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Is 32,000 baht a good monthly salary (rent included)?

 
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jcoral128



Joined: 18 Jun 2012
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2012 7:45 pm    Post subject: Is 32,000 baht a good monthly salary (rent included)? Reply with quote

I'm considering taking a job teaching in Thailand and the salary they're offering is $1,000 a month, or 32,000 baht or so. Does that salary sound like a good one, especially if the school is going to cover rent?

I'll also have to take a training class that will cost about $1,000. Lots of upfront expenses, but I just want to see if I'll be able to save any money or travel at all with those requirements.

I don't have any ESL teaching experience, so I'm wondering if this sounds good for someone like me.
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tttompatz



Joined: 06 Mar 2010
Posts: 1951
Location: Talibon, Bohol, Philippines

PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2012 11:29 pm    Post subject: Re: Is 32,000 baht a good monthly salary (rent included)? Reply with quote

jcoral128 wrote:
I'm considering taking a job teaching in Thailand and the salary they're offering is $1,000 a month, or 32,000 baht or so. Does that salary sound like a good one, especially if the school is going to cover rent?

I'll also have to take a training class that will cost about $1,000. Lots of upfront expenses, but I just want to see if I'll be able to save any money or travel at all with those requirements.

I don't have any ESL teaching experience, so I'm wondering if this sounds good for someone like me.


The wage is nothing spectacular. It is on the low end of average for someone with a degree. It is OK out in the country and is (in my opinion) a bare minimum if you live in or close to BKK.

The requirement to take your agency's TEFL course is dodgy (not that training is bad but as long as you have a degree you can get work and a work permit without it).

IF you don't have a degree then it is all dodgy (since the degree is a requirement for legal work and work permit).

BEST ADVICE:

IF you have a degree, transcripts, police check, the price of a plane ticket and 100,000 thb in your pocket then go to BKK and start looking with your resume in hand. You won't do any worse and could likely do better than that offer.

If you don't have a degree then CAVEAT EMPTOR (buyer beware). The vast majority of TEFL course sellers are more into getting your money by selling dreams of work abroad than anything else. (Their website looks more like a travel agency brochure than anything else).

Legal work, proper visa and work permit won't be in your future. Regular runs to the border for a new tourist visa, working illegally on an EDU visa and looking over your shoulder for immigration to walk through the door are in your future.

LAST THOUGHTS:
TEFL (in Asia in general) is a grind.
It means a 40-50 hour work week in hot classrooms filled with far too many kids and not enough resources.
It is NOT a working vacation with your mornings in class, afternoons on the beach and evenings at the disco.

.
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plumpy nut



Joined: 12 Mar 2011
Posts: 746

PostPosted: Tue Jun 26, 2012 12:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Forget the job and forget the training class. For a little more than a thousand you can get a 120 hr. TEFL certificate that is accepted everywhere as legitimate. I would hate to see you shell out money for something that is good mostly for your job, which will then sizzle out after about 2 months and was never that great to begin with. Free housing tends to be something worse than a university area slum anyway. You probably wouldn't want to stay in it.
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MaiPenRai



Joined: 17 Jan 2006
Posts: 380
Location: BKK

PostPosted: Tue Jun 26, 2012 12:13 am    Post subject: Re: Is 32,000 baht a good monthly salary (rent included)? Reply with quote

jcoral128 wrote:
I'm considering taking a job teaching in Thailand and the salary they're offering is $1,000 a month, or 32,000 baht or so. Does that salary sound like a good one, especially if the school is going to cover rent?

I'll also have to take a training class that will cost about $1,000. Lots of upfront expenses, but I just want to see if I'll be able to save any money or travel at all with those requirements.

I don't have any ESL teaching experience, so I'm wondering if this sounds good for someone like me.


For your first job in Thailand and with no experience, this is a pretty standard offer for Thailand schools. If you are a young attractive female (sorry but true), especially British, you can sometimes find 40-50,000 baht/mth with no experience if you work at a nursery or pre-school.

The $1000 up front for training sounds iffy. Is it a TEFL course? If you are willing to work with a TEFL course for a guaranteed spot, you should just go ahead and contact agencies directly because the TEFL schools just usually just ship you out to agencies anyways (or they operate their own agency in combination with TEFL school). You save $1000 this way.

Quote:
TEFL (in Asia in general) is a grind.
It means a 40-50 hour work week in hot classrooms filled with far too many kids and not enough resources.
It is NOT a working vacation with your mornings in class, afternoons on the beach and evenings at the disco


Ya, its tough and ya its not the working vacation many expect, but if you are halfway intelligent and care about doing a good job at all, you will learn the ropes and be fine. IMO, 40-50 hour work weeks is a bit much. Expect to teach 18-24 classes/week at a government school and up to 30 at a language school. At government schools you are almost always teaching the same level multiple times, so your make one lesson plan that can be used up to 10 times in some cases. You will be expected to be at a government school from about 7:30-4:00 Monday to Friday, but your prep/planning shouldnt be that difficult once you figure it out.

30-32K + housing is standard for anything outside of Bangkok in a government school. And in fact in many places it is slightly above average. (Chiang Mai, down south, some provinces in NE Thailand or Isaan, etc.)
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jcoral128



Joined: 18 Jun 2012
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Tue Jun 26, 2012 5:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks everyone. Yeah, the school itself certainly does seem like it trends sketchy rather than 100 percent reliable. I'll look into other agencies/schools; if anyone has any recommendations on particular ones and wants to post them it would of course be much appreciated.

I definitely have never been planning on making my stay in Thailand a vacation, but I don't necessarily anticipate teaching long term, which is why anywhere that offers it cheaply with a short-term contract is appealing to me. (Of course that also opens up the sketchy possibilities as being appealing, rather than the more reliable CELTA programs...)
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jcoral128



Joined: 18 Jun 2012
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Tue Jun 26, 2012 5:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh, and in response to MaiPennRai, it is a TEFL course, so I'm wondering if you think that also means I should look anywhere.
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Sophisticate



Joined: 29 May 2010
Posts: 38

PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2012 7:21 am    Post subject: Re: Is 32,000 baht a good monthly salary (rent included)? Reply with quote

tttompatz wrote:
jcoral128 wrote:
I'm considering taking a job teaching in Thailand and the salary they're offering is $1,000 a month, or 32,000 baht or so. Does that salary sound like a good one, especially if the school is going to cover rent?

I'll also have to take a training class that will cost about $1,000. Lots of upfront expenses, but I just want to see if I'll be able to save any money or travel at all with those requirements.

I don't have any ESL teaching experience, so I'm wondering if this sounds good for someone like me.


The wage is nothing spectacular. It is on the low end of average for someone with a degree. It is OK out in the country and is (in my opinion) a bare minimum if you live in or close to BKK.

The requirement to take your agency's TEFL course is dodgy (not that training is bad but as long as you have a degree you can get work and a work permit without it).

IF you don't have a degree then it is all dodgy (since the degree is a requirement for legal work and work permit).

BEST ADVICE:

IF you have a degree, transcripts, police check, the price of a plane ticket and 100,000 thb in your pocket then go to BKK and start looking with your resume in hand. You won't do any worse and could likely do better than that offer.

If you don't have a degree then CAVEAT EMPTOR (buyer beware). The vast majority of TEFL course sellers are more into getting your money by selling dreams of work abroad than anything else. (Their website looks more like a travel agency brochure than anything else).

Legal work, proper visa and work permit won't be in your future. Regular runs to the border for a new tourist visa, working illegally on an EDU visa and looking over your shoulder for immigration to walk through the door are in your future.

LAST THOUGHTS:
TEFL (in Asia in general) is a grind.
It means a 40-50 hour work week in hot classrooms filled with far too many kids and not enough resources.
It is NOT a working vacation with your mornings in class, afternoons on the beach and evenings at the disco.

.


It does NOT mean a forty to fifty hour work week for me. It means much less than that.
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tttompatz



Joined: 06 Mar 2010
Posts: 1951
Location: Talibon, Bohol, Philippines

PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2012 8:36 am    Post subject: Re: Is 32,000 baht a good monthly salary (rent included)? Reply with quote

Sophisticate wrote:
It does NOT mean a forty to fifty hour work week for me. It means much less than that.


And you are a newbie, fresh off the plane with no classroom experience?

He is an apple and you are an orange.

Regular school jobs are a 40 hour week (M-F, 8-ish - 4:30-ish).

Typical (full-time) entry level jobs in EFL mean 20-30 hours per week in the classroom and unless you work for some dodgy academy you will certainly be expected to put in prep, marking, and extra curricular activities as part of your regular routine.

It is a daily grind (like any other job) and not a working holiday with mornings in the classroom, afternoons on the beach and evenings in the disco / dance club.

.
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flow



Joined: 31 Aug 2012
Posts: 38

PostPosted: Sat Oct 13, 2012 11:05 pm    Post subject: Re: Is 32,000 baht a good monthly salary (rent included)? Reply with quote

Quote:


LAST THOUGHTS:
TEFL (in Asia in general) is a grind.
It means a 40-50 hour work week in hot classrooms filled with far too many kids and not enough resources.
It is NOT a working vacation with your mornings in class, afternoons on the beach and evenings at the disco.

.


Nicely summed up!
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Solar Strength



Joined: 12 Jul 2005
Posts: 560
Location: Bangkok, Thailand

PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2012 10:36 pm    Post subject: Re: Is 32,000 baht a good monthly salary (rent included)? Reply with quote

flow wrote:
Quote:


LAST THOUGHTS:
TEFL (in Asia in general) is a grind.
It means a 40-50 hour work week in hot classrooms filled with far too many kids and not enough resources.
It is NOT a working vacation with your mornings in class, afternoons on the beach and evenings at the disco.

.


Nicely summed up!


It's not unusual to find people posting messages on the Thai forum asking about TEFL teaching jobs in Phuket so that they can go to the beach every day and surf and be near the night life, etc.

What they don't seem to realize is that to make it in a place like Thailand as a EFL'er, you need to work - and work a lot. It's NOT an indefinite holiday or vacation with only a few hours in the classroom and then hitting the beach for the rest of the day.

People are delusional if they think that's the lifestyle we typically lead. Far from it. The reality is that it's a slog for the vast majority of TEFL'ers in Thailand.
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