Getting a Job Teaching English (ESL)

Getting a job is one of the first steps in traveling abroad to teach English. Ok, simple enough, but where does one start? There are no less than 5 million recruiters, YouTube videos, ESL forums, and blogs out there offering advice and direction (and some less desirable commentary).

I see ESL instruction as a long-term endeavor for myself. This realization has led me to research many of the opportunities around the world in multiple industries. I’ve scoped out recruiters, found many job posting portals and forums, researched requirements, and have kept myself abreast of the latest jobs in East Asia, South East Asia, and the Middle East, as well as South America – my ultimate goal!

I try to answer readers’ questions and post information when possible. It’s a harrowing endeavor finding recruiters, gathering documentation and choosing the right school. Hopefully something I have to offer will lessen that burden for you. As always, feel free to ask anything you like. I try to answer every email I receive.

Get started with Getting a Job Teaching English (ESL)


  1. Hi Tom,
    My name is Wayne and I love watching your videos on Youtube. They are very informative and I respect you for telling it like it is. One of my plans is to teach English in South Korea soon. Keep on posting those great videos.

    • Thanks, Wayne! Good luck finding a position in Korea. You can always message me on my Facebook page if you have any questions.

      • Avatar Wayne McKenzie says:

        No problem!!! I recently applied for the JET Program Japan and I’m excited. The only issue that I have is they will interview me in February and won’t know if I got into the program until April. One of my goals is to teach English in the public schools, but would have to wait until July/August to get in. I am thinking about teaching in a private school for one year and switching over to public school afterwards. Would you know anyone that has done this? If you do, just let me know. I would really appreciate it.

  2. Just graduated college a week ago and this coming October I have been accepted to participate in a volunteer organization in the US called Americorps. After that my dream for a few years now is to join the peace corps. I was wondering if peace corps experience would make me a more attractive candidate for ESL teaching?

  3. Hey! I just started my new blog. I love yours and can’t wait to dig deeper into it! I actually found you on the infamous YouTube! You have great information…. thank you 🙂

  4. Avatar Austin Holmes says:

    Hey Tom!

    Thanks for all the information you provide on your blog! My wife and I would love to teach English for a year as I take the year off before going to medical school. We both have a BA (Biochemistry and Theology) from accredited Universities and we plan on getting our TESOL soon (from LinguaEdge). But I’m wondering about the process of applying as a couple. We don’t particularly care if we teach at different schools, as long as at least one of us has a reasonable commute. We would definitely live together as well.

    What is your advice? We want to get in somewhere this summer.

    -With gratitude,


    • Austin,

      That is entirely doable. There are schools from time to time that are looking for couples. Also, it’s possible to find teaching jobs within the same city so you have some different options. If you’d like to send me your resume, I can forward it to my recruiting associate to see how they can help. My email is



  5. Avatar Austin Holmes says:

    Hey Tom!

    I have a few questions…

    What is your advice for applying as a couple? Would there be special housing accommodations? Also, do some schools offer to find your own housing?



    • Austin,

      If a school is hiring a couple, then the apartment would be larger to accommodate. The school will typically find the apartment for you before you get here in Korea.


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