Moving to South Korea: Teaching English Guide

Are you thinking about moving to South Korea? South Korea's flourishing ESL industry provides an exciting opportunity for English teachers. This article serves as a comprehensive guide, offering invaluable information on how to secure teaching jobs there - from requirements and salaries, popular destinations, job types and popular career destinations - we'll show you the path toward securing one in 2024!


What are the requirements to teach English in South Korea?

To teach English in South Korea, there are some key criteria you'll need to meet:

  • Attract native English speakers from countries such as UK, Ireland, South Africa Australia New Zealand USA or Canada and fulfil them before offering your classes in Korea
  • Hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited Western university.
  • Keep your criminal history free.
  • Consider earning your TEFL certification to distinguish yourself in Korea's competitive job market.

What is the average ESL teacher salary in South Korea?

ESL teachers in South Korea enjoy competitive pay that can range from around $1,350 per month up to $3,100, depending on various factors like experience, negotiation skills, school type and location.

Private language schools known as hagwons tend to offer average monthly pay ranges between $2,000 and $2,200, whereas public school positions like those available through EPIK typically pay between 1.8-2.7 million won per month (1,380-$2,000).

Teaching positions at universities typically offer higher pay, often between $2,050 and $3,100 monthly.


What are some popular destinations for teaching English in South Korea?

South Korea provides ESL teachers with many exciting destinations. Seoul boasts numerous schools and offers ample job opportunities.

Busan offers a vibrant environment and strong demand for English education, while Daegu is known as "Apple City," offering unique cultural experiences as well as many ESL job openings.


What are my options for English teaching jobs in South Korea?

South Korea provides various types of English teaching jobs to meet individual preferences and goals.


Private language schools (Hagwons): These private language schools specialize in ESL or math tuition for their students.

Hagwons typically open for business in the evenings, late afternoons, and weekends; their average monthly pay ranges from $2,000 to $2200 per month.


Public Schools: The Korean government invests significant funds in English education via programs such as EPIK.

Public school positions provide benefits including regular work hours, medical coverage, airfare reimbursements, free housing options and paid vacation leave; their monthly salaries typically range between 1.8-2.7 million won ($1,380-$2,000).


On the other hand, universities typically offer higher pay structures.

Teaching positions at universities typically pay between $2,050 and $3,100 monthly and offer additional benefits such as housing stipends, overtime pay, medical insurance coverage and even national pension plans.


How can I improve my chances of landing a teaching job in South Korea?

To improve your chances of landing a teaching job in South Korea, follow these suggestions:

Earning a TEFL certification will sharpen your teaching abilities and make yourself more marketable.

Draft a job search plan with at least two applications submitted daily to meet recruitment efforts

Research and identify schools or regions that match your preferences and qualifications, before approaching potential schools or recruiters for interviews.

Follow up after one week if no response has been given by showing your enthusiasm and dedication in making contact.

Attend job fairs or networking events related to teaching in South Korea as they may provide invaluable connections and insights.


Teaching English in South Korea offers an exceptional experience that combines your passion for education with immersion into an intriguing culture. Thanks to high demand for ESL teachers and competitive salaries as well as various job types available here, South Korea makes for an attractive destination for educators looking for work. By fulfilling requirements and exploring popular spots while employing effective job search strategies you could turn your dream of teaching there into a reality in 2024!

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