Teach English

Discover 14 Countries Where You Can Teach English Without A Degree

There are millions of articles out there on how you can migrate abroad through study and how you can secure jobs abroad with your degree as a graduate, but few about how non-graduates can secure full-time jobs abroad. If you are considering working and migrating abroad and you do not have a university degree, then I’ll advise you to read more. 

In this article, you will discover 14 of the best countries where you can teach English without a degree. All the countries I will discuss below employ teachers without a Bachelor’s degree, but prepare for a competitive job search as many schools will still prefer to hire graduates. I strongly recommend that you get TEFL-certified as this will help you in your job search. Any classroom experience you can get will also stand you in good stead. 

I know looking for where you can teach English without a degree abroad can be so confusing that you might want to close your eyes, pick a marker, mark a point on a map and fly! But don’t worry, this article is here to clear things up a bit. I write primarily this article for those of you who don’t have a University degree, although it should also give some useful information for those of you who do and for people who do have a strong interest in teaching. For detailed information, I divide this article into four parts, which include;

Top 14 Countries Where You Can Teach English Without a Degree

1. Kazakhstan

When you think of Asia, you might not immediately think of Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan is the largest landlocked country in the world and boasts the second-coldest capital city in the world. Expats report that as long as you dress for the weather, it isn’t too much of an issue. Kazakhstan is placed in Level 1 countries by the US Department of State, which means it is one of the safest countries in the world to live in. There are some Kazakhs who speak English, but they are few and most are 35 years or younger. The most useful language for the region is Russian, since Kazakhstan was part of the Soviet Union for many years, so there is a high demand for English teachers in the country.

English teachers are in high demand in big cities like Nur-Sultan, Almaty, Karaganda, Pavlodar and in smaller cities, but not that high, with lower earnings. You can get jobs in private or public schools, a lyceum, a gymnasium, or a university. In private schools, you get to offer English classes to people of different ages and salaries are way higher, with more benefits, of course, with higher degrees. The low cost of living goes hand-in-hand with low average salaries, but it should allow you to live comfortably. Expats report utilities are cheap, so you do not need to worry about a sky-high heating bill as well. Some employers also offer accommodation as part of their package. 

So, if you plan to teach English in Kazakhstan, an accredited CELTA / TESOL certificate, or IELTS / TOEFL if you are not a native speaker, is often required, depending on the language school. English teachers in primary or secondary state schools might not need these certificates. All you need is, apply for a Kazakhstan visa from the Kazakhstan Embassy before you travel, then your employer will assist you with any necessary paperwork. 

  • Hiring Season: Schools in Kazakhstan hire all year round. 
  • Contract length: Initial contracts are typically 6 or 12 months. 
  • Age groups: In Kazakhstan, work is available to teach adults or children. 
  • Salary: $400–$1500. Some come with free housing and/or reimbursed flights.

Some websites you can use to search for jobs in Kazakhstan are:

2. Spain

Spain is a developed country with amazing cultural heritage and great transport links to the rest of Europe. She is the only country in Western Europe where you can get a teaching job without a degree. Most of the teaching work is in the capital, Madrid, and the major cities of Barcelona, Seville, and Valencia. To teach English without a degree in Spain, you need to have a TEFL certification! A typical schedule includes 20-25 teaching hours per week, giving you the chance to enjoy your free time. With a teacher’s salary in Spain, you will live comfortably even though you may not save much money while teaching in Spain. 

If you want to earn more money, you could offer to teach online, offering private tuition, or working at a summer camp. To apply for a visa, EU citizens do not need a work visa for Spain, but you will need to apply for a residence and work permit after arriving. Requirements vary for citizens of other countries. You must apply for a Schengen Visa as a Nigerian citizen to travel to Spain. Just remember, this visa is created for short-term visits, regardless of the purpose (business, tourism, etc.). But, if you want to travel to Spain for the long term, get a National Spanish Visa and your employer will assist you with the visa process.                  

  • Hiring season: Schools in Spain typically hire in September and January. 
  • Contract lengths: Initial contracts are typically 10 or 12 months. 
  • Age groups: In Spain, you can teach business professionals and children. 
  • Salary: $1,250–$1,850.

Some websites you can use to search for jobs in Spain are:

3. Egypt

Egypt has a high rate of demand for English teachers despite the recent political crisis. We found most of the teaching jobs in the capital, Cairo, and other major cities, such as Alexandria. How lovely will it be to visit those pyramids and teach English in Egypt? Egypt has a rich cultural heritage and fascinating history, so you will not be short of interesting things to see and do during your free time. The cost of living is very affordable in Egypt, and you could afford decent accommodation and a comfortable standard of living on a typical teacher’s salary. To teach English in Egypt, a degree is not required, but you should have a TEFL qualification. While it is still a safe country, expats should be cautious and stay up to date with security advice. For obtaining a visa, your school may sponsor your work visa and will advise you about the process. 

  • Hiring season: Schools in Egypt hire all year round, but peak season is from May to August. 
  • Contract lengths: Typical teaching contracts are for 6 or 12 months. 
  • Age groups: In Egypt, you can teach adults or children.
  • Salary: $250–$500

Some websites you can use to search for jobs in Egypt are:

4. Cambodia

Cambodia is a developing country on the Indochinese mainland of Southeast Asia and one of the poorest countries in the world, so living and working there can be challenging. The infrastructure is poor and the visible social inequality can be distressing. However, there are lots of opportunities to get involved with charity work and volunteering if you choose to do so. 

This South-East Asian country is well-known for its spectacular Angkor Wat temple complex. We find most of the teaching jobs in the capital, Phnom Penh, and in Siem Reap. Cambodia is popular with tourists and expats alike for its easy-going pace of life and affordable cost of living. On a typical teacher’s salary, you can easily afford to rent a decent apartment, eat out often and take trips during the school holidays. You can expect to save about $100-$300/month without too much trouble. To get a Cambodia Visa: Buy a 30-day business visa on arrival and your employer will help you extend it and help you in getting a work permit. 

  • Hiring season: Schools in Cambodia hire all year round. 
  • Contract length: Initial contracts are typically 6 or 12 months. 
  • Age groups: In Cambodia, you can teach adults or children. 
  • Salary: $700–$1,000.

Some websites you can use to search for jobs in Cambodia are:

5. Mexico

Mexico is one of the largest job markets for English language teaching jobs in Latin America and is a widely varied country that offers something for everyone. Whether you love trekking through mountains, lounging on the beach or exploring ancient Aztec ruins, there’s bound to be a part of Mexico that suits you down to the ground. Mexico has a fairly low cost of living, meaning that on a teacher’s salary, you’ll be able to afford to live comfortably and enjoy your free time. If you are a fan of the Spanish language like me, Mexico is a great place to brush up on your Spanish, which is ideal if you want to go on and explore the rest of Latin America. Salary-wise, you can expect to break even, but may not save much money while teaching in Mexico.

Understandably, pick an area wisely because of the prevalence of drug cartels. Some states are pretty much no-go areas. Citizens of the UK and US do not need a visa to enter Mexico. Citizens of other countries (Nigerians) need to apply for the right visa–consult your nearest Mexican consulate or embassy for more information. 

  • Hiring season: Schools in Mexico hire all year round. 
  • Contract length: Typical contract lengths are 6 or 12 months. 
  • Age groups: In Mexico, opportunities are available for teaching adults or children. 
  • Salary: $500–$800.

Some websites you can use to search for jobs in Mexico are:

6. Russia

Russia is one of the world’s largest and fastest-growing markets for English language teaching jobs. We found most teaching jobs in the capital, Moscow, or the major cities of St. Petersburg, Vladimir, Yekaterinburg, Omsk, and Novosibirsk. Russia has a fascinating culture, as well as plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities such as skiing. The cost of living in Russia is reasonable, and you should be able to afford to live comfortably on a typical teacher’s salary. 

They do not require a degree to teach in Russia, although you must have TEFL certification. You may not save much money while teaching in Russia because the cost of living can be expensive in Moscow and St Petersburg, but there are opportunities for lucrative private tuition to help you boost your salary. Expats sometimes report finding the locals cold and unapproachable, but if you attempt to learn to speak some Russian, it will certainly help you. To get a Russian visa, your school will typically sponsor your work visa and will guide you through the process. 

  • Hiring Season: Schools in Russia hire all year round, but especially in September and January. 
  • Contract length: A teaching contract in Russia is typically 12 months.
  • Age group: In Russia, you can teach adults or children. 
  • Salary: $500–$1,400. They sometimes include flights and accommodation in the package.

Some websites you can use to search for jobs in Russia are:

7. Georgia

Georgia is a small country at the eastern end of the Black Sea and on the southern flanks of the Greater Caucasus Mountains. She was formerly part of the Soviet Union. They based most of the teaching work in the capital, Tbilisi. Georgia is great for teachers looking for something a little off the beaten track. In your free time, you can choose from outdoor activities such as hiking or skiing. You can teach in Georgia without a degree, although a TEFL certificate is also required. Georgia has a low cost of living and you could live on as little as $220/month. You can expect it to cover your expenses as the cost of living is so low, but you may not save much money from your teaching salary. You can enter Georgia through a tourist visa. The requirements will vary according to your nationality. 

  • Hiring season: Schools in Georgia hire all year round. 
  • Contract length: A teaching contract is typically for 6 or 12 months. 
  • Age group: In Georgia, you would most likely teach children. 
  • Salary: $220

Some websites you can use to search for jobs in Georgia are:

8. Laos

We sometimes overlook Laos on the Southeast Asia circuit, but she has much to offer teachers who choose to make her their home. Laos is a beautiful and peaceful country with year-round warm weather. The main allure is the gorgeous unspoilt landscape, with its lush rice paddies and thick jungles. Although the cost of living is low–you could live on as little as $500/month. Laos has a famously sleepy vibe and relaxed pace of life. The major cities, Vientiane and Pakse, have small communities of expats, so you’ll have some options for meeting people and socializing. During your school holidays, you can easily take a short flight to visit neighbouring countries like Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia or Myanmar. 

The major challenge about living in Laos is that it is a poor and underdeveloped country, so you may find that you don’t have all the comforts that you are used to from home. To enter Laos, you may enter on a tourist visa and your employer can help you apply for the work visa once you have started employment. 

  • Hiring season: You can find work in Laos all year round. 
  • Contract length: Typical teaching contracts are for 6 or 12 months. 
  • Age groups: Teach adults or children.
  • Salary: $500–$1,000.

Some websites you can use to search for jobs in Laos are:

9. Argentina

Argentina is also one of the largest job markets for English language teaching jobs in South America, so there’s an $800-$900 opportunity for you. Argentina is a large and varied country with plenty to see and experience in your free time. It’s great for people who love the outdoors–you can easily hop on an inexpensive train and head for the beautiful countryside. Expats enjoy the relatively low cost of living in Argentina, and many teachers save even more money by sharing accommodation with coworkers or other expats. 

The teaching workload and duration is typically light, and you can expect to teach around 20-25 hours per week. Wages and salaries are relatively low. However, you can boost up your earnings by teaching English online or doing private tuition, which will give you some extra spending money. Citizens from many countries do not need a visa to enter Argentina. Once you arrive, your employer will help you get the work permit and working visa. 

  • Hiring season: Schools in Argentina typically hire in Feb/Mar and July/Aug. 
  • Contract length: Contracts are typically for 6 or 12 months.
  • Age groups: In Argentina, you will mostly teach adult business professionals. 
  • Salary: $600–$1,100.

Some websites you can use to search for jobs in Argentina are:

Related: Top 5 VISA-FREE destinations for Nigerians  

10. Brazil

Brazil is another large market for English language teaching jobs in South America. Most expats in Brazil live in larger cities such as Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Recife and Salvador. Brazil is a fantastic country that has everything from beautiful beaches to jungles and mountains. The average monthly cost of living is roughly equal to the average salary in Brazil. Most English-language schools in Brazil do not interview teachers by phone or Skype and will prefer you to attend a face-to-face interview, so your job search may involve some legwork. Citizens from many countries can arrive in Brazil without a visa, and others will need to apply for a visa in advance. Your employer will advise you on the visa process. 

  • Hiring season: Schools in Brazil typically hire from Mar-Aug. 
  • Contract lengths: Teaching contracts are usually for 6 or 12 months. 
  • Age groups: In Brazil, you can expect to teach mostly business professionals. 
  • Salary: $800–$1,300

Some websites you can use to search for jobs in Brazil are:

11. Peru

This mountainous South American country has a growing English language teaching industry, particularly in the capital, Lima. Peru has many spectacular sights to see, including the ruined ancient city of Machu Picchu. The cost of living in Peru is low, and you can live comfortably on a typical teacher’s salary. The major challenge about teaching in Peru is that it is a developing country–it does not have modern public transport, for example. To teach in Peru, you can enter Peru on a tourist visa. Visa requirements vary according to your nationality–check with your nearest consulate or embassy for more information. 

  • Hiring Seasons: There are two main hiring seasons in Peru–Feb-Mar and July-Aug. 
  • Contracts: They may offer you a contract for 3, 6 or 12 months. 
  • Age groups: You will mostly teach adult business professionals in Peru. 
  • Salary: $500–$1,000.

Some websites you can use to search for jobs in Peru are:

12. Lebanon

This Mediterranean gem boasts both beautiful beaches and fantastic ski resorts. Most English teaching jobs are in the capital, Beirut, but also the major cities Tripoli, Sidon, and Byblos. Beirut is a well-developed and cosmopolitan capital, where you won’t be short of places to spend your free time. Elsewhere in Lebanon, you can enjoy outdoor pursuits such as trekking or skiing. The English language is widely spoken in Lebanon, so it shouldn’t be too hard for expats to communicate in everyday life. Your teacher’s salary will afford you a noble quality of life and allow you to enjoy your free time. You can teach English in Lebanon without a degree, although many schools prefer to hire graduates.

The cost of living can be high in Lebanon, especially in Beirut. Another disadvantage of Beirut is that there is no public transport, so you may spend a lot of money on taxis. Some schools will sponsor your work visa, while some may not.

  • Hiring season: Schools in Lebanon hire all year round. 
  • Contract length: Typical teaching contracts are for 6 or 12 months. 
  • Age groups: In Lebanon, work is available teaching adults and children. 
  • Salary: $900–$1,500

Some websites you can use to search for jobs in Lebanon are:

13. Costa Rica

Costa Rica is an amazing Central American country bordered by Nicaragua to the North and Panama to the South. It has beaches on both the Caribbean and Pacific coasts and is a popular destination for tourists. It is also one country with a high demand for English teachers. The cost of living in Costa Rica is relatively affordable, and you can live comfortably on a teacher’s salary. The capital, San Jose, has great nightlife, colourful markets and a lively ex-pat community. A major challenge is that earthquakes are very common in Costa Rica and you would have to consider how this would affect you before deciding to work there. Citizens of many countries do not require a visa to enter Costa Rica, while citizens of some countries will need to get a tourist visa in advance. 

  • Hiring season: Schools in Costa Rica hire all year round. 
  • Contract length: Contracts are typically for 12 months. 
  • Age groups: In Costa Rica, you will mostly teach adult business professionals. 
  • Salary: $700–$900.

Some websites you can use to search for jobs in Costa Rica are:

14. South Korea

Teaching English in Korea is a fantastic way to save money and get under the skin of this fascinating culture. It also offers many opportunities to travel extensively around East and Southeast Asia. Moving to Korea to teach English is one of the best life decisions you would ever make. 

If teaching English in Korea is something you’re considering, or you’re interested in, then why not make the move now? The salary you can earn teaching English in Korea is one of the highest in the TEFL world. The cost of living is also very affordable, meaning you can save a huge chunk of that generous paycheck every month. If you have little (or indeed zero) teaching experience–no worries! Compared to other high paying English teaching opportunities in the Middle East, for example, it’s relatively easy to secure a job in Korea regardless of your experience. The generous pay isn’t the only financial draw, either. Standard benefits for foreign English teachers in Korea include a free furnished apartment, return flights from your home country to Korea and a bonus of one month’s salary upon completion of your 12-month contract. Your employer will cover 50% of your medical insurance costs. Finally, income tax is a mere 3.3%.

  • Hiring season: Schools in South Korea hire all year round. 
  • Contract length: Contracts are typically for 12 months. 
  • Age groups: In South Korea, you will mostly teach adult business professionals. 
  • Salary: $1,350-$2650.

Some websites you can use to search for jobs in South Korea are:

9 Sites Where You Can Teach English Online Without a Degree 

If you are someone like me who doesn’t enjoy being tied down to a particular place, then working remotely might just be what you need. Below are nine sites where you can teach English online without a degree from the comfort of your home.

To be eligible to teach on these platforms, you must have at least a TEFL Certification.

4 Essential Things To Have Before Applying For Teaching Jobs Abroad.

Hopefully, you’re brimming now with ideas and you can’t wait to pack your bags and move to your dream teaching job country. First, there are essential things you need to have and put in place before making that journey and for you to secure that English teaching job. I recommend getting these 4 essential things before you go to live your dream job in an unfamiliar country. These things will give you the best possible chance for success when you teach English without a degree abroad.

A TEFL Certificate

TEFL is an acronym that stands for Teaching English as a Foreign Language. Essentially, it involves instructing non-English speakers on how to read, write, and speak English. This shows that you’ve had professional-level training that meets internationally recognized TEFL standards. A legitimate and recognized TEFL class must have a minimum of 100 hours of coursework, 6-20+ hours of live practice teaching with non-native English learners, it is accredited by a recognized body within the field, and recipients must be taught by university-level instructors. Find out more about becoming qualified here. What is TEFL Certification?  

Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is an insurance product for covering unforeseen losses incurred while travelling, either internationally or domestically. This is crucial while planning to travel abroad. With Travel Insurance, you get secured against personal accidents and medical emergencies. 

Flights

To get the best flight deals to anywhere in the world, download the Skyscanner App or you could book your flight ticket on their website. It has everything from flights to hotels to car rental.

Related: How to get cheap accommodation and flights (PDF)  

The Right Visa

Apply for the right visa to avoid your application being denied. If officials interpreted the mistake as an attempt to mislead or deceive, they will refuse your application, leading to you losing your job and if the application is for entry clearance, it will also lead to a 10-year ban on re-entry. Your employer can advise you on what visa to get after getting the teaching position. To avoid getting scammed or getting the wrong visa, shop these Travel-requirements-and-visa-protocols available on our website. Need more guidance? Subscribe to UrbanNomads and speak to an agent who is ready to guide and help you with your visa process.

Wrap Up

Are you still concerned about what you can do without a degree?  Do you have an interest in teaching? Where is your dream job? I believe this article might have answered a sizable chunk of your questions. In doubt, the UrbanNomads team is always here to support you in every of your migration and job searches abroad. To have access to our competent travel experts, subscribe to the Japa Plan and let us help you get your dream teaching job. 

Are there other countries where you can teach without a degree that you want to add to this list? Are you teaching English in one of these countries already remotely or live in? How is it going? Kindly comment below in the comment box!

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3 Comments

  1. This is very thoughtful of you.
    Thank you for the eye opener.
    please keep it up . I planned to attend a TEFL class kindly help me on how to go on.

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