Call us biased, but we believe China is one of the best places in the world to teach English.
There are plenty of reasons why people choose China as an international teaching destination. In fact, there are so many reasons we’ve created a list to show you!
China is a safe country
China is a safe country to work, travel and live in. Chinese people are generally peaceful and their culture reflects that.
Despite the sheer amount of people living there, crime is relatively low. Probably the only crime you will see is crime against fashion! (Note: as Chinese society develops quickly, even this kind of crime is disappearing).
So if you’re looking for a place to live and teach where you don’t have to worry about getting pistol-whipped, China is for you.
You can earn a generous local salary
You'll likely earn at least double the average local salary, which means you'll live like a king of queen in China. Our salary calculator will show you what you can earn.
Chinese food is delicious
The Chinese know how to make delicious food. That’s because passionate cooks have been perfecting recipes for thousands of years.
Teaching in China is fun
Young Chinese students are fun to teach. They’re lively, noisy and very inquisitive. Older students, while quiet and shy to begin with, come out of their shell once they trust you and feel more comfortable in the classroom.
You’ll have plenty of fun with your fellow teachers and other adults around you. Whether it’s trying to identify peculiar foods at the dinner table or having a night out singing karaoke, you’re bound to have some incredibly fun experiences.
Demand for foreign teachers in China is high
There are over 400 million people actively learning English in China. That’s more people than the combined population of the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia.
Much of this group are considered part of China’s ‘emerging middle class’. These people are earning, consuming and demanding more than their predecessors. They’re desperate to learn English and for their children to learn English.
The high demand for foreign ESL teachers means upward pressure on salary and working conditions, and this can only be a good thing for those considering teaching abroad.
You can make money on the side in China
Because demand is high, you’ll have the opportunity to make extra money on the side as a private tutor.
Ambitious, and often wealthy, parents want their kids to receive extra attention so they can excel academically and make the family proud. This means they’re willing to pay for one-on-one tutoring outside of class hours.
Private tutoring has some great benefits for ESL teachers. If you don’t mind working a few extra hours a week, it’s an easy way to get some extra cash and you further hone your teaching craft in a one-on-one capacity.
Some schools have strict policies that prevent you from earning money outside your contract. It’s therefore important to check with your school contact before doing any extra work. Better still, see if the provision for private tutoring can be included when negotiating your contract.
Teaching in China may change your life
It might sound like a cliché, but teaching English in China could change your life.
Away from the monotony of your one-dimensional job and daily routine, you may ‘find yourself’ in a place you would least expect. You won’t know until you go.
Chinese people are friendly
You’ll make friends quickly. Why? Chinese people are friendly and inquisitive. They will want to know all about you, your family, whether you’re married and quite possibly what salary you’re on!
It’s part of the Chinese culture to ask lots of personal questions. At first this may seem strange, but you’ll get used to it and come to realise that people are just trying to be friendly.
You’ll be a welcome addition to your school. Students and their parents will look up to you, and your Chinese colleagues, while shy at first, will embrace you.
If you end up teaching adults, you’ll likely be invited to their home for a delicious banquet. It’s a way of showing they care and it's unique to the Chinese culture.
There are lots of travel opportunities in China and beyond
China is one of the largest countries in the world, and the largest in Asia. This means there’s plenty of ground for you to cover!
The Chinese government has recently invested billions of yuan (Chinese currency) in its high-speed train network to ensure that people can travel anywhere quickly and cheaply. Taking the train is a great way to see the country and it’s amazing what you can squeeze into a weekend! Beijing to Shanghai takes just half a day.
Fancy taking a trip to another country in Asia? With so many countries on China’s doorstep, you’re spoilt for choice.
For teachers located in the north, Japan and South Korea are much-loved destinations. If you’re feeling a little bit more adventurous, you could try Mongolia or Russia. For teachers in the south, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and Thailand are popular choices.
There are lots of tourist attractions in China
China is a tourist’s heaven. With a history dating back thousands of years, there’s no shortage of interesting places to visit.
Our favourites are some of the classics: the Great Wall of China in Beijing, the Terracotta Army in Xian and the Bund in Shanghai.
If you know which province you’ll be teaching in, or you’re already in China, check out our highlights and sightseeing hotspots. If you like getting off the beaten track, there are some hidden gems in places you've probably never heard of!
Chinese culture is incredible
It’s hard to sum up Chinese culture in a few paragraphs. In fact, we won’t even try! Chinese culture is something you need to experience firsthand. It’s incredibly unique, different from what you’re used to and constantly changing.
And, because China is so big and has so many people, you’ll notice distinct differences in culture when you travel to different parts of the country. There can even be distinct differences within a province.
Teach how you want to teach
If you want to have control over what you teach your students and create your own lesson plans, you can choose a more flexible school. Having a say is important for many teachers.
On the other hand, if you prefer being given set lesson plans to save on preparation time outside of class, there are numerous schools that operate this way. The choice is yours.