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British Council in Cairo - CELTA Teacher Training
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nstick13



Joined: 01 Dec 2008
Posts: 104
Location: The Ohio State University

PostPosted: Thu Feb 19, 2009 2:26 pm    Post subject: British Council in Cairo - CELTA Teacher Training Reply with quote

Can anyone provide feedback regarding the assistance in finding a job after completing their program? Has anyone done this program and have any thoughts to share? I posted on the teacher training forum, and am awaiting a response there as well.

Thanks for all the help!
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 19, 2009 2:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The BC seems to have just taken over the CELTA in Egypt. It used to be done at another language school and then it wasn't available at all for a few years. Finding you a job isn't normally a part of the CELTA program although just being there doing it allows you to do some research on the ground and I'm sure that they and other teachers will point you to the possibilities.

I think doing it in Cairo is a great idea if you plan to teach in the Middle East and I'd make it tops of my list. (a fun place to spend a month studying Laughing)

VS
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nstick13



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PostPosted: Thu Feb 19, 2009 7:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's basically what I've found VS. The reason I'd even had questions about other options is because BC Cairo just put their course dates up in the past couple days. So I'm planning a move around the world not knowing if/when they'll release more course information. The dates don't line up with my calendar terribly well, but I'll make it work. Cairo was the top choice. Been there and loved it. It makes the most sense, but we clearly wanted to investigate all of our options.

Some info I've found regarding rent, etc.

I'm planning on 1500/person (traveling with my g/f) for rent for a furnished 2 BR place. I've been told this will get a VERY nice place Cairo. I'm figuring each of us can live on the equivalent of 700-1000 USD (per person) or about 3500-5000 LE, with rent included. I live on that now in the States. And, I think that's a tad on the high end and could EASILY be trimmed back.

I would prefer to not have a hotel stay, and to be able to move straight into an apartment when arriving in Cairo. A good friend of mine is Egyptian and is willing to make calls on our behalf. The problem I've realized is most of the places I have access to here are via the internet, making the almost by default nicer (and thus more expensive) places.

I'm not expecting to make a salary immediately that's outrageous. I fully expect to have to live on some money I've saved for a month, and even with a job to subsidize with previously saved money. With only a CELTA, what type of contributions can I expect a job to bring to this overall budget?

Anyone have thoughts about rent/living expenses/etc.?
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 20, 2009 4:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welll... we need someone currently there to know the current prices. With inflation and the tanking of the Egyptian pound... and everything in between, I no long know what that will get you.

Since you have been to Cairo, you realize that what some will say is a VERY nice place... appears to be a real dump to us. You should be able to find something in Agouza, Mohandeseen or even Zamalek which is near the British Council. (unless the course is at the Heliopolis branch)

BC is usually a pretty efficient place. They could probably answer your questions if you called them. (SKYPE?)

VS
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nstick13



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PostPosted: Fri Feb 20, 2009 5:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, I was hoping someone else would pick up on this thread.

The pound is no worse than it was when I was in Cairo last spring. And, interestingly, on our trip we only saw the outside of apartments, which obviously all look very similar. We never saw the inside of any Egyptian apartment, about which I was disappointed.

I have a blog that talks about expenses bookmarked on my computer at home--found it on an Expat forum--I'll post it here when I'm back there. I think that person lived on about a total of 3000 LE a month. And, my friend is visiting his family in the end of March, so he should be able to provide some insight.

So, to all out there, any ideas on monthly expenses to live in Cairo? Can a Mod change the title of this thread to "How expensive is living in Cairo?"

Thanks to all in advance.
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 20, 2009 3:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Me again. (sorry) Laughing I think you can change the title to the thread yourself. But... if no one has responded, it is likely because none of the current residents are here at the moment - not the title.

I can tell you that when I last lived in Cairo as a local hire for a semester in early 2001, I paid 2000 pounds a month for a tiny one-bedroom in Zamalek... but it had a view of the Nile from the bedroom balcony, TV, AC, and a washing machine (all of which can be noticeable mostly by their absence) but it was for 4+ months and I was getting a very high salary at the time.

The furniture style of rental flats can be very... um... interesting. Normally the cast offs of the landlord... tends to be a predominance of chairs. Cool

VS
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egyptfan



Joined: 29 Nov 2004
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 20, 2009 7:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not sure of your nationality but just a quick comment in relation to your query on employment after the CELTA. As far as I know, the BC can only employ British and Egyptian (full-time) staff due to some local regulation or other.
Hope this does not pour cold water on your plans. Cairo is a great place to do the CELTA and I'm sure you would find work in other places with the CELTA. Depending on when you do it, I think part-time work, especially in the summer, would probably be available at the BC, irrespective of nationality.

Don't know how much apartments are right now but I'd say 3500 LE a month would get you a reasonable place near the BC.
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nstick13



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PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 2:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

.....tumbleweed.....

Anyone else have thoughts?
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

....chirp... chirp...

You'd probably be more successful just calling the BC in Agouza and asking them about it.

VS
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nstick13



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PostPosted: Sat Feb 28, 2009 4:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've been in e-mail contact with them, but it's always nice to find some information that's not straight from the horse's mouth.

Is that expressions apt in this situation?!
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 28, 2009 4:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

When I used to go to Cairo regularly to visit I always stayed here:

http://hotels.lonelyplanet.com/hotel/Cairo-New-Star-Hotel-P129699.html

I had heard that it closed, but I just found it on Lonely Planet. It would be within walking distance to the BC if you are the hardy type. I used to walk over there to use their library. Of course, I was used to Cairo traffic by then. Cool I liked that it had a little kitchenette and the bedroom is separate from the living area. It was very run down the last time I stayed there, but the location is fantastic. In 2001, it cost 2000 LE a month...

I sent an email to a friend in Zamalek. If he is there to reply, perhaps he can check if it is still there... or you can try the email address at the website above.

VS
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nstick13



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PostPosted: Sat Feb 28, 2009 7:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, VS. Your help is greatly appreciated.

I did join the Egyptian Apple Users' Group, and hopefully will be able to use that to network. And, my Egyptian friend will be visiting the country late this month.
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 01, 2009 4:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I heard back from my friend (surprisingly fast) and he says that the New Star is still limping along. He also recommended a place called the Mayfair Hotel in Zamalek... which is more of a hostel I think. He says that he knows a woman who has been living there on a temporary contract and she likes it well enough.

Both of these places are close to the BC and would be good until you can find something you might like better. Zamalek is a great neighborhood... considered very posh by Egyptian standards... with good shopping. It is safe, friendly, and easy to catch taxis to wherever you want to go.

VS
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I researched the Mayfair and figure that will be our first stop, regardless of where we do the CELTA. I remember driving through this area when I was in Cairo. Several factors play into that decision, the majority being it guarantees transportation to the airport, lets us do some of our own work on the ground, check the places ourselves, not have to worry about not liking a place, lets us figure out where we might work, and several others.

We were each accepted to Language Link CELTA program in London; though that one is suddenly the most expensive of our final choices because they recently raised their prices for the last half of the year. The CELTA instructor didn't know that when I interviewed with her, and couldn't believe how much the price had gone up; it was quite comical.

A note about my interview--I was confident I had a good command of the English language. Both my parents were English teachers, I had good English teachers throughout school, and learned a ton about English in my Arabic classes. I was stunned to find out there were 12 tenses in English. We identified a few areas on which I need to "brush up" and I am excited to do so.

Also, my copy of "Practical Guide to Cairo" arrived today. Regrettably it's 2005, but I don't feel like much has changed. I bought it used on Amazon for like $11, so I'm happy with it.

VS: Would your friend mind assisting a bit with the Mayfair in the future? Specifically, are they willing to negotiate a lower-rate month contract, or week-by-week contract? I obviously am not to that point yet, but before I know it, I will be. Again, all of your help is much appreciated.
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 2:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That might be pushing things. He's not Egyptian... perhaps your Egyptian friend would be a better choice. What I suggest is to just go and check in. Then you can scope things out... talk to other people living there longer term... check out other options... then go ahead and bargain it on your own. I wouldn't base where I stay by just getting a ride back to the airport in a month. Any hotel can arrange that easily. Do check out the New Star too. Get prices at various places and that gives you negotiating power.

12 tenses in English? Well that depends on how you define tense. This is one of those things that linguistics professors sit in their ivory towers and debate. Laughing You are also going to run into the differences between American and British English.

You could have picked up the newest practical guide once you got there... and I just noticed that Amazon has the newest edition for only $13.57. But, I suspect that the pyramids and stuff are still in the same place.

VS
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