A Beginner’s Guide to Teaching English in Cambodia

teaching english in cambodia

Southeast Asia is a popular destination not only for travelers, but also for people interested in teaching English abroad. Nestled between Thailand, Laos and Vietnam sits the culture-rich land of Cambodia. Teaching English in Cambodia is gaining popularity as more and more jobs enter the market, and its laid back lifestyle offers plenty for the teacher who wants to make a decent salary while living in paradise. 

If you are looking for a guide to everything Cambodia than you are in the right place! If you are like me, information is key to helping me make any decision including teaching abroad! 

Plus, taking time to learn about the country where you want to teach can give you the courage and knowledge to make your dreams of teaching abroad in Cambodia a success!

teaching english in cambodia

Climate

Cambodia is considered to have a tropical climate with two different seasons governed by monsoons. The rainy season occurs from mid-May to October and their drier season is typically November – March. The coolest month is January with average temperatures of 82-83 degrees Fahrenheit or 28 degrees Celsius. April tends to heat up with temperatures of 95 degrees Fahrenheit or 35 degrees Celsius. So it’s safe to say that you won’t be freezing in Cambodia, but due to their rainy season you will definitely need a raincoat of some kind! 

Language

The official language of Cambodia is Khmer. If you are interested in learning some basic words and phrases that can help you transition abroad, check out a language learning platform called Memrise. It is completely free and provides you access to learning a foreign language at your fingertips!

Simply create an account, choose the languages you want to learn, and begin learning how to communicate with others in Cambodia in a matter of minutes! You won’t be an expert by any means, but knowing how to say words like “car”, “school”, “food”, “hotel”, “bus”, and other basic key words for travel are definitely helpful.

Religion

Another component that is helpful to know about the country is their main religion. The faith practiced most in Cambodia is Buddhism.  Although this is the most common religion, it is good to know that Cambodia is religiously tolerant of other types of faith. 

With this in mind, one site that may be cool to add to your bucket list is the Angkor Wat. It is a beautiful religious monument that is known to attract over a million people per year. 


See how Cambodia compares to 59 other popular countries with our free Country Comparison Chart!

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teaching english in mexico

Regions of Cambodia

Cambodia is a beautiful country filled with many diverse landscapes that can be broken down into various regions. 

Phnom Penh

The capital of Cambodia, Phnom Penh is a vibrant and bustling city in which many Cambodians work and live. The city is known for having authentic Khmer cuisine, along with other shops, and restaurants that could be fun to visit during your down time. 

Siem Reap:

Home to one of the most infamous and well-known sites of Cambodia, Siem Reap attracts many visitors for the chance of seeing the grand temple network called Angkor Wat. According to National Geographic, this historical jewel is said to be built in the twelfth century as a Hindu temple by King Suryavarman II for the religion’s “Lord Vishnu”. Later on the temple was converted to represent the nation’s current main religion, Buddhism. The temple includes beautiful stone carvings that tell amazing stories of significant faith such as the Ramayana and Mahabharata.

Beyond Angkor Wat, you can try authentic Cambodian cuisine in Siem Reap  like kuthiew (traditional white noodle soup with your choice of pork or chicken). Yum!

South Coast:

The south coast of Cambodia is known for its beaches in places such as Sihanoukville, Takeo, or Kep. There are plenty of opportunities to try seafood local to their region and to get outside with activities such as snorkeling, scuba diving, water sports, hiking, and more. Either way this area can give you the best of both worlds whether in the water or on land to help you get to know Cambodia even more than you did before. 

teaching english in cambodia

Northwestern:

This region of Cambodia is home to many beautiful historic temples such as Preah Vihear Province and Banteay Chhmar. Plus, how can we not mention that this region is home to floating villages! Yes…floating! How cool is that? You can take boat rides to view the floating villages all while enjoying the Sangker River. One of the biggest floating villages in Cambodia is located in Kompong Luong on the Tonle Sap lake. Not a bad thing to add to your bucketlist!

Eastern:

The eastern region of Cambodia is also very diverse with an array of wildlife ranging from dolphins in the sea at Kratie to elephants in the forest at Mondulkiri and Ratanakiri. This section of the nation also provides a culturally rich representation of ethnicities such as the Bunong people of Mondulkiri or the opportunity to view tribal cemeteries belonging to Ratanakiri. 

Why Cambodia is a great place to teach English abroad:

teaching english in cambodia

Beyond the stunning beauty that comes along with being in Southeast Asia, Cambodia will leave you with amazing memories for years to come. Teaching English abroad is a great opportunity for you to go out of your comfort zone (literally), experience a new culture, learn a new language, form new relationships, build your professional resume, become a global citizen, and to simply find a home away from home.=

Plus, you are sure to leave with a unique perspective on Cambodian culture. It is one thing to visit a country, but completely another to live, work, and interact with the people that represent the true essence of the place in which you are teaching abroad. Teaching in Cambodia gives you the chance to become a part of a global community that you can carry with you no matter where you go next! Also, you can look back and be proud of how much you have grown not only as a teacher abroad, but also as an individual!

Requirements for teaching English in Cambodia:

Teaching in Cambodia is not an impossible mission! In fact, it may be simpler than you think.

What you need is:

  • To be a fluent speaker of the English language
  • To have at least a High School Diploma
  • To have a TEFL Certificate (try our course with job placement
  • To have a genuine interest in living and teaching the English language in Cambodia

Salary

During your time teaching abroad in Cambodia, you can earn a monthly salary ranging anywhere from $700-$1000 USD. Plus, there’s ample opportunity to make extra cash by private tutoring or teaching English online

Teaching online allows you the flexibility you need all while earning some extra cash to support your bucket list (or pay off those student loans). Not to mention, depending on your company you can earn anywhere from $18-$24 USD per hour. Not too bad for a side hustle! 

Another way to make additional income is through private tutoring to members in the area which you will be teaching. This gives you the ability to set your own rates, interact with different age groups, as well as further immersing yourself in a new culture and create community.

teaching english in cambodia

Types of Teaching Jobs

There are many potential teaching sites where you can teach English in Cambodia. Here are some of the different types to help you become aware of what your new job may look like.

Private Language Institutes:

Private language institutes allow you the opportunity to teach English to students of all ages and beyond the normal school week. You’ll have the chance to design a more varied teaching experience with some classes being held during the evenings and weekends. Not to mention, private language institutes stay open throughout the year which means you can pick up more classes during your time abroad! For those of you looking for an experience outside of the traditional school work week, than this may be a wonderful teaching site for you.

Public and Private Schools:

Teaching in a public or private school can offer you the ability to teach children along with the time table of a traditional school week, Monday through Friday with holidays and school breaks off. Be sure to be flexible and open to public and private schools as they will not always have the highest salary when compared to other teaching sites.

Companies/Businesses:

Many companies and businesses can benefit from supporting their employees in learning English. This means companies often hire teachers to hold English language classes (focused on business English primarily). Your schedule would most likely correlate to the business hours of the business you are teaching. This can be a great opportunity for those of you who are wanting to teach English to adults and enjoy teaching English designed for business professionals in mind.


See how Cambodia compares to 59 other popular countries with our free Country Comparison Chart!

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Compare salaries, cost of living, benefits, contract length and more for 60 of the most popular countries to teach English abroad.


Getting a visa/work permit to teach abroad

To teach English in Cambodia you will need a visa. Specifically, most people can stay and work here for a long period of time if they enter the country with an E-visa. This is inexpensive and will only cost $35 USD. 

For countries unable to obtain an E-visa when arriving to Cambodia, a tourist visa is the best option. In this case, you’ll have 60 days to find employment before having to leave. Once you obtain employment you can then begin the process of applying for an E-visa that will let you stay for one year.

Great apps to use for communication during your time abroad

Some tools you can use to communicate with friends and loved ones during your time abroad is through communications apps such as Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Skype, Email, Postcards, FaceTime, and other various communication methods.

So if Cambodia is still on your radar, then go for it! You are sure to make an impact through your time abroad while making memories you will never forget.

Happy travels!


Words by Melody Lipford.

What to Consider Before Teaching English in Mexico 

teaching english in mexico

If teaching English in Mexico is on your radar, I couldn’t be happier for you.

The country is one of my all-time favorite countries in the 30+ I’ve visited, and for more reasons than one: the culture is friendly and inviting, the people are lovely, the food is one of the most unique and varied in the world, and it’s absolutely stunning, with a landscape to suit any desire. If you still need some convincing, here are 10 reasons why you should teach English in Mexico.

If you’re already sold, keep reading.

With such a large and varied country, it’s important to do your research before you go. There are many questions to consider, like “what are the teaching jobs in Mexico like?” and “how much money can I earn teaching English in Mexico?” to name a few.

I’ve done my best to provide you with answers to all of these start-up questions, so you can consider yourself fully informed to make the best decision for you. 

teaching english in mexico

Are you qualified to teach English in Mexico?

For starters, it’s always good to compare your qualifications with the country/ies you’re interested in teaching in. Mexico is a rare jewel in the teach abroad industry because it’s one of the countries that doesn’t require a bachelor’s degree, but you can still get a work permit to ensure you’re working legally, and for as long as you’re happily employed.

Another common requirement is TEFL certification. It may be possible to find a job if you’re not TEFL certified, but it’s becoming more and more difficult. The benefits of certification are plenty:

  1. You’ll demonstrate that you’re a serious teacher, not just a backpacker looking to make extra cash
  2. You’ll be more confident and fully prepared to step foot in the classroom, thus improving your experience and those of your students
  3. If you get certified through globalU, you’ll have guaranteed job placement in one of your top 5 chosen cities.
  4. You only ever have to take the course once, and it’s internationally recognized so you can teach around the world.

In short, you must be at least 18 years old, hold a high school diploma and speak fluent English (non-native speakers are encouraged to apply).

Explore our TEFL Training Course in Guadalajara, Mexico with guaranteed job placement + incredible benefits.

What are the teaching jobs in Mexico like?

There are many kinds of schools to teach in while teaching English in Mexico. A TEFL certified teacher can find work in public schools, language institutes, universities or freelance.

While one-year contracts are the most common, many employers only ask that you commit to at least six months.


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teaching english in mexico

An English teacher may work an average of 30-40 hours per week (teaching approximately 5-7 classes per day), though 25-30 hours is usually enough to support you. Your schedule will be arranged between you and the school.

You may find work in any of the following:

Public Schools

Perhaps the rarest option is to teach English in a public school in Mexico, but TEFL certified teachers can find work in elementary and high schools around the country. These positions will be contingent on the academic calendar (August through July) and will offer a Monday-Friday work schedule with all public and school holidays off (though usually not paid).

Private Language Institutes

Most teachers in Mexico work in language institutes where you’ll find decent salaries, flexible hours and year-round opportunity. Language institutes are usually open seven days per week, and allow the teacher to tailor his/her own schedule. Most students will be present during evenings and weekends since they’re studying English in addition to work or school, so you’ll want to keep that in mind. Language institutes offer the opportunity to work with all ages, or to specialize in one.

Universities

Often the most lucrative opportunities for teaching English in Mexico are in the universities. They typically require both a master’s degree and a TEFL certificate.

Freelance/Private Tutoring

It’s common for teachers who prefer to set their own schedules to earn a living by freelancing their teaching skills. Whether its teaching business professionals in their offices, or meeting with students one-on-one at a local café, teachers can often earn $12-$20 USD/hour and can do this full time, or in addition to another teaching opportunity.

Keep in mind that while the above mentioned employee options will typically include fringe benefits such as health care and opportunities for loans/credits from the government, they will also keep a part of your paycheck for taxes. Freelancing will not come with fringe benefits, yet it does mean you get to keep 100% of what you earn.

How do I get a work permit to teach English in Mexico?

If traveling from the U.S., Canada, Australia, New Zealand, or Western Europe, you only need the standard tourist visa issued upon entry to Mexico, for starters.

A 30-day visa allows enough time to complete a TEFL training course or arrive already certified and search for a job, but you may also request a 60-, 90- or 180-day visa instead if you think you’ll need more time.

To obtain either one you will only need your passport. If in doubt please contact the nearest Mexican consulate.

Once an employer extends a job offer to you, you may apply for a working visa. The fee is approximately $3,600 Mexican pesos ($200 USD), and you’ll be responsible for paying for this to ensure you’re working legally. You can simply go to the local consulate to apply.

teaching english in mexico

How much money can I earn teaching English in Mexico?

A TEFL certified teacher in Mexico can expect to earn between $500 – $800 US dollars a month with their first job. This is enough to live on in most places in Mexico. Compare the cost of living here.

How can I supplement my teaching salary in Mexico?

As with teaching English abroad anywhere these days, there is ample opportunity to supplement your teaching salary with private tutoring and teaching English online. In Mexico, private tutoring is relatively easy to arrange with a little advertising, and you can expect to charge between $8-15 USD per hour.

There are a growing number of online teaching opportunities these days, and many offer flexible enough hours that you can do it in addition to your onsite job, either early in the morning or in the evening.

What should I pack for teaching?

Make sure you bring the latest copy of your C.V./resume, your birth certificate or a notarized copy and a copy of any degrees/certificates you may have.

You’ll also want to have your own laptop computer for lesson planning, etc.

You will be expected to dress professionally when teaching, so be prepared with proper clothing (sandals, shorts, torn items, T-shirts, low collar blouses, short skirts, tennis shoes or sneakers are not acceptable).

10 Incredible Reasons to Teach English in Mexico

reasons to teach english mexico

There’s nothing not to love about the friendly, inviting, rich, vibrant culture of Mexico.

It’s the birthplace of mariachi and tequila — two things that, when put together, I’m pretty sure spell “a good time” — and it’s a country with some of the most gorgeous deserts, relaxing beaches, magical villages (really, it’s a thing), volcanoes and mountains, spicy peppers and all the tacos you can imagine.

Is there anybody who doesn’t love tacos?

That’s what I’m saying!

It’s hands-down one of my favorite countries in the world — one in which I’ve spent a lot of time — and unfortunately when I started looking into teaching English abroad, I didn’t realize I could even do it in Mexico. But you can!

And here are 10 incredible reasons to teach English in Mexico:

reasons to teach english in mexico

You can get TEFL certified onsite in Guadalajara

Guadalajara is one of the largest cities in Mexico, which means it has everything you’re looking for in a city experience.

The TEFL course is located in the historic district, right next door to one of the oldest language institutes in the country (where you’ll do your teaching practicum, by the way), and within walking distance to some of the best restaurants and bakeries. You’ll get a quality introduction to what it’s like to live in Mexico, and then you can decide to stay or go.  

It’s a big country, with jobs in every corner!

One of the beautiful perks of the TEFL course in Mexico is that it comes with guaranteed job placement…anywhere in Mexico! You can choose your top 5 favorite locations, and the placement team will do their best to find you a job in one of those. Mexico is huge, and you’ll surely find a location and a climate that suits you.

See how Cambodia compares to 59 other popular countries with our free Country Comparison Chart!

Compare salaries, cost of living, benefits, contract length and more for 60 of the most popular countries to teach English abroad.

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teaching english in mexico

The people are incredible

I’ve never met a more welcoming, friendly and open people in all of my travels than I have in Mexico. They welcome foreigners from all over the world without judgment and within no time  you’ll be invited into their homes, or to their hometowns for a fiesta or to the bar for a night of beer and tequila. You’ll make friends for a lifetime, and gain a truly unique insider experience into their culture and traditions.

You can learn or perfect your Spanish

Remember that Spanish you studied in high school but haven’t touched since? It’ll come back to you in no time if you want to improve your skills.

You’ll learn Spanish just by living and teaching in Mexico, because immersive experiences are the best way to force yourself to actually learn.

Of course, if you want to go the extra mile you can take Spanish language classes as well, which will only speed up the learning experience. Did I mention that you’ll get a free week of lessons included in your TEFL course tuition? Yep. Believe it.

The food is world renowned

There’s hardly a pocket of the world that doesn’t have at least a high-end restaurant touching on Mexican cuisine. It’s unique for it’s spices and combinations in a way that stands out from the rest of Latin America.

While true Mexican food differs greatly from what you’re used to in the American Mexican restaurants (still delicious), I think you’ll find it tastes better, and leaves you feeling better, too.

Try the mole dishes, or the famed pozole! And of course, tacos! Psst… it’s worth seeking out fresh-made tortillas whenever you can.

You get to learn how to dance salsa…

Want to dance the night away with your newfound friends, and your new skills? As part of the TEFL course in Mexico, you’ll get free salsa dance classes so you can impress that guy or gal you’ve had your eye on in the course…

….and drink tequila (but you already know that 😉 )

Might I suggest adding mezcal to your palate? It’s a unique and pleasant experience your mouth will love.

You can explore the magic villages

The Mexican government has declared 111 pueblos magicos, or magic villages, around the country, and each are spectacular.

The goal was to promote rich cultural heritage and history of Mexico by recognizing towns that were once overlooked (and when you see them now, you’ll wonder why). Some are recognized for their architecture, others for their food, and still others for their natural wonders, but each is worth a visit if you stay long enough! Here’s a guide to exploring them.

It’s easy to get a visa

This is a nod back to the welcoming, friendly, non-judgmental people: it’s easy even for non-native speakers to get a visa and work permit, making it an easy choice for you if you don’t want to jump through all the bureaucratic hoops some countries require, or don’t want to pay the fortune required of others.

You simply enter Mexico on a 30, 60 or 90-day tourist visa and once your employer extends a job offer, you can go to the consulate and apply for a working visa (this costs about $200 USD).

You’ll gain international recognition

Since you’ll earn an internationally accredited TEFL certification and gain your first 6+ months of experience, you’ll essentially earn your passport to the world. With those two things on your resume, you open up thousands of doors around the globe for teaching opportunities far and wide.

Why stop now?

If you’re ready to get started on your teaching adventure in Mexico, start here.

Tips for Retired Folks Seeking to Teach English Overseas

teach english abroad in retirement

People often think of teaching english overseas opportunities as a short stint for young, 20-somethings to experience in their gap years, or to broaden their horizons and learn who they are. It is a great way to do all of that and more, but it doesn’t mean those in their later years should rule it out. It can be a life-changing experience at any age. Continue reading

10 Things to Expect About Teaching English in China

If you’re looking for a reason (or few) to teach English in China, it has the potential to be a very long list. We know choosing a country to teach English abroad in can be a difficult decision—and there are so many factors to consider! But here are just a few reasons why you won’t regret teaching English in China: Continue reading

Teach English Abroad with Student Loans: Is it Possible?

In short, yes, it absolutely is possible to teach English abroad with student loans! Being straddled with debt is a commonplace thing nowadays—especially for students who have sought higher education. But what happens when you’ve got student loan debt holding you back from making career decisions, such as whether or not to teach English abroad? Well, it’s all about strategy! If you need a good reason to teach English abroad but don’t know the first thing about securing your financial plan beforehand, this blog post will give you great pointers. These are not one-size-fits-all options, but a combination of these efforts—or at least one of these options—will suit you. Continue reading

Best Places to Teach English Abroad in 2020

teaching english in europe

Each year, we like to compile our list of the best places to teach English abroad and this year is no different…though our list is.

If teaching English abroad has recently crossed your radar as a likely opportunity, then you’re probably already asking yourself the hardest question of all — where? Will you head to Latin America? Asia? The Middle East or maybe Europe?

No matter which corner of the world interests you most, each has an experience of a lifetime awaiting you. As the demand for Native English speakers continues to climb, more countries are entering the scene and each year different countries make our list for the best places to teach English abroad.

We know that choosing a country is often the hardest part of teaching English abroad, so we hope this list will help you narrow it down. To compare 60 countries around the world, download our Country Comparison Chart here. 

So, without further adieu, we introduce the top places to teach abroad.
Continue reading

Pros and Cons of Taking Your TEFL Certification Course Online vs. Abroad

teach english prague

So, you know you want to teach English abroad, and you’ve done the preliminary research and realized that being TEFL certified will put you above other applicants who aren’t…which brought you to this question: where do I take my TEFL certification course? There are two options: you can complete the TEFL certification online in your home country, or you can complete it abroad in a specific country—one you know you’re interested in, or one you want to learn more about.

Here’s a list of pros and cons to help your weigh options, getting you closer to choosing the best type of TEFL course for you! Continue reading

10 Reasons to Take Your TEFL Certification Course in Thailand  

reasons should teach english in thailand

Moving overseas to teach English abroad is something that most people often dream about — and taking a TEFL certification course is an easy way to get you started.

But with so many options available — like getting certified online, or at home, or in your country of choice abroad, it’s hard to narrow down your decision. I’ve been teaching English in Thailand for the past year, and I love it! But narrowing that down wasn’t easy. 

Deciding you want to move overseas to become a teacher is hard enough already; now just imagine deciding WHERE you should go. The world’s a big place, and picking a destination can be very overwhelming.

Which is why I’m here to tell you that teaching English in Thailand should be at the top of your radar, and it starts with taking a TEFL certification course in Thailand! Here’s why…   Continue reading

4 Types of Students You’ll Encounter in Your Classroom

Types of Students

Since the beginning of teachers in classes, there have been certain types of students. As reliably as the sun will rise, you will have kids in your class that are always running late, or “forgetting” homework, or doing who-knows-what as soon as your back is turned. Here is a list of some of the more common ones, and how to do your best to make sure you’re classroom stays in order. Continue reading