Much of the teaching will cover basic levels of English and grammar, and TEFL teachers can potentially work full time over a contract period of at least 12 months. Other benefits usually include paid return flights and visa, medical and health insurance, and free TV and Internet. All you need is a good BA degree and a recommended TEFL course, such as the 120-hour TEFL Org course, to get started.
TEFL jobs in Saudi Arabia are found in the country’s major cities, such as Dammam, Al Khobar, Riyadh, Jeddah, Al Baha, Medina and Jubail – all major population centres with good ex-pat communities.
Living and teaching in Saudi Arabia
Did you know that teaching English in Saudi Arabia commands some of the best paid TEFL jobs in the business? It’s a country many of us may overlook in our quest to find a great teaching position abroad but look a little closer because working in Saudi Arabia can offer a great deal of professional fulfilment and financial reward.
What Saudi Arabia can offer the TEFL teacher
While Saudi Arabia is a very conservative country which may put off some English teachers, employers are known for their high regard of the EFL teaching profession. Consequently, the pay is usually high and benefit packages second to none. Most employers are from the university sector and you’ll be teaching adults, many of whom will be university graduates. Other major employers include the Saudi oil industry and military, such as the air force.
One thing is for certain, you’ll escape the UK’s rain and cold working in Saudi Arabia, but be warned it’s very hot here during the summer months with temperatures regularly topping 40°C. That said, spring and autumns here are very pleasant with average temperatures of 29°C. Whatever the season, you’ll be living and working in air-conditioned surroundings, so the heat, while intense in summer months, can be avoided.
Your working week will usually be between 20 and 30 hours teaching and pay ranges, depending upon what qualification you have, between $2,700 and $3,500 per month. TEFL teachers with a Masters degree or PhD can command salaries upwards of $4,000.
The prospect of working and living in Saudi Arabia may be daunting at first, but remember you’ll be joining a group of teachers from a similar background to yourself. What’s more, most of the TEFL teaching contracts include fully furnished accommodation.
While you won’t be required to speak Arabic, however any knowledge you have of the language will be welcomed by your employers and will make your life in Saudi Arabia much easier.
In your free time, you’ll discover a very well established ex-pat community and will have plenty of opportunities to make friends. There’s also no shortage of things to do in a country that is steeped in history and culture. Whether it be a trip to the cosmopolitan city of Jeddah on the Red Sea or hiking and camping in the desert, there’s something for everyone. Football fans will also find a home here since it’s Saudi Arabia’s most popular sport.
An essentially safe country in which to live and work, Saudi Arabia follows a strict Islamic culture of respect, modesty, and self-control. These are certain factors to bear in mind for those intending working here but don’t mistake this way of life as being overly restrictive to the TEFL teacher. Working here can be a rich and enlightening experience and one where your talents as an English teacher will be both recognised and well rewarded.