Updated: Mar 15
As an English teacher in Thailand, you make incredible money relative to the cost of living- easily enough to recoup your costs, have fun on the weekends, and even save.
All at the same time, you are having a transformative experience exploring the unfamiliar in a new country, bonding with an exclusive community you’ll forever feel apart of, inspiring kids who want to learn, and becoming confident in discovering things yourself.
I know. You are just graduating University and want a top-dog job and $1000 a month doesn’t seem a lot. However, don’t underestimate how much you are making relative to the cost of living. Check out these numbers:
Pretty crazy huh. Your salary goes along way in Thailand. The opportunity feels different now, doesn’t it?
By saving over $300 a month, you will recoup your startup costs (course, flight, packing), while also experiencing an adventure you'll have forever.
Check out the J2 Thailand Program to see the breakdown including the J2 Thailand cost.
The Power of Tutoring:
You’ll quickly figure out that the big money maker while teaching in Thailand is tutoring outside of school hours. There are SO many opportunities.
Who wants to be tutored?
Their Parents and family members
Thai teachers at your school
How to get clients:
Don’t be afraid to ask your school manager or agency. People who want to be tutored from a foreign teacher approaches them first, not you (remember, they don’t speak English lol). They are your best bet .
Secondly, engage with the teachers who left before you arrived. They most definitely had tutoring clients while they were teaching before you. Those clients are now left hanging. Pick them up. I guarantee you they still want to get tutored from a foreign teacher.
The world of online tutoring
Online teaching is becoming increasingly popular in our digital world. It’s simple, easy, and a consistent way to earn money. All you need is good Internet, a decent camera for video, and a positive teaching attitude.
The most popular platform is VIPKID, based in China (VIPKID WEBSITE).
Go to the bottom of this article for more detailed information on how to get started.
Other unique ways to make money:
Find your freelance gig
I’m sure you’ve heard the coined word ‘digital nomad’ before. Digital nomads live and travel the world doing freelance work. What freelance work, or ‘remote jobs’ are they exactly doing.?
Here is a list of them:
- Writing blog articles
- Editing and proofreading papers
- Social media management
- Graphic designing
- Website programming
- Photo and video editing
You probably don’t have the skill set nor passion to do all these gigs, but know that there is always room to learn. Go for it!
If you are craving some extra money, look into weekend ‘English camps.’ Typically held in the larger cities like Bangkok and Chiang Mai, these two-day weekend boot camps are designed for students who pay extra to improve their English. Foreign teachers are highly demanded and the camps pay pretty well! You can get more details on Craigslist Bangkok postings (https://craigslist.org).
There are two teaching terms in Thailand. The first one is from May 12ish to September 28ish. There is an entire month break in October. The following term is from November 1st to February 28ish. There is a two and a half month break from March 1st to the beginning of the first term in mid-May. What do you do during these breaks?
Let’s be honest… You are going to spend most of your time and money traveling. And you should! However, if you are looking to make some money during this time, here are some things you can do:
You can work at a hostel as a front desk host, mix drinks as a bartender, or share your wisdom as a teacher and work for a teacher training TEFL certification course in Thailand and train incoming teachers.
You can also be a DJ. I met a guy in Cambodia who has been touring SouthEast Asia playing at different nightclubs, bars, and hostels. He said that it took him 1 month to learn how to DJ and says it’s the easiest job if you are organized and prepared. He gets paid VERY well relative to the cost of living. He told me, “ I don’t know why other people don’t do this. It’s common sense!”
Maybe you can get a gig at the Full Moon Parties on the beautiful islands of Thailand.
VIPKID Online Teaching
1. Bachelors Degree in any subject
2. US/Canadian Citizen
3. Some teaching experience
You can pick your schedule :)
No Minimum teaching hours
Classes are 25 minutes (1 on 1 with student)
You are provided all teaching materials. You aren't responsible for designing your own lesson plans. Teaching materials can be downloaded 24 hours before the class.
Paid hourly $18-$22
Pay dependent on 1-hour role play with a recruiter as a student and teaching experience.
Bonuses include- attendance bonuses, trial class bonuses, 6-month review increase base bonuses. Pay is negotiable
This is my referral link. Let me know if you sign up through this link and I’ll pay you $10 after your first 1 hour of teaching :
There are so many opportunities to make extra money while teaching and traveling in Thailand. Find the side gig that speaks to you and run with it! Don't let the average Thailand teaching salary dissuade you. The sky is the limit.
What side gig speaks to you? Comment Below
About Journey to Teach Abroad:
Become a global citizen and discover life TEACHING ABROAD. Get paid to travel to stunning places, bond with an international community that you'll forever belong to, feel rewarded daily for teaching students who want to learn, and gain the confidence to discover new things. Journey to Teach Abroad is a teacher training TEFL certification course here in Los Angeles that GUARANTEES a teaching job abroad.