When is the best time to apply for a job teaching English abroad?

Although most TEFL destinations have a certain number of schools that recruit all year round, there are some that have peak hiring periods. With this in mind here is TEFL Courses Ireland’s guide, divided by region, to the times of highest demand. Be sure to keep this in mind, especially if you are applying to a competitive TEFL destination.

Teaching English in Europe

Language school hiring seasons – 
Primary: August/September   Secondary: January
Many TEFL teachers leave their positions over the summer, creating huge demand for new teachers in Europe to fill these TEFL jobs as schools begin new sessions in September and early October. There are exceptions to this rule, especially Turkey and Russia, who tend to hire all year round.
There are also many opportunities to work in TEFL summer camps in Europe, which usually begin to hire students around the start of the year. It is however possible to secure Summer Camp work as late as June. As an exception, Turkey and Russia hire all year round.

Teaching English in Central America

Language school hiring seasons –
Primary: June/July   Secondary: January/February
Many schools in Costa Rica will interview in December for TEFL positions beginning in January. Whereas the demand for TEFL teachers in Mexico is high enough that language schools are hiring year-round.

Teaching English in South America

Language school hiring seasons –
Primary: February/March   Secondary: July/August.
The summer academic term in South America ends in February kicking of the first hiring season. Second hiring season is after the mid-year holiday break which generally ends in August. South America is growing rapidly as a TEFL destination with new schools springing up on a regular basis, so you may not have too much difficulty finding roles outside the peak times.

Teaching English in Asia

Language school hiring seasons –
In Asia, the enormous population and emphasis on learning English as a foreign language has created a TEFL job market exponentially larger than those in Europe and Latin America, and for these reasons TEFL teachers are hired all year round! There is huge demand on a regular basis in countries such as China, Thailand and Vietnam.

For those interested in teaching English in South Korea, public schools typically interview and recruit TEFL teachers during the spring and early summer for August and September start dates. Some public schools will also recruit English teachers in the fall for positions that begin in January, February or March.

In Japan, the Jet Program, which recruits approximately 4,000 English teachers from native English speaking countries annually requires that applications be submitted the first of December for positions beginning the following autumn (interviews will follow).

Teaching English in the Middle East

Language school hiring seasons –
Positions are open throughout the year for those looking to find a TEFL job in the Middle East.
In countries such as the U.A.E., Qatar and Saudi Arabia, public and private schools for children, as well as vocational schools, colleges and universities typically interview and recruit TEFL teachers during the spring and early summer for August and September start dates.Some public schools will also recruit TEFL teachers in the fall for positions that begin in January, February or March.

In developing Arab countries like Morocco, Egypt and Jordan, some language schools hire in advance, but most jobs will be found local in-country.

TEFL Certification Timeline Guide

When you book an accredited course with TEFL Courses Ireland you have up to 6 months to complete your Combined or Online TEFL course, although many students take a lot less time; around 6-8 weeks is common. The Classroom element of your TEFL course is completed over just two or three days. After you have completed your online feedback you will receive your official TEFL certificate within 21 days.

You can start applying for TEFL jobs as soon as you enrol on your course and many of our TEFL students already have a TEFL job lined up and waiting for them before they complete their TEFL course.

TEFL Jobs Centre

All of our TEFL students have exclusive access to our TEFL Jobs Centre, with TEFL jobs all around the world which are open to our graduates only. As employers are always approaching us looking to hire our graduates, new TEFL positions are regularly being updated and added to the site. You will have a lifetime access to the site, so no matter where you are in the world, or what time of year, you can log in a find a job teaching English abroad.

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One thought on “When is the best time to apply for a job teaching English abroad?

  1. Re Teaching English in Europe

    I am a fully qualified (Level 10) post-primary school teacher based in Cork city, Ireland. I would be very interested in working for TEFL for the summer months (July/August). Can you please let me know of availability? Ideally, based n Ireland.

    Thank you.

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