Skip to Content

A Giant List of Advice and Resources for Teaching Abroad!

The Grand Bazaar in Istanbul, Turkey: One of many places Eliane traveled.
The Grand Bazaar in Istanbul, Turkey: One of many places Eliane traveled.

Yesterday, the article about Eliane came out, telling her amazing story of teaching English around the world through Airline ESL, Business English, and TESOL Teacher Training.

Today, Eliane has agreed to share with us all the super-useful processes and resources that she recommends to launch or further a career in Teaching-Traveling.

This advice is useful for finding teaching gigs around the world, as well as in the specific countries of Brazil and Canada, where Eliane has done extensive work. Take it away, Eliane!

Eliane: I have quite a few tips and suggestions which worked for me, so I’ll just list them here.

1. Take the time to think about why you want to travel and where you want to go. Then RESEARCH!!

2. Be prepared. Take a TESOL, CELTA, TEFL or TESL in class or online program. There are many programs and formats that range from 1 week to a year or even to a Master in Education program. The most important thing is to think of yourself, your personality and which format works better for you.

Teaching-Traveling expert Eliane, herself!
Teaching-Traveling expert Eliane, herself!

3. Get the right VISA to enter the country and know the rules!!!!

4. Get a passport, a bit of cash and traveller’s cheques, an international debit bank card, an international driver’s license (this can be your ID). Also get medical insurance!!! Don’t ever carry your passport with you. Stuff happens.

I was in Florence and second last day of my trip, I was in a hurry to go out and ended up forgetting to take my passport out of my purse… not a good ending… wallet was stolen probably in the bus and I never felt a thing and then it took me around 5 months to get all the documents again.

5. When you know the country you want to go to, research the web for teaching jobs and ask in different blogs and forums about the country and the company you would like to work for. I will list some schools below that are actually great schools to work for.

6. Regardless of having experience in teaching or not, be professional, arrive on time, prepare your classes!

7. Volunteer as a teacher in your country to get some experience and ask them if you can do a practicum at their school.

Vibrant downtown London on one of Eliane's travels.
Vibrant downtown London on one of Eliane’s travels.

8. If you leave your country with a signed contract, be sure to read all the details.

9. Learn some of the basic language of the country where you’re going to. You can get the Berlitz pocket books. They’re a great resource.

10. As a teacher, always have a good dictionary on you. If you have a laptop, you can use the online dictionary.

Here are some organizations and schools you can check out:

A) Chamber of Commerce: a very resourceful organization in all countries.

B) In Canada:

– Be a supply teacher in different colleges or universities. They usually have an ESL department and their continuing education or extension programs have separate ESL programs.

– Good schools to work for in Canada: ILSC, EF, LSC, Global Village Centers, PLI.

C) Brazil:

– Good language schools to work for: Fisk Schools, CNA, Alumni Association, Cellep, Seven, Berlitz.

– If you have some experience in teaching and want to teach Business Communication, The Trend School is the top company in this market segment.

Globe Theater London.
The famous Globe Theater in London.

– Universities have extension programs and continuing education programs that are partnerships with language schools and held privately. Contact them as you can also teach in these programs.

If you are interested in teaching English for Specific Purposes:

– Ask yourself which market you are interested in.

– Research the country and city you are going to for the companies you can approach; call or email and ask them if they have a language department or if they would be interested in setting up a program within the company.

– Prepare yourself – this area requires a proactive approach and it also requires you to have meetings, define company’s and participant’s needs so you can design a program, select or develop materials and so forth.

– Regardless of the market niche you choose to pursue, be sure to read news and magazines to keep yourself informed but also to spot trends which lead to opportunities.

– Network, get out and meet people, enroll in a course (any type of course to practice the local language).

– Don’t hang around only foreigners; you have chosen to move to that country so make sure you make friends with locals and get to know the culture, the language and its people.

– Don’t do or try any drugs as the laws in different countries are extremely strict and at times drastic.

A stunning photo from Eliane’s travels in Thailand.

– Enjoy yourself and have fun!

– Be flexible, be open as the first three months you will feel like a tourist but right after you may experience culture shock as it hits you that you are now residing in that country and life is different when you are a resident and not a tourist.

– Take time to travel as it opens up a whole new world and changes you – I had the opportunity to travel to France, Italy, Greece, Croatia, Turkey, Canada, Brazil, Thailand, China, Korea, Japan, Mexico all due to teaching and traveling… great fun, great places to find yourself and meet so many amazing people along the way.

– LIVE & TAKE TIME TO ENJOY BEING THERE!!!!! This is what you take with you, the experience, the people and a part of you that you have either rediscovered or discovered!

Three last things!

1. When choosing the country you want to live in, take time to reflect on what you like and don’t like, what you’re willing to compromise, what type of cultures are easier for you to live in and what type of teaching experience you want.

2. Do your research, get all documents, shots, funds and clothes for your trip. Scan all your documents and email them to yourself so you have it on file in case anything happens. Trust me it comes in handy.

3. If you are going to pursue English for specific purposes, visit our website as we are focused on bringing practical tools and solutions for global teachers and we provide three teacher training programs that can prepare you for specialized segments.

Teaching Traveling: Thanks so much, Eliane! Readers, what questions or comments do you have?


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Tuesday 4th of June 2013

Great article, thank you.

Lillie of

Wednesday 5th of June 2013

Glad it helps!!

Dr. Mishele Newkirk-Smith

Thursday 17th of January 2013

Great list of resources. One item I would add that I learned living in many other countries is to buy an unlocked smart phone. The Apple store now sells unlocked phones but these can be very expensive. We found that we were able to get our cell phones unlocked in most countries outside the US just by asking around. Once the phone is unlocked, we were able to buy SIM cards for our phones. These are pay-as-you go calling chips specific to the country. I had a pocket on my cell phone case to keep all of my SIM cards. I would just switch out the cards as I arrived in a new country. This is a great way for the family to keep in touch with each other.

Bruce Jones

Monday 23rd of April 2012

Great article! One of the best ways to teach abroad is to become professional certified with a TEFL school, International TEFL Academy is one of the largest in the world with over 1,000 new graduates teaching in over 80 countries worldwide.

Barry O'Leary

Saturday 4th of February 2012

Very interesting post. Brings back memories of my trip. Loved the photos.

wandering educators

Friday 3rd of February 2012

what a great resource list - thank you!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.