Money Saving Tips for TEFL Teaching Abroad
admin - Jun 17 2018
Teaching English in a foreign country is a challenging, yet truly fulfilling job. As with challenging job, while it can be fun, it can equally make life really difficult for you when you just jump in a plane and fly halfway around the world to teach without a plan. Adapting to a different country from home to a different culture and lifestyle can be an uphill task in some climes, and one of the many things a prospective EFL teacher has to consider is money.
The major question most prospective teachers ask is: how can I save teaching English abroad? Of course, here’s a decent number of first world countries that offer good money, and thus the promise of a salary on the high side is great, if you get into a country and realize cost of living is expensive, your cash isn’t going to stretch as far as if you would like for it too if you were teaching in a developing country.
The idea of saving is especially crucial; whether you're deciding to start teaching overseas just right out of college and need to pay off some pressing student loans, or you’re flying overseas with family and are burdened with more expenses than the average EFL teachers, you need a working plan to save some precious cash. So here are 8 great tips that could enable you to make the most financially out of teaching English overseas.
Head to East Asia or the Middle East
In Europe and Latin America, most English teachers make a decent wage that covers their expenses and helps them maintain a comfortable living. But many such teachers eventually don’t make enough to save anything really tangible after expenses monthly due to the equally high cost of living. So, they’re typically constantly living on a break-even basis.
In contrast, however, in may EastAsian and Persian Gulf countries in theMiddle East, it is often very possible for even rookie English teachers with a TEFL certificate to make enough to save as much as thirty to fifty percent of their income after expenses and tax because of the comparatively lower cost of living. The possibility of saving good money is even higher as many teachers in countries like South Korea, China usually receives free furnished accommodation or at least housing allowance and free airfare. Bonuses like these contribute greatly in making good savings, as getting your flight ticket paid for can significantly reduce initial costs.
Get a roommate
If you’re not lucky enough to get free or subsidized housing, you should think of sharing an apartment with someone. Of course getting a roommate can be quite tricky, but it will help you share costs and lower daily expenses.
Take on Private Tutoring
You’re always going to make extra good money from taking on private students, and this applies to every part of the world. People are always willing to pay for extra classes to improve their knowledge, whether in Taiwan or in South Korea or in Germany and France. It’s possible to even earn double of the money you make taking on private students compared to the hourly wage at the school where you teach. In China where the demand for private lessons is stupendously high, many English teachers make the equivalent of an extra $10,000 or greater in a year.
Cook your own food.
Of course, if you’re going to save money, you have to spend less. This applies to even little things. They might seem insignificant at first, but such little costs tend to add up quickly. Instead of buying new water bottles and cups of coffee, why not buy a reusable water bottle instead and a coffee flask so all you need to do is refill each day?
Instead of eating out every day, why not cook your own meals? Get a calculator and add up what you’re spending on take-outs and junk food each month. I promise the results will leave you amazed at how much more you can save by getting your own groceries and making your own lunch. It doesn’t even require lots of planning or work. Homemade meals also have the added edge of being healthier options.
Public Transport is Okay
A lot of cities especially in China and the Middle East have efficient public transportation systems, and you can save a lot of money by taking advantage of them. Don’t use cabs unless absolutely necessary. I repeat, don’t use cabs unless it is absolutely necessary.
Learn to Live and Shop Local
As an expatriate living in a foreign country, hanging out, eating, drinking or shopping at foreigner friendly spots can be quite tempting. But this often means paying hiked tourist prices. Imagine trying to get good old pizza in Taipei? Learning to fit into the local scene will do your efforts to save a world of good. Shop at local markets, avoid pricey bars, learn the local food recipes, and your pockets will thank you.
Set Cost cutting Goals. And stick to them
Set goals on how much you want to save and set target dates for achieving them. Follow them strictly. Living below your means as much as possible is always good advice for ESL teachers in foreign countries. Always hold out for cheaper options. Spending as much as you can on everything will only make you save for nothing. If you can afford $7 for a cheeseburger, find an option that only costs $5 or less. If you typically spend $70 going out each weekend, try to cut that amount to $50. If you can afford a $700 rent per month, find accommodation for half the price. Disciplined spending and saving habits in a foreign country will ultimately help you save enough to invest in all sorts of other great endeavors in life.
Create a bank different accounts for different purposes
You can have more than one account for different goals you set to achieve. For example, if you have three different bank accounts. You can put your spending money in one, that includes your rent, feeding money and other expenses you do every day. This may be seventy percent of your income. Then in another account put the money you set out to save each month, maybe money for long-term goals, for example, the money you want to invest with, etc. That is twenty percent of your income while the ten percent of your income will go in your third account, the money you deposit in this account will be for an emergency, in case if any comes up. If you create a different account for your different goals like this you will not go broke and at the same time, you will be able to save money for other things.