Teaching English in Thailand - the upsides and the downsides

Teaching English abroad is a journey filled with trade-offs, each offering its own set of adventures and challenges.

If the idea of jet-setting as an English teacher is tickling your fancy, let's dive deeper into the pros and cons. Here's a more detailed and friendly look at the wonderful world of teaching English in Thailand.


Why become an English teacher?

A job that brings challenges and rewards every single day

When it comes to picking your dream job, some options just leap out at you. Wine taster, travel writer, movie critic: who wouldn’t fancy any of those? Teaching, on the other hand, is a more maligned profession.


Is TEFL management the right choice?

What exactly would I be giving up if I became a manager?

Something I love about TEFL work is that as soon as I walk out of the door each day, I don’t have to think about my job. That’s certainly not true as a manager.


I was warned about this

Postbox letter from Bangkok

When I started my second year here, all my friends and family told me I should just go home and that English teaching isn't really a career. I was having too much fun to take any notice of this unsolicited advice.


The importance of a syllabus to aid lesson planning

No experience, no certification, no degree? English teachers required?

Not being prepared remains a major contributing factor to beginner teacher burn-out with pressure and stress, therefore and with tongue in cheek, let's collectively dip our proverbial toes into the enticing newbie paddling pool of TEFL.


Will I find work in Thailand?

Is there a definitive answer to this incredibly common question?

I wish I could look at the main scenarios, the reasons teachers ask if they will find work in Thailand, and give everyone a straight "yes, you will" or "no, you won't" answer. But unfortunately it's nowhere near that straightforward.


Teacher mistakes

Avoid falling into any of these teacher traps

Ajarn has put together a list of the most common mistakes that teachers make in Thailand - both new arrivals and those who have been here a while.


So what can you do with a TEFL/TESOL certificate?

One teacher's TEFL journey

My first introduction the TEFL/TESOL world was an online TEFL certificate. Online was chosen because I was working on a cruise ship and obviously couldn't attend physical classes. I then finished the cruise ship work and wanted to live and work in Asia.


Teaching in the sticks

31 cool and awesome things about living and teaching in rural Thailand

Before we get into the list I just want to mention that everything is written in good fun. Expats and Thailand veterans will understand more than first timers. Certain sentences and parts reflect my own specific experience more so than the general one. Some of it might come across as sappy, but I've had a very positive experience in Thailand and the glass is half full for me.


Why study English?

Or for that matter, why teach English as well?

For most Thai students the answer is obvious: it's a requirement. For many English teachers, especially foreign teachers, it's a job: a way to make money and keep their work visa current.


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The Hot Spot


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.


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.


Contributions welcome

Contributions welcome

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


The dreaded demo

The dreaded demo

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


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 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.


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.


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!