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Teaching English in Europe

Completed your TEFL course and wish to travel Europe? Deciding where to teach English in Europe can be daunting with the vast array of options, each providing you with opportunities to learn another language, yourself. It’s not surprising that Europe is a popular destination for those looking to teach English abroad. You may also be finding it tricky to choose where to go first - TEFL teachers are spoilt for choice of location, afterall! Before you pack up and move yourself to another country, it is crucial that you make yourself aware of any cultural differences, expected average salaries and the general cost of living. Why not traverse across Europe? Teaching in Europe, you have the possibility of moving from one country to another, as travel between these destinations is often remarkably easy and affordable!

To help you make the best decision, we’ve put together a list of the most popular European locations for teaching English, in addition to the locations of the highest paid TEFL salaries in Europe.

 

Top 5 most travelled EU destinations with a TEFL qualification:

#1 Spain

#2 Italy

#3 Czech Republic

#4 France

#5 Austria

 

1. Spain

With close proximity to the warm, turquoise waters of the Mediterranean Sea along with the rich heritage and culture of the country, Spain has proven to become greatly popular with TEFL teachers looking to have a change of scenery. Take note, however: in line with the country’s laidback lifestyle, you should expect things to be done at a slower pace here; “Mañana, mañana…” and be sure to try some homemade vino payes!

2. Italy

Straight out of the movies, Italy is truly breathtaking wherever you look. Once home to the Ancient Romans, this country has a rich tapestry of history and boasts magnificent architecture and monuments. In keeping with reputation, food is also largely celebrated in Italy. Be sure to try a traditional after-dinner shot of amaro liqueur, which the Italians drink to aid with digestion. During your holiday time, why not head over to the vast island of Sardinia? Plentiful sheep, laden with beautiful greenery, and host to spectacular beaches, some say Sardinia is the Mediterranean Wales. Explore some of the island’s vineyards, or take the steam train up towards Valle Della Luna and watch exotic sunsets as you camp by the sea with the locals. Make no mistake: relations are strong here, be that between relatives, friends, or even neighbours. You’re sure to build bridges that will last a lifetime.

 

3. Czech Republic

Now an ever-growing European investment hub, the Czech Republic needs more English teachers each year. The city is full of regeneration and exciting creative growth, with a wealth of cool cafes, restaurants and pubs to it’s name. No doubt about it, Prague is hotly coveted by the young Czechs and cool expats of Prague. The city is also home to some breathtaking views and an array of phenomenal Medieval architecture.

 

4. France

Subdued village life or bustling metropolis, Paris is a country of romance through and through. France is also a country of icons - be that the landmarks or it’s history of famed actors, artists and models. Discover Bordeaux, no longer a “Belle au Bois Dormant”, this city is now home to an abundance of university students, hipster food-trucks and beatnik coffee shops. Bordeaux is an enticing alternative to Paris, whose bridges at night are bathed in the incandescent glow of street lamps and set to the melodic music of buskers playing accordion. Sewn together with a combination of neighbourhoods and villages, the fabric of life here in Paris is varied, expressive and charming without a doubt.

 

5. Austria

A country boasting music and beauty, Austria houses exquisite cities including Vienna, as well as striking landscapes made up of meandering valleys and steam trains that trace the contours of the country’s mountainous terrain. When strolling in the capital, you’ll encounter baroque churches, gothic cathedrals and more than your fair share of cosy cafes. Cycle, hike or hop on a ferry - Austria is a country for exploring.

 

Details for Top 5 most travelled destinations within Europe:

 
Country Monthly Pay

Time-Based Pay Rate

Cost of Living Visa requirements, post course Best time to apply Hiring Process Average weekly working hours Best city to work in
Spain  €700 - €1,800 €18 - €20 per hour Approximately €580 minimum per month

EU/EEA/Swiss Citizenship

Combined residence & work visa (visado de trabajo y residencia) to live and work in Spain for over 90 days

You must, regardless of nationality, have an Identity Number (Número de Identificación de Extranjero) or NIE

Certificado de Empadronamiento by registering on the Padrón
September, October and January In person 24 - 26 hours Barcelona or Seville
Italy €700 - €1,350 €18 - €20 per hour Approximately €700 per month (break-even)

EU Citizenship

Long-term visa (National Visa - NV) to stay in the country for over 90 days

Short-term visa (Uniform Schengen Visa - VSU) to stay in the country for up to 90 days

"Nulla osta" (authorisation) to work, obtained at the relevant SUI
September, October and January In person 20 - 25 hours Rome, Florence, Milan, Turin or Naples
Czech Republic 20,000 - 28,000 Kč 200Kč for a 45 minute lesson

Approximately 14,400 Kč per month

Long-term visa (Visa D) to stay in the country for over 90 days

Short-term visa (Visa C) to stay in the country for up to 90 days

 

Language Schools - September, January and February

Pre-School - July or August

Primary & Secondary - April & May

In person, or via Skype

Language Schools - 25 hours

Preschool - 30 - 34hours
Prague
France

€1,700 - €2,300

(€700 for pre-school teaching)

Language School: €25 - €30 per hour

Preschool: €9 - €10 per hour
Approximately €1,700 - €2,300 per month (break-even)

EU Citizenship

Long-term visa (National Visa - NV) to stay in the country for over 90 days

Short-term visa (Uniform Schengen Visa - VSU) to stay in the country for up to 90 days

Temporary work permit approved by the French Ministry of Labour
September, January and March In person

Language School: Initially part-time at 15 - 20 hours. Progressing to full-time at 25 hours

Pre-school & Primary: 15 - 20 hours
Bordeaux, Hyeres, Nice, Paris or Strasbourg
Austria €1,500 - €3,000 Language School: €12 - €18 per hour Approximately €850 - €1,000 per month

EU/EFTA/EEA Citizenship

Long-term visa (National Visa - NV) to stay in the country for over 90 days

Short-term visa (Uniform Schengen Visa - VSU) to stay in the country for up to 90 days

Work permit (Sicherungs bescheinigung) and residency permit (Aufenthaltsgesetz)
September, October and January In person 20 - 25 hours Vienna, Salzburg or Graz

 

Top 3 Highest Paid TEFL Salaries in Europe:

#1 Austria

#2 Belgium

#3 Switzerland

 

1. Austria

A country boasting music and beauty, Austria houses exquisite cities including Vienna, as well as striking landscapes made up of meandering valleys and steam trains that trace the contours of the country’s mountainous terrain. When strolling in the capital, you’ll encounter baroque churches, gothic cathedrals and more than your fair share of cosy cafes. Cycle, hike or hop on a ferry - Austria is a country for exploring.

 

2. Switzerland

International, multi-lingual and home to world-class art, Switzerland acts as a fantastic hub for TEFL teachers and expats alike. It’s not surprising that each city has it’s own distinct personality and the country as a whole really can cater to any taste. Notably a country for enthusiasts of the great outdoors, Switzerland’s cities also offer roof-top bars, galleries of up-and-coming artists and shopping districts that’d challenge the boutiques and hip-havens of Brooklyn, New York. Most teachers work freelance, so teaching opportunities are plenty, but go quick and competition is stiff. First get a few years of experience, then try out Switzerland, for your best chances of landing jobs in a country where this market is so saturated.

 

3. Belgium

Medieval castles, chocolate, beer! It’s everything you thought it was and more. Belgium is a country that meticulously weaves tradition with new thinking, a country that is self-assertive, yet humble. Head down to Brussels, which is filled with art nouveau architecture juxtaposing facades of modernist glass skyscrapers. If you do choose to live in Belgium as an English teacher, you will however need to declare yourself as ‘indépendant’ (self-employed), as the language schools here don’t hire teachers, rather, they act as a client.

 

Details for Top 3 Highest Paid TEFL Salaries in Europe:

 

Country

Monthly Pay

Cost of Living

Best city to work in

Austria €1,500 - €3,000

Approximately €850 - €1,000 per month

 

Vienna, Salzburg or Graz

 
Switzerland

€1,500 - €3,000 (1,620 CHF - 3,240 CHF)

Approximately €2,800 per month (break-even) (3,024 CHF)

 

Bern, Geneva or Zurich

 
Belgium

€1,000 - €3,000

 

Approximately €1,330 per month

 
Brussels

 

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