Teaching English in Latin America

Teaching English in Latin America


Latin America is home to some of the most talkative and sociable groups of people on the planet. The larger-than-life characters who reside in every English class will ensure that your teaching career in this part of the world is nothing short of a joyous and passionate experience.

There is an increasing demand for native English teachers by the business communities of large cities in South America, including Buenos Aires, Bogota, and Mexico City. Because of strong commercial links, the preference is for American English as opposed to British English so American and Canadian teachers may be at an advantage. In addition, those who can speak Spanish or Portuguese will also find settling in a great deal easier.

Work is available at the usual language center franchises although many starting jobs are paid by the hour and it can take time to build up the contacts to obtain a good salary. Flights from/to the teacher’s country of origin are only very occasionally paid for by the company. Several nations in South America have bilingual schools that generally pay better than language centers. In many cases, it is much easier to find work β€˜on the ground’ as speculative emails are often not replied to if sent from overseas. Check the local English language press when in the country. Living costs vary. This region of the world is perhaps the most vibrant of all. Just think of all the festivals and carnivals!

Locations and Salary

CountryMain Cities/AreasSalary range (USD/month)
ArgentinaBuenos Aires$800 – $1500
BelizeBelmopan$500 – $800
BoliviaLa Paz, Santa Cruz$500 – $1000
BrazilSao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro$800 – $1500
ChileSantiago, Iquique, Puerto Montt$800 – $1500
ColombiaBogota$700 – $1000
Costa RicaSan Jose$800 – $1300
EcuadorQuito, Cuenca$600 – $1200
GuatemalaGuatemala City, Antigua$500 – $1200
HondurasTegucigalpa, San Pedro Sula$500 – $1200
MexicoMexico City, Chiapas$800 – $1500
NicaraguaGranada, Managua$500 – $800
PanamaPanama City$800 – $1500
ParaguayAsuncion$500 – $1000
PeruLima, Cusco$500 – $1200
Puerto RicoSan Juan, Ponce$1200 – $2000
UruguayMontevideo$500 – $1000
VenezuelaCaracas$500 – $1000

Typical Job Requirements

CountryDegree?TEFL Certification?Experience?
Costa RicaNoYesNo
Puerto RicoYesYesNo

Fun Fact About Latin America:

One interesting fact about Latin America that would be of interest to an English teacher is that it is home to the most Spanish speakers in the world. With over 400 million people speaking Spanish as their first language, Latin America offers a vast range of dialects, accents, and cultural nuances within the Spanish language. This diversity can provide an enriching learning experience for English teachers and their students, as it presents opportunities to explore various regional differences, idiomatic expressions, and literary traditions across Latin American countries.