5 Things To Know About Teaching English Abroad in Taiwan
Taiwan is known for its culture-rich and diverse landscape, from urban cities to beautiful coast, nice beaches, tall mountains, and amazing hot springs. The country also brings plenty of great opportunities for foreigners to become ESL teachers.
Here are five things to know about teaching English in Taiwan:
1. Can I Find an ESL Teaching Job in Taiwan?
To teach English in Taiwan, you must be a native English speaker. Hence, you must be a passport holder from Canada, the United States, Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Ireland or South Africa. You’re also required to have at least a 2-year Associate Degree along with a TEFL or TESOL certificate (many schools in Taiwan actually prefer a 4-year Bachelor Degree).
Having satisfied the requirements above, you still need to be 20 years old and up, as well as to pass a criminal background check and a health check in order to obtain a Taiwan work visa. This visa will allow you to achieve your Alien Resident Certificate.
Overall, it’s not recommended to arrive in Taiwan on a visitor’s visa then look for work. It’s illegal and risky. If Taiwan immigration knows that you’re looking for a job on such a short-term visa, you’ll not be granted the visa or worse, banned from the country for five years.
2. How Much Money Will I Make as an English Teacher in Taiwan?
You can expect an average of $16 to $23 per hour, and around 30 hours of teaching per week. Your one-month paycheck comes around $2,000 to $2,400 for teaching English at public schools, $1,400 to $2,100 for teaching English at private schools. This is not to mention performance bonuses, housing allowances, and overtime pays, depending on your particular job.
This will be more than enough for you to afford Taiwan’s cost of living. Rent is as little as $180 for a single room and as much as $600 for an entire apartment with two or three bedrooms. Food costs between $3 to $5 or less for an entrée at a normal restaurant. Though dishes will cost higher at luxurious or Western-style restaurants. Overall, many ESL teachers could save money while in Taiwan.
3. Where Should I Live in Taiwan?
There are four major cities with most ESL teaching jobs in Taiwan:
- Taipei is the capital and largest city in Taiwan. It’s most accommodating for foreigners with the highest number of English teaching jobs. The city is also an epicenter of publishing, arts, and music. However, it’s most expensive to live in and has furious competition.
- Kaohsiung is an industrial city down South of Taiwan, and the second largest city. It has modern facilities, yet is lesser known to many Westerners living in Taiwan. The population of ESL teachers here in the past few years has grown rapidly.
- Taichung is located a few hours south of Taipei and also has numerous English teachers. It’s the third largest city in Taiwan with more affordable real estate. Thus, it’s packed with foreigner-owned restaurants and bars in one small area of the city. It has one of the best weather year-round in Taiwan.
- Tainan is a smaller city with fewer teaching jobs, thus weaker competition. You’ll find a bit more of a culture shock living in this area if you don’t know the language. However, there’s a small bonding foreigner community living in this area.
4. What Types of Teaching Jobs Are Available in Taiwan?
ESL teaching opportunities in Taiwan include:
- Private schools (including “buxibans” aka private after-school schools for children)
- Public schools
5. Is It Easy To Live in Taiwan?
You don’t need to know Mandarin to live in Taiwan, though it would definitely help make your life easier. There’s a large Buddhist population in Taiwan with many vegetarian options. The people are super friendly, and you may get special treatment sometimes being a foreigner. With a large population of foreigners living and teaching in Taiwan, it should be quite easy to fit in!
Transportation is super convenient in large cities like Taipei and Kaohsiung. People rely heavily on public transportation and scooters. Having a car is a luxury in Taiwan. There’s a free Go bus equipped with large comfortable chairs and TVs that transports conveniently between cities in Taiwan.
Are you looking for opportunities to teach English abroad in Taiwan? Check out our Teach English Abroad Facebook group for daily job listings.