a dry-erase board and some puppets, and make sure you have a working laptop and audio set-up. As long as you have a reliable wifi connection, you can hop from destination to destination, teaching English along the way.
Finding a teaching job abroad
Once you have your TEFL certificate, you may wonder where you can find a teaching job abroad. This will largely depend on where you’re hoping to live, but here are some tips to keep in mind when you begin the job hunt process.
- Do your research: You may have one location in mind when searching for a teaching job abroad, but your research could provide information to shift your focus. For example, teaching assistant positions in Spain often require fewer working hours than a typical teaching position, but they earn less money. Jobs in China have standard working hours but often offer competitive salaries. Do your research and decide which factors matter most to you.
- Create a TEFL oriented CV: Your TEFL certificate will help you stand out when applying for teaching jobs. Create a resume specific to the requirements of the teaching jobs you want, including other relevant experience like volunteering, working with children, or experience with languages.
- Collect resources: Many TEFL programs give their students lifetime access to job centres through their websites. This can get you started, and there are plenty of other online resources for finding job postings and connecting with the TEFL world.
- Reach out to fellow teachers: If you know anyone with experience in TEFL, reach out to them. First-hand experience is one of the most valuable ways you can learn about jobs, get tips on applications, and gain a deeper understanding of what your future role will entail.
- Keep an open mind: Your experience teaching abroad will undoubtedly be different than what you expect. Having an open mind will not only keep your options open for countries you may not have considered. It will also help you get more out of your time teaching and travelling abroad.
Best places for Australians to teach
There are many countries around the world where teaching English is popular. We recommend adding Japan, Spain, China, South Korea, and France to your list of top countries to research for jobs teaching English abroad. We chose each of these countries with travel and job market in mind, since each offers an excellent base for travel and a wide variety of teaching opportunities for Australians and other native English speakers.
For Australians looking to make money while travelling, look no further than opportunities teaching English abroad or online. This experience has the potential to open new doors for you in terms of both personal and professional growth. Whether you’re looking for a gap year, or just want a new start, it’s worth taking the leap to teach English abroad.
Samantha is the head of content and politics columnist for Best in Australia. Prior to joining the Best in Au, she was a court and crime reporter at SM.