Teaching English in Sweden

Teaching English in Sweden

Sweden Overview

Main Cities/AreasSalary range (USD/month)
Stockholm$1500 – $2000

Despite the generally excellent English language skills of the Swedish people, there is still some demand for tuition in the land of the midnight sun. This demand is usually created by foreign workers needing to learn English for a Specific Purpose (medical, finance, etc.) and Business English tuition. Very few opportunities are advertised online so you will probably have to start your search once you have arrived.

This makes it very difficult for those who do not hold an EU passport (unless they already have the essential contacts in Sweden). Note that salaries are low when compared to the high living costs but there are opportunities for EU nationals to become self-employed in the longer term.

Typical Requirements and Tips

Degree?TEFL Certification?EU National?Experience?
YesYesYesNo

Non-EU nationals should try to arrange a job and a work permit several months before arriving.

EU nationals who wish to settle in Sweden should look into opening up their own language school. Self-employed work is much more lucrative (f you have enough contacts).

As with most countries in Europe, it is a lot easier for EU nationals to find work as the paperwork required is significantly less than when applying to employ non-EU nationals.

Living costs are high and most TEFL salaries in Sweden will only just cover them. Expect to share accommodation with other teachers. The Swedish people are exceedingly sociable but eating and drinking out can do serious damage to your wallet. There is little chance of saving money each month.

Employers generally pay your income tax for you and as usual, you should expect to be paid on a monthly basis. The income tax in Sweden is notoriously high (even for those on low salaries).

Pros and Cons of Teaching in Sweden

Pros:

  • A lesser-known TEFL destination which will provide you with a unique teaching experience
  • Superb infrastructure – a very safe country
  • A beautiful country ideally suited to those who love outdoor pursuits

Cons:

  • Lots of red tape for non-EU nationals and those without considerable experience
  • Very few opportunities
  • High living costs when compared to the salaries

Fun Fact About Sweden:

An interesting fact for an English teacher about Sweden is that it has one of the highest English proficiency rates among non-native English-speaking countries. In fact, it consistently ranks among the top countries in the world for English proficiency. This is partly due to the emphasis on language education in Sweden, where students typically begin learning English as early as age six and continue throughout their education.