Being the third-largest city in China, Guangzhou is an exciting option for many ESL teachers wanting to live and teach English abroad. The city’s got a major trading port, a bustling scene for businesses, manufacturers, and entrepreneurs from all over the world. It’s also full of ancient sights, rich in history. Guangzhou is the birthplace of Cantonese food, so get ready to try all sorts of mouth-watering, typical Chinese cuisines!
The best thing is that there’s a huge demand for foreign ESL teachers with decent pay and benefits, while the cost of living here is quite affordable, compared to other big cities in China like Beijing and Shanghai.
Here’s everything you should know about teaching English abroad in Guangzhou, China:
Guangzhou is the third-largest city in China, following Beijing and Shanghai. Its population is around 13 million people (2018). However, it’s worth noting that the Guangzhou municipality, area, which includes Shenzhen, Foshan, and Dongguan, has 44 million residents in total. Guangzhou was made the capital city of China not once, but three times. Now it’s a major port city, a trading and manufacturing hub that is key to China’s economy.
Guangzhou is located close to the South China Sea, Hong Kong, and Macau. Its subtropical weather is humid year-round. Guangzhou got lots of rain and is evergreen in all four seasons. The rainy season starts in April and ends in early August. It’s hot and dry in July, August, and September, with regular typhoons. The cold winter is from December through February. The most comfortable months are October, November, and March.
Some more fun facts about Guangzhou, China:
- The city is nicknamed “the City of Flowers” thanks to its evergreen climate and beautiful flowers that bloom year-round.
- The Canton Tower in Guangzhou was once the world’s tallest building at an impressive 600-meter height.
- Guangzhou’s got the most number of restaurants than any other cities in China.
- Huaisheng Mosque in Guangzhou is China’s, and one of the world’s oldest mosques built 1,300 years ago.
- The Canton Fair, the oldest and most famous trade show, happens here in Guangzhou twice a year.
- 40% of the population in Guangzhou are either from other Chinese regions or other countries.
What It’s Like Living and Teaching ESL in Guangzhou, China
Guangzhou is one of the most popular destinations for foreign ESL teachers in Asia. The demand is huge for younger learners such as pre-school, kindergarten, and K12 students. However, since it’s a business hub, lots of young professionals now need to learn English for work as well so they can trade internationally.
The cost of living in Guangzhou, however, is lower than that of Hong Kong or Shenzhen. For example, here are some typical expenses in Guangzhou:
- A bus/subway ticket: 30 – 40 cents
- Utilities (electricity, water, gas, heating): ~ $40 / person / month
- A room in a shared apartment: ~ $260 to $450
- A studio: ~ $ 250 to $ 650
- A local meal out: ~ $ 5
An ESL teacher’s monthly salary in Guangzhou could range from $1,600 to $2,500, plus free accommodation, health insurance, holidays, and in some cases free Chinese lessons and performance bonuses as well.
Guangzhou is not only a shopping heaven, but it also has a rich history and lots of ancient sights to explore, plus tons of good Cantonese food! With its relatively affordable cost of living and convenience, the city is quite an attractive destination to live and teach ESL abroad in.
ESL Teaching Job Opportunities in Guangzhou
You can find a list of ESL teaching jobs in Guangzhou, China here or join our Teach English Abroad Facebook group to see daily job postings and connect with fellow ESL teachers in Guangzhou.
If it’s all too confusing and overwhelming, fill out this application form for Teaching Abroad Positions and we’ll help you find the most suitable English teaching job opportunity in Guangzhou or other popular cities in China such as Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Wuhan, and Chengdu.