Teaching English in Thailand

Teaching English in Thailand

Thailand Overview

Main Cities/AreasSalary range (USD/month)
Bangkok, Surat Thani, and throughout the country$750 – $2000

Many people fall in love with Thailand and think about extending their holiday indefinitely by becoming a teacher. There are certainly plenty of opportunities out there, but pay is low and you face plenty of competition for the better jobs. It is time-consuming to arrange a work visa once you are in Thailand (you have to visit a neighboring country for the paperwork and then come back again) but only a relatively small proportion of the opportunities available are advertised online. Demand remains high for English tuition just as salaries remain rather low. Female teachers are more sought after because of the already high proportion of male teachers.

Flag of Thailand - Wikipedia

Typical Requirements

Degree?TEFL Certification?Experience?

The best schools only employ teachers with a degree although it is still just about possible to find work if you have lots of relevant teaching experience and are able to convince authorities of this. But it will be tough (unless you work illegally).

In order to teach legally in Thailand, you need a work permit. Whilst there are lots of teachers who do not have this it is strongly advisable that you do not consider accepting an offer of employment unless there is a guarantee of a work permit paid for by your employer. This should be arranged before you arrive in Thailand because otherwise it will entail leaving the country and returning again on the proper work visa. Once you have the work visa you then need to apply for the teacher’s license but you are free to teach in the meantime (as long as you get one within 2 years of arriving).

Pros and Cons of Teaching in Thailand


  • There are lots of TEFL opportunities
  • Your students will be easy to teach and pleasant
  • Lots to do within the country and network of ex-pats


  • Hard to find a job unless you are already in Thailand
  • Lots of competition for jobs
  • Not much opportunity for career development