The Most Well-Paid Countries to Teach English Abroad

 | Teaching House Nomads Blog

In today's interconnected world, the demand for English teachers has soared. From bustling Asian metropolises to the tranquil towns of the Middle East, educational institutions are on the hunt for qualified individuals to teach the English language. As a bonus, many of these regions offer salaries that are not just competitive but downright lucrative, making teaching English abroad a tempting proposition for many.

Top Well-Paid Countries for Teaching English

United Arab Emirates (UAE)

The cosmopolitan cities of Abu Dhabi and Dubai in the UAE are among the top destinations offering the highest ESL teaching salaries globally. Beyond the attractive pay, ESL teachers can anticipate a comprehensive benefits package that includes a housing allowance, relocation assistance, flights back home, and government health care. What's more, the salaries are typically tax-free. Living in the UAE means experiencing world-class amenities, from top-tier restaurants and beaches to vibrant nightlife and cultural activities. Interestingly, the cost of living here is generally lower than in the United States.

Salary expectation: $4,500 (averaging between $3,500-$5,500) USD per month


Japan, a country deeply rooted in culture and tradition, presents a broad appeal for ESL teachers. The salaries can vary significantly based on your qualifications, but many positions come with added perks such as housing assistance and free flights. Japan is a land of contrasts, from its delectable cuisine to its  snow-capped mountains and iconic cherry blossoms. However, it's worth noting that the cost of living can be relatively high, making housing subsidies a valuable benefit.

Salary expectation: Averaging between $2,200-$5,000 USD per month


Situated in a desert landscape, Qatar offers ESL teachers the allure of tax-free salaries. The benefits don't stop at the paycheck; teachers can also expect comprehensive packages that often cover housing, flights, and even transportation allowances. Qatar stands out as a safe haven for Western professionals, and its lively expat community ensures that even miles away from home, you don’t feel alone. The cost of living is notably lower than in the U.S., providing ample room for savings.

Salary expectation: Averaging between $2,400-$4,500 USD per month


Kuwait offers a modern urban experience set against a backdrop of vast desert expanses. The presence of numerous international schools means abundant job opportunities for English teachers. The salaries here are tax-free, and the cost of living strikes a reasonable balance, ensuring a high quality of life. Kuwait City buzzes with life, boasting skyscrapers, lush parks, shopping hubs, and a dynamic expat community.

Salary expectation: Averaging between $2,600-$4,000 USD per month


Oman is one of the Arab world's most developed nations, Oman has witnessed rapid progress in its educational sector. ESL teachers can earn competitive salaries, and the exceptionally low cost of living ensures a comfortable lifestyle with opportunities for significant savings. While teaching opportunities might be limited compared to other countries, choosing Oman means being part of an evolving ESL landscape.

Salary expectation: Averaging between $2,000-$3,500 USD per month

South Korea

South Korea has emerged as a favorite among ESL teachers. The nation offers competitive salaries, often sweetened with housing and flight reimbursements. Beyond the financials, South Korea is a cultural treasure trove, with its rich heritage and bustling cities. The cost of living allows teachers to save a substantial part of their earnings, making it a win-win destination.

Salary expectation: Averaging between $1,700-$2,650 USD per month

Tips for Securing a High-Paying English Teaching Job Abroad

  • Securing Recognised Certifications: Elevate your teaching credentials by obtaining a TEFL, TESOL, or CELTA certification. Organizations like Teaching House offer accredited courses that can significantly enhance your employability and earning potential.
  • Accumulate Domestic Teaching Experience: Before venturing abroad, consider teaching in your home country. International institutions often prioritize candidates with a track record of experience.
  • Build a Network: Engage with current and past teachers in your desired destination. Their firsthand experiences can offer invaluable insights and might even lead to job referrals.
  • Target Reputable Institutions: Direct your job search towards schools and institutions renowned for their competitive salaries and esteemed reputation.
  • Understand Your Contract: Before signing on the dotted line, meticulously review the terms. Stay informed about your rights, responsibilities, and any hidden clauses that might impact your earnings or working conditions.

Teaching English overseas offers more than just an exciting journey; it can also be financially beneficial in numerous areas. Yet, it's essential to be well-informed. Familiarize yourself with the local demands, enhance your credentials, and come ready. The world is vast, and for the skilled English teacher, it's also full of opportunities. Study a course with Teaching House and we can help you to secure a teaching position around the globe.

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