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Feature photo by Alessandro Vannucci
Photo above by Six in the World

Wanting to secure a job
that allows nearly unlimited travel options? Teaching English to Speakers of other Languages (ESOL) can afford you the financial freedom to stay on the move. In this podcast episode, Craig Martin briefs you on the qualifications needed for and job opportunities available in the ESOL world.

Craig has been funding travel through teaching English as a Second Language since 2003 and has been using it to fund a two-years-and-counting world trip. It is a viable way of staying solvent whilst seeing all the places you’ve ever dreamed of.

Some companies will give you in-house training when you get a position, others will expect a University degree along with a highly recognised qualification. The two most sought-after by ESOL schools are the Trinity TESOL and the CELTA certificates. Are you just looking for work? Check out the job listings and at Dave’s ESL cafe. We regularly receive hundreds of volunteer and paid job opportunities a week through their RSS feeds.

Don’t miss the chance to subscribe to the Traveler’s Notebook Podcasts in iTunes. Click here now for a free subscription.

ESL Teaching


About The Author

Craig Martin

Podcaster and writer Craig Martin has been traveling full-time in Europe since leaving Auckland, New Zealand in February 2006. With a degree in Media Studies and English plus a penchant for Coleridge, he's currently homeless in Europe. Craig podcasts at the Indie Travel Podcast and regularly blogs at Our Crazy Travels along with his wife Linda.

  • Peter Trinder

    Great article! If you are looking for a job in teaching English as a second language, it may be worth contacting one of our licensed partners around the world. Visit our website – – to find out more information.

  • tristan bailey

    I enjoy listening to your podcast and would be interested in how you work while you travel. We offer TEFL job listings on our TEFL website and training in TESOL, CELTA and TEFL for people looking to start teaching,

  • Craig

    Hi Peter and Tristan. Tristan, I tend to do just that; work and travel.

    I either take short term contracts which allow me to travel between them or I find work with companies that send me out on intensive courses in different countries.

    (Often short-term contracts will offer to reimburse me for flights et al. so I can spend an extra month or so travelling around that area.)

  • tristan bailey

    Thanks Craig, what countries are next on your list?

  • Craig

    I’m spending some time in the UK, Spain, Portugal, Turkey and France over the next few months. Not working for any of it; just doing lots of walking and meeting some friends and family along the way.

  • bipolar2

    Do your research — there are plenty of rip-offs out there. Poor pay, worse accommodation . . . .

  • Pingback: How to Become an English Teacher in Mexico

  • ree ree leigh

    i am a single mother of one child is this a job that would be possible for me to do? i would love for my son to grow up experiencing world travel…

  • Chrissy

    I think this would be a fantastic opportunity for me…I’m just wondering, how do you sort out the crappy certification programs? The ones you listed aren’t in the States (anywhere near me, anyway) and I’ve picked up that you need in-person classes to make it worthwhile. Any suggestions? I was looking into BridgeTEFL because they offer mostly online work with some weekend seminars I can travel to. Are they reputable?

  • Lauren

    Hi, I currently an English teacher living in England and am looking for work abroad. Every site I look on appears to tell me I need to have TEFL training, however I have been teaching now for three years and feel that it would be a waste of money for me. Can I get around it and not complete a TEFL do you think?

    • ESLinsider

      It depends some on what sites you look at. It also depends on the school and the country. In most of Asia you don’t need it, you’ll usually just need a degree. They can be preferred by some schools, but there’s other preferences too that I have written about.

      If it’s true that you’re an English teacher then that will be honored more than any TEFL certificate will be. I took a TESOL course and I didn’t see myself having any advantage over my non-TESOL qualified friends. The majority of teachers that I met teaching in Taiwan, Korea, China and Japan didn’t take TEFL courses.

      Many TEFL/TESOL providers will tell you that you need it which may not be the case. Or they’ll have some other marketing story wired into it. TEFL/TESOL is big business. It could help you, but I wouldn’t take one of those courses again.

  • Carlos J Mendes

    I’m a brazilian one. Is there some oportunity to me to work abroad? i.e. in France?

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