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Need advice! Incheon or Songpa?

 
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cgirl



Joined: 28 Jan 2013

PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:15 pm    Post subject: Need advice! Incheon or Songpa? Reply with quote

Hello,

I have been offered jobs in both Incheon and Songpa. I have heard Songpa is a great place to live but the contract for this job requires split shifts as required which I have read are really awful to do. The job in Incheon however, is an SLP program which I have heard really negative reviews about. Otherwise, they are both equal pay with all the benefits one would expect. I have no idea which one to choose and any advice would be appreciated!!


Thanks in advance!
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Michlerish



Joined: 08 Jan 2013

PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not even in Korea yet, but I've read bad reviews of teachers living in Incheon. They don't like it, from what I recall.

Songpa I hear is amazing.

Considering the work, I think I'd much rather work split shifts with a great school and colleagues... then one shift in a crappy school and bad management. Sounds like you'd be happier overall in Songpa. I actually turned down a couple of positions in/around Songpa, and they did not require split shifts. Perhaps you should keep looking?
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NYC_Gal 2.0



Joined: 10 Dec 2010

PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 12:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like Incheon. I'm not familiar with Songpo, so can't help you on that one. It really does depend on the schedule/coworkers/etc, though.
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Son Deureo!



Joined: 30 Apr 2003

PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 1:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd think twice about taking any job that requires a split shift if I were you. They're exhausting, bad for your health, and detrimental to any chance at a decent social life outside of work.

I went into more detail about splits and adult hogwons on this old thread: http://forums.eslcafe.com/korea/viewtopic.php?t=60621&highlight=split+shifts

The only thing I'd add now is that working at an adult hogwon isn't so likely to help you get a uni job any more unless you already have a master's. At least, I assume you're looking at an adult hogwon. If you got an offer from a kiddie hogwon that wants you to work split shifts, tell them to stick it!

As for the Incheon SLP job, SLP seems to have a reputation for requiring longer hours than most hogwons for the same or less pay. Do searches on this board and Google for SLP plus the name of your location (there's probably more than one SLP in Incheon, so be as specific as you can).

Incheon is a big city area-wise, so neighborhoods can vary pretty dramatically. Some parts are full of expensive high-rise apartment buildings, others are industrial wastelands, there are seedy red light districts, a Chinatown, harbors full of container ships, and other parts are downright rural. There are neighborhoods with decent night life, like Bupyeong and Arts Center/City Hall, and express buses and subway trains from many parts of Incheon that will get you to Seoul within an hour or less. There are also some very lovely islands with beaches that make for awesome weekend getaways when the weather is warm.

Most expats prefer Seoul to Incheon (myself included), but I had a great time there for a year and wouldn't turn down a job just because it's in Incheon as long as you live within walking distance of a subway station.
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PREEST



Joined: 20 Jan 2013

PostPosted: Sun Feb 03, 2013 3:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Michlerish wrote:
I'm not even in Korea yet, but I've read bad reviews of teachers living in Incheon. They don't like it, from what I recall.

Songpa I hear is amazing.

Considering the work, I think I'd much rather work split shifts with a great school and colleagues... then one shift in a crappy school and bad management. Sounds like you'd be happier overall in Songpa. I actually turned down a couple of positions in/around Songpa, and they did not require split shifts. Perhaps you should keep looking?


Keep looking and turn down two jobs in great locations?

OP, please don't take advice from people who have never been to Korea. I lived in Incheon for 18 months and loved it. It is more suburban than Seoul and not as crowded. It is only and hour or so away on the subway. It has a lot of great areas for shopping and partying etc, and currently has a new 'international city' called Songdo, which is constantly under development and will be a major hub in coming years.
There are a lot of festivals and concerts going on and there is always something to do~

I landed a job recently near Incheon as I really wanted to go back.
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Dazed and Confused



Joined: 10 Jan 2003

PostPosted: Sun Feb 03, 2013 6:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't know anything about Songpa but I've been in Incheon over 12 years. It all depends on the area you're living in. Bupyong is great! Even Chuan and Yoensu dong have their advantages. Places like the islands or Geomdan take a certain type of person to live there and enjoy it. It wouldn't be for me.

I've heard good and bad things about SLP over the years. They are a chain and have their own curriculum. If you're an inexperienced teacher it might not be a bad idea.
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watergirl



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Location: Ansan, south korea

PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2013 4:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you can, try and get an email of one of the foreign teachers at each place.
then, email the teacher and try and ask if you can phone them. Try to be delicate about this and phrase it like you want to ask things about the area etc. Remember, they do have a job there so won't want to be too negative but, I think, people's level of happiness can be heard in their voice etc.

Get a sense of how happy they are, the area really depends on what part of Incheon you're in (if you're not in the good,central part near a subway station, then people seem to really dislike Incheon).
I personally feel it's important to be within walking distance of a subway station.
Yes, SLP does have a bad reputation, mainly I think for long hours, but it seems that each branch has its own culture.. (depends on how nice the other foreigners are) and your area.
By the way, A lot of Koreans like Songpa but I don't know about foreigners.
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watergirl



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Location: Ansan, south korea

PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2013 4:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

and the people I've known who have had adult, split shifts say that they can't get a proper sleep during the week, never even mind the social life.

I guess it's hard to go to sleep right after work, at night but you have to get up SO early that you'll always be tired.
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