In the wide world of TEFL, choosing which country to teach in at first can be a challenge. There are the financially rewarding and unique Asian territories; Europe, with its diversity and high standard of living; The Middle East and Africa, for the more adventurous. So, how will you choose where to start out?
I’m often asked why I came to Japan, and there were two reasons: 1. I’m very interested in Japanese culture, and 2. I knew there was a market for private English teachers here having done some research and asked some fellow teachers about the matter. Therefore, I’d recommend doing some serious research into not only where the jobs are, but also how easy it is to live and work in certain places. When you have narrowed down your choices by the criteria of job availability and other practical reasons, ask yourself which of the remaining locations appeal to you personally.
Do your research
Living in a new country isn’t to be taken lightly. You can’t hide away in a bubble. If you want to thrive, you have to integrate. What do you know about the culture and people of your target country? Ask around on TEFL forums and travel websites about living in that country. Gather as much information and advice as you can so that you know what the potential pitfalls are, and how best to get set up there.
How an employer can help
One teacher I spoke to about this matter said their employer had been incredibly helpful in this matter. They provided detailed information on living quarters, the culture of that country and arranged for all of the smaller details of relocating to be taken care of. If you are serious about a job in a new country, ask for all the information and advice you can get from your employer. If the company is worth working for they will help you out as much as they can.