Teaching English in Vietnam

Teaching English in Vietnam

Vietnam Overview

Main Cities/AreasSalary range (USD/month)
Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Haiphong$1200 – $2500

Vietnam is one of the best places in Asia for teaching English. An interesting culture, stunning natural scenery, and a huge demand for English tuition make it one of the most popular destinations. Most jobs are in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon) and it is worth reading up on the different characteristics of the two cities in order to be able to focus on vacancies in your preferred location. Salaries are perhaps the best in the Mekong region and there is a lively ex-pat scene in both main cities.

Flag of Vietnam - Wikipedia

Typical Requirements

Degree?TEFL Certification?Experience?
YesYes1-2 Years

Experienced teachers without a degree can obtain a work permit if they can demonstrate that they have worked for 5-7 years as a teacher.

If you don’t get enough hours from your employer, consider working for a second school or language center. This is quite common. The British Council employs part-time staff on an excellent hourly rate.

Normally teachers arrive on a tourist visa and then convert it into a business visa with the help of their employer. Unlike neighboring countries, you do not have to leave Vietnam and return on the new visa. However, a work permit also requires a health check and a criminal records check from your country of origin. If possible, obtain a criminal records check before arriving in Vietnam because it costs more and takes longer if you try to get one once you have arrived. The work permit is valid for 3 years and allows you annual business visas sponsored by your employer.

Transport, food, and accommodation are all quite cheap in Vietnam but bear in mind that you will probably be charged more for many goods because you are a foreigner.

Pros and Cons of Teaching in Thailand:


  • Lots of demand and jobs
  • Good pay relative to the rest of Southeast Asia
  • Cheap cost of living and delicious food


  • The process of becoming a teacher in Vietnam not only requires the usual certificates and experience. You also need a health check and a police check from your country of origin
  • As a foreigner, you will be charged a higher price for many goods and services
  • Some people complain of an unfriendliness towards foreigners – particularly in North Vietnam