Imagine sipping wine from a castle vineyard, overlooking one of the most beautiful cities in Europe, if not the world.
Imagine strolling cobblestone streets, through colorful, narrow alleys and picturesque doorways, toward beautiful bridges, majestic buildings or your favorite cuisine.
Imagine going on vacation and never having to leave.
Teaching English abroad, even if only for a short time, is your answer. And if the above sounds like you, you’re going to fall in love with Prague like we did. Here’s why Prague is the best place to teach English in Europe (or, perhaps, the world).
Live somewhere all your friends and family want to visit
The romance! The castles! The beer! People all over the globe have Prague on their bucket lists (7.05 million visited in 2016, according to this article), and since it’s much more accessible than some countries in eastern Europe and more affordable than its Western European counterparts, choosing to live and teach English in Prague means the people who love you will be more enticed to come visit and stay. You’ll get to be the local expert, able to show them around one of the coolest cities in Europe, and it will be nice for you to host a welcomed visitor (or ten) to tame the homesickness.
Learn parts of the city tourists don’t have time for
Since most tourists only visit Prague for 2-3 days as part of a stop on a larger EuroTrip, you’ll have time to get beyond Prague Castle, the Malá Strana, Charles Bridge and Old Town (though you’ll definitely want to do those, too!). Prague has a lot more to offer than those parts swarming with tourists. Visit the one of the ten churches in New Town and explore the unique, modernist architecture (a stark contrast to the baroque style many flock to see) along the way. Consider visiting the lesser known castle of Vyšehrad, where you can sip a brew from the beer garden and enjoy breathtaking views over the city, or explore the nearby villages where microbreweries are reclaiming their stake on the market after the Communist regime of 1948 (which lasted until 1989, when Prague had its reawakening) destroyed them. The city itself (and all of the Czech Republic, really) offers a rich and exciting history with museums and historical sites galore, for anyone interested in going back in time.
You don’t need a degree
Despite what many will tell you, it’s not actually a requirement to have a bachelor’s degree to teach English in Prague, as long as you have a TEFL certification and a high school diploma. Many other European countries are strict about having a bachelor’s degree, but the Czech Republic is still pretty lax about it. Sure, a degree will give you some bargaining power when it comes to negotiating your salary, but many people are legally teaching English in Prague without a degree. Don’t believe us? Check out our TEFL Prague Program and ask us any questions you have.
You don’t have to be a native speaker
Unlike many other countries in Europe, you don’t need to be a native English speaker as long as you’re fluent enough to teach the complicated intricacies of the language. In fact, many non-native speakers are better ESL teachers because they understand first hand just how difficult it is to learn English. We should note that it is still limited to those fluent speakers from countries who are eligible to obtain a work permit in Prague (see next point).
You can get a proper working visa even if you’re not from the EU
Many countries in Europe make it very, very difficult to live and work legally (especially in the Schengen area), so many teachers are working illegally on tourist visas. Teaching English in Prague, however, allows you to obtain a proper work visa and programs like ours will help you through the entire process. The legal visa process including a Zivno Business visa, Zivno License, translations and services of an agency costs about $720 USD plus two trips to an embassy abroad (Vienna, Berlin, Bratislava…did someone say excuse to travel?). The process usually takes about two months, but as a non-EU citizen you can stay in the area for 180 days without a visa so you’ll have plenty of time to arrange proper documentation.
You can actually afford to live there on a teacher’s salary
While places like Spain and Italy make it nearly impossible to live as a foreign English teacher with the high cost of living, the Czech Republic is still very affordable, in part because it’s on its own currency, the Czech Koruna, not the Euro, and Prague is one of the cheapest large cities in all of Europe. Most teachers work full-time (about 20 hours per week) and earn between $800 – $1,300 USD per month. Accommodation usually costs between $150 – $400 USD per month.
You’ll have flexible working hours
Did we say full time is 20 hours per week? Actually, when you’re first starting out, we recommend not taking on more than 18 hours per week. That’s actual face-to-face teaching hours, not including time for lesson planning, preparations, grading, etc., but you’re free to do all of that from the flexibility of your own home, a local café, the office at your school, etc. so you can have the flexibility to make your own schedule and work as much or as little as you want.
Easy weekend getaways
With its central location, it’s only a hop, skip or a jump to other nearby destinations of interest. You’re only a bus ride to the picturesque countryside of the Czech Republic, a short train ride to the border of Germany, a six-hour train ride from the stunning Alps in Salzburg, Austria, or a cheap and easy flight to anywhere else in Europe. If you have more than a weekend and love trains, get the Eurail pass and go on an adventure!
These are just a few of the many reasons why Prague is the best place to teach English in Europe, but in case we didn’t yet convince you, here are 7 more reasons to teach English in Prague.