So you’ve decided to teach internationally and set your sights on Dubai and Abu Dhabi, but with more people applying to each job there than anywhere else in the world, salaries which have dropped year on year and strict visa requirements which rule out a lot of excellent teachers from consideration you may want to widen your job search to other locations to ensure you make the most of your international experience…

With that in mind we’ve put together this list of 8 other locations that may well be worth looking into.

Qatar

Often referred to as ‘the new Dubai’, Qatar’s capital Doha has almost everything you would find in Dubai, just on a slightly smaller scale. With a strong expat community, a prevalence of English speakers and all the Western shops, restaurants, sports clubs and bars you could need, life in Qatar is good. The country as a whole is one of the most liberal in the Middle East while still offering a cultural experience.

With good tax-free salaries and a lower cost of living too you’ll have more opportunity to save money, and if you are a football fan you’ll be perfectly placed for the World Cup in 2020! If you'd be interested in Qatar discuss with your consultant about whether you'd be eligible.

Kuwait

A more traditionally Arabic country than the UAE, Kuwait can offer a much more genuine cultural experience. Their salaries are some of the best in the region and there are also some very reputable schools. The visa restrictions have a ‘matching qualifications’ rule like the UAE but they have no minimum experience requirement so it can be a great option for NQTs as well as experienced teachers.

You should be aware that Kuwait is a ‘dry’ country (so no alcohol except for a few locations) but there’s still loads to do and good expat communities including sports and social clubs. It’s well connected for travel in the holidays to use all the money you’ve saved and it’s also the hub for robot-jockey camel racing which is an incredible sight to behold.

China

When you remember that China is the most populated country in the world, and has an ever-growing economy, it’s not surprising that its market is booming with jobs. It’s also a varied and diverse place, with not just big cities like Beijing, but also smaller locations by the sea and even some near the panda-filled bamboo forests. 

Given the sheer volume of jobs in China, it’s here that you’ll have the highest chance of working in a world-class school, as well as getting a world-class salary and benefits package. And, Chinese schools can offer some of the best career development opportunities too! The main restriction here is that you must have more than 2 years of post-qualification experience.

Teachers in China are well respected and you’ll be dealing with well-behaved, hard-working students. It’s also very safe for westerners and a wonderful country to do some solo travelling in the school holidays!

Egypt

If you are interested in learning about history and culture, there are few better places than Egypt, and with some really good schools and a very low cost of living it can be great for both your career and wallet too. Some schools will even pay as much as 75% of your salary in your home currency and send it to your bank account for you - making saving a lot easier.

Life in Egypt is vibrant and exciting, Cairo in particular is full of things to do and you’ll never be bored. There are good expat communities and many ways to make friends while you are there and it’s very safe, unless you disturb a Pharaoh’s tomb and get cursed (!) but don’t let that put you off seeing the pyramids and Sphinx or the beautiful beach resorts. You’ll need a minimum of 3 years post-qualification experience to get a work visa here though.

Malaysia

Even though it’s on the other side of the world Malaysia has quite a lot in common with the UAE - it’s also a Muslim country with a liberal outlook, beautiful beaches, sunshine and a multicultural feel. The salaries you’ll earn there aren’t so high compared with the other locations on this list but the cost of living is low so the savings potentials are good.

With a mix of traditional Malay and colonial European influences, Malaysia is a metaphorical melting pot of culture and a literal melting pot of food - every restaurant there is it’s own style of ‘fusion cuisine’. It’s also ideally located to take cheap flights and explore the rest of Asia, or even go and see some orangutans and pygmy elephants in Malaysian Borneo!

Indonesia

If you don’t have 5 years of experience then move on, as Indonesia has the highest minimum experience requirement for work visas, however if you pass this hurdle then maybe Indonesia has everything you are looking for…

As the world’s largest archipelago, Indonesia is an incredibly diverse place - with more than 13,000 islands and 700 languages there will always be more for you to see and learn. By population it’s the world’s largest Muslim country but there are substantial numbers of other faiths and religious diversity is the norm. Bahasa Indonesia is their common language across the country and is one of the world’s easiest to learn so you’ll be able to learn to speak like a local quickly. Cost of living here is very low and so it’s really easy to save money and have a high standard of living at the same time and the locals really go out of their way to treat Westerners well.

Central Asia

A great option for any aspiring ‘tripsters’ looking to go to amazing places that your friends haven’t heard of, there are some great teaching opportunities in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan that will give you an incredible and unique experience, Central Asia is a blend of everything - the people are an ethnic mix of Chinese and European and a cultural mix of Russian and Arabic and while you’ll find other expats the whole area has been relatively untouched by tourism.

It does get cold in the winter, but that will just make you appreciate the landscapes more and it’s a fantastic option if you are an outdoorsy type. High salaries and low cost of living also make this a strong option for the money motivated. We also work with some really interesting schools and projects there than can be a great career step too - whenever we send people to the ‘stans they always give great feedback on their experiences

 
If you have any questions about these or any other locations. please click here to get in touch with us and our friendly consultants will help you work out where you’ll be happiest.