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Teach English in Thailand: Requirements, Salary, Jobs

Teach English in Thailand

Have you been considering teaching English in the vibrant and scenic country of Thailand? Known for its breathtaking landscapes, from lush jungles and pristine beaches to bustling cities, Thailand offers a compelling backdrop for educators. Whether you're drawn by the allure of tropical islands or the charm of mountainous northern regions, teaching in Thailand, provides a rich experience that goes beyond the classroom.

Thailand is not only a top destination for its exotic appeal but also for its affordability and safety, making it a preferred choice for many English teachers. The country enjoys a tropical climate with warm temperatures year-round, ideal for those who relish the heat. However, for those who might find the climate too intense, air-conditioned facilities are commonly found in apartments, schools, and shopping centers, ensuring comfort.

Strategically located in Southeast Asia, Thailand borders Myanmar, Laos, Cambodia, and Malaysia, offering a unique geographical advantage that adds to its allure. Teachers in Thailand can choose from a variety of locales in which to live and work—whether it's the island paradises of Phuket, Krabi, or Koh Samui, the urban expanse of Bangkok, or the serene highlands of Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai.

Bangkok, the capital city, is a bustling metropolis where traditional Thai culture intermingles with modernity. Here, you can explore ancient temples one day and contemporary shopping malls the next, all while enjoying the friendly vibes and cultural richness that Thailand is known for. Whether you are a seasoned educator or just starting your teaching career, TEFL in Thailand, short for "Teaching English as a Foreign Language" in Thailand, offers a wealth of opportunities to grow professionally while enjoying a lifestyle that many dream of.

Why Teach English in Thailand?

Teaching English in Thailand, is not just about starting a new job, it's about stepping into a lifestyle that offers daily adventures and new learning experiences. Thailand is a sought-after destination for English teachers for many compelling reasons.

The vibrant cultural experience is at the heart of Thailand's appeal. The culture is a tapestry of traditions, festivities, and a warm communal spirit. Teachers here are not just visitors, they become part of a community that celebrates both big festivals and everyday moments with enthusiasm.

Thailand's natural beauty provides a stunning backdrop for life and work. From the crystal-clear waters of the southern islands to the lush, rolling mountains of the north, these landscapes are not just for sightseeing — they're places where you can actively relax, meditate, or engage in outdoor activities.

One of the biggest perks of living in Thailand is how affordable it is. Even on a teacher's salary, you can enjoy a quality lifestyle, dine out, and explore without breaking the bank. This affordability extends to traveling, allowing you to see more of the country and surrounding regions.

The job market for English teachers in Thailand is robust, with a strong demand that means plenty of opportunities. Schools offer competitive packages that often include accommodation, which can make settling in much easier.

Known for their hospitality, Thai people are welcoming to foreigners. This friendliness makes it easier to adapt and feel at home, as locals are generally eager to share their culture and language with you.

Thai food is a delightful experience, famous for its rich flavors and variety. Teachers in Thailand enjoy exploring the culinary landscape, from street food to fine dining, all offering authentic tastes at affordable prices.

Living in Thailand positions you perfectly to explore the rest of Southeast Asia. With low-cost travel options, weekend getaways to places like Cambodia, Vietnam, or Malaysia can become a regular part of your life.

Teaching in Thailand offers more than a paycheck, it provides a rich, fulfilling life full of growth, discovery, and adventure.

Requirements to teach English in Thailand

Would you like to teach English in Thailand, but still not sure if it’s for you? Teachers usually come from a wide range of backgrounds. From recent graduates and travelers, to writers, retired lawyers and experienced doctors looking for a new life experience.

To teach English in Thailand the level of experience required, depends on the school you are applying to. Experience is always a plus, but not a requirement for most jobs. The most important thing is that you have a friendly and positive personality and are willing to learn and work with a team. If you have experience in fields related to teaching, it will help you stand out among other candidates. Jobs such as babysitting, au pair, public speaker, etc are some examples.

Thailand is known as a country that is “flexible” with the laws written on paper and the ones actually practiced, so it depends on the organization you are working with. However, here is the list of requirements set by the government in order to receive a work permit as a teacher:

  • A four-year degree in any major (bachelor’s degree or higher).
  • To be a native English speaker (NES) OR a non-native English speaker (NNES) with a TOEIC score of 600 or IELTS score of 5+. This test can be done in Thailand or in your home country.
  • To pass a police background check in your home country.
  • To pass a simple health check
  • A TEFL certificate is preferred, but not required
  • Experience is preferred, not not required
  • You should have an interest in Thailand and Thai culture

Read More: What are the requirements to teach English in Thailand?

Salary for teaching English in Thailand

With the popularity of English growing in Thailand, there are many opportunities for foreign teachers to earn a living teaching English. With friendly people, tropical weather and amazing food, Thailand is a great place to be if you want to live a comfortable lifestyle. The amount you will earn will vary depending on the type of school you teach at and how qualified and experienced you are.

Thailand offers teachers various different teaching opportunities. You can work in a modern metropolis like Bangkok, or surround yourself with beautiful mountains in the north or tropical beaches in the south. Teaching jobs will vary between kindergarten students to adults. Classes can vary from 40 students, 10 students to 1-1 and teaching contracts can range from 6 months to 1 year. Here are the types of jobs and salaries you can earn:

School Salary
Public or Government Schools 25,000 - 55,000 Baht per month
Private Schools 35,000 - 70,000 Baht per month
Private Language Schools 25,000 - 40,000 Baht per month
International Schools 80,000 - 170,000 Baht per month
Universities 30,000 - 60,000 Baht per month
Private English Lessons 400 - 1,000 Baht per hour

Public or government school teaching jobs and salaries

Thailand offers Thai nationals nine years of basic education for free. This means that Thai students can attend Public schools for free until grade 9. They are also offered additional 3 free years until grade 12, but these years are optional. At these schools, your students are likely to all be Thai.

Because of the ease of access to these schools, the classes are often on the larger sides, with a high student to teacher ratio. Larger classes give you an opportunity to work with a wide variety of students, but also keep in mind that it might be a bit more difficult to keep order. At public schools, the students' understanding of English often varies. Some students might be able to speak English fluently, and write excellent essays, while others in the same class might not know how to finish a sentence. This presents a bit of a challenge, but a very rewarding one to solve when you see the difference you have made.

The salary English teachers earn at public schools typically range between 25,000 to 55,000 Baht. This also differs depending on the school and location. If you are experienced teachers you can also be offered a higher salary.

Private school teaching jobs and salaries

The main difference between public and private schools is that the classes are typically smaller with a lower student to teacher ratio. Because these schools often require a larger investment from parents since they aren’t free, less people are able to attend. At public schools your students might be predominantly Thai, but you can expect students from all other nationalities to attend, depending on the school and location. A school in a larger city, with more expats, will have more foreign students. Private schools are pretty much like the school you attended back in your home country.

Your day to day duties here will be no different than at public schools. At public schools you are often given complete control over planning your lessons and curriculum, at private schools, especially the best ones you can expect to have someone review your lesson plans and make sure you are on the correct track. There is often a strong support system and staff assigned to help you if needed.

Private schools might also have different programs such as a basic program and intensive program, where students can choose to take their classes in Thai, with some English classes or study in both English and Thai.

The salaries at these schools are usually higher than public schools, and will vary depending on location and school. English teachers will earn a salary of 35,000 to 70,000 Baht per month at these schools. Things like your education, experience and nationality could also affect your salary. Benefits here could include a housing allowance and paid vacations.

International school teaching jobs and salaries

Expats living in Thailand often send their kids to international schools. Some Thai parents also send their kids to an international school if they believe it will be good for their education. These schools are located in Thailand but follow a western curriculum, usually from the United States, United Kingdom or Canada. There are also international schools for students from other nationalities such as Japan, China and South Korea.

The fees to attend these schools are much higher than other schools in Thailand. Because of this there is a high standard that needs to be maintained. Getting a job teaching at international school usually requires a teacher to have experience teaching in their home country as they want to attract the most qualified teachers. For these jobs it’s best to apply before travelling to Thailand.

These are also the most well paid jobs. Teachers here can expect to earn a salary of 80,000 to 170,000 Baht per month as well as many benefits such as contract bonuses, increases, vacations, health insurance and sometimes flights to and from Thailand.

Language school teaching jobs and salaries

Language schools are another great place to teach English in Thailand. Here you won’t be teaching during school hours. Your students will be kids and adults. Adults might study in the mornings or evenings and kids will usually study after school in the late afternoon or evening. Because of this your working hours will be different than working at a school where you will work from the morning to early afternoon.

At a language school, workdays depend on the school, and can be extended to the weekends. The class size also depends on the school and some classes could be group classes and others one on one classes. For most schools, the teacher is responsible for setting up the lessons but some schools do help with this. If not, there are a ton of awesome resources online to help with lesson content.

You could work both full time and part time at language schools. Some pay per month but common practice is to pay teachers per hour. Although salaries are usually higher than public schools, because you work per hour, you often have to work a lot more at language schools. The salary at language schools is usually around 25,000 to 40,000 Baht per month if you work full time or 300-500 Baht per hour if you work part time.

University teaching jobs and salaries

Universities are very prestigious in Thailand and teaching English here is a highly respected job, just like being a school teacher. The main difference between universities and schools is that at schools you are required to be at work all day, even when not teaching. At universities you are only required to attend your lessons, and are free to do as you please in your free time.

This could be a great benefit if you are someone who has other things to do during the day or plan to tutor English privately. You could schedule meetings with students when you are not teaching at the University. Because of the high status of universities, working there will also be a great CV boost.

The salary you earn at universities depends on your role and how many classes you need to teach, but also on your qualifications and experience, as well as the university and location. On average salaries are 30,000 to 60,000 Baht per month.

Private tutoring jobs and salaries

Many English teachers opt to tutor some students privately after work to earn some extra money. There are even a few teachers who do this full time. It is not that common though because it takes some work and skill to build up your own client base, but can be very rewarding.

When tutoring privately some students might look to hire a teacher to help prepare for exams or tests but most will be interested in learning conversational English which is fun to teach and doesn’t feel like work at all. You could meet up at your students home or at a mall or café for your lessons.

A major downside with private tutoring is the lack of stability, guidance and support and this might turn many teachers away. On the plus side that opens up room for freedom and creativity. English tutors in Thailand often make 400 to 1000 Baht per hour.

Read More: What is the average English teacher salary in Thailand?

Cost of living in Thailand

When you calculate the cost of living in Thailand you need to cover two things. Your needs and wants. Your needs include basic things like rent, utilities, WIFI, food, and transportation. Your wants depend on your personal lifestyle and are any luxuries you plan to purchase. In Thailand, your needs will be extremely affordable, so with your teaching salary you will have no problems enjoying your time. The costs will vary from higher in larger cities to smaller in more rural areas. A single persons estimated monthly costs are 18,000 Baht per month without rent. The currency used in Thailand is called "Baht" or THB and according to Numbeo here are some basic costs to consider in Thailand:

Item Cost
Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Centre 13,421.34 Baht
Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Centre 8,104.26 Baht
Monthly basic utilities (Electricity, Heating, Cooling, Water, Garbage) 2,334.73 Baht
Internet (60 Mbps or More, Unlimited Data, Cable/ADSL) 674.56 Baht
Water (1.5 liter bottle) 16.56 Baht
Chicken Fillets (1kg) 75.45 Baht
Potato (1kg) 41.90 Baht
Rice (white), (1kg) 37.34 Baht
Banana (1kg) 86.21 Baht
Local Transport (One-way Ticket) 25 Baht
Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult 1,592.28 Baht

The best places to teach English in Thailand

Thailand, with its rich cultural tapestry and diverse landscapes, offers a plethora of opportunities for English teachers. Whether you're drawn to the hustle and bustle of city life or the serene beauty of beach towns, there's a place for every educator. Here's a guide to the top destinations for teaching English in Thailand, each offering its unique charm and opportunities.

Bangkok

Bangkok, the capital city of Thailand, is a bustling and vibrant metropolis that is known for its rich culture, delicious cuisine, and friendly locals. Teaching English in Bangkok provides an exciting opportunity to work with motivated students of all ages, explore the city's historic landmarks and attractions, and immerse oneself in Thai culture. As a city that is rapidly developing and expanding its global reach, Bangkok is an ideal destination for teachers looking to gain valuable experience and advance their careers.

Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai, located in northern Thailand, is a charming and picturesque city that is known for its stunning temples, vibrant night markets, and laid-back lifestyle. Teaching English in Chiang Mai provides an opportunity to work with motivated students of all ages, explore the area's natural beauty and cultural landmarks, and immerse oneself in Thai culture. As a city that is rapidly developing and expanding its tourism industry, Chiang Mai is an ideal destination for teachers looking to gain valuable experience and work in a unique and enchanting setting.

Phuket

Phuket, located in southern Thailand, is a stunningly beautiful island that is known for its white sandy beaches, crystal clear waters, and vibrant nightlife. Teaching English in Phuket provides a unique opportunity to work with motivated students of all ages, explore the island's natural beauty and cultural landmarks, and immerse oneself in Thai culture. As a popular tourist destination that is rapidly developing and expanding its tourism industry, Phuket is an ideal destination for teachers looking to gain valuable experience and work in a tropical paradise.

Pattaya

Pattaya, located on the eastern coast of Thailand, is a vibrant and lively beach town that is known for its lively nightlife, beautiful beaches, and world-class attractions. Teaching English in Pattaya provides an opportunity to work with motivated students of all ages, explore the area's natural beauty and cultural landmarks, and immerse oneself in Thai culture. As a popular tourist destination that is rapidly developing and expanding its tourism industry, Pattaya is an ideal destination for teachers looking to gain valuable experience and work in a dynamic and exciting environment.

Other Notable Destinations

In Thailand, beyond the vibrant cities and picturesque islands, there's a mosaic of destinations offering unique teaching opportunities. From the serene beaches of Koh Samui, attracting educators with its peaceful yet enriching environment, to Hua Hin's royal resort town charm with its growing demand for English language education, Thailand caters to varied teaching preferences. Krabi presents a tranquil setting against dramatic landscapes, ideal for those seeking a laid-back teaching life amidst natural beauty. The Isaan region offers a deep dive into Thai culture less influenced by tourism, where local schools eagerly await English teachers.

Historic Sukhothai lets teachers immerse themselves in a UNESCO World Heritage site, contributing to local students' global readiness. Ayutthaya combines rich cultural heritage with the need for English education, just a short distance from Bangkok. In the cooler northern city of Chiang Rai, educators can enjoy diverse teaching experiences among local and neighboring country students. Nakhon Ratchasima, or Korat, gateway to Isaan, is expanding its educational sector, offering teachers a taste of vibrant local culture with access to the countryside's tranquility. Each of these destinations underscores Thailand's diversity, presenting a broad spectrum of experiences for teachers looking to explore and contribute to different communities across the country.

Read More: The best places to teach English in Thailand

Insights into Thai Culture for English Teachers

Thailand's rich cultural landscape offers a unique blend of traditions, social norms, and etiquette. For educators coming to teach English, understanding these cultural nuances can significantly enhance the teaching experience and foster mutual respect between you and your Thai students and colleagues. Here’s a deeper look into Thailand’s cultural practices and how you can navigate them respectfully.

Greeting and Social Etiquette

The traditional Thai greeting, the "Wai," is more than a simple hello; it's a sign of respect and gratitude. Performed by pressing your palms together and bowing your head, the Wai is especially important when interacting with someone older or in a position of respect. While not expected in every interaction, responding with a Wai when offered is a gesture of goodwill. Accompany it with "Sawadee" for a friendly hello.

Thai culture is characterized by its warmth, as seen in the ubiquitous Thai smile. Smiling is a versatile tool in social interactions, used even in discomfort or disagreement to maintain harmony. As a teacher, embracing this practice can help you navigate classroom dynamics and establish a positive environment. Remember, a smile in Thailand can convey a multitude of meanings beyond happiness.

Communication and Respect

Understanding indirect communication is crucial in Thailand. Direct refusals or confrontations are rare, as Thai people prioritize social harmony and fear "losing face." If a Thai colleague or student seems hesitant or non-committal, it’s often a polite way of saying no. When discussing sensitive issues or disagreements, do so privately to avoid embarrassment.

Age and social hierarchy play a significant role in Thai culture, influencing how people interact. Seniors are addressed as “Pee” and juniors as “Nong,” reflecting their relative status. This respect for age extends to behavior and language, underscoring the importance of understanding these dynamics in the classroom.

Public Conduct and Physical Gestures

Public displays of affection are uncommon in Thailand, reflecting the society's modesty. While holding hands may be seen, more overt expressions of affection are considered inappropriate. Teachers should also be mindful of the cultural significance attached to the head and feet. The head is regarded as sacred, so avoid touching anyone’s head, even in a friendly gesture. Similarly, pointing with or placing your feet on furniture is disrespectful. Observing these practices helps maintain decorum and shows respect for Thai customs.

National Pride and Religious Observance

Thailand’s national pride is palpable, with the national flag and anthem playing significant roles in daily life. Showing respect during these moments is essential. Similarly, the monarchy holds a revered place in Thai society; any criticism can be seen as highly offensive.

Buddhism’s influence is evident throughout Thailand, from temples to the presence of monks in public spaces. Women, in particular, should avoid physical contact with monks, adhering to religious customs that dictate social interactions.

By taking the time to understand and respect these cultural nuances, educators can significantly enrich their experience teaching in Thailand. Not only does it facilitate a smoother transition into Thai society, but it also deepens the mutual respect between you and those you teach or work with, making your time in Thailand both rewarding and fulfilling.

Do you need to speak Thai to teach English in Thailand?

The short answer is, no, you don't need to speak any Thai, but learning Thai can definitely improve you experience in Thailand.

In Thailand, the prevalent teaching approach in language classrooms emphasizes creating an immersive English environment. Consequently, most educational institutions advocate for an English-only policy during lessons, even if the educator is proficient in Thai. This methodology is designed to maximize students' exposure to English, encouraging them to think, communicate, and interact in the language, thereby enhancing their language acquisition process. Adherence to this rule is widely accepted and considered beneficial for fostering a focused learning environment.

While the classroom environment predominantly supports English for educational purposes, acquiring some knowledge of the Thai language can be advantageous for teachers. Learning basic Thai phrases and expressions not only aids in navigating daily life outside the classroom but can also significantly strengthen the rapport between teachers and students. Demonstrating an effort to learn and respect the local language can lead to a more inclusive classroom atmosphere, making students feel more connected and engaged. Additionally, understanding even minimal Thai can help teachers grasp the cultural nuances that influence students' perspectives and learning styles, contributing to more effective teaching strategies.

Do you need to be a native English speaker?

While looking for teaching jobs in Thailand the words, “Native English Speaker” or “NES” will pop out often. What this means is that you come from a country which Thailand recognizes as a country where the main language of communication in English. These countries are, The United States, Canada, The United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa. South African teachers, however, are required to pass a TOEIC exam to prove their English proficiency. The reason for this is that South Africa has many official languages and some teachers might not be a native English speaker.

If you are not a native speaker from these countries, you will also be able to get a teaching job. Just like South African teachers you just need to pass a TOEIC exam to prove your proficiency. When applying for a job, schools will want to know about your qualifications, experience and also your ability to communicate clearly. A reason schools choose native English speakers is because they are able to communicate in a way that students can easily understand, so if you can show that you can do the same, you will be able to get a job whether you are a native English speaker or not.

Read More: Can you teach English in Thailand as a non native English speaker?

Do you need a TEFL Certificate to teach English in Thailand?

A TEFL certificate is not a government requirement in Thailand, so you will be able to get a job without it. However, a solid TEFL training course will help prepare before jumping right in. You will learn about teaching methods as well as other important things like classroom management and Thai culture. If you plan to teach English as a second language, most of your students will not be fluent in English. A TEFL, TESOL, or CELTA course will prepare you well for these situations.

You can take a TEFL course in Thailand, in your home country, or even online. By getting TEFL certified in Thailand, you will learn more than just what’s in the English textbook like grammar, spelling and pronunciation, you will learn how to teach your students in a fun and engaging way and manage the classroom. You will learn about how to prepare your lesson plans, how to use games to make your students enjoy your lessons, how to use your body to communicate (This is called TPR and is extremely helpful in communication where students have a low language proficiency) , you will also learn about important do and don’ts in Thailand as every culture is different and certain things you might think to be fine, might be offensive in their culture, so this is very important to learn.

Do You Need a TEFL Certificate to Teach English in Thailand?

A TEFL certificate is not a government requirement in Thailand, so you can secure a teaching job without it. However, completing a reputable TEFL training course can significantly enhance your preparedness. These courses provide valuable insights into teaching methods, classroom management, and Thai culture, all of which are crucial for effectively teaching English as a second language. Since most of your students will not be fluent in English, a TEFL, TESOL, or CELTA course will equip you with the skills to handle various classroom situations confidently.

You can take a TEFL course in Thailand, in your home country, or even online. Opting to get TEFL certified in Thailand offers additional benefits. Beyond the standard curriculum covering grammar, spelling, and pronunciation, these courses teach you how to make lessons engaging and fun. You'll learn how to create effective lesson plans, use games to enhance learning, and employ Total Physical Response (TPR) techniques to improve communication, especially with students who have low English proficiency.

Moreover, TEFL courses in Thailand often include modules on cultural sensitivity, highlighting important do’s and don’ts to help you navigate Thai cultural nuances. Understanding these cultural aspects is essential, as actions considered normal in your culture might be offensive in Thailand. Notably, some TEFL courses in Thailand offer job guarantees upon completion, providing a seamless transition from training to employment. This support can be invaluable in securing your first teaching position and starting your journey with confidence.

Can you teach English in Thailand without a degree?

Teaching English in Thailand is a sought-after role that typically necessitates having a bachelor's degree, chiefly to fulfill the legal requirements for a work permit. This is a standard expectation for most teaching positions within formal educational settings, such as public schools and established language institutions. Despite these stringent requirements, avenues exist for those lacking a degree to engage in teaching, though these paths come with their own set of challenges and potential risks.

Some employers in Thailand might offer roles that do not strictly demand a degree for obtaining a work visa, such as positions for teaching assistants or other educational support roles. These positions provide a legal means to participate in Thailand's educational sector. Additionally, the option of becoming a private tutor presents itself as a viable alternative. Private tutors typically operate independently, offering lessons in various informal settings like homes, cafes, or public spaces. While tutoring can eventually become a lucrative endeavor, cultivating a reliable and consistent client base requires considerable time and dedication.

However, venturing into teaching without the official sanction of a degree and work permit introduces significant legal and professional risks. Individuals may find themselves teaching under the guise of alternative visas, including education or tourist visas, necessitating frequent border runs to maintain their stay. This precarious situation not only poses the risk of legal repercussions, such as deportation and fines due to non-compliance with visa regulations but also exposes teachers to potential exploitation. Without the protection afforded by a legal work contract, teachers working illegally may encounter unfair labor practices, including but not limited to, unpaid wages, substandard working conditions, and a lack of recourse in disputes with employers. This underscores the importance of understanding the implications and considering the legalities of teaching in Thailand without a degree.

Read More: Can you teach English in Thailand without a degree?

Can you teach English in Thailand without experience?

Yes, it is possible to teach English in Thailand without prior teaching experience. Thailand's high demand for English language education in schools, language centers, and private tutoring means there are opportunities for individuals who are new to teaching. Most institutions look for candidates who are enthusiastic, adaptable, and have a strong command of the English language. Holding a TEFL, TESOL, or CELTA certification can significantly enhance your prospects, even without experience. These certifications provide foundational teaching skills and methodologies, making you a more attractive candidate to employers.

When seeking teaching positions without experience, it's important to showcase your willingness to learn and your dedication to education. Many schools and language institutes offer on-the-job training, allowing you to gain experience while teaching. Additionally, being open to starting in smaller towns or less prestigious schools can be a good stepping stone into the teaching profession in Thailand. With a positive attitude and a commitment to professional development, teaching English in Thailand without experience can be the start of a rewarding career path.

Read More: Can you teach English in Thailand with no experience?

How to get a visa to teach English in Thailand

To legally teach in Thailand, you will need a Non-Immigrant B Visa (“B” stands for “Business”). Working without it is illegal and there are fines and penalties if caught. By working illegally you also lose your workplace rights and any legal disagreements with your employer cannot be pursued. Being deported or being taken advantage of by your employer would definitely leave a sour taste in your mouth about Thailand, so please make sure to get your visa sorted.

The Non-Immigrant B Visa is valid for 3 months. Your school or company will then apply for a work permit and then your visa will be valid for the length of your work permit. Usually the length of your contract. The final step is to then apply for a teaching licence (If you have an education degree you will be exempt from this) which will be valid for up to six years.

It is common for schools to ask teachers to come to Thailand on a Tourist Visa and then apply for a Non-Immigrant B Visa in Thailand or by doing a border run. You can also apply for this in your home country before traveling. If you apply from your home country please check with your local embassy or consulate as they might have different requirements. The documents required Non-Immigrant B Visa in Thailand are:

  • Your passport with at least six months validity and two blank pages for the visa
  • Passport photos
  • Your original degree and transcripts and they should be authenticated
  • A criminal background check
  • Documents to confirm where you will be working (provided by your employer)
  • Visa application fee (varies by country)

Read More: Non B visa and work permit requirements for teachers in Thailand

Applying for teaching jobs in Thailand

When to apply

In Thailand, the school calendar is not the same as in most western countries. So the starting dates will differ. The first semester starts in May and runs up until the break in October. The second semester starts in December and runs up until the end of March. Then there is a long holiday until the first semester starts again in May.

The best time to arrive will be in April/May, just before the first semester or in October/November, just before the second semester as schools are on a hiring spree this time. If you plan to take a TEFL/TESOL course you should try and arrive a month earlier than that. This is the time when it is the easiest to get a job, but in Thailand schools will hire throughout the year, so feel free to arrive anytime and you will easily find a job anytime of the year.

Applying directly to schools

Applying directly to schools in Thailand offers a more personal and potentially rewarding path to securing an English teaching position. This approach allows candidates to carefully select schools that align with their teaching philosophy, location preferences, and desired student age group. Direct applications often facilitate a clearer communication channel between the teacher and the school, providing an opportunity to ask specific questions and gain a deeper understanding of the school's culture and expectations.

Additionally, applying directly can sometimes expedite the hiring process, as it eliminates the middleman, allowing for quicker decision-making. While this method requires more research and initiative from the candidate, it often leads to a more satisfying match between the teacher and the school, fostering a sense of ownership and commitment to the new role. To aid your search, consider making use of our job board for teaching jobs in Thailand, where you'll find direct listings from schools across Thailand.

Using an agency

On the other hand, using a teacher recruitment agency can simplify the job search process, especially for those new to the Thai educational landscape. Agencies offer valuable services, including job matching, visa assistance, and sometimes even accommodation help. They have a broad network of schools, providing access to a wide range of opportunities that might not be publicly advertised. For teachers who are looking for support and guidance throughout the application and relocation process, agencies can be a reassuring option. They can also offer insights into salaries, contracts, and cultural norms, helping candidates set realistic expectations.

Tips for getting a teaching job in Thailand

Getting a teaching job in Thailand is easy, but getting a good job means that you need to stand out from the others. Whether you are applying to schools directly or teaching agencies, you need to remember that they will be receiving hundreds to thousands of applicants depending on the vacancy. Here are some tips to help you stand out in the application process:

  • Dress Professionally: First impressions matter. Dressing professionally for your application photos or interviews signals your seriousness and professionalism to potential employers. It conveys that you respect the role and are ready to be a valuable member of their educational team.

  • Smile and Show Enthusiasm: Teaching, especially language teaching, should be engaging and enjoyable. Demonstrating a friendly demeanor and enthusiasm through your smile communicates that you are approachable and passionate about teaching. It suggests you'll create a positive and conducive learning environment for students.

  • Clear Pronunciation and Articulation: Clear communication is key in teaching, particularly for ESL learners. Emphasizing your ability to speak clearly and with a neutral accent in your application and demo videos can address any concerns about students' ability to understand lessons. It reassures schools of your effectiveness as an English language teacher.

  • Update Your CV: Ensure your CV is current and includes a professional photo, highlighting your qualifications, certifications (such as TEFL, TESOL, or CELTA), and any relevant teaching experience. A well-organized and detailed CV demonstrates your preparedness and attention to detail.

  • Include a Personal Introduction Video: Stand out by adding a personal touch to your application. Create a short video introducing yourself, incorporating the above points—dress professionally, smile, and articulate clearly. Briefly share something interesting about yourself, your teaching philosophy, or why you're drawn to teaching in Thailand. This not only showcases your communication skills but also gives potential employers a sense of your personality and teaching style.

With the right preparation and approach, landing your dream teaching job in Thailand is within reach. Remember, the most qualified candidates aren't just those with flawless resumes, they're the ones who demonstrate genuine enthusiasm for Thai culture, a passion for teaching, and a willingness to adapt. By following the tips we've provided and showcasing your unique strengths, you'll set yourself apart from the crowd and embark on an unforgettable adventure in the Land of Smiles.