So, you’d like to teach in Thailand? Perhaps you’re bored of your current job and are hungry for a taste of adventure? Then pursuing teaching English abroad is almost certainly the right path for you. However, there are a few considerations that you should make before rushing in. Here are 5 handy tips to consider before teaching in Thailand.
1 – Ensure that you are qualified & meet the legal requirements
In order to be legally qualified to teach in Thailand you will need to be a native English speaker (or have proof of proficiency with the English language) and have an undergraduate degree.
A TEFL qualification is not technically required by law, however the chances of you securing a job as an English teacher in Thailand without one are slim. In addition to that, a TEFL course is invaluable with preparing you for life as a teacher. You will be introduced to the culture, the basics of the Thai language to get you started, and so much more.
2 – Be financially prepared
As tempting as it might be to just book your flights, arrange your TEFL course and zoom off to the other side of the world, we would advise exercising a little patience. You should at the very least, have an emergency fund for flights home just in case. You never know when you might need to leave. If you can save up more money as a bit of a safety blanket while you establish yourself, then even better.
3 – Pick up some basic Thai words
In order to get along in Thailand, you’ll want to learn some basic Thai. Of course, you don’t really need to speak Thai at all as you can survive on English, however, it’s nice being able to communicate with Thai people who don’t have such a good grasp of English. This is especially helpful for speaking with your Thai students who are new to English as well. In addition to that, it’s really fun learning a new language and progressing onto more conversational Thai.
4 – Research your desired teaching destination
There is a lot of choice when it comes to Thailand and where you want to teach, so it would be worth doing a bit of research beforehand. What sort of environment are you after? Do you want the bustling and exciting metropolis of Bangkok? Or perhaps the colourful and mountainous region of Chiang Mai? Not to mention the tropical island lifestyle that so many people crave!
5 – Read up on life in Thailand as an expat
You should endeavour to do as much research as you can regarding life in Thailand, cost of living, accommodation, and any other information that can help prepare you for your new adventure. Of course, no amount of research will ever fully prepare you for such a life changing experience, however it certainly helps to be ready. You wouldn’t want to be caught off guard and without the correct documentation / enough money to survive the first month or so of teaching.