Submit your own Great Escape

James Vincent

Q1. Where did you move to and when?

I moved to Tokyo in 2002

Q2. How long did you work in Thailand?

2 years

Q3. What was your main reason for moving?

I was sitting having a beer and I looked down the bar and had a vision of what would become of me. There were 5 or 6 guys sitting in a line in ascending age order from me to the last guy who was about 70 years old. I was 28.

Q4. What are the advantages of working where you are now compared to Thailand?

Aside from earning hard currency, status. In Japan you are simply another member of the workforce and so are afforded the same rights as everybody else.

Q5. What do you miss about life in Thailand?

Weekend breaks to Ko Samet.

Q6. Would you advise a new teacher to seek work in Thailand or where you are now?

I don't think one is better than the other for a new teacher. If you are looking for a cultural experience then both countries have a lot to offer. If you are seeking a career as a TEFL teacher I don't think it matters where you go in Asia. You will always face problems and obstructions. So, the place you arrive at matters less than your determination to do a good job.

Q7. Any plans to return to Thailand one day?

To work, no.

Q8. Anything else you'd like to add?

You really just have to go with the flow in Asia. Whether we like it or not TEFL is very much a business where we as teachers deliver a product. And to that end customers have to be provided with what they want (which is not necessarily what they need).

Read more Great Escapes

Submit your own Great Escape

Featured Jobs

Full-time Native Japanese Teacher

฿45,000+ / month


Part-time French and English Teachers

฿330+ / hour


MYP Head of Maths

฿120,000+ / month


Shadow Teacher

฿20,000+ / month

Pathum Thani

Early Years Teacher

฿70,000+ / month


NES English, Science and Math Teachers

฿42,300+ / month


Featured Teachers

  • Thricia

    Filipino, 24 years old. Currently living in Philippines

  • Ika

    Filipino, 28 years old. Currently living in Thailand

  • Berry

    Malaysian, 46 years old. Currently living in Thailand

  • Claudette

    Filipino, 32 years old. Currently living in Hong Kong

  • Aleksandar

    Serbian, 35 years old. Currently living in Thailand

  • Ruby

    Filipino, 27 years old. Currently living in Philippines

The Hot Spot

The Region Guides

The Region Guides

Fancy working in Thailand but not in Bangkok? Our region guides are written by teachers who actually live and work in the provinces.

The cost of living

The cost of living

How much money does a teacher need to earn in order to survive in Thailand? We analyze the facts.

Need Thailand insurance?

Need Thailand insurance?

Have a question about health or travel insurance in Thailand? Ricky Batten from Pacific Prime is Ajarn's resident expert.

Teacher mistakes

Teacher mistakes

What are the most common mistakes that teachers make when they are about to embark on a teaching career in Thailand? We've got them all covered.

Will I find work in Thailand?

Will I find work in Thailand?

It's one of the most common questions we get e-mailed to us. So find out exactly where you stand.

The dreaded demo

The dreaded demo

Many schools ask for demo lessons before they hire. What should you the teacher be aware of?

Air your views

Air your views

Got something to say on the topic of teaching, working or living in Thailand? The Ajarn Postbox is the place. Send us your letters!

Contributions welcome

Contributions welcome

If you like visiting and reading the content, why not get involved yourself and keep us up to date?